Wandering teachers travel to Iranian Kurdistan, near the border of Iraq. They carry blackboards on their backs that they use to take cover from army helicopters hovering overhead. An old man asks one of them, Said (Saeed Mohamadi), for help reading a letter from his son. His colleague Reeboir (Bahman Ghobadi) attempts to persuade a band of young thieves to allow him to teach them. Both find their lives taking unexpected turns.