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Happy Nowruz: Cooking with Children to Celebrate the Persian New Year
By Najmieh Batmanglij
This cookbook/cultural description has beautiful color photographs, ideas for cooking projects with children, even a cookie cutter. It's a great resource for teaching about the Persian New Year holiday (March 21st), which is celebrated in several countries of western and central Asia.
By Kristen Balouch
Award-winning tale of a little boy in New York who is magically transported to Iran, where his father is from.
The Hungry Coat: A Tale from Turkey
A story about a man judged by his appearance.
Bill and Pete Go Down the Nile
By Tomie De Paola
On a class field trip to Egypt, Bill and Pete not only learn a lot about ancient Egypt, but they also confront the Bad Guy.
How the Camel Got Its Hump
By Justine and Ron Fontes
One of a Little Golden Book's "Tales from Around the World"
By Suhaib Hamid Ghazi
Describes the Muslim holiday of Ramadan.
The Day of Ahmed's Secret
By Florence Parry Heide and Judith Heide Gilliland
A nicely written and beautifully illustrated story of a young boy in Cairo.
Celebrating Norouz (Persian New Year)
By Yassaman Jalali
Description of the most popular Iranian holiday, Persian New Year, celebrated March 21st, the first day of Spring.
One Night: A Story from the Desert
By Cristina Kessler
About a Tuareg boy in the Sahara desert waiting for a goat to give birth.
Sound the Shofar!: A Story for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur
By Leslie Kimmelman and John Himmelman
This book focuses on the high holy days of Judaism and how one family celebrates those together and by helping out the less fortunate. Nicely illustrated.
What's the Matter, Habibi?
By Betsy Lewin
A warm and funny story of a boy and his pet camel.
By David F. Marx
This book gives religious and historical information about the Jewish Passover holiday.
The Rich Man and the Parrot
Retold By Suzan Nadimi
Illustrated by Ande Cook
A folktale once told by the famous thirteenth-century poet Rumi is retold again in this attractive picture book. A story about a man and his parrot who longs to be free.
By Naomi Shihab Nye
About a girl raised in the US who goes to visit her grandmother in a Palestinian village.
The Hundredth Name
By Shulamith Levey Oppenheim
A story of friendship and Muslim faith set in a village in Egypt. Nicely illustrated.
Nesma Buys the Beans
By Andy Smart
A Egyptian story of a little girl struggling to go out to buy beans for breakfast.
One City, Two Brothers
By Chris Smith
Illustarted by Aurelia Fronty
A tale of two brothers whose secret sharing of grain with one another results in a mystery. A good story to illustrate caring.
The Librarian of Basra
By Jeanette Winter
The same story as Alia's Mission(about the woman who saves the books in the Basra Library), but this version is written for children ages 4-8. It's short, simply written, and beautifully illustrated.
Aleph-Bet Telethon (1991)
Sesame Street in Hebrew and English
Babak and Friends: A First Norooz
Excellent if you are doing a study of different holiday traditions. This is a 75-minute movie about an Iranian-American boy, Babak, learning about the Iranian holiday of Norooz (Persian New Year - which takes place on the first day of Spring). The movie also explores the theme of growing up as an American with roots in another culture and even the issue of having a newborn sibling. The video comes with a short booklet that gives a summary of the entire plot.
DVD format. 75 minutes.
Fables of Bah ya Bah (2001)
Animated retelling of six different short fables from the Middle East.
VHS format. 60 minutes.
Just say Hic
Turkish folktale with discussion questions.
VHS format. 9 minutes.
Kids Sing Israel (Grouches Don't) (1991)
Sesame Street in Hebrew and English.
VHS format. 38 minutes.