Update on Libraries’ events and programmes

With the move to Covid-19 Alert Level 1 all Wellington City Libraries branches will resume our programmes and events over the coming weeks. Please check our website for details. We will maintain the additional cleaning currently in place and encourage everyone to continue recording their visits using the QR codes.

“Thank you to everyone for patiently following the sign-in and physical distancing rules under the previous Alert level,” says Laurinda Thomas, Manager Libraries and Community Spaces. “When visiting we encourage you to use the hand sanitiser available and record your visits using the QR code posters so we can all help keep one another safe.”

“Over the coming week our teams will be busy setting up our popular programmes like Storytime and Baby Rock & Rhyme, and events, so visit our website to find out what you’ll be able to enjoy at your local branch and when.”

Visit wcl.govt.nz/calendar to see which programmes and events are coming up.

COVID-19 Update – Libraries at Level 2

COVID-19 logo“Under Alert level 2 all libraries will remain open for normal hours, with a few changes to keep everyone safe and able to use our spaces,” says Laurinda Thomas, Libraries and Community Spaces Manager. “This includes encouraging everyone to follow the social distancing, use hand sanitiser and wear masks.”

Continue reading “COVID-19 Update – Libraries at Level 2”

Visiting libraries under Alert Level 1

covid19 logo

Under the Covid-19 Alert Level 1 all Wellington City Libraries branches will return to normal opening hours from Monday 15 June, while continuing with additional cleaning and providing QR codes for people to track where they’ve been.

“It’s been great to see people coming back to our branches over the past few weeks, and we’ve really appreciated everyone for their patience in following the sign-in and physical distancing rules,” says Laurinda Thomas, Manager Libraries and Community Spaces.

“We will continue to provide regular cleaning of shared resources, such as children’s toys, and keep our QR codes up so people can continue to keep track of where they’ve been”

“Our teams loved entertaining Wellingtonians by delivering our Storytime, Bedtime stories, and Baby Rock and Rhyme programmes live through Facebook, and we were delighted with how well received they were.

“Now we’re back in the branches, our Storytime and Baby Rock and Rhyme programmes will be gradually restarting. But we’ll continue to help Wellington kids get off to sleep by reading Bedtime stories on Facebook.”

To see the branch opening hours and which programmes are available, and where, please visit the opening hours and event calendar pages.

Library online numbers a turn-up for the books

With libraries reopened in the capital now, the library boffins have been crunching the numbers during the Covid-19 Alert Levels, and found online services broke every record in the book.

As the lockdown started in March, Wellington City Libraries welcomed over 1,110 new members, a 300% increase compared to 2019.

The number of people using eResources remained high throughout, averaging 10,000 eBooks issued and 5,000 reserves per week. Audiobooks averaged over 5,000 issues and 2,000 reserves per week.

Compared to early March 2019 the average number of ebooks issued was around 6,000, with 1,800 reserves. Audiobooks for the same time last year sat around 3,000 issues and 1,000 reserves.

“With Miramar Library opening 27 May, and Island Bay and He Matapihi opening 2 June, all 13 branches will have reopened – but with Level 2 restrictions there is still a lot of online activity going on,” says Laurinda Thomas, Wellington City Council’s Libraries and Community Spaces Manager.

“We are not running any face-to-face group activities under Alert Level 2, and our hours are a bit different from normal, so check our website before you visit. In the meantime, we are streaming our popular programmes such as Storytimes and Baby Rock & Rhyme, live on Facebook from Mondays to Saturdays, and the recorded Storytimes are available on the Kids pages of our website.

“We are currently planning for Alert Level 1, and we’re hoping that will see the return of many of our much loved programmes like Baby Rock & Rhyme to our libraries.”

Michelle Obama’s ‘Becoming’ was one of the most popular adult eBook and Audiobook over the past two months, and the Harry Potter series remained the most popular Audiobook for children, including the foreign language editions – although Horrid Henry was taking over from Harry in the eBooks stakes.

Such high levels of engagement with our library services during lockdown is reassuring for Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons, Portfolio Leader for Libraries.

