Oh I do like to be beside the seaside!

Yay – Summer is here and there is nothing better than going to the beach. Swimming in the surf, picking up driftwood, finding pretty shells and looking in rock pools.

We are so lucky in New Zealand because nine out of ten New Zealanders live within 40 km of the coast.  We have a very long coastline. When you put our three main islands together there is over 18,000 km of coast in total length. If you decided to walk along our coast it would take you about 6 months and that’s if you could keep walking day and night non-stop!  I don’t think I will try that!

Have you thought about becoming a seaside scientist? Why not study some rock pools. You might find some sea anemones or maybe a starfish.  Perhaps you might like to hunt for crabs.  Watch out that they don’t bite your toes though. Or maybe you like to look at all the different types of seaweed that may have washed ashore.

Whatever you like doing there is always plenty to see and do at the beach.

And don’t forget to build your sandcastle or create your own artwork in the sand. Draw a face and then use shells, pebbles and seaweed to decorate it.

Have fun!

 

 

 

 

Hot new back to school reads!

Whether you are still in holiday mode or gearing up to head back to school, Wellington City Libraries have got you covered when it comes to juicy reading material!

You need some great reads so you can brag to your friends about what’s cool when you get back to school, and start up a new trend.

Read on for a taste of some of the awesome new fiction we have coming to a shelf near you…

 

The Fairy Caravan by Beatrix Potter

A new edition of a 1929 creation from beloved children’s author Beatrix Potter (she wrote the Peter Rabbit books).

Meet Tuppenny the guinea pig, who leaves home determined to start a new, more exciting life. He is soon adopted by an animal circus who are travelling the countryside, performing for the animals of the farms and fields. Join Tuppenny and his new friends for many magical adventures and enjoy the beautiful illustrations hidden away in the middle of the book. Perfect for those who love animal stories!

 

Alanna: The First Adventure by Tamora Pierce

The first book in the ‘Song of the Lioness’ series from popular fantasy fiction author Tamora Pierce.

Alanna has always craved the adventurous life only allowed to the boys of her village, while her twin brother Thom dreams of learning the art of magic, a special skill reserved for girls. So they switch places, a decision that will change their lives forever. Join Alanna as she begins on her road to knighthood, filled with swords and sorcery, adventure and intrigue, good and evil.

 

How Harry Riddles Mega-Massively Broke the School by Simon Mayle

Book two from the hilarious and equally ridiculous ‘Shoutykid’ series (we also have books one, three and four by the way).

Harry’s dad has been nagging him to do more sport and less gaming, which is really dumb because Harry sucks at sports but is totally awesome at gaming and has been working on a new zombie game that could make him a mega-millionaire. So he’s written to some famous sports stars for advice (and also to some other people in the hope of getting rid of his sister Charlotte). Told through emails, letters and text messages, this one is sure to tickle your funny bone!

 

Word of Mouse by James Patterson and Chris Grabenstein, illustrated by Joe Sutphin

A new release from number one bestselling author James Patterson.

Isaiah, a blue haired mouse that was raised in a science laboratory, is super smart but scared of almost everything. When he escapes, leaving his family behind, Isaiah finds himself alone in the big wide world and more terrified than ever. However, he soon meets a girl that is just as unusual as he is, and who teaches Isaiah that even someone small and frightened like him can have the power to change the world.

 

Don’t forget, reserves are free when you use your Children or Young Adult card!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Top 10 Children’s DVDs December 2016

Its summer holidays! But we all know Wellington is tricksy when it comes to beaching weather, so having a couple of DVDs up your sleeve for a wet day is a good plan.

Movies and TV programmes with your favourite characters are a great way to fill in a few hours and inspire imaginative play. Do you have dress ups as your favourite characters?

 

bananas in pajamas1. Octonauts

2. Fireman Sam

3. Thomas and Friends

4. My Little Pony, friendship is magic

5. Peter Rabbit

6. Bananas in pyjamas

kidsblog27. Zootopia

8. Chuggington

9. Inside Out

10. The Angry Birds Movie

 

Top 10 children’s non-fiction for December 2016

This month’s Top 10 has so many great books in it!  The new Annual a group of New Zealand writers, illustrators, musicians and poets have come together, sourced by Kate deGoldi and Kate Paris from Gecko Press.

Lego and Minecrafters have the virtual and real life block worlds covered and beautiful photos from Vesa  Lehtimäki show off the lego model world.

Maori myths and legends illustrator and author Peter Gossage, died this year, so it’s a fitting tribute that his books should still be so popular with younger readers.  His iconic images live on in the books he created.  His illustrations were also part of animated versions, here for your viewing pleasure.

