The Summer Reading Challenge Continues!

Another year begins, and our Summer Reading Challenge continues! If all the book reviews you’ve been writing are anything to go by, you guys have been reading like absolute machines all throughout this beautiful Wellington summer. It has been wonderful reading all of your reviews and hearing about what you’ve enjoyed (or not so much!) about the books you’ve been reading.

It’s not too late to get involved! The Summer Reading Challenge is still running, and will keep running until the 31st of January 2021! There are heaps of prizes to be won just by reading books from our Summer Reading Challenge booklist — just see the photo below for a teensy tiny glimpse into our instant prize stash! Massive thanks to our friends at Unity Books, Marsden Books, and the Children’s Bookshop in Kilbirnie for their generous support.

Several piles of brand-new children's books, including picture books, fiction, nonfiction, and comics

This is just a small sample of the awesome book prizes that you can earn — just by reading and reviewing books from our collection!

But, reviewing books isn’t the only way to earn prizes. If you turn over your Summer Reading Challenge booklet, you’ll find a plethora of fun challenges to complete as part of our special Book Bingo challenge. Once you’ve finished off all 9 of the challenges, take your booklet in to your local library to earn a special prize.

A hand-drawn and vibrantly-coloured Dora the Explorer sits beneath the original art from the book.

This beautiful drawing of Dora the Explorer by Aarvi from Johnsonville Library was completed as part of the Book Bingo Challenge! Ka rawe, Aarvi!

So what are you waiting for? It’s time to get reading!

Discover Wicked Bugs for Summer Holiday Fun!

The summer holidays are here – sunshine, barbeques, swimming, staying up late… and mosquitoes biting, flies buzzing around the cooked food, moths beating against your torch as you try to read at night, and crickets and cicadas making a racquet when you’re trying to sleep in you tent!  Anyone would think bugs were put here to ruin your summer fun!

But did you know that we humans wouldn’t survive on this big, beautiful planet without our friendly creepy-crawlies to help us along? At last count it is estimated that there are ten quintillion insects alive on Earth right now, which means that for each one of us, there are two hundred million of them! But don’t panic! They all have a job to do, and if you dig deeper (and many of them do live underground), what the insects do for us and the health of the planet is pretty amazing.

File:Cook Strait Giant Weta (5601688959).jpg - Wikimedia CommonsTake New Zealand’s GIANT WĒTĀ (wētāpunga) for example. This big daddy of an insect features in the Guinness Book of Records as being one of the world’s largest insects, and some of them weigh in around 70 grams – about the same weight as a saddleback or sparrow! Department of Conservation staff refer to them as the ‘mouse of the forest’ because their equally giant poos help fertilise the forest floor and help with regeneration of native bush. What a hero! And the Auckland Zoo think so too and have joined forces with DoC and local iwi to reintroduce wētāpunga to islands in the Hauraki Gulf so that they can do their fertilising work and bring back the bush.

And just when you thought things couldn’t get any weirder, did you know that the wētā’s ears are located in their knees?! Yes, really!


File:Chorus Cicada... (6926902643).jpg - Wikimedia CommonsYou really know Summer has arrived when the CICADAS start their noise! But why do they do it? And how?

The high-pitched ‘song’ is actually a mating call belted out by males. Each species has its own distinctive song that only attracts females of its own kind. This allows several different species to live together in one area.

Cicadas are the only insects capable of producing such a unique and loud sound, and they do it by contracting special muscles called tymbals in their abdomen. Some larger species can produce a call in excess of 120 decibels at close range (120 decibels is the equivalent of a thunderclap or a chainsaw)! Smaller species sing in such a high pitch that it cannot be heard by humans, but may cause dogs and other animals to howl in pain.


File:Housefly on Table.jpg - Wikimedia CommonsWe’ve all experienced the FLIES massing as soon as the barbeque is cooking and the salads are out on the picnic table. But why do they do this? The common house fly has a pretty powerful sense of smell and is attracted to strong smells – especially meat, and especially rotting meat! They like to lay their eggs in rotting material so that when their babies – maggots – hatch they have something to eat, yum! But just like the rest of us, adult flies have to eat too so that they’ve got the energy to fly. To eat their food, flies regurgitate (bring up) saliva from their stomachs, which dissolves the food until it is digestible. The house fly then uses its proboscis – like an attached straw where your nose should be – to suck up the liquefied food. Though they eat with their mouths, house flies taste with their feet. This is why they are always crawling on your food.

