Great picture books about friendship

Starting school and making friends can be scary. These fantastic books show how kindness makes everything better!

Mae’s first day of school / Berube, Kate
“From the author/illustrator of Hannah and Sugar comes a back-to-school tale about facing your fears As Mae’s first day of school approaches she decides she IS. NOT. GOING. School is scary What if the other kids don’t like her? Or what if she’s the only one who doesn’t know how to write? Or what if she misses her mom? Mae’s anxiety only builds as she walks to school. But then she meets Rosie and Ms. Pearl. Will making new friends show her that they can conquer their fears together?” (Catalogue)

Adrian Simcox does not have a horse / Campbell, Marcy
“Adrian Simcox brags about owning a horse, and Chloe just knows he’s making stuff up…until she learns an important lesson in empathy”– Provided by publisher.” (Catalogue)

Maddie’s first day / Matthews, P. E.
“It is Maddie’s first day of school and she has everything ready – her uniform, shoes, socks and hat. But there is one special thing that Maddie can’t leave behind – her blanky! Award winners Penny Matthews and Liz Anelli team up to bring us this wonderful picture book about the excitement of going to “big” school for the first time.” (Catalogue)

I walk with Vanessa : a story about a simple act of kindness / Kerascoët
“An elementary school girl witnesses the bullying of another girl, but she is not sure how to help. After talking with her friends she decides to act. A very simple story about the difference one child can make.” (Catalogue)

From far away / Munsch, Robert N.
“The classic story of an immigrant child adjusting to her new home, now with new illustrations. Askar immigrated with her family from war-torn Lebanon when she was seven years old. This picture book tells the story of how she must adjust to her new home in Canada. An ideal book to help kids empathize with immigrant children whose experiences are very similar to Askar’s. Full color.” (Catalogue)

The secret sky garden / Sarah, Linda
“A startlingly original book,  about a garden grown on an old car park roof, with beautiful illustrations by Fiona Lumbers.
Funni loves the old, disused car park, and spends a lot of time there flying her kite and playing her recorder. But something is missing. Definitely. So Funni decides to create a garden in the neglected space and after weeks of careful nurture, her garden in the sky takes shape. One day, a little boy, Zoo, spots the square of colour amongst the grey from an incoming flight, and decides to try to find it. And slowly, not only do Funni’s flowers bloom, but a very special friendship blossoms too.” (Catalogue)

Kindness is cooler, Mrs. Ruler / Cuyler, Margery
“When Mrs. Ruler asks five of her kindergarteners to miss recess, she’s got a special plan up her sleeve. She’s about to teach a new golden rule: KINDNESS IS COOL. Soon the entire class is doing so many good deeds that their kindness bulletin board barely fits their classroom. From clearing the table after dinner, to helping the elderly, one kindergarten class is proving that kids really can make a difference. Count along with Mrs. Ruler’s class. Can all their good deeds really add up to 100 acts of kindness?Acclaimed picture book author Margery Cuyler will inspire children of all ages to have a heart and save the world” (Catalogue)

Mermaid School / Wetzel, JoAnne
“Molly enjoys her first day at Mermaid School, where she makes new friends, learns new things, and hears a story about children with no tails. A rhyming story about starting school” (Catalogue)

Feel Brave book event: Little Stories about Big Feelings

It’s hard to be brave sometimes as a child, and often as adults we forget what the world is like for children – shadows in the corners of rooms, strange noises, bullying at school, not being invited to a birthday party, no one to play with and the death of a grandparent are often part of their world. How do we help children as they confront these situations while growing up?

UK based NZ author Avril McDonald has come up with a wonderful series of books that follow the adventures of Wolfgang the wolf as he encounters these emotional situations. The Feel Brave book series is designed to help children understand their feelings and give them strategies and techniques they can use when feeling upset or anxious.

Avril McDonald, a former primary school teacher, is currently in New Zealand and has been touring schools with her books reading the stories and doing Feel Brave Wellbeing Workshops with the children. Discover the Feel Brave series for yourself when Avril comes to Wellington Central Library on Saturday the 26th of August. The Feel Brave books are officially for 4 – 7 year olds but all ages enjoy them. So come along and bring the children to this special Feel Brave event.

