The Day of Ahmed's Secret
By Florence Parry Heide and Judith Heide Gilliland. Illustrations by Ted Lewin. Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Books, New York, New York. 32 pages. Permission for illustration reproduction provided. Good for elementary age and up.
Every day, Ahmed takes his donkey cart through the winding streets and alleys of his hometown, Cairo, the capital of Egypt. Although he is young, he helps his father by delivering fuel that people use for cooking. On this day he can hardly wait to get home because he has a special secret he will share with his family. But you will have to wait until his deliveries are over to find out his secret.
Although you might think that this story takes place hundreds of years ago, it actually takes place in our time. The book paints a wonderful picture of this amazing city, which mixes the very old with the very new. As you join Ahmed weaving his way through the crowded city, you can see the colorful sights, meet the people, and almost hear sounds that make his town special.
Here are two pictures that show how people in modern times live in a city that is thousands of years old. Click on them to see if you can find at least three clues that show you this story takes place today. Do people use the streets in Cairo the same way they do in your town? Why do you think the streets are so crowded?
Click on the pictures for a closer look.