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Meet the Characters


“Reading is dreaming with open eyes.”

What I do for fun: READ

When they gave us our summer reading list at school, I laughed because…well, because I’d already read most of them! I don’t mean to show off. It’s just that I really love to read! Reading is better than dreaming, because I can go back to my favorite part of the story whenever I want - but I can never seem to go back to my best dreams. I love bookstores, because there’s a million stories waiting for me. I know I can read from my mom’s computer - but it’s not the same. When I read books, I can flip the pages and mark them so I can go back to my favorite parts. Besides, my big brother uses mom’s computer to play games all the time.
I love it when it rains because I can stay at the store longer. I like to lie on the floor with my legs up against the shelves, like I do at home. It drives my mom crazy because she says it looks so uncomfortable, and that I shouldn’t turn the store into my living room. But I’ll tell you a secret: I go so much it kind of feels like my living room.

Favorite “Superpower”: LEGS

My legs let me run and play, and I like that one of them is different than most of my friends’. I collect scarves and jewelry to put on my leg so that it’s dressed up. I don’t mind that it looks different - I can do the same things that all my friends can. I may even write a story about all the places I’ll travel to with it someday.

Hometown: CHINA

I almost forgot to tell you my name! I’m Meili, and I live in Beijing - the capital city in China. They say our city is 3,000 years old, so history is pretty important around here. It makes me feel like I live somewhere old and important - but I also dream of seeing newer cities and countries that might not be as old as mine.


When I grow up, I want to own a bookstore. But not just any bookstore - I want a modern bookstore that can stand out in my old city of Beijing. I want it to be so modern and new that people just want to stay in it to read their books, and to feel like they’re in their living room. I want it to be a bookstore you never want to leave. It’ll have music and crafts and activities so that everyone can know what I know - that reading is the best!
What’s your favorite story?
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“Music can change the world because it can change people.” - Bono


Music school is expensive, and not easy for a lot of kids to afford. So, when a cool school of music in my Brazilian neighborhood offered free classes to kids interested in playing an instrument, I was the first one in line! Once a month, they take us to watch a live orchestra; it was in that first performance that I discovered who I really want to be!
It’s awesome how they transformed an abandoned area near my community to use as a temporary school of music for us. The class is so much fun - we learn a lot by helping each other, and the volunteer teachers are always helpful and attentive. To be honest, my interests for other classes (like math, ew) have improved since I joined my school of music. My passion is playing the violin, but everyone has to learn to play the flute first.

Hometown: BRAZIL

I was born and grew up in the city of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil. The Olympic Games of 2016 were held in my city, and I had never seen so many people from all over the world, speaking so many different languages. My beautiful city is surrounded by an ocean and mountains, poverty and wealth, and girls like me with BIG dreams.

Best friends: MY FAMILY

My mom, dad, and older brother have always been supportive of my musical dreams. I think I got this love of music from my dad, since he used to play the guitar when he was younger – he still has his really old guitar and plays it when we are celebrating something special at home!


My dream is to become a great musician, playing in an orchestra that performs around the world. But I especially want to play music for the people in my country who never had the chance to see an orchestra. I want to show them music can change lives, much like it changed mine. I’d also like to give back what was given to me - providing free music lessons to kids who can’t easily afford to it.
What do you want to share with others?
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Name: ARU

“A house is not a home until it has a dog.” - Gerald Durrell

What I do for fun: CARE FOR DOGS

I have friends, of course, but I can easily say that my best friends are my dogs. I only have one at home, but I consider all of my neighbors’ dogs mine, as well. I can’t wait to get home from school and play with Lili, Shy, Joy, Max, and Bia. And these are just some of the pups by my house! I run with them, teach them tricks, care for them, and even feed them.
My best friend, Cia - who is not a dog by the way - helps me gather food and find shelter for the dogs that don’t have an owner, since we can’t bring them all home with us. Sometimes I am able to find a new family to adopt some of the stray dogs around my neighborhood. Cia, the pups, and I make a wonderful team!

