Going to Mecca by Na’ima B. Robert illustrated by Valentina Cavallini

Standard

Going to Mecca

With Hajj starting in the next few days, this is a wonderful book to share with children (and adults) of all ages. The simple text flows, although it doesn’t rhyme, and is action oriented as the reader is encouraged to accompany a family on the rituals of Hajj.  The short sentences keep the book flowing and give the Arabic terms for the actions being performed.   The pictures show what each step looks like and are large, inviting, and colorful.  While the text doesn’t give abundant detail to someone unfamiliar with Hajj, there is basic information about Hajj at the end of the book.

Overall the book, in my opinion, works best for those familiar with Hajj and Islam. For those who are not, they will understand the basics, but probably be at a loss to delve much deeper or to answer any questions without further research. I plan to read it for story time at school and use a storyboard with the students after the initial reading to see what they can recall about the steps of Hajj, supplement, and share with their peers.  I also plan to read it with my own children to do the same, as it leaves plenty of holes where those with more knowledge about the details will feel empowered in contributing to the story discussion and thus making the book enjoyable and engaging for older aged children.

The book is not AR, but most second graders should be able to read it independently without trouble.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s