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Razia's Ray of Hope: One Girl's Dream of an Education

by Elizabeth Suneby
Illustrated by Susanna Verelst

Published by Citizen Kid/Kids Can Press, 2013
32 pages
ISBN: 978𢴓54538164

Ages 6-9

Growing up in a small town north of Kabul in Afghanistan, Razia dreams of going to school, just as two of her brothers do. Her hopes soar when she learns that a new school for girls is being built in her town, and her grandfather agrees she should go to school. But most of the men in her family don抰 think that girls need an education. They want Razia to work in the family抯 orchard. Razia knows there抯 nothing she can do, but her curiosity takes her to the school once it is built and she meets the teacher, whose name is also Razia. The teacher pays a visit to Razia抯 home and convinces Razia抯 family to let her attend school. Although the story is fictional, the teacher is based on Razia Jan, a real person, and an afterword gives more information about this fascinating woman committed to educating girls. The illustrations, which combine painting and photo collage, use a style reminiscent of the work of Patricia Polacco.  © Cooperative Children's Book Center

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