Traveling Man, The Journey of Ibn Battuta, 1325-1354 By James Rumford

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travelingThis is a fascinating book about 14th century explorer Ibn Battuta. Born in Morrocco, Ibn Battuta, travelled to China, Russia, through Africa, totaling some 75,000 miles in all and returning to document his travels and lessons. A devout Muslim he performed Hajj and saw the beauty of Islam in much of his travels. The book is beautifully done, as the words flow around the pages in both English and Arabic calligraphy. The story is simple enough to be read aloud in a Social Studies class or poured over independently time and again. It has an AR level of 4.0 and I think if it correlates with a lesson about Ibn Battuta, or is read in conjunction with lessons of Marco Polo and even Christopher Columbus, the book will be well received. I can’t forsee anyone younger than second grade truly understanding his journey, and how remarkable it was then, and still is today. This non-fiction book is clean and imaginative in summarizing his travels. Adults as well as children will spend time analiyzing the pictures and maps included in this 34 page book.

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