Superpower: RUNNING

My second favorite thing to do is run. I am part of the cross country team at my school, but I don’t do it to compete- I do it for fun. I don’t know how I learned to run so fast and for so long, but I think it may have something to do with how much I play with my dogs. Being part of the cross country team actually helps me take better care of the pups because some of them run so fast that I have to keep up so I don’t lose them!

Hometown: INDIA

There are so many people in India, they’re everywhere! I have to be really careful not to get lost from my parents sometimes. There are also lots of trains - I love traveling in them and looking at all the beautiful trees passing us by through the windows. Want to know a cool fact about Pune, the city I live in? Almost all of the families that live here own a motorcycle!

Dreams About: BEING A VET

This probably won’t surprise you to hear, but - I obviously love dogs and animals - so my dream is to become a veterinarian. I hope that my clinic is always full of animals: purring cats, soft bunnies, and cute little hamsters. But don’t worry, I'll take care of the big animals as well - I’ll just need help from someone bigger and stronger than me!
Do you want to grow up and be veterinarians together?
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“Dancing is like dreaming with your feet” - Constanze

What I do for fun: DANCE

¡Hola! My name is Evelyn, and I am 8 years old. Where I live, everyone loves to dance. We dance at parties, in our homes, and on the streets. My favorite types of dances are Rumba, Mambo, and Salsa. My grandma makes many different clothes for me to dance in, just like she used to do for my mom. They are always so colorful and beautiful! When there are dance competitions at school, the clothes are more stylish with sparkles to catch the attention of the judges. We even do our hair and my mom lets me put on a little bit of make-up, as well.
The Carnival of Santiago de Cuba is where we are able to see many different types of dances, including Calypso, Reggae (and my favorites, of course). I went for the first time this year with my mom and grandma, and I can’t wait to go again next year! One day I might be able to wear those incredible clothes and participate in the carnival myself…


The first time my friends and I saw street dancers perform, I noticed that there were many different rhythms and moves that I had never heard or seen before. I immediately loved it! Now, my friends and I practice, and we hope to perform at school one day.

Hometown: CUBA

Along with dancing, another thing that’s famous in Cuba is the national sport of Baseball. Don’t tell anyone, but I’m one of the few people that doesn’t like it - even though I have to watch my uncle play sometimes. What I do like to do is relax in our famous, sandy beaches – we have the prettiest sunsets!


I dream of learning to dance all the different dances from around the world. I want to visit and study the Tango from Argentina, Samba from Brazil, Ballet from Russia, and many others! And after I learn them, I want to teach these dances and cultures to the children of my country.
What about you - do you like to dance too?
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“Never give up and be confident in what you do” – Marta Vieira da Silva

What I do for fun: PLAY SOCCER

In 2015, I was eight years old when the US woman’s soccer team won the world cup. My dad, Irvin, always preferred American football, but since the woman’s soccer team was playing in the finals, we all watched the game together from beginning to end. I was crazy about our win, and soon after I asked my parents to buy me a soccer ball! So, after practicing here and there, I began to participate in small tournaments, and now I compete all the time. I have not won any medals or trophies yet, but I love trying anyways because I get to play with my friends.
My older sister plays volleyball, so we have balls, backpacks, socks, shoes, and school supplies scattered everywhere around the house - especially our room! But it is all worth it because I can easily find my soccer gear and play my favorite sport.

Superpower: CLEATS

With them, I feel so powerful in the soccer field that it seems like magic. I have some that are pink, some that are black, and some white. Some are very old but very soft. Some are bought and others are gifts, but they all have to be treated with care. There is also a strict rule in my house: “remove them before entering”.


Atlanta is the capital of Georgia in the USA. Our symbol is the Phoenix and I learned that it is a bird that was born from ashes, but I still need to learn more about why that is our symbol. Martin Luther King Jr., a Nobel Peace Prize winner was also born here, what an honor!


