In the world of children’s books, we often speak about the window and the mirror. It is of course important for our kids’ books to serve as a mirror and for them to see themselves in what they read. On the other hand, books must also provide a window into experiences and cultures other than our own. My kids are surrounded by books. Books we own, books from the library… suffice it to say, books are everywhere. Okay, okay, we own a company that helps families discover books, but we are not unlike many other families in our neighborhood. For us, books are in abundance. And yet, throughout the U.S. and in many other countries around the world, there are kids growing up with no books in their homes at all.
Waiting for the Biblioburro gives a window into many things for our kids. First, we are introduced to rural life in Colombia, where a teacher moving away means no more school or access to books for local children. Ana, the main character of the story, reads her sole book over and over again, until she and her village friends are one day surprised by a biblioburro, a teacher from the city who acts as a mobile library for children throughout the countryside. Ana’s deep appreciation for her books, and the love she has for reading and writing, resonate with child and parent alike.
The best part about this uplifting story is that it is based on the real life Biblioburro, which gives us a meaningful opportunity to talk with our little ones about the value of reading and books, and what it means when they are not easy to obtain.
At Zoobean, we have created English and Spanish reading guides to accompany the book and enhance your experience while enjoying it. We hope you love the story as much as we do, and would love to hear your feedback on the book and guide. ¡Qué disfruten!