Children Celebrate Russia Day with Russian Book Reading

Russia Day book reading More than 30 children celebrated Russia’s national holiday with a reading of a Russian-version of Cinderella at the Russian Pointe Dance Boutique on Friday, June 15.

The children, all of whom have at least one Russian-speaking parent, were eager to hear a story in their native language and sat attentively as author Aleksandra Efimova read The Cinderella Ballet by Aleksandra®, which has been translated into Russian.

After the book reading, children learned about the Russian alphabet and acted out scenes from the story with the companion Cinderella Stage Scene Play Set. The children were also treated to an elegant brunch and had the opportunity to take photos with ballerinas dressed in regal tutus.

Inna Elterman brought her three children, ages 14, 7, and 2, to the event and said all three enjoyed the storytime. “My 7-year-old son, Eli, was very proud to show off his knowledge of Russian letters in the alphabet activity after the book reading, and my 2-year-old daughter, Kate, did not want to leave until she has rearranged the stickers in the dress-up book in every possible sequence,” Ms. Elterman said.

Victoria Friedman said her daughter was mesmerized by the Russian version of Cinderella. “Since the event, Aleksandra’s Cinderella ballet book has become the highlight of my daughter’s bed-time reading,” she said.

Hosted by the Moscow Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International, chaired by Ms. Efimova and Prince Piotr Galitzen, the event was held in honor of Russia’s national holiday, which is celebrated on June 12 and commemorates the day in 1990 when the Russian parliament formally declared sovereignty over Russia. The event was co-hosted by Rossotrudnichestvo — the (Russian) Federal Agency for the Commonwealth of Independent States, Compatriots Living Abroad and International Humanitarian Cooperation — which aims to promote the study of Russian language.

Aleksandra Efimova is also the president of Growing Through Arts®, a company that creates and markets educational books and toys for children. The company currently has six books available in English and two in Russian, The Cinderella Ballet by Aleksandra® and The Peter and the Wolf Symphony by Aleksandra®. Matching toys that illustrate the Russian alphabet will be available at the end of July. Both the books and matching toys can be purchased at the Russian Pointe Dance Boutique, as well as online at