There has been a library in Wellington for over a hundred years and the record use by residents during the lockdown shows the huge value and trust Wellingtonians place in library services today. We are so lucky to have such committed staff running our city’s libraries.

“The libraries of 2020 are not just about books – it’s audio, visual, historic, futuristic, online, offline, and for public events. Now that our branches are reopening, they’re also demonstrating what an important public space they are for residents as well.”

To meet the required social distancing for staff and customers Wellington City Libraries have introduced a number of systems to adhere to the Alert Level 2 guidelines, says Mayor Andy Foster.

“We know everyone loves our libraries, but we ask visitors to limit their time to 30 minutes to let everyone have a chance to pop in while we’re still operating under Level 2 guidelines.

The Rippl app is in place too, so make sure you register through that or manually while we continue to use contact tracing systems for the health and safety of our staff and customers.”

Top 10 from Kanopy (April)

1                    Ex Libris
2                    The Dressmaker
3                    The Phone Call
4                    Carol
5                    Kedi
6                    Stash Short Film Festival: Comedy
7                    Bobbie the Bear
8                    The Trip to Spain
9                    Bauhaus: The Face of the 20th Century
10                 I Am Not Your Negro

Top 5 from Beamafilm (April)

1                    Catherine The Great
2                    Un Village Francais
3                    Book Club
4                    Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy
5                    The Name of The Rose

Top 10 Adult and Children ebooks and audio (April)

ADULT EBOOKS ADULT AUDIO BOOKS
This is Going to Hurt: Secret Diaries of a Junior Doctor by Adam Kay Becoming by Michelle Obama
Blue Moon: Jack Reacher Series, Book 24 by Lee Child The Subtle Art of Not Giving a F*ck by Mark Manson
The 5 Elements of Effective Thinking by Edward Burger The Alchemist  by Paulo Coelho
Nine Perfect Strangers by Liane Moriarty Present Over Perfect: Leaving Behind Frantic for a Simpler, More Soulful Way of Living by Shauna Niequist
The Dutch House by Ann Patchett Mythos: The Greek Myths Retold by Stephen Fry
Normal People by Sally Rooney Talking to Strangers: What We Should Know about the People We Don’t Know by Malcolm Gladwell
Welcome to the Universe: An Astrophysical Tour by Neil DeGrasse Tyson Miss Marple’s Final Cases by Agatha Christie
The Testaments: The Handmaid’s Tale Series, Book 2 by Margaret Atwood The Alice Network by Kate Quinn
Becoming by Michelle Obama Girl, Wash Your Face by Rachel Hollis
The Family Upstairs by Lisa Jewell The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer
CHILDREN EBOOKS CHILDREN AUDIO BOOKS
Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone: Harry Potter Series, Book 1 Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone: Harry Potter Series, Book 1
Horrid Henry Robs the Bank Harry Potter à L’école des Sorciers: Harry Potter Series, Book 1 (French)
Little Women: Little Women Series, Book 1 Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets: Harry Potter Series, Book 2
Horrid Henry’s Underpants Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: Harry Potter Series, Book 3
Flunked: Fairy Tale Reform School Series, Book 1 Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince: Harry Potter Series, Book 6
Guts: Smile Series, Book 3 Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire: Harry Potter Series, Book 4
The Cupcake Club Series, Book 1 Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows: Harry Potter Series, Book 7
Boy-Crazy Stacey: Baby-Sitters Club Graphix Series, Book 7 Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix: Harry Potter Series, Book 5
Horrid Henry Tricks the Tooth Fairy Harry Potter y la piedra filosofal: Harry Potter Serie, Libro 1 (Spanish)
The Dirt Diary Series, Book 1 Big Nate in the Zone: Big Nate Series, Book 6 by Lincoln Pierce

The Beyond the Page literary festival for tamariki and their whanau – a project with Hutt City, Upper Hutt City, Wellington, Kāpiti and Porirua Libraries – is running events online this weekend.

Children can sign up to take part in a Zoom drawing class with talented comic book artist and wrestler, Michael Mulipola or join the Family Quiz on Sunday – learn more here.

