Special thanks go to parent Rachel Venditto for creating such wonderful pennants for our school library! Not only are they beautiful, but they convey, in both English and Hebrew, what I hope students experience in the library. I want them to discover, read, think, imagine, and dream here. I see the library as a portal to self-directed learning and creativity. This is why every month we study a country, a science topic, a cultural topic, and library skills. The library also provides an array of learning materials, including ipads, books, and Montessori-inspired activities that are tailored to every class. In this spirit, this week was a “country” week. We learned a bit about Cuba. For example, for grades Pre-K through 1, we read the book “The Drum Dream Girl,” by Margarita Engle. This beautifully-illustrated story is about a young girl who loves to drum, but is told by her father that “only boys” play the drums. In time, the father relents and allows her to study drumming with a teacher. Later, she is permitted to play publicly in her sisters’ band, and she is a great success. The tale is based on the true story of a Chinese-African-Cuban girl, Millo Castro Zaldarriaga. She broke Cuba’s traditional taboo against female drummers when she played in an “all-girl dance band” during the 1930s. She went on to become a world-famous musician, and later played with some of the American jazz greats of the era. The story led to some interesting discussions among the students about gender and equity. Later, the students identified Cuba on a world map, listened to some Cuban music while reading, colored pages of Cuban parrots, constructed letters of the alphabet out of colorful pipe cleaners, and solved “Pirate Math” problems. The kids, of course, also had time for browsing books to check out. It was a fun week in the library!