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Those Shoes

4.45  ·  Rating details ·  2,289 ratings  ·  614 reviews
But all the kids are wearing them! Any child who has ever craved something out of reach will relate to this warm, refreshingly realistic story.

"I have dreams about those shoes. Black high-tops. Two white stripes."

All Jeremy wants is a pair of those shoes, the ones everyone at school seems to be wearing. But Jeremy’s grandma tells him they don’t have room for "want," just "
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published July 24th 2012 by Candlewick Press (first published January 1st 2007)
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4.45  · 
Rating details
 ·  2,289 ratings  ·  614 reviews

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Although the concepts of needs versus wants and the importance of being a good friend are perhaps a bit on the surface and obvious, thankfully and appreciatively, the presented narrative of Maribeth Boelts' Those Shoes is generally realistic and neither too preachy nor sugar-coated. For one, young Jeremy does not immediately and smilingly accept his grandmother's claims that he needs new winter boots more than "those shoes" that everyone at school is oohing and ahhing about (which I for one cons ...more
CH13_Caitlin Murphy
Feb 20, 2013 rated it it was amazing
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
Krista Lutgring
I absolutely love the story this book portrays. It shows diversity in family structures, economic funds, giving, and friendship. The young boy in this story learns the importance of spending money and saving money on things that you need rather than what you want to fit in at school. In the end, it was winter and he didn't even need his tennis shoes anymore and he was grateful to have his nice new snow boots.
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
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.
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing

As you as you can see the friendship in this story teaches me that helping your friend out gets you and your friend something If Antonio and Jeremy
Didn’t show friendship to each other the short story would have a completely different theme and thesis, That’s why showing friendship help you and your friend out.
Jan 09, 2012 rated it liked it
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
Mallory Hackett
The only think Jeremy wants in the world is a new pair of shoes that all of his classmates have. Jeremy feels embarrassed that he cannot afford these shoes. One day, Jeremy's grandma takes him shopping and they find these shoes a thrift store. He wears them to school despite the shoes being much too small. When Jeremy sees a fellow student on the playground with his toes poking out the front of his shoes, he learns a valuable lesson about being selfless and appreciating what you already have.
I t
Nov 15, 2016 added it
Shelves: rdg-291
This is the story of a boy who wants the same shoes as everyone else. All the boys in school have those shoes, and Jeremy wants them too. His Grandma says that there's no room for want, only what you need. Still, Jeremy wants the same shoes as everyone he sees walking through the halls or in the lunch line. When his shoes break during kickball, Jeremy needs to use shoes from the guidance counselor. He's upset by the childish velcro shoes, even if they were the only ones in his size. The kids in ...more
Gillianne Litvack
Nov 22, 2016 marked it as to-read
The short story “Those Shoes” is a charming picture book with a lesson that every child should learn. The story begins with Jeremy and his love for the black shoes with a white stripe. The shoes were his dream, everyone had them and he wanted it. One day at recess, Jeremys shoes break apart and he is forced to use left-over shoes that were stranded at school. Everyone made fun of Jeremys school shoes, but he had no choice but to wear them. After a couple of days, Jeremys grandma begins to notice ...more
Heather Singh
Nov 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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
Jessica Peacock
Feb 18, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Jeremy is a child who needs a new pair of shoes. He wants his grandma (who I assume is his sole guardian) to buy him "those shoes" that everyone at his school seems to own. When the guidance counselor gives Jeremy a pair of "kiddie" shoes, he is embarrassed and all but one of his classmates laughs at his shoes. Jeremy's grandma takes him shopping only to discover she can not afford the shoes. Jeremy later finds the shoes at a thrift store but they are too small. At the end of the story, he choos ...more
Lauren Mocny-Branum
Oct 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Those Shoes (A Charlotte Zolotow Award Nominee, 2008) A touching story that follows a young boy, Jeremy, that has no room for “wants” only “needs.” but Jeremy desperately wants those shoes - the pair of high tops with two white stripes. Jeremy’s loving grandmother says he only needs a pair of winter boots. Jeremy struggles with this dilemma, he wants “those shoes” - especially after his own sneakers fall apart at school and he has to wear some given to him by the guidance counselor that have an ...more
Reva Taylor
Oct 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: books-21-30
Summary: Those Shoes is a story about a young boy named Jeremy who always catches himself wanting a pair of those shoes that everyone else at his school has. His grandma explains to Jeremy that they do not have room for wants and needs. Jeremy’s shoes end up falling apart, and the guidance counselor gives him some. Jeremy also goes to the thrift store to buy a pair because he’s so determined to have them, but they’re too small. At the end of the story, Jeremy realizes the boots his grandma had g ...more
Mar 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
Those shoes is a moving story about a boy that is fascinated with "those shoes", black high-top with two white stripes, but his Grandma can not afford them right now. All Jeremy can dream of is having those shoes. At school he start noticing that all the kids have "those shoes" , but still Grandma can't pay for them. One day, one of Jeremy's shoes comes apart and the school counselor brings a pair of shoes for Jeremy but they are not "those shoes". Jeremy has to wear a pair of velcro shoes in ba ...more
May 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I heard this story through an audio version of the book. It's about a boy named Jeremy who lives with his grandmother. Grandma struggles to make ends meet, and there's no room for wants in their home, only needs. However, Jeremy wants a pair of the shoes that all the other boys at school are wearing. He's never had anything like these shoes, and is dying to buy a pair. The school guidance counselor provides Jeremy with a "new" pair of shoes, the same kind Jeremy's little cousin wears - you can f ...more
Nov 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Everyone in Jeremy’s school seems to own a pair of those shoes: the black high tops with two white stripes. Everyone except Jeremy, that is. When he tells his grandmother about the shoes he wants, she tells him that what he needs is a new pair of snow boots. When Jeremy’s own shoes fall apart the school guidance counselor helps him find a pair of shoes from the school donation box. The shoes that fit are blue Velcro shoes made for little kids. Jeremy is embarrassed and all of his classmates teas ...more
Kali Guest
Nov 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Those Shoes by Maribeth Boelts is a story about a boy named Jeremy who wants a pair of shoes which every other child at school has. His shoes fall apart and the counselor gives him a rugged pair which fit him, but they aren't the cool shoes he wanted. His grandma decides to take him to look at the shoes, but they are too expensive. The two of them go to thrift shops in hopes of finding a pair, when they do, they are too small. Jeremy buys them anyways, in hopes he might be able to fit in. He the ...more
Apr 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: week-7
Text-to-Teaching Connection