More library branches to reopen from Monday 25 May

“Wellington City Libraries will reopen three more branches as we get back to our new normal under Alert Level 2,” says Laurinda Thomas, Libraries and Community Spaces Manager. “We reopened seven branches from Thursday 14 May, and now our Brooklyn, Khandallah and Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) libraries will reopen from Monday 25 May.”

“All open branches will continue to follow slightly reduced hours, so we can manage the additional covid19 logohealth and safety measures required under Alert Level 2. Our teams continue to work hard on making our new normal as smooth as possible for everyone, and we appreciate how patience and kind everyone has been.”

“Magazine fans will be super excited as we had a massive amount waiting for us when we returned. They were part of the 11 bags of mail that greeted our teams, which included hundreds of newspapers from around the country!”

“We also saw a huge jump in people entertaining their bubbles using the thousands of eBooks, audiobooks and movie streaming services people can access for free through their library card. Compared to last year, we issued 32% more eBooks and 27% more audiobooks and reserves went up around 50% for both – and the issues aren’t slowing down yet.”

“What we are most excited about is we welcomed over 1,110 new members in March, which was a 300% increase compared to 2019.  We relaxed the rules for lockdown so people could apply to become a member online and we could issue them a library number to login. It’s proved so popular we not changing the process back.”

The following branches that have reopened: Arapaki Manners Library and Service Centre, Cummings Park (Ngaio), Johnsonville (Waitohi), Karori, Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie),  Newtown, and Wadestown.  Brooklyn, Khandallah, and Mervyn Kemp Library (Tawa) will join them from Monday 25 May.

See our Frequently Asked Questions for the full details about the branches opening hours and steps we have in place.

NZ Music on Screen: NZ Music Month

Each year during May it is always New Zealand Music Month, but 2020 is an unusual one due to the COVID-19. It is forcing artists to find new ways of working and connecting with audiences, and there are a surprising number of things still happening. Check out the NZ Music Month official website as well as our Wellington Music blog and facebook. To celebrate and support New Zealand music and artists, we have selected some fantastic films available on Beamfilm and Kanopy. They include the documentary about Martin Phillipps (The Chills) and two iconic New Zealand movies (An Angel at my Table and Dean Spanley) for which Don McGlashan (Blam Blam Blam, The Mutton Birds) did the soundtracks. Be calm, kind and enjoy the movies!


The Chills: The Triumph & Tragedy of Martin Phillipps

Year: 2019
Length: 95 minutes
Directors: Julia Parnell and Rob Curry

Watch the full film here!

Martin Phillipps came tantalizingly close to conquering the international musical world with his band The Chills, but instead fell into decades of debt and addiction in his hometown of Dunedin, New Zealand. At 54, he’s been given a dire medical prognosis, forcing him to face his demons and realise his musical ambitions before it’s too late.


The Pa Boys

Year: 2014
Length: 90 minutes
Director: Himiona Grace

Watch the full film here!

A contemporary story with a strong message, PA BOYS, follows a Wellington reggae band as they embark on a tour ‘down north’, from Wellington to Cape Reinga. Staring Fran Kora (from the band KORA) and Matariki Whatarau (Go Girls, The Almighty Johnsons), PA BOYS is a story about life, death and music. As the band tours, their travels expose Danny (Kora) and Tau (Whatarau) to a spiritual history that cannot be avoided and when unresolved events from their past must be confronted it’s Danny who holds the key.


Topp Twins Untouchable Girls

Year: 2009
Length: 81 minutes
Director: Leanne Pooley

Watch the full film here!

The Topp Twins: Untouchable Girls” is the first time that the irrepressible Kiwi entertainment double act, Jools and Lynda Topp’s extraordinary personal story has been told. The film offers a revealing look into the lives of the World’s only comedic, country singing, dancing, and yodeling lesbian twin sisters. As well as rarely seen archive footage and home movies, the film features a series of special interviews with some of the Topp’s infamous comedy alter-egos including candid chats with the two Kens, Camp Mother and Camp Leader.


Born To Dance

Year: 2015
Length: 96 minutes
Director: Tammy Davis

Watch the full film here!