Lego Weta by EzraCRITTER OF THE WEEK: To tweak you interest further, check out “Critter of the Week”  on Radio New Zealand every Thursday in Afternoons with Jessie Mulligan.  Nicola Toki is the Threatened Species Ambassador for the Department of Conservation and a self-confessed “nature nerd”. Each week she talks  about a lovable member of New Zealand’s wildlife community, many of them our creepy-crawly friends. There was even a competition earlier in the year for you to make the most interesting critter out of Lego and send in a photo. Check out some of the entries here.

“An understanding of the natural world is a source of not only great curiosity, but great fulfilment.”

(David Attenborough – natural historian, environmentalist and planet-hero)



Wellington City Libraries have loads of fantastic books about insects, creepy-crawlies and the people that study insects (entomologists). Take a dive into the fascinating world of bugs… go on! There’s nothing to be afraid of!

The genius of bugs / Pollard, Simon
This book contains a cast of amazing and unexpected bugs, from the killer brain-surgeon jewel wasp to the master-of-disguise orchid mantis, to the New Zealand favourite, the wētā.

 


New Zealand’s backyard beasts / Barraud, Ned
In the garden, creeping along branches, hiding under stones or flitting from flower to flower, a whole universe of creatures is waiting to be discovered. Butterflies, moths, beetles, wasps, spiders. Did you know that  cicadas live underground for most of their life? That bumblebees have smelly feet? That some species of stick insect are all female? Or that earwigs don’t actually crawl into ears? In this book you can learn to identify some of the creatures most commonly found in the backyard.


The bug girl : (a true story) / Spencer, Sophia
Real-life 7-year-old Sophia Spencer was bullied for loving bugs until hundreds of women scientists rallied around her. Sophia tells her inspiring story in this picture book that celebrates women in science, bugs of all kinds, and the importance of staying true to yourself. Sophia Spencer has always loved bugs but when she was bullied at school she stopped talking about bugs altogether. When Sophia’s mother wrote to an entomological society looking for a bug scientist to be a pen pal for her daughter, she and Sophie were overwhelmed by the enthusiastic response–letters, photos, and videos came flooding in. Using the hashtag BugsR4Girls, scientists tweeted hundreds of times to tell Sophia to keep up her interest in bugs.


World's Biggest Baddest Bugs (Ruud Kleinpaste) Image at Mighty Ape NZWorld’s biggest baddest bugs
To find the good, the bad and ugly of the insect world, Ruud Kleinpaste – New Zealand’s very own BugMan – embarks on an entomological journey in search of the biggest and the baddest of them all in this two part DVD. From killer bees and army ants, to cockroaches and tarantula, Ruud explains exactly what makes the “stars” of the show so incredible. Through a series of deadly stunts Ruud reveals what makes these crawlies the kings of the bugs and how they are capable of so much more than just scaring us silly.


World’s strangest creepy-crawlies / Derrick, Stuart
This book includes 40 of the planet’s most bizarre species and ranks them in order of their oddness! With jaw-dropping facts and amazing photos, the pages reveal each creature’s seriously strange characteristics and the unusual ways they hunt, eat or defend themselves.   Inside World’s Strangest Creepy-Crawlies, you’ll discover the tiny terror that blows itself up to save its friends, a creature so well disguised even its own species can’t see it, and a giant spider the size of a dinner plate. And with the ‘strange-o-meter’, you can compare each animal based on its creepiness, fight factor and superpowers!


I’m trying to love spiders : (it isn’t easy) / Barton, Bethany
What do you do when you see a spider? a. Lay on a BIG spidey smoocheroo. b. Smile, but back away slowly. c. Grab the closest object, wind up, and let it fly. d. Run away screaming.
If you chose b, c, or d, then this book is for you.
I’m Trying to Love Spiders will help you see these amazing arachnids in a whole new light, from their awesomely excessive eight eyes, to the seventy-five pounds of bugs a spider can eat in a single year And you’re sure to feel better knowing you have a better chance of being struck by lightning than being fatally bit by a spider. Comforting, right? No? Either way, there’s heaps more information in here to help you forget your fears . . . or at least laugh a lot!