 

Here’s your Top 10 for December: 

1. LEGO, by Daniel Lipkowitz

2. Hacks for Minecrafters, by Megan Miller

3. Harry Potter and the cursed child, by Jack Thorne, John Tiffany and J. K. Rowling

4. Minecraft : Redstone Handbook, by Nick Farwell

5. Star Wars character encyclopedia, by Simon Beecroft and Pablo Hidalgo

6. Minecraft. Construction Handbook, by Matthew Needler

7. Small scenes from a big galaxy, by Vesa  Lehtimaki

8. Pokemon gotta catch ‘em all! published by Scholastic

9. Annual edited by Kate de Goldi and Susan Paris

10. Maui and other Maori legends, by Peter Gossage

 

Discover your green thumb and get into gardening this summer!

Gardening is a fun activity to get involved in during the summer months, and one that many people all around the world find very fulfilling.

Gardening is also really good for you in all sorts of ways. Firstly, gardening outside is a great way to get out in the sun and soak up some vitamin D, just don’t forget to be sun smart and chuck on a sunhat and sunscreen before you head outside.

Gardening is  good exercise and an enjoyable way to keep busy and stay active in the summer months. It is also a fun introduction to science and enables us to learn about the natural world around us using all of our senses (sight, smell, taste, touch, sound).

But best of all, gardening makes you happy! In fact, scientific experiments have shown that when you connect with soil, your brain releases a feel-good chemical called serotonin that actually helps to improve your mood. How cool is that!?

Gardening is also a very rewarding activity, as you get to watch all of your hard work grow and flourish (and it might even end up on the dinner table).

Gardening can be a peaceful activity to do on your own, but you can have fun gardening with a friend or family member, or even in a group. You might know someone that likes gardening, perhaps your Grandparent or a neighbour, that you could help out their garden.

If you have limited outdoor space at your house, try starting small using a planter box, an old car tyre, or plant straight into a bag of compost.

The libraries have HEAPS of awesome books on gardening to inspire you and help you get started. Check out the catalogue to find out what’s available in your local branch library and don’t forget children can place reserves for free using your library card all summer long!

Top 10 Children’s eBooks December 2016

There no doubt in anyone’s mind that J. K. Rowling totally owns the December’s eBook Top 10.  The world of Harry Potter continues to inspire new readers, but also people love to re-read these books.  Re-visiting the books often reveals passages that were missed the first time round.  Or when you read a book at a different age you get new things out of the writing, and J. K. Rowling explores different aspects of her characters as the series expands through the school years.

But wait what is that at the end of the list? Squeaking in at the end… Thea Stilton.  The Thea sisters are out to solve the theft of a precious ring on a trip to Russia. A figure skating medal and a good reputation is at stake!

1.  Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, by J. K. Rowling

2.  Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone, by J. K. Rowling

3.  Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets, by J. K. Rowling

4.  Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, by J. K. Rowling

5.  Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince, by J. K. Rowling

6.  Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, by J. K. Rowling

7.  Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, by J. K. Rowling

8.  Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, by J. K. Rowling

9.  Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them, by J. K. Rowling

10.Thea Stilton and the Lost Letters, by Thea Stilton

Top 10 Children’s comics December 2016

Summer is here! So it’s time to take a pile of comics, find a big shady tree and spend some time letting the gentle breezes turn the pages for you. What would you take with you? Pages of Pokémon? Will you giggle at Garfeild and Titter at Tintin? Some more serious adventuring with Amulet?

There are other really cool titles with great illustrations, we have new titles coming in all the time so come in for a browse or have a look with ComicPlus online.

If you use a tablet or other device you can download so you can read them when you’re you’re out of wifi range or stream them while you’re connected.

1. Pokemon, by Hidenori Kusaka and Satoshi Yamamoto

2. Peanuts, by Charles M. Schulz

3. Garfield, by Mark Evanier and Jim Davis, Cedric Michiels

4. Big Nate, by Lincoln Peirce

5. Adventure time, by Ryan North and Chris Hastings

6. Tintin, by Herge

7. The Smurfs, by Peyo

8. Amulet, by Kazu Kibuishi

9. Asterix, by Goscinni and Udzero

10. Chi’s sweet home, by Kanata Konami

Top 10 Children’s fiction December 2016

Alan MacDonald is in the Top 10 again with his Dirty Bertie series. Stuck for things to do in the holidays? Then this page was made for you (Dirty Bertie fans only!).

The Dirtie Bertie author honed his skills writing and performing for children in a travelling theatre troupe that visited schools.  Having an audience that threw paper at you when they were bored quickly showed him what kids like and dislike! Alan MacDonald has a page on his site dedicated to the drawings that children send him.  Do you have access to a scanner? We have one at the library if you don’t. You could send him a picture yourself !