Champion hip hop dancer, Tu Kaea, has the chance to audition for K-Crew, the best hip hop crew in the country, but he has to go behind the backs of his home crew and his best friend Benjy. Things get even more complicated when he starts falling for Sasha, the girlfriend of K-Crew’s leader. When Tu’s old crew and new crew clash, he has to make a decision that will change his life forever.


An Angel At My Table

Year: 1990
Length: 158 minutes
Directors: Jane Campion

Watch the full film here!

Jane Campion brings to the screen the harrowing true-life story of Janet Frame, New Zealand’s most distinguished author. The film follows Frame along her inspiring journey, from a poverty-stricken childhood to a misdiagnosis of schizophrenia and electroshock therapy to, finally, international literary fame. Beautifully capturing the colour and power of the New Zealand landscape, the film earned Campion a sweep of her country’s film awards and the Special Jury Prize at the Venice Film Festival.


Dean Spanley

Year: 2008
Length: 97 minutes
Directors: Toa Fraser

Watch the full film here!

A dog may be man’s best friend but in Dean Spanley it is also the key to reconnecting Henslow Fisk and his ailing father, Horatio. After attending a lecture given by a visiting Swami on ‘The Transmigration of Souls’, the Fisks run into eccentric Dean Spanley. Soon, Henslow discovers the Dean may be more connected to the Fisks than they could ever have imagined!

Half of Wellington City Libraries to reopen under Alert Level 2

Wellington City Libraries have been busy over past weeks preparing to welcome people back to half of their branches – but things will be a little different.

“We’ve been busy right through the lockdown moving many of our popular programmes online and creating events and activities to help keep everyone entertained in their bubbles,” says Laurinda Thomas, Libraries and Community Spaces Manager. “Over the past weeks we’ve been preparing to make our spaces for our customers and staff to return to. Meeting the government hygiene guidelines includes additional cleaning of the spaces and equipment, temporarily remove some toys and activities, working out how our teams can work and serve customers while meeting the physical distancing rules.”

“Now we have the systems set up we will begin reopening five branches from Thursday 14 May, with another two libraries opening from Monday 18 May. We are reducing our opening hours slightly to fit in the additional health and safety requirements. In order to make sure everyone can maintain physical distancing, we will be managing numbers onsite, so it is likely to be a little busier when you visit.”

“To help everyone enjoy their visits safely please keep your visits shorter, and be kind when keeping your 2m distance, especially when waiting to sign in or check out items. It’ll take a little while as we all settle into around our new ways of working and getting around, so thank you for your patience.”

The Cummings Park (Ngaio), Waitohi (Johnsonville), Karori, Kilbirnie and Newtown branches will reopen on Thursday 14 May 2020. Arapaki Manners Library and Service Centre and Wadestown branch will reopen from 10am, Monday 18 May 2020. See our Frequently Asked Questions for full details.

Be productive during the lockdown

Need help staying focused and productive while in lockdown? I think we all do. Here are some really good strategies from the Lynda.com tutors.

Productivity Tips: Setting Up Your Workplace with Dave Crenshaw
This shortish 40 minute video gives you quick tips for cultivating a workspace that makes it easier to stay focused, motivated, and productive. (It’s had over 2,500 views since it was loaded at the beginning of February)

Mixtape: Learning Highlights for Better Productivity with LinkedIn Learning Instructors This is a curated collection of insights from top LinkedIn courses on productivity. If you are particularly interested in any one of the courses, check out the full version of each course.

 

Productivity tips: finding your productive mindset – Dave Crenshaw
This hour length video has had over 8,000 views since it was released in January this year.
Dave Crenshaw shares bite-sized actionable tips for finding time in your routine to improve productivity and flexibility. Learn how to shake off negativity and add meaning to your workday.

Time Management: Working from Home with Dave Crenshaw
Another very useful and apt course which gives time management tips to stay productive and balanced when working from home part-time or full-time.

5 Ways to Control Your Time with Chris Croft
Find more time for what’s most important. Learn the 5 key time management strategies (from saying “no” to overcoming perfectionism) to reduce distractions and stay focused…

Storytime, now direct to your bubble!

