Today’s countdown to Independence Day is brought to you by … the French? Yes, you read that correctly. In addition to being a Reading Specialist, I am also a French teacher. As such, the involvement of the French in the American Revolution holds special interest for me. As I mentioned at beginning of this countdown, I am a member of the Daughters of the American Revolution. In addition to belonging to my own local chapter, I am also an associate member of the Rochambeau Chapter in Paris, France. That is why I was thrilled to find Selene Castrovilla’s book Revolutionary Friends: George Washington and and the Marquis de Lafayette. This tale relates the story of the remarkable friendship between these two men and the role it played in boosting French support for the patriot cause. Inspired by Lafayette’s passion for American independence, the formal alliance between France and the United States was signed on February 6, 1778. It gave the Americans much needed military and financial resources which lead to their eventual victory over the British. So as you celebrate your Independence Day tomorrow, give a thought to Lafayette and our first allies and their sacrifice for our independence. Vive la France et vive la liberté!