The Turtle of Oman by Naomi Shihab Nye

Ages 8 and up (younger kids welcome as listeners)
  • Reading Led by Jennifer Gordon

    Librarian at Malcolm X Elementary School, Berkeley

In this participatory reading, young readers are invited to read aloud the opening chapter(s) of a book and then take home a copy to continue reading at home.

Aref Al-Amri does not want to leave Oman. He does not want to leave his elementary school, his friends, or his beloved grandfather, Siddi. He does not want to live in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where his parents will go to graduate school. His mother is desperate for him to pack his suitcase, but he refuses. Finally, she calls Siddi for help. But rather than pack, Aref and Siddi visit the camp of a thousand stars deep in the desert, they sleep on Siddi’s roof, they fish in the Gulf of Oman, and they travel to the nature reserve to watch the sea turtles. At each stop, Siddi finds a small stone that he later slips into Aref’s suitcase—mementos of home. Enjoy reading aloud from this magical story about change and the special bond between a boy and his grandfather, and find out what happens to Aref when you read more at home.