Those Shoes. Maribeth Boelts
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Those Shoes. Maribeth Boelts

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4.35 of 5 stars 4.35  ·  rating details  ·  366 ratings  ·  94 reviews
School is a tough place to be if you don't have the latest footwear. Jeremy can't afford those shoes and the other kids make fun of the ridiculous kids' pair Mr Alfrey gave him from his box of cast-offs. His only hope is that maybe, just maybe, the too-small pair he found in the charity shop might miraculously stretch to fit.
Paperback, 40 pages
Published November 3rd 2008 by Walker Books Ltd (first published January 1st 2007)
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CH13_Caitlin Murphy
In Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts, Jeremy struggles with a dilemma at school. All he wants are the shoes that "everyone" else has at school. Jeremy's Grandma tells him that they can't afford the expensive high top tennis shoes that he wants, but they can get the warm winter boots that he needs. When Jeremy's old shoes break and he is forced to wear Velcro cartoon character shoes provided by the guidance counselor, he finds out who his real friends are and what he truly needs not wants.
This book...more
L13_Allison Safran
“I have dreams about those shoes. Black high-tops. Two white stripes.”

Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts is a story that truly touched my heart. Those Shoes is the story of a little boy who doesn’t have much money, and is feeling very jealous of everyone in his class who has a special pair of shoes. The little boy in the story really breaks down when his own shoes fall apart, and he has to visit the guidance counselor to pick out shoes from a box. The new shoes that he selects are too young, accordi...more
Nyla
Jeremy wants a pair of black high-top sneakers that all the boys at school have, only to find his grandma refuses to buy him some as they cannot afford them. Things got bad at school when Jeremy shoes fell apart at school, if that’s not embarrassing enough the only shoes available are sneakers with a cartoon of an animal on the side! Jeremy tries his luck and buys sneakers at a local thrift shop even though they were small, giving him blisters. However something did come out of it when his gener...more
Barbara
Many young readers will relate to Jeremy's desperate desire for a pair of black and white high tops. Because they're so pricey and his grandmother must budge her money carefully, she can't afford to buy them. Jeremy watches as just about everyone in his class comes to school with those shoes. When he finally finds the shoes on sale at a thrift store, they're perfect in every way except the size. The text and illustrations, created with watercolor, pencil and ink and put together digitally, perfe...more
Jennifer
Apr 09, 2008 Jennifer rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: storytimes on compassion, 4-8 y.o.
Recommended to Jennifer by: Jane, Central Public Library
For anyone who's ever wanted something they can't have, like the new "in"-thing, Jeremy's realistic story doesn't shirk away from the complex nature of compassion.

CIP:Jeremy, who longs to have the black high tops that everyone at school seems to have but his grandmother cannot afford, is excited when he sees them for sale in a thrift shop and decides to buy them even though they are the wrong size.

"A poignant, thought-provoking book." School Library Journal

"Whether children are on the shoe-ownin...more
Gayle Swift
When A Shoe Is So Much More Than Just A Shoe
Black-high tops with two white stripes—imagine them being the heart’s desire for a little boy. He wants them more than anything else in the world. All the other kids in his class have the extravagant shoes. The power of peer pressure; Jeremy dreams of getting his own pair—of being cool.

In her picture book, Those Shoes, Maribeth Boelts captures the intensity of a child’s yearning for the latest clothing fad. He’s caught between the proverbial rock and a...more
Carl
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Courtney Dyer
Those Shoes is a story that balances teasing and embarrassment with kindness and generosity. Boelts does a great job at showcasing an inner-city, interracial school scenario that deals with topics familiar to children of all ages: wants vs. needs.

Jeremy, a poor boy who lives in the city with his Grandma, dreams of owning a pair of the new black high-tops with two white stripes that everyone is wearing at school. But Grandma says “There’s no room for ‘want’ around here- just ‘need,’ and what you...more
Randie
Jeremy wants "those shoes", if you have ever struggled financially, you know exactly what shoes he wants, expensive, new, hip, cool shoes. His grandma says they don't have room wants, just needs. So, Jeremy gets a pair of used shoes from the school counselor. He's embarrassed and sad. What happens next is powerful and offers a great message about having good character.

