Kids’ Club Review by Alice: Back to School

Back to SchoolBack to School, by Meredith Badger

This book is really enjoyable to read. In this book Chloe feels excited about going back to school but when she does not get to be in the same class with all her other friends and things start going wrong she doesn’t at all feel like going to school. I recommend this book to ages 6-11.

5 stars

Reviewed by Alice from Kilbirnie and St Patrick’s School , 11 years old

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!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walt Disney DVD recommendations: All time classics and an upcoming movie release.

Term 4 has started and the countdown to the Christmas holidays has began!

The library is still  choc-a-block full of Walt Disney DVDs in the collection that you can get your hands on and may come handy for the Christmas holidays if you fancy a relaxing day of veging out in front the telly with your choice of favourite snacks.

This is the FINAL blog post for Walt Disney DVDs, for this year at least as I will be moving onto blogging about other cool movies and categories. Some I watched throughout my childhood that still remain favourites of mine today and some that I have only watched in the last few years.

In this blog post, you will encounter Walt Disney movie recommendations filled with heroes/heroines, sleeping princesses, animal friends and the odd bit romance.

So check out the following DVDs below and believe me… I think I have saved the best for last… and see further down below for an extra special treat!

(Click on the linked titles to find out which libraries you can find these DVDs at)

 

image courtesy of amazon.comLady and the Tramp.

Probably one of the best Walt Disney classics and romances to date! Join Lady, a pampered cocker spaniel and Tramp, a jaunty freedom loving mutt, with a heart of gold who share an enthralling romance and thrilling adventures.

The infamous Bella Notte Spaghetti/kissing Scene is always a favorite mine, as I’m sure it is with a lot of people. See the scene for yourself and decide if this is a movie you like to see, especially with your own canine pal!

 

image courtesy of smazon.comMulan.

In truly Shakespearian style, a brave young Chinese girl named Mulan fashions herself as a male solider in her aging father’s place and leads her fellow soldiers with remarkable courage and tactical brilliance in the battlefield – and a legend was born.

A truly magnificent film that showcases that not all heroes are born, but made. A great movie for girls and a true celebration of girl power! Check out this awesome music clip “True to your heart” from the movie soundtrack.

 

image courtesy of amazon.comThe Princess and the frog.

This is truly a different take on classic fairy tale, The Frog Prince, where the story takes place in New Orleans, Lousiana, during the roaring 20s where jazz music, prohibition fine dining, flappers and social dance were on the rise.

Not to mention, both the prince – Arrogant, carefree Prince Naveen, and… the princess – hardworking, no nonsense waitress Tiana, are transformed into frogs!

With the help of a trumpet-playing alligator, a Cajun firefly, and an old blind lady who lives in a boat in a tree, Naveen and Tiana must race to break the spell, and fulfil their dreams.

Overall a fantastic film! Absolutely loved it! This is a very entertaining girls movie and a celebration of the Creole culture that will make you want to get up and dance the foxtrot and the Charleston.

 

image courtesy of amazon.comThe Little Mermaid.

Oh my goodness, this is the one movie I watched religiously throughout my childhood with my mates from school where we were continuously reciting lines and singing along to the songs!

Based on the all time classic by Hans Christian Anderson – the same guy who wrote The Snow Queen, which Disney adapted into the movie, Frozen… Anyway I am getting way ahead myself.

The Little Mermaid is about Ariel, a fun-loving and mischievous mermaid with a fiery personality – hmm, explains the red hair, who is enchanted with all things human and falls in love with Prince Eric, who also happens to be a human to the disgust and horror of her father.

Determined to be human, she strikes a bargain with the devious sea witch, Ursula, and trades her fins and beautiful voice for legs. However the catch is that in order for her to be a human forever, her prince has to kiss her. Always true love’s kiss to either break or hold a spell. Ah, the things we do for love.

So poor Ariel has a lot on her plate: become human, win the prince’s love and save her father’s kingdom and her love’s kingdom from Ursula, but luckily she has a few friends to aid her in the form of her best friend Flounder, and her reluctant chaperon aka singing crab, Sebastian at her side.

Not easy being a Disney princess and heroine. But overall a fun, enjoyable Disney classic to watch when having a night in with the family. You might enjoy this clip “Kiss the girl” sung by Sebastian where he tries to encourage Prince Eric to kiss Ariel to break the spell. Will it work? Watch, be entertained, laugh and find out.

 

image courtesy of amazon.comSnow White and the seven Dwarfs.