Are your kids missing their Library storytime visits? Well, good news! You and your bubble can now enjoy storytime anytime at home with Storybox Library. Storybox Library features over 300 stories read aloud by a fantastically diverse range Australian and New Zealand storytellers. All you need is your Wellington City Libraries card and a device to watch on — PC, laptop, tablet or smartphone.

To get you started, here are some stories my bubble have enjoyed this week:

I Just Ate My Friend – written and illustrated by Heidi McKinnon and read by Tim Rogers
This story about a quirky wee monster looking for a friend will have the little ones laughing out loud, especially at the surprise ending! Performed with superb comic timing by musician Tim Rogers.

That’s Not The Monster We Orderedwritten by Richard Fairgray, illustrated by Richard Fairgray and Terry Jones and read by Richard Fairgray
What happens when the family next door gets an awesome monster!? Well everyone else wants one as well of course! But what if the monster you order isn’t necessarily the monster you get… Super funny and with a unique and ever so slightly offbeat illustrative style, this was a real winner in our house.

The Terrible Plop – written and read by Ursula Dubosarsky, illustrated by Andrew Joyner
This is an old favourite. All about a brave little rabbit, a grumpy bear and a mysterious Terrible Plop!


I Am Jellyfish – written and illustrated by Ruth Paul, read by Akina Edmonds
A glittery undersea story about a kind jellyfish who cleverly gets the better of a knife-nosed swordfish who is keen to have her for his dinner! Gorgeous illustrations and lyrical text make this a perfect choice to wind down before bed.


Pig the Pug – written, illustrated and read by Aaron Blabey
Pig is an outrageously selfish pug dog who decidedly does not want to share his toys with Trevor the dashshund. Something unexpected happens but will Pig learn his lesson? 

Room On Our Rock – written by Kate Temple and Jol Temple, illustrated by Terri Rose Baynton and read by Jay Laga’aia
A clever story about a seal-and-pup looking for a place of safety in an uncertain world. Reading front to back and then back to front gives two different thought provoking narratives.

Bear Make Den – written by Jane Godwin and Michael Wagner, illustrated by Andrew Joyner and read by Anne Edmonds
Bear is very industrious and wants to make the perfect den, but finds something is missing. What could it be? A simple, heartwarming story read with a great sense of playfulness by comedian Anne Edmonds.

The Patchwork Bike – written by Maxine Beneba Clarke, illustrated by Van T Rudd and read by Zahra Newman
A resourceful young boy and his brothers show that you don’t need a lot of possessions to have fun. Using everyday items and a creative spirit the brothers work to build the most amazing patchwork bike around.

AND after you’ve enjoyed the story, don’t forget to scroll down to the bottom of each story page to discover a related at home activity!

#StayAtHome Film Festival: Welcome!

With over 30,000 films available via Wellington City Libraries’ free film streaming services, it can be hard to know where to start. Do you want a movie with drama? Something to scare you? Perhaps you want to be inspired, or distracted, or maybe you just want to be convinced that the mice that have recently overrun your house are really just cute little dust sprites? (Totoro, I’m counting on you!)

Whatever your cinematic needs, Wellington City Libraries has got you covered! Over the next few weeks our librarians will be presenting hand-picked selections of some of their favourite films in a variety of genres. To take part, all you need to do is make sure you’re a Wellington City Libraries member (click here to find out more), then sign up to both Kanopy and Beamafilm.

And don’t forget to keep an eye out for associated resources: for example, did you know Lynda.com has a wide variety of courses on how to make films yourself?! Discover more with the #StayAtHome Film Festival, coming soon to a library blog near you!

Selections:

Marilyn’s Picks: Women and Girls Against the Odds

Kerry’s Picks: The Latest Fashion Documentaries

Neil’s Picks: Comedy Greats

Mark’s Picks: Music Documentaries

Louise’s Picks: Documentaries that Resonate

Shinji’s Picks: Films From Around the World

Paul’s Picks: ANZAC Day

Gus’ Picks: Weird and Thrilling Films

Hannah’s Picks: The Best Travel Films Around

Susannah’s Picks: Classic and Contemporary Horror

Louise’s Picks: Māori and Pasifika Movies and Docos