A children’s book about the school-day challenges of an immigrant child: From Far Away

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from far away

From Far Away is a children’s book by Canadian author, Robert Munsch, based on the real life experiences of Saoussan, a young girl who fled war-torn Lebanon with her family, to start a new life in Canada when she was five.

This book describes Saoussan’s trials and tribulations as she starts school. Not understanding English and still fearful of dangers, even the simplest things such as going to the bathroom or encountering Halloween decorations proves challenging to Sasossan, who navigates these challenges in interesting, and sometimes poignantly funny ways.

This is a useful book for helping elementary children learn about challenges faced by immigrant and refugee children, and can be used as part of a lesson to promote understanding and empathy for newcomers. (See lesson plan on Welcoming Newcomers that uses this book for one such example)

Authored by Robert Munsch, a well-known Canadian author of children’s books, this book was drawn from the letters written to Munsch by a real-life Saoussan.