Where: Wellington Central Library
When: Saturday 26th of August, 10.30 – 11.30am

It’s the Beyond The Page Literary Festival these holidays!

School holidays are upon us and you’ll find the Beyond the Page literary festival taking place 8-23 July 2017 at libraries across Wellington and the Hutt Valley region. Local children and youth are invited to journey through different aspects of storytelling — creating experiences for them to immerse themselves in the literary world and express their creativity. Join one of the over 113 festival events and activities happening across the region – creating local spaces for innovation, and encouraging exploration of participants’ own stories, helping them embrace new ideas along the way.

 


Help us celebrate the opening of the festival with Poetry and Pancakes on Saturday 8th July at 11am. If your child contributes a poem they’ll get a pancake for their efforts! Plus they can discover all the different sorts of poems there are – acrostic, haiku, magnetic blackout anything goes. Listen to poet Michael Howard reading some of his poetry and your kids can have a go at reading their own.


In the first week of the festival we have the wonderful Sir John Trimmer bringing us Tales from the Royal New Zealand Ballet. He will be telling stories from some of the best loved ballets using voice, music and mime. This is definitely one not to be missed!

Johnsonville Library: 2.30pm Monday 10th July

Karori Library: 10.30am Saturday 15th July

Central Library: 2.30pm Saturday 15th of July


Meet the Robots! Red and Blue – our Nao robots have arrived and are awaiting command. Their humanoid shape and body movements give them life and show the possibilities of robotics and how useful learning coding languages can be. Plus these robots even dance Thriller and Gangnam style!

Central Library: 2pm Monday 10th July

Miramar Library: 2pm Tuesday 11th July

Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library: 2pm Wednesday 12th July

Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library: 2pm Thursday 13th July

This is just a sample of some of the great events happening. Like all our holiday activities, these events are free to attend – and you’re welcome to attend any of the events throughout the Wellington region. The full list of what’s happening can be found at www.beyondthepage.nz – or here’s a printable version for those at Wellington libraries.

September/October school holidays – Celebrate Space!

We have some great events happening across our libraries during the school holidays that are free to attend, and will be lots of fun too!

We will be celebrating World Space Week by creating Space Movies!

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Calling all Space, Film and Technology buffs! Bring a device, or use one of our tablets to showcase Earth from space by creating a stop-motion animated film.

Here’s when the events are on at a library near you:

Week 1:

Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library: Wednesday 28 Sept, 11am
Miramar Library: Wednesday 28 Sept, 2pm
Khandallah Library: Thursday 29 Sept, 2pm
Johnsonville Library: Friday 30 Sept, 11am

Week 2:

Karori Library: Tuesday 4 Oct, 2pm
Wellington Central Library: Wednesday 5 Oct, 11am
Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library: Thursday 6 Oct, 2pm
Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library: Friday 7 Oct, 2pm

Some important notes:

  1. Please bring your own device if possible. The library will have a limited number of tablets that can be used on the day.
  2. If you bring your own device, it needs to be an Android or iOS tablet or smart phone with a camera
  3. Before the event, please download a free app called Stop Motion Studio on to your device.
  4. The event is free, and no bookings are required. However due to limited resources and library spaces, librarians may limit numbers on the day depending on how many people turn up.
  5. Suitable for ages 7+

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Some Children’s and YA authors not to miss at Writers Week

Writers Week is a very exciting week for book lovers! This year, children and young adult readers are spoiled with great authors to meet.
Watch these videos of authors who are taking part in this year’s festival and check out a selection of their titles you can borrow from our shelves:

Paul Beavis:

Paul Beavis, author of Mrs Mo’s Monster is leading live reading (and drawing!) of his raucous tale of a little monster … dress ups for this event are encouraged (come as Mr Mo, Mrs Mo, or the Monster. Prizes for best dressed!).

Syndetics book coverHello World!
“In this sequel to Mrs. Mo’s Monster, the fuzzy blue monster from that book-one part toddler, one part gremlin-sets out to see the world since his elderly caretakers are too busy to do anything fun. With a backpack overstuffed with sporting equipment, toys, cookware, and more, the monster tromps off into the mountains before getting lost. Ages 3-up.” (Syndetics)

Mariko Tamaki:

Mariko Tamaki is an award-winning writer of graphic novels – her worlds can be dark and full of surprises. Mariko is a must-see for all readers – she is a powerful storyteller, and her books are especially important for teenage readers and adults remembering what coming-of-age really is.  See her in conversation with Kate De Goldi, and again with Sarah Laing, Kerry Ann Lee and Courtney Sina Meredith.

