After the end of civil war in erstwhile soviet Union, there was a serious attempt to improve the education of children all over the USSR. This particular novel talks about the attempt of a soldier who is also a Komsomol member by name Dyuyshen comes to a remote village and takes up the post of village teacher. When he tries to improve the literacy of children, there is heavy opposition from parents, particularly from Moslem community. He meets a girl by name Altynai who longs to study is sold to a wealthy chieftain and the school is burnt. But the school is rebuilt with a centuries old tree which is source of pride to the villagers.