Meet ISB’s Librarians

Maria Falgoust, Head Librarian

Maria’s Current Favorite Books:

For Younger Students:
Noodlephant by Jacob Kramer and K-Fai Steele

For Older Students:
For Black Girls Like Me by Mariama J. Lockington.

For Adults:
The Yellow House by Sarah M. Broom

Maria earned a Masters in Library and Information Sciences from The Palmer School, a part of Long Island University. A Native of New Orleans, Maria has worked as a school librarian in independent schools in New York City and Rome. Maria is on the planning committee for NYSAIS Education and Information Technology Conference and Teaching With Technology symposium, has served as the vice-president for the Hudson Valley Library Association (HVLA) board twice, co-organized the Building Bridges Through Books book club through the Human Rights Pen Pal organization, and was awarded a Fulbright-Hays scholarship to Uruguay in 2019. She is a fan of Stephen Krashen’s reading theories and believes that libraries empower patrons and benefit society in countless ways. Maria is passionate about community building and is always dreaming up new ways to bring our community closer together through the love of literacy. Outside of her work, Maria loves to travel, and she is enthusiastic about cooking and is known for her dinner parties featuring different cuisines from around the world. 

Amy Ribakove, Librarian

Amy’s Current Favorite Books:

For Younger Students:
Sofia Valdez, Future Prez by Andrea Beaty, illustrated by David Roberts

For Older Students:
Show Me a Sign by Ann Clare Lezotte

For Adults:
Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo

Amy is currently pursuing her Master’s in Library and Information Science at Pratt Institute. A native New Yorker, Amy previously worked as a children’s book buyer for an independent bookstore in Manhattan. Additionally, she has interned with the Library of Congress Young Readers Center and worked as a Head Start classroom aide. Amy loves to help children and young adults find the books that will make them life-long readers. She believes that Professor Rudine Sims Bishop was right when she wrote that a child’s library should include books that act as mirrors to their own experiences, windows into worlds of people who are different from them and sliding glass doors to help them imagine what it would be like to exist in another’s world. In her spare time, Amy loves to bake delicious treats.

What to Read Aloud to Your Middle Schooler

One of my favorite activities in the winter months is curling up under a blanket and reading with my kids. But the past couple years, I found myself reading less with my oldest child who is now in 6th Grade. At first, I celebrated this independence; I was proud, seeing the familiar pull of literature’s tug take hold. Soon he was devouring an entire series, and now he’s in the thrall of The Keeper of Lost Cities—another epic tale currently running nine volumes. Sometimes he asks me to read to him, but it’s hard to truly enjoy these books when I’m joining him seven volumes in and unfamiliar with the characters and the plot twists. I miss the excitement of reading something new and really good together.

Dr. Debbie Reese Discusses Misrepresentation of Native Americans in Literature with the 8th Graders

Throughout the year in their Individuals and Societies class, 8th Graders are examining the history of the United States from the "discovery" of America by Christopher Colombus through the Civil Rights Movement. Individuals and Societies Teacher Guillaume Roper-Sirvent and Librarians Maria Falgoust and Eli Hetko invited Dr. Debbie Reese, a scholar, and educator from the Nambé Owingeh nation, to come and speak with the entire 8th Grade to deepen students’ awareness of how Native Americans are way too often not taken into consideration in most historical, as well as fictional, books.