Say Sí for Books!
October 2018
Hispanic Heritage Month -- Say Sí for Books!

This year's official celebration ended earlier this month. But good news...the great book selections go on and on! What began as a one-week observance in 1968 is now a one-month celebration from September 15 to October 15 each year. This year's theme -- “Hispanics: One Endless Voice to Enhance our Traditions” -- echoes in many children's books. Here are links to a few great reading lists -- here, and here, and here! Okay, here, too!

Also, check out the Pura Belpré Award . Named after the first Latina librarian at the New York Public Library, the honor is presented annually to a Latino/Latina writer and illustrator whose work best portrays, affirms, and celebrates the Latino cultural experience in an outstanding work of literature for children and youth. It is co-sponsored by the ALA's Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) and REFORMA, the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking.
2018 Pura Belpré Author Award Winner:
Lucky Broken Girl by Ruth Behar. In this work, fifth-grader Ruthie Mizrahi, newly arrived to the United States from Cuba in the 1960s, is confined to a full-body cast after a life-changing accident. Surrounded by her family and a diverse group of neighbors, Ruthie finds strength and courage to heal and grow.
2018 Pura Belpré llustrator Award Winner:
La Princesa and the Pea, illustrated by Juana Martinez-Neal and written by Susan Middleton Elya. In this tale, the mischievous characters play out the classic princess-and-the-pea tale -- with cultural elements inspired from Peru in vibrant acrylic and colored pencil illustrations.
RIF of NOVA celebrated, too, as board member Christine McLaughlin read books in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month at Drew Elementary School in Arlington. For ages 3, 4, and kindergarten, she read Grandma's Pear Tree / El Peral De Abuela and Rubia and the Three Osos. The second through fourth graders heard Mango, Abuelo, and Me.
Have You Filled Your Bucket Today?

Liaisons from RIF of NOVA's 36 schools and community sites gathered in early October for the annual academic year kick-off. This year's theme: Have you filled your bucket today? "Bucket" ideas included books about kindness, generosity, perseverance, and adventure. Board members provided brunch, and everyone shared thoughts about engaging ways to distribute RIF of NOVA books to children, while encouraging a love of reading at the same time. Among the speakers were Jennifer Moone and Jodi Rubin, from National RIF. They gave a presentation about RIF’s Literacy Central, a digital library that hosts over 10,000 resources directly tied to the books teachers, caregivers, and community partners turn to every day. Check it out!
RIF of NOVA co-president Justina Johnson (JJ) Head (l in selfie!!!) led the discussion about books that children can read to fill their "buckets."
Each liaison received a bucketful of book distribution ideas to take back to schools and sites.
RIF of NOVA VP Ann Godfrey (c) is flanked by liaisons Kara Klousia (l) and Caitlin Sherman (r) from Claremont Elementary School in Arlington.
RIF of NOVA Board News
Hazeline Harris, educator and long-time RIF of NOVA officer and board member, will be honored next month by the Northern Virginia chapter of Continental Societies Inc. (CSI). A dedicated volunteer for several area organizations, Hazeline will receive the CSI Arts & Humanities Award at the group's Silver Celebration on November 17. CSI is a national non-profit organization providing over 300,000 children with access to better education, health, recreation, careers, and the arts. Way to go, Hazeline! You are an inspiration to so many! Thank you!!!
Almost a year ago, RIF of NOVA advisory board member Ramunda Young (l), her husband Derrick (r), and their daughter Mahogany (m) expanded their 10-year-old online bookstore,, into a physical location in the Anacostia Arts Center. Specializing in books written for, by, or about African Americans, MahoganyBooks is committed to making books accessible to all. The popular spot has been featured in the Washington Post and other local news outlets. Check it out at 1231 Good Hope Rd., SE. Congratulations, Ramunda and family!!
One of RIF of NOVA's book distribution sites, the Falls Church-McLean Children's Center, held its sixth-annual Teddy Bear 5K/1M fundraiser in early October. The pouring rain did not deter the intrepid participants who ran or walked the course. Fairfax County Supervisor John Faust (holding the umbrella) posed with board member Christine McLaughlin's husband John and grandson Colin, who proudly showed off his Teddy Bear prize!
Last, but certainly not least, RIF of NOVA co-president Nancy King has a new granddaughter, Emery Rose, and she is reading only one week old!!! She is seen here with her doting, book-loving dad, Rich Confalone. Yes, the reading habit starts early in the RIF of NOVA community!
Please help fill the RIF of NOVA "bucket" so deserving children can have their very own books to read!

According to a new report in The Guardian, growing up in a home packed with books has a large effect on literacy in later life. Read more here.
Here's how you can help!

1) You can give at any time via PayPal on the RIF of NOVA website

2) You can send a check to our mailbox: P.O. Box 7012, Arlington, VA 22207-0012.

3) You can register with Type in Reading Is Fundamental of Northern Virginia, Inc. to select us as the charity you want to support. Amazon will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to RIF of NOVA.
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