Syndetics book coverThis one summer
“Rose and her parents have been going to Awago Beach since she was a little girl. It’s her summer getaway, her refuge. Her friend Windy is always there, too, like the little sister she never had, completing her summer family. But this summer is different. It’s a summer of secrets and heartache, and it’s a good thing Rose and Windy have each other.” (Syndetics)

Sally Gardner:

Sally Gardner never did things by the usual route. Her books are full of magic, mischief and overcoming the odds – bring your young readers for an hour with this extraordinary author (Maggot Moon, I, Coriander and so many more…)

Syndetics book coverMaggot moon
“The year is 1956. In an unnamed country of obvious allegorical weight, the totalitarian government of the Motherland keeps the impure in ghettos where they live off scraps and hope not to be dragged away to camps. Standish, 15, lives in Zone 7, a nasty place from which school is no respite there cruel teachers beat students and, on this particular day, kill one. Standish is expelled in the aftermath, and the next step for him may be the camps. Standish, however, knows a secret…” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverI, Coriander
“It is night, and I have lit the first of seven candles to write my story by. My name is Coriander Hobie, and I have a great many things to tell-of silver shoes that tempted me and an alligator most rare; of London, the home of my childhood, and another, stranger land, one that I thought only existed in dreams; and of an ebony box whose treasure only now am I beginning to understand. The box was once my mother’s, but its secrets were meant for me. This being my story and a fairy tale besides, I will start once upon a time…” (Syndetics)

Cornelia Funke:

Cornelia Funke is a champion for young readers – her books are enthralling adventures that have delighted children for years. And Cornelia herself is no ordinary person – she’s going to talk with comedian, writer and actor Jo Randerson about her stories and what inspires them.

Syndetics book coverInkheart 
“One dark night, a mysterious man called Dustfinger appears at the house where Meggie lives with her father, a bookbinder. Dustfinger’s arrival sets in motion a long, complicated chain of events involving a journey, fictional characters brought to life, dangerous secrets revealed, threats of evil deeds, actual evil deeds, a long-lost relative found, and the triumph of creativity and courage.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverFearless : a Mirrorworld novel
“After saving his younger brother Will’s life in Reckless, Jacob Reckless now has to save his own. With only months to live after being cursed, he searches for the Witch Slayer’s crossbow, rumored to give life instead of death when it’s used out of love. He is competing for the crossbow against ruthless fellow treasure hunter Nerron; a stone onyx, Goyl, who’s saddled with a spoiled prince; and other unwelcome companions on his quest. A map helps readers track Jacob and Fox, the lovely shape-shifting human/vixen who loves him, as they desperately search all around Mirrorworld while encountering such familiar fairy-tale characters as Bluebeard.” (Syndetics)

Syndetics book coverYoung werewolf
“Matt is returning home from the cinema when a yellow-eyed monster bites his hand and his whole world – and body – changes. Helped by his best friend Lisa and teacher Mrs Ruskin, they have just two days to find a cure before the curse takes hold forever!” (Syndetics)

Joy Cowley:

Last, but not least, Joy Cowley is one of New Zealand’s best-loved writers – she is a delightful person and a brilliant writer. Don’t miss this opportunity to celebrate Joy and her amazing work!

Syndetics book coverRoad to Ratenburg
“A family of rats is forced to leave their home, so sets out to find the fabled city of Ratenburg. Along the way they outwit vicious dogs, tricky rat traps, and sharp-beaked hawks, and make some very dangerous crossings. The rat family’s adventures test their character and grow bonds between sisters and brothers, father and uncle, mum and dad. Narrating the tale is Spinnaker Rat, a classic Edwardian father, full of wisdom about the ways of the world, who finds himself learning more than he expected.” (Gecko Press)

Syndetics book coverDunger
“William and Melissa have been roped into helping their old hippie grandparents fix up their holiday home in the middle of the Sounds. They’ll have no electricity, no cellphone reception and only each other for company. As far as they are concerned this is not a holiday.” (Back cover)