This was the very first movie I saw at the cinema at the tender age of 3 years old and nearly thirty years later, still remains a favourite and timeless classic to this day!

This The beautiful and kind-hearted princess Snow White must go on the run into the deep dark woods after she incurs the wrath of her jealous and wicked stepmother, the Queen by being fairest in the land. There, she befriends the lovable seven dwarfs, Doc, Sneezy, Grumpy, Happy, Bashful, Sleepy and Dopey.

However things go pear shaped when The Queen finds Snow White and tricks her with an enchanted apple. Only the magic of her true love aka Prince Charming’s kiss can save her.

 

image courtesy of amazon.comSleeping Beauty.

Princess Aurora is cursed by the evil fairy/witch/fire breathing dragon, Maleficent, into a deep sleep and can only be awakened by her true love’s kiss.

This is one of my favourite Walt Disney movies of all time. I loved it so much that my aunt ended up buying me the video for my seventh birthday, which was probably the most memorable birthdays ever! I loved everything about this movie! Loved the music by Tchaikovsky, which he originally composed for the ballet version of Sleeping Beauty; the playful banter and bickering between three good fairies, especially when they debate about the color of Aurora’s birthday dress, hmmm pink or blue? You decide. Not to mention, the chemistry between Aurora and her true love, Prince Philip.

A big spoiler and perhaps uncanny about Aurora and Philip is that they were betrothed when they were little and they end meeting and falling in love anyway, WHOA! Another favourite (probably more than Snow White) and timeless Walt Disney classic from childhood to the present day!

Also check out my review of Maleficent for an alternative interpretation of Sleeping Beauty and decide whether Maleficent is evil or misunderstood.

 

image courtesy of amazon.comUpcoming Walt Disney Movie release for next year: Beauty and the Beast.

If you are a fan of the Disney animated movie, Beauty and the Beast, then brace yourselves… next year Walt Disney is releasing a live action adaptation of the classic fairy-tale about a monstrous prince transformed into a beast.  In order to break the horrible enchantment, the beast must fall in love with a beautiful young woman, played by none other than Emma Watson (Hermione from the Harry Potter movie), but to complicate things further he must earn her love in return.

Check out the official teaser trailer! So why not pen in the date: 17th March 2017 to be a guest for one of the most highly anticipated Walt Disney movie releases of all time!

 

 

Back to school – here’s a website to bookmark

So long holidays, hello school. We hope you enjoyed your April School Holidays (despite the weather) and managed to read heaps of awesome books and do cool stuff. Did you get along to any our the Libraries’ awesome holiday activities?

But now that you’re back to school, you’ll need to know about where to go for homework help. Here’s two great starting places:

anyquestionslogo_smallAnyQuestions.co.nz and ManyAnswers.co.nz

These two NZ websites are designed to help school students find online information for their school work. AnyQuestions is a live service – which means you chat live with a librarian who will help you find helpful websites with the information you need. AnyQuestions in open Monday – Friday from 1pm to 6pm. All you need to do is visit the website, type in your question, and you’ll be chatting live with a librarian very soon. The librarian will talk to you about your question and the information you need, and then will help you to search for helpful and trustworthy websites.

ManyAnswers is open 24/7 and has lots of great tips about where to find online info for heaps of topics. Use the search box or topic cloud to find advice on how to search for your topic. this is a great place to visit when AnyQuestions is not open for a live chat.

Back to school!

So long holidays, hello school. We hope you had a great summer holiday and managed to read heaps of awesome books.

But now that you’re back to school, you’ll need to know about where to go for homework help. Here’s some great starting places:

AnyQuestions.co.nz and ManyAnswers.co.nz

These two NZ websites are designed to help school students find online information for their school work. AnyQuestions is a live service – which means you chat live with a librarian who will help you find helpful websites with the information you need. AnyQuestions in open Monday – Friday from 1pm to 6pm.

ManyAnswers is open 24/7 and has lots of great tips about where to find online info for heaps of topics.

 

Te Ara – The Encyclopedia of New Zealand

In Māori, Te Ara means ‘the pathway’. The Te Ara Encyclopedia will take you on a journey of discovery! Constantly being updated, this site will eventually be a comprehensive guide to New Zealand – its peoples, natural environment, history, culture, economy and society.  The site also includes New Zealand’s last official encyclopedia from 1966. It is published here in full, with all the original drawings, maps and photographs — and there are some very neat illustrations!

 

The following info sources can be found on the Library’s My Gateway page.