Text and illustrations are both of high quality and help to deliver an important life lesson in a natural manner.
Dolly
Jan 18, 2014 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a realistic and heartwarming story about a boy named Jeremy who really wants to be like 'everyone else' and have the newest pair of high-top sneakers. The story depicts children of varying economic means and Jeremy learns a good lesson about wants vs. needs and the importance of giving to others in need.

The narrative is engaging and children will be able to relate to the concept of not always getting what you want. I hope that children who often get more of their 'wants' read this book...more
Lizzy
Jeremy wants a pair of fad shoes that many students at his school have. However, his grandmother says no, that there is no room for "want," but only for "need." He finds a pair at a thrift shop that are too small, but wears them anyway. His sore feet teach him an important lesson of appreciating the things we have. I think this is a good book to teach children about economics, fad products, and not always getting what we want. It seems more suited for older preschool or early elementary.
Theme: s...more
Kara
Jeremy has his eye set on the cool shoes that all the kids at school wear. But, when his grandmother buys him boots because he needs them and they cannot afford other shoes, he saves his money to find the cool shoes anyway. When he finally finds the shoes at a second hand store, they are too small but he buys them. At school, he notices that his friend Antonio has ripped shoes that are held together with duct tape. Antonio also has smaller feet. So, Jeremy gives those shoes to Antonio so that he...more
Teresa
Every time I read this book to classes of elementary students, they are completely spellbound. The story is so relevant to their world: the main character wants shoes that his grandma can't afford, yet almost everyone else has "those shoes". He's ridiculed when he receives practical replacements for his worn out pair -- they aren't the coveted shoes.I won't spoil the ending, but it's heartwarming and realistic at the same time.
If you reside in the south, where there's not much snow, you might h...more
Melanie
Jeremy really wants the snappy looking new "it" shoe that all the boys at school are wearing. However his grandmother informs him that there isn't any room for "want" in their household; only "need." So Jeremy has to make do. When his shoe comes apart one day while playing the guidance counselor gives him a pair of velcro shoes with a nobody cartoon character on them. When he walks back to class everyone laughs at him with the exception of one young boy.

One day his grandmother tells him that she...more
Allison
Jeremy wants the same new pair of shoes that everyone in his class has, but Grandma cannot afford them when he already needs a new pair of winter boots. When his shoes break, the principal gives him a pair and he gets made fun of by all of his classmates, except Antonio. Desperate for those shoes, Jeremy and Grandma go from thrift store to thrift store, finally finding a too small pair of those shoes, which Jeremy buys with his own money. They are so small, though, that he cannot even wear them....more
Avery Maxwell
I had this book read to me in a class in college and I thought that it was a beautifully written and illustrated book. I thought that a child wanting a specific pair of shoes and would do anything to get them was a great idea that most children can relate to. When I was growing up, there were definitely things that I wanted that all my friends had and my parents would not buy me; for example, a cell phone. I would beg and plead but with no luck convincing my parents. The original thing about thi...more
Mandy Scheuren
Marideth Boelts expresses a young boy’s feelings on the shoes of his dreams. Unfortunately Jeremy’s grandma tells him they have no money for shoes that he just “wants”. His grandma told him he needed snow boots and there is no room for wants around their house, just needs. All his friends begin to come to school in the shoes of his dreams, black high-tops with two white stripes. Jeremy’s shoes fall apart during recess so his guidance counselor gives him a pair of shoes out of a box donated to th...more
Aimee
This is a book that small children up to high school kids would all love. It's the story of young boy living in a more poverty stricken neighborhood, who wants a pair of black hightops with 2 white stripes. All the kids in his school have these shoes, but after his own shoes fall apart he is embarrassed by the velcro shoes the school counselor gives him. The whole class makes fun of him, except for one boy. I'm not going to tell you what happens, but it's a must have.