Summer Programmes and Events Schedule

Kia ora koutou! The summer holidays are a great time for you to relax, spend some time with whānau, and bask in the sunshine with a good book. Our librarians sometimes like to do this as well, so there will be some changes to our regularly-scheduled events and programmes during Christmas, New Year’s, and January. You can find out where and when everything is happening at the Event Calendar, or the children’s What’s On webpage, but here are the basics for you:


Special Events

Two children sitting underneath a tree, reading a book.

Enjoy the Summer Reading Challenge these school holidays!

During December, we have special Christmas Storytimes for the whole family to enjoy at all 14 of our libraries, and don’t forget that the Summer Reading Challenge is running from now until the end of January! Get stuck in now to earn sweet prizes.

Keep an eye out for our famous BookBike at beaches and parks around the city during those hot January days, and you can also come see us at a wide variety of festivals and events during the summer, including Gardens Magic (12 January – 31 January 2021) and the Wellington Pasifika Festival on 23 January 2021. We’d love to see you there!


Regular Programmes

Baby Rock and Rhyme will be taking a break at all sites from the 11th of December, and making a glorious return on the 1st of February. If you’re itching for that musical fix in your life, our newest library in the CBD, Te Awe on Brandon Street, will keep running Baby Rock and Rhyme until the 16th of December, and return on the 11th of January.

Preschool Storytime and Kōhunga Kōrero will run until the 20th of December at all sites for all your storytelling needs. At our CBD sites, as well as Johnsonville, Tawa, Brooklyn and Wadestown, storytime will resume from the 4th of January. At all other locations, our storytellers will be returning from the 1st of February.

Our LEGO® programmes including Let’s Go LEGO® and LEGO® Time will be on hiatus between the 20th of December and the 1st of February. At Johnsonville, Tawa, and Te Awe Libraries, these programmes will keep running throughout January — yahoo!

Our term-time programmes including Code Club, Tech Time, and CRAFTerschool will start up again in Week 2 of Term 1 2021, to give you time to adjust to being back at school before diving back into library events!


If you have any questions, feel free to contact your local library, or you can email the Children’s Librarian to find out more.

 

Summer Reading Challenge 2020-21!

Snowy the Sandman wishes he could read books for the Summer Reading Challenge, but he only has sunglasses where his eyes should be!

Switch on your reading eyes, grab the nearest cat (the purr-fect reading companion!), and prepare your parents for many bookish bedtimes and beach barbecues — the Summer Reading Challenge is nearly here!

It starts tomorrow, the 1st of December 2020, and runs through to the 31st of January 2021. Your mission: to read as many books as you can from the official Summer Reading Challenge list, which you can download online or pick up from your local library, and complete the 9 brain-bustingly brilliant Book Bingo challenges you’ll find on the back of the booklet. There are lots of instant and major prizes to be won, so get reading quick-smart!

Read the whole story — and get started on the Challenge — at the Summer Reading Challenge page.

So, how many can you read?

Making Musical Mayhem these School Holidays!

The school holidays are almost upon us — just 5 sleeps to go! With the Prime Minister’s announcement that we will be moving to COVID-19 Alert Level 1 from midnight tonight, we thought this calls for some kind of celebration. And what better way to celebrate than with music?

These school holidays, from September 26 — October 11, Wellington City Libraries are inviting you to Make Musical Mayhem with us at your local library or community centre! There’s heaps to do, from awe-inspiring interactive performances with our friends at Orchestra Wellington and musical craft extravaganzas with LEGO and recycled materials, to workshops on making music for robots, speed-dating musical instruments, and even a big dance party at our new Central branch, Te Awe Library on Brandon Street. There’s fun for the whole family, so check out the schedule below, or go to our event calendar for the full details of what’s on offer at your library!

Image of digital equaliser software displaying rainbow-coloured volume bars at different heights.

Get ready to make beautiful musical mayhem at your library during the school holidays!

Building Sound: Creating Music with Apps

Want to make music at home? Come along and learn how to make your own tunes at home using apps. We will explore different music-making apps, and how to layer different sounds and instruments to create our own pieces of music. Tablets will be provided, however we encourage you to bring your own.