Jeremy needs a pair of new shoes, but his grandmother tells him that they barely have enough money for the things they need, much less the things they want. When Jeremy's shoes fall apart the school counselor gives him a pair of used tennis shoes and Jeremy sets out to find a way to get a new pair of shoes. For a response activity our lesson would begin with a discussion about the difference between wants and needs. We would discuss how there are people in our communit
Morgan Dunton
Jul 08, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: theme-poverty
I thought this book was a great lesson for students to not also understand what life is like for someone struggling with poverty, but to help them realize how blessed many of them are with what they have. The main character does everything he can to get a new pair of shoes that will help him fit in at school. But in the end, his friendship was more important than any pair of overrated shoes. This book teaches children another example of what poverty is and how it affects someones life.
Melissa Hicks
Jun 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
This story is told in such a way that young readers can connect and relate to the ideas told. The setting of this story is within a school and a boy and his grandmother living in low socio-economic times and there being no other parental guidance for young Jeremy. Great story to allow for an experience of a mirror while reading this book to children who are learning and discovering the things that truly matter in one’s life.
Aug 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I thought this was interesting... I really hate the way brands have influenced how our kids dressed ,Started jackets and Air Jordans come to mind...I do like the way the boy in this story comes to a compromise over the shoes and does another child a good deed. Good lesson here. illustrations are wonderful.
Lesley Burnap
Aug 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Important book to share with your child and/or your class. And a great reminder for teachers about the children who may be in your classroom.
Mar 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I don't normally rate children's books with 5 stars, but this one deserves it. Please read this book--it's a wonderful story about a young boy, a pair of shoes, and a whole lot of humanity.
Anna DuBose
Mar 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This one is fantastic! What an important message and lesson for all of us, young and old.
This is a powerful picturebook that explores the tension between wants and needs when family budgets are tight.
Lin Lin
Have you ever craved for a pair of shoes everyone else has? This is a book in Spanish, and with my little Spanish, I tried to understand it. Everyone in his school seems to be wearing this cool pair of shoes. His grandma cannot afford it, so he got a pair from the second-hand store. But the size was too small for him. He gave the pair to his friend, who also needed new shoes. With his winter boots, he still can run and have fun with his friends. Does one really need brand new shoes?
Feb 14, 2018 marked it as library-to-read
Recommended to Cheryl by: Manybooks
Shelves: more-wi, mobius, okc
I don't recall every having this kind of craving; maybe this (Candlewick) book will help me empathize with those who do.
Russ Weeks
Jan 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Read this now! Such a great read-aloud for Social Emotional Learning, especially empathy, kindness, and moral courage! Thank you, Buffie and Ashton for the recommendation! #showwrite19
Oct 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s
I got this from the library on the advice of a "books to read for Thanksgiving" list, and it choked me up a bit. It's a sweet book that kid's will understand. It's not preachy. I love it.
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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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