1. Diary of a wimpy kid, by Jeff Kinney

2. Tom Gates series, by Liz Pichon

3. Storey Treehouse series, by Andy Griffiths

4. Where’s Wally? by Martin Handford

5. Dirty Bertie series, by Alan MacDonald

6. The Secret Seven series, by Enid Blyton

7. The BFG, by Roald Dahl

8. The enormous crocodile, by Roald Dahl

9. The world’s worst children, by David Walliams

10. Matilda, by Roald Dahl

Library closures over Christmas

Merry Christmas everyone!

We hope you have had a great year, and are looking forward to the Christmas and New Year holidays.

Us librarians like to take a bit of a holiday over this time too, which means the libraries and open and closed at different times than usual.

You can check out our library opening hours on our website.

Our storytimes session take a break too. You can find out the dates for your local library at the Children’s What’s On web page.

 

But never fear! even though the libraries may be closed, there is still lots to do…

8 new children’s non fiction summer entertainment guide – Part Two!

The countdown to Christmas and the end of 2016 continues.  And the new children’s non fiction summer entertainment guide theme continues!

So for your reading pleasure, the library has some new non fiction available from your local library.

Check out books about what DreamWorks characters  like to eat for supper, fantastic guide on popular film and TV characters,  famous children’s authors and even more about Star Wars.

Also Kiwi Christmas song, Summer Wonderland by Ronan Keating  is now available to stream and download from all your favourite music streaming flavours. But you can’t bothered, check out the clip right here, complete so you can sing along and take part in the festive cheer while  strolling through a summer wonderland.

To recap, Summer Wonderland is a Kiwi spin on a much beloved classic Christmas carol Winter Wonderland, with a lyrical twist for the Southern Hemisphere and recorded for Air New Zealand.  This Christmas carol really showcases and beautifully captures the sprit and essence of a Kiwi Christmas of tucking into ham and pavlova, playing cricket, mozzie spray and tan marks. Check it out!

 

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Ultimate DreamWorks Cookbook.

Trolls has finally been released in theatres and to continue the celebration, check out the ultimate DreamWorks cookbook. Have you ever wondered about the secret ingredient in Mr. Ping’s noodles? Do you know how the Croods cook their dinner or how the penguins get their bellies filled? In the Ultimate DreamWorks Cookbook you can find the answers to all of these questions, and many more. Breakfast, lunch, dinner and desserts, all are featured in this fun and nutritious cookbook from DreamWorks.

 

image courtesy of syndeticsDoctor Who: A History of Humankind.

History and Doctor Who all rolled into one, Imagine that?! The doctor has corrected this Coal Hill School Hisotry textbook with his own notes and illustrations that is jammed packed full of the real history about our very special planet.

 

 

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Usborne Official Spy’s Handbook.

This one book that every potential spy needs to get it’s hands on. Covers everything that a good spy needs to know about secret codes, spy rings, dead drops, disguises, tracking, shadowing, hiding, sending message, decoding signal and observation skills.

 

 

image courtesy of syndeticsJeff Kinney.

Read all about the man who brought Diary of a Wimpy Kid to life! Simple text and full-color photographs introduce readers to Jeff Kinney.

 

 

 

image courtesy of syndeticsDr. Seuss.

Read all about the man who brought The Cat in the Hat, Horton hears a who and The Lorax to life! Simple text and full-color photography introduce beginning readers to Dr. Seuss.

 

 

image courtesy of syndeticsMoana.

Find out everything you need to know about the newest Disney heroine, Moana, and her hero Maui, on their incredible journey across the South Pacific. Discover the beautiful locations of Oceania, including breathtaking underworlds along with frightening sea creatures! This book is packed with stunning images of Moana’s quest and provides a fascinating, in-depth look at the most thrilling moments from the movie.

 

image courtesy of syndeticsTop 10 of everything 2017.

Move over, Guinness World Records, Top 10 of everything 2017, that ranges from video games, insects, movies, sports and so on, will enthral and amaze you for hours… not days… not weeks… but all year long!

 

 

image courtesy of syndeticsStar Wars Galactic Atlas.

Calling all Star Wars fans, here is you chance to explore a galaxy far, far away in this stunning guide to the worlds of Star Wars. This book is jam packed full of  superb full colour, covers everything from Alderaan and Naboo to Tatooine and Yavin 4, taking in the epic stories, strange creatures and glorious vistas of the entire saga. Check out the official trailer for the latest release from the Star Wars franchise: Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, in which a group of unlikely heroes band together on a mission to steal the plans to the Death Star, the Empire’s ultimate weapon of destruction. Exciting!

 

Hope you all have a very Merry Christmas and a happy new year!  See you in 2017!