Suitable for ages 8+ with their caregivers.

  • Te Awe Library, Tuesday 29 September, 11.00am

Introduction to the Orchestra

Want to learn about the inner workings of an orchestra? In preparation for “Where’s My Triangle?” with Orchestra Wellington on the 4th of October, Te Awe Library will be screening an entertaining guide to the orchestra, suitable for the whole family!

Bring your parents and grandparents — everyone is sure to learn something new.

  • Te Awe Library, Sunday 27 September, 1.30pm

Let’s Go LEGO®: Musical Edition

Are you a master builder in disguise? Join us for this special music-themed edition of Let’s Go LEGO® for our musical school holidays. Let’s build – let’s explore – let’s create your LEGO® magnum opus!

Suitable for ages 5+ with their caregivers.

  • Khandallah Library, Friday 2 October, 3.30pm
  • Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library, Wednesday 7 October, 11.00am
  • Johnsonville Library, Friday 9 October, 11.00am
  • Brooklyn Library, Friday 9 October, 2.00pm
  • Te Awe Library, Sunday 11 October, 11.00am

Makey Makey: Music for Robots!

What if we told you you could make a musical instrument out of everyday materials you find lying around? A banana piano? No problem. A drum kit made of keys and coins? Why not! Join us for a special music-making session with our Makey Makeys — who knows what you’ll create!

Suitable for children of all ages with their caregivers.

  • Khandallah Library, Tuesday 29 September, 2.00pm
  • Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library, Tuesday 6 October, 2.00pm
  • Johnsonville Library, Wednesday 7 October, 11.00am

Musical Movie Screenings

Join us for these special music-themed movie screenings for the whole family! Find out which movies we are screening by calling the library, or come along in your PJs for a musical surprise! All movies chosen will have a G or PG rating. Popcorn supplied!

  • Te Awe Library, Thursday 1 October, 1.30pm
  • Karori Library, Thursday 8 October, 5.30pm

Musical Storytimes

Join us for these special musical storytimes, featuring songs and musical stories for the whole family! Come along prepared to make some noise — bring your own instruments if you’re feeling extra brave!

Suitable for children aged 2-6 with their caregivers.

  • Karori Library, Wednesday 30 September, 10.30am
  • Khandallah Library, Tuesday 6 October, 10.30am
  • Cummings Park (Ngaio) LibraryWednesday 7 October, 10.30am

Party Time at Te Awe Library!

To celebrate the end of the school holidays, you are invited to a special party right here in the library! Do you want to play party games? Do you enjoy dance and song? Then grab your grown-up and bring them along to Te Awe Library prepared to have LOTS OF FUN!

Suitable for ages 6-9 with their caregivers.

  • Te Awe Library, Friday 9 October, 11.00am

Recycled Musical Crafts

Did you know that you can make a harmonica out of popsicle sticks? Or a guitar from a tissue box? Get your craft on these school holidays and turn your trash into treasure as we make our very own musical instruments from everyday items! Materials will be provided, but you are welcome to bring your own recycled item if there’s something special you wish to transform.

Suitable for ages 5+ with their caregivers.

  • Te Awe Library, Friday 2 October, 11.00am

Speed-Date a Musical Instrument!

Ever wanted to know what it’s like to play a musical instrument you’ve never tried before? Come along for this special opportunity to get up close, have a go, and learn about various musical instruments at stations placed throughout the library. Friendly library staff will guide you through your introduction to these instruments and the musical world.

Suitable for ages 4+ with their caregivers.

  • Brooklyn Library, Thursday 1 October, 2.00pm
  • Wadestown Library, Thursday 8 October, 2.00pm

‘Where’s My Triangle?’ with Orchestra Wellington

Orchestra Wellington is proud to present their 2020 Music to Schools programme, “Where’s My Triangle?” by the POW! Trio. Join us for this unique opportunity to get up-close to the family of instruments played by the percussionists of Orchestra Wellington. The show features music for a variety of instruments and musical styles from classical to pop, and the POW! Trio takes us on an adventure of EPIC proportions as they introduce instruments you never even knew existed!

This event is suitable for children of all ages accompanied by their caregivers. Special thanks to our friends at Orchestra Wellington!

  • Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library, Thursday 1 October, 10.30am
  • Newtown Library, Thursday 1 October, 1.30pm
  • Newlands Community Centre, Friday 2 October, 10.30am
  • Karori Library, Friday 2 October, 1.30pm
  • Johnsonville Library, Sunday 4 October, 10.30am
  • Te Awe Library, Sunday 4 October, 1.30pm
Three musicians, smiling, playing a marimba with 6 wooden mallets

Join the POW! Trio from Orchestra Wellington for this hands-on performance!

Purapura Whetū: A Matariki Festival with Your Libraries

Tēnā koutou katoa, e te whānau!

This July, Wellington City Libraries is celebrating Matariki with Purapura Whetū, a special festival of events, crafts, storytelling, and reflection for whānau and tamariki all over our city.

As well as all the programmes listed below, each of our libraries will have special crafting stations set up where you can make your very own star to add to our city-wide purapura whetū; a pattern, or web of stars.

Why do we celebrate Matariki? The star cluster Matariki (also known as the Pleiades) reappears in the dawn sky about Aotearoa in late May or early June. The new moon following the rising of Matariki signals the Māori New Year. Customarily, this was a time to remember the deceased of the past year and to plan for the new year. Today, Matariki has been revived as a celebration of people, culture, language, spirituality, and history. It is a time for whānau and friends to come together to reflect on the past 12 months and look forward to the year ahead. When you add your star to our purapura whetū, we invite you to send a message to someone you love, or reflect on the year that has just passed.

Come down to your library to make your whetū (star) and add it to our constellation!


Nau mai haere mai ki te whare pukapuka ki te whakanui i a Matariki! As well as the Purapura Whetū craft activity happening at every branch, there are many other fabulous events to look out for celebrating Matariki during the school holidays:

Kōhunga Kōrero o Matariki
Nau mai haere mai ki te whare pukapuka ki te whakanui i a Matariki! Pakiwaitara i roto i te reo Māori. E 30 meneti pakiwaitara, rotarota, waiata hoki i roto i te reo Māori nō ngā kōhungahunga me ō rātou mātua kaitiaki. Join us for these special Matariki storytimes in te reo Māori! Featuring stories, songs and rhymes in te reo Māori, these 30-minute storytimes are open to anyone, and are recommended for children aged 2-6 years and their caregivers.

  • Friday 10 July, 10.30am at Johnsonville Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Waitohi
  • Monday 13 July, 10.30am at Karori Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Māhanga
  • Friday 17 July, 10.30am at Johnsonville Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Waitohi

Making Matariki Stars
Join us for this special Matariki craft session! Make your very own Matariki star using one of our designs, or let your creative juices flow and create your own! Then, we will add your star to our purapura whetū — our pattern of stars — for everyone to enjoy and admire.

  • Monday 13 July, 11.00am at Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Takapū o Patukawenga

Matariki By Torchlight
Head down to the library at twilight for this special evening of Matariki and Aotearoa-themed stories and songs under the starlight (or clouds!). Bring your own torch and come along in your PJs ready for some heart-warming bedtime stories and songs.

  • Monday 13 July, 6.00pm at Brooklyn Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Moe-rā

Matariki Music Makers: Making Taonga Whakatangitangi
Come along and celebrate Matariki by crafting music makers inspired by the porotiti, and making Matariki stars. You can take your creations home, or display them at our libraries during our #purapurawhetu Matariki festival.

  • Friday 10 July, 2.00pm at Brooklyn Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Moe-rā

Matariki Online Storytimes
Whakarongo mai, tamariki mā, pākeke mā! Celebrate Matariki wherever you are with our Matariki online storytimes. He korero paki i te reo Māori ēnei; these stories are in te reo Māori. The stories will be streaming live on our Wellington City Libraries Facebook page, and will remain up for your enjoyment throughout the holidays!

  • Saturday 4 July, 7.30pm — online!
  • Sunday 5 July, 7.30pm — online!
  • Monday 6 July, 7.30pm — online!

Matariki Storytimes
Come along and celebrate Matariki at your local whare pukapuka, or library, with Matariki-themed stories and waiata with our librarians. Then, why not try your hand at making Matariki stars at our crafting stations