Almost every time I play, either in a competition or for fun, I imagine winning the World Cup. Although I'd be more than happy to participate in the Olympics, what I would really love is to win a World Cup trophy. Can I tell you another dream of mine? To meet Marta, the best soccer player of all time!
What about you, have you won a trophy?
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“And at the end of the day, your feet should be dirty, your hair messy and your eyes sparkling” - Shanti

What I do for fun: GO TO THE BEACH

My house has a big yard around it, where I spend a lot of time playing games with my family and my two dogs. What I like to do the most is play - and the beach is by far my favorite place to play in! That’s why I don’t mind being woken up on Sunday morning with my older sister yelling, “CARISSA!” I’m already up because I know it’s beach time! I’m one of 3 brothers and sisters, 6 cousins, uncles, and grandparents - we are a huge family. Everything we do turns into a celebration, with lots of food and lots of dancing.
But back to the beach - it’s where I feel the happiest. I love the wind, the salt water, and the sand. One summer, my entire family got together to rent a beach house, and we had the BEST time! It was then that and I discovered something really interesting. Want to know what? Keep reading!


It was during that summer at the beach house that I learned to build sand castles with my uncle Theo. I became an expert! I even turned a part of the beach into my own sand castle construction zone. I now make castles of many types: small, big, simple, and even difficult ones. I always have assistants, since my family is so big. At the end of the day, I make sure to take photos of them because I know once the tide rises and the waves come, my castles disappear!

Hometown: GREECE

Remember my large family? I even have some of them in my own school! My favorite teacher, which is also my aunt Helen, is teaching us about the place we live. What I know so far is that Greece is really old and its capital is Athens, which is usually crowded with different people taking selfies. Little by little I am understanding why so many of the older buildings are so famous. The name for this is “ιστορία”.


When I am not building sand castles, my second favorite activity is to pretend that I am a mermaid. I dive and float, imagining that I have a colorful tail. One day my imaginary tail is pink and the other day it is yellow with beautiful, shining sparkles. My older brothers tell me that mermaids don’t exist, but I don’t care. When I am in the water, a mermaid does exist and her name is “Carissa”.
Hang on to my mermaid tail and let’s play!


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“Do not limit yourself”

What I do for fun: COOK

Okay, okay, the mess is huge! There’s flour all over the kitchen and even on my hair - but the fun was bigger than the mess! I inherited my love for cooking from my grandma - at least that’s what she tells me. She always places a little chair near the counter so that I can see over it and cook. She even bought me a chef’s hat and an apron in my size!
I have an older brother, but he is not as interested in cooking as I am. What he really likes to do is eat. He is always roaming around the kitchen to see what we’re making. He loves quiche, but I prefer desserts. While he may eat everything we cook, in the end, I'm the one who has to clean it! My mom tells me and my grandma that the kitchen should be squeaky clean when we’re done, but I have a confession to make - I sometimes find a way to escape before!


My parents told me I have Down Syndrome; so I go to a school where many other friends also have special needs and talents. I learn all of the subjects very well, but one of my favorite classes is art - especially when I get to play with ceramics. I'll begin to learn a second language soon - either English or Italian. Actually, Italy is a place that I really want to visit so I can learn how to cook their famous pizzas!

Hometown: FRANCE

I live in Dijon, a city in France, which is famous for its mustard, wine, and the famous food fair (see, I really do like eating). Dijon also has many museums, and my school often takes us on field trips to visit them. Each visit is different, and more interesting than the last.


A confiserie is sort of like a bakery - I want to bake and design éclairs, tarts, and crème brûlées. My assistants and other bakers will have special needs and talents like me, and together we will have the most famous confiserie in Dijon! We will have a window display full of macarons of all colors and flavors, and I'll name it “Lilou Confiserie”, after my grandma.
Is there anything special your grandma has taught you to do?


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“One child, one teacher, one book, one pen can change the world.” – Malala Yousafzai

What I do for fun: FISHING

My hands look a bit different than my friends’ because they’re marked by something that I love doing: fishing with my dad! I’ve been fishing with my dad, his friends and his friends’ kids ever since I can remember. We do “catch and release”, which means we catch the fish, but then release them back to the water. That way, it’s fun for us without hurting the fish or reducing the number of fish near our home.
In our little village in England, fishing is a family sport. My friends and I love to plan our fishing day for the following Sundays. The only problem is that we cannot stop talking and laughing - and that doesn't help attract fish, so our dads go crazy! But in the end, the point of it is to have fun, and we have a lot of that!