ZooWhizz

ZooWhiz is a great site for learning maths, spelling and reading, with a neat twist — when you complete an activity, you earn “coins” to spend for your online zoo! Activities are aimed at the full range of levels — from ages 5 to 15. Choose a zookeeper avatar, and then a type of activity, and get started earning “coins” to build your zoo!

Encyclopedia Britannica

This online encyclopedia has more than 73,000 encyclopaedia articles, both short and book-length — and is a great place to start looking for information for all kinds of projects. It also includes a world atlas, thousands of images and videos, an online dictionary and thesaurus and links to helpful websites.

LanguageNut

LanguageNut is a fun way to learn different languages for kids and adults. There are songs, stories and games for each language so you’ll be adding to your vocabulary without really realising it! The non-English languages you can learn include te reo Māori, Indonesian, Mandarin (Pinyin and Hanzi), Italian, Arabic script and many others. There is also an option to learn English if you speak another language.

Oddizzi

Oddizzi site is a fun, interactive way to learn about countries. It includes weather, climate, rainforests, volcanoes, earthquakes, oceans, food and farming, animals, transport, jobs, schools, festivals, religion, and more. Need to find out about a country or have a topic about the natural world to research?

 

 

 

 

Back to school!

The school holidays are over and it’s time to go back to school! We hope you had a great two week break.

Your teacher is bound to start giving you projects and homework to do – and we’re here to help!

Have you heard about AnyQuestions.co.nz? It’s a live online homework help service where you can chat live to a New Zealand Librarian who will help you find the information you need online. It’s a free service and open Monday to Friday 1pm – 6pm. the service is available in English and te Reo.

If you need help outside those times you can go to ManyAnswers.co.nz. This is the sister website for AnyQuestions.co.nz and has information about where to find information online for thousands of homework topics.

Of course you can always visit your local Wellington City Library after school and ask the librarians for help finding information -they’re always happy to help!

Give it a go!

WIN a back to school prize pack!

Thanks to the cool people at Random House Books we have a wicked back to school prize pack for you to win. The pack includes 3 books from James Patterson’s Middle School series , a book bag, and a notepad and pencil.

 

How do you win…? It’s easy! All you have to do is comment on this post and tell us the best and worst thing about going back to school after the school holidays (make sure your comments are nice and you’re not being mean about anyone). Feel free to get creative; some of the best stories are the made-up ones. A team of expert librarians will pick a winner.

 

The Middle School series are really funny! Here’s what they’re about:

I even funnier

Middle schooler Jamie Grimm has big dreams of being the best stand-up comic in the world—and he won’t let the fact that he’s wheelchair-bound stand in his way. After winning the New York state finals in the Planet’s Funniest Kid Comic Contest, Jamie’s off to Boston to compete in the national semi-finals.

 

 

Middle School: My Brother Is a Big, Fat Liar

Georgia Khatchadorian plans to excel at Hills Village Middle School in all the places her troublemaking brother failed. She’s even bet him that she’ll quickly become one of the most popular girls in school. But Rafe left a big mark at HVMS, and no one will give Georgia a chance!

 

 

 

Middle School: Get Me Out of Here!

After sixth grade, the very worst year of his life, Rafe Khatchadorian thinks he has it made in seventh grade. He’s been accepted to art school in the big city and imagines a math-and-history-free fun zone. Wrong! It’s more competitive than Rafe ever expected, and to score big in class, he needs to find a way to turn his boring life into the inspiration for a work of art. His method? Operation: Get a Life!

 

 

 

Cool fiction for starting school

School is about to start for 2014!  We hope you’ve all had a fun-filled summer holiday break and are rearing to go for term 1.  Are you looking forward to starting school?  Or maybe you’re a bit nervous?  Whichever way you’re feeling, the library has some awesome books for you all about starting school and going to a new school.  Here’s a selection of some faves to get you rocking in your school shoes and banish away any back to school blues!

Everything SCHOOL!

The countdown for starting back at SCHOOL is on.

Are you excited?

Are you ready?

Are you organised?

To help you fill in some of the time left on your SCHOOL holidays why not have fun at some other SCHOOL’s. Perhaps you would like to go to drama SCHOOL, learn how to ride a horse at riding SCHOOL, try a pirouette at ballet SCHOOL or learn how to serve a ball at tennis SCHOOL.

You can even go back in time to a Victorian SCHOOL or try an experiment at science SCHOOL.

Time to have some fun at one of these great SCHOOL’s before you head back to SCHOOL!

(Are you sick of us saying SCHOOL yet??)