This would be a great book...more
Ellen
Every child dreams of getting the new toy, game or shoe that comes into style. Unfortunately not everyone can afford to get these new gadgets. This is what happens to Jeremy; all he wanted was a pair of black high-top shoes with white strips on them. It was all he could dream about. One day he able to buy these pairs of shoes, but then after interacting with his classmate Antonio, he realizes the the difference between want and need. This is a story about the difference between "want" and "need....more
Sara Abdulkarim
Those Shoes is a story about a young boy who wants a new type of shoes. However, his grandmother tells him that they do not have the means for the those shoes because they are expensive. Still, the only thing that Jeremy wants. Since he could not afford them, Jeremy was one of the only boys who did not have those pair of shoes. One day Jeremy and his grandmother visited second-hand stores and Jeremy finally found his shoes. However, there was one issue...they did not fit. So Jeremy gave the shoe...more
Scarlet
Living in the city with his grandma Jeremy really wants a new pair of shoes that are all the rage. He wants them even more when his shoes break at school and he is stuck wearing a pair of kindergarten shoes that have a character on them from a show that no one even watches. Jeremy's grandma will get him a regular pair of shoes, but he wants a new pair that is just to expensive so he decides to look at the local thrift store. After finding the shoes that he wants at the thrift store he buys them...more
Ashlie
This picture book is about a boy named Jeremy who wants to have cool shoes like his other classmates but they are to expensive for his family to afford. His grandma can only afford what he needs and what he needs is a new pair of winter boots. Jeremy’s shoes break at school and he has to wear a pair from the counselor’s office and is humiliated. His grandma takes him to a second hand store and they have the shoes he has been wanting. They are too small but they buy them anyways. He has a debate...more
Elizabeth Leonard
In this story all Jeremy wants is a pair of black high-top shoes with white stripes. He beggs his grandma for days for these shoes, but they just do not have the money for these shoes. One day his shoes fall apart and the counselor gives him a pair of of hand-me-downs and it is now his chance to get the shoes. He eventually finds a pair of these shoes in a thrift shop and they are sadly too small, but his grandma buys them anyways. He eventually decides to give the shoes to one of his friends th...more
Stephanie Weatherly
This story is a great example of how we can treat others the way we want to be treated. Jeremy desperately wants a pair of fancy new shoes like many of the kids at his school. He finally gets a used pair but they are too small for him. Still, he is very happy to have the shoes even if he can't wear them. Then one day he is playing with his friend Antonio, and he sees that Antonio could use a new pair of shoes, and that Antonio's feet are smaller than his own. Jeremy decides to do what he would w...more
Taina
This title works well for children who may be lusting after material possessions outside of their reach. It allows children to check their privilege and really understand what it means to be grateful for what one has.
Caroline Petrow
Book Title: Those Shoes, Maribeth Boelts

Description: This book is about a poor child who wants a pair of shoes that other kids in his class have. He finds a pair at a thrift store that are too small.

Focus for mini lesson: Show, not Tell - this book is great for elementary students as it is easily accessible and on a topic they can relate to. The author uses dialogue, description of actions and feeling and clear images to show how the character feels and what he does, instead of telling.

Standards...more
Ashlyn Barker
I thought this was a great book and I enjoyed the fact that the characters in the story were from multiple racial backgrounds. I also thought the story was applicable as everyone has those "I want that!!" moments, and the author handled it well. The end of the book will put a smile on your face as it helps children learn about generosity.
Green Bean
All of us can relate with wishing for that “in” thing that everyone else seems to have. In Those Shoes, Jeremy yearns for the popular, black, high tops that all the other kids wear. Unfortunately, his family can’t afford them. When he finds some that are too small for him in a thrift shop, he buys them and tries unsuccessfully to squish his feet into them repeatedly. At last, Jeremy painfully comes to terms with not being able to wear “those shoes” and selflessly gives his too-small shoes to his...more
Renee
The young boy in this story, Jeremy, wants a pair of black and white high-tops. Because every other boy in the school was wearing a pair of these high-tops, so he wanted some too. But, his mom could not afford the shoes. Eventually, Jeremy talked his grandmother into buying him a pair of the high-tops from a second hand store. At the end of the story, Jeremy gave up his high-tops to a friend who needed them even more than he did. This story is about friendship and caring for others. It is a good...more
Rida
Very good for little kids to learn how to share and care about others no matter how much you don't want to.
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Maribeth Boelts is a former preschool teacher who has written numerous books for children. She lives in Iowa with her husband and three children.
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