Superpower: BRAINPOWER

I love talking. My teacher says I am very diplomatic and good at debate - and since I am already 10 years old, I feel confident in presenting my thoughts to achieve what I think is right. I use my debate and persuasion skills to either get my mom to buy me new clothes, to defend a kid at school if someone isn’t being terribly nice, or to get a few extra points on my homework - but only if I strongly believe I deserve it, of course. ;)

Hometown: ENGLAND

I live in a little village in England. It is very cold here the entire year, so when the sun shines bright, we have to take advantage of it. My country is known to have many castles, a Queen, Princes and Princesses, ahh…it is like living in a fairy tale. How cool is that?!

Dreams About: POLITICIAN

I may have already mentioned how much I love talking and debating. So, I want to use this characteristic to help people. I want to be a sociologist, a lawyer, and later I want to be a member of parliament. When I am really prepared, I want to become the new Prime Minister of England. Could you imagine? “Lady Amelia”!
Watch out to see what I’ll do next, people (and fish)!


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“We all have ability. The difference is how we use it.” - Stevie Wonder

What I do for fun: VOLUNTEERING

Hello, I am Jessie. I am the only child to my mom and dad, who divorced when I was younger - but they both married again, so now I have two moms and two dads - which is awesome in some situations and not so good in others (but that’s a story for another time). I can’t wait for my stepmom and dad to have their baby, so that I can finally have a little brother!
My parents have always volunteered, and brought me along with them. One of my favorite volunteer activities is reading to the blind and elderly with my mom. But I confess I’m not as big a fan of cleaning up polluted beaches under the hot sun - especially when I can’t dive in the water afterwards! My stepmom takes me to organize toys and books for the local orphanage before the volunteers arrive, so I am actually a volunteer for the volunteers, right?

Superpower: GLASSES

Because I was born with a small problem with my eyes, I have to wear big glasses. I have many different styles (an advantage of having four parents): pink, round, square, blue. Sometimes I decorate them, bedazzle them, and even paint the sides. This way it looks like I have new glasses all the time, and I feel pretty everyday.


I live in the capital of the United States - Washington D.C.. My city has famous universities, famous hospitals, and I can even see a part of the White House from our apartment! What I really love about my city is the National Cherry Blossom Festival, because it is so colorful and full of other volunteers like my family. It's a beautiful event!


I know it won’t be easy, but I dream of becoming a nurse, and volunteering my skills all around the world. I want to be a world-wide nurse: helping people from countries that aren’t as wealthy as mine. I believe that I can make someone smile, even in hard situations - and that makes me feel like I have a purpose.
Well, you already know I love my glasses; what makes you feel pretty? And what do you think is your purpose?


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"I dream of painting and then I paint my dream." - Vincent Van Gogh

What I do for fun: CREATE

Do you like crafts stores? Because I love it! I save the money my mom and dad and grandparents give me for by birthday and Christmas to buy my pencils, my paint, and everything else I need to make pretty pictures.
At home, we are three children. We are all adopted. I am 9 years old and my parents say I was adopted when I was 2. My two brothers are twins and were adopted before me when they were still babies. My mom said that I already had a passion for painting since I was three years old. When I was little, I’d draw anywhere I could: sofas, walls, doors, and even on my little brothers’ face. With time, I began painting and drawing on the right places, and now I even have my own art corner in my room... The house has been saved from my pencils!

Superpower: HANDS

With my hands, I am able to travel in my imagination. I love to draw or paint my friends, superheroes, and my own dolls. There are even people who ask me to write my name on my works of art, cool right?! My mom isn’t even worried about me anymore since I haven't drawn on our walls for years.


A good steak is what we love eating in Argentina. Our sweets are also famous world-wide. If you are curious, look at the map of South America: Argentina is all the way in the bottom right corner. In fact, I have drawn the entire map of South America in school, and it looked beautiful!


I think that a lot of girls have dreams, right? Since I love art so much, my dream is to see my art works in galleries all around the world. In the beginning, I'll be so happy seeing my art in the homes of my brothers, my teachers, and my friends. How great would it be to give someone a gift of an artwork painted by me! Later, I would love to have an exposition with all my works: “Now presenting, Camila’s Beautiful artwork!”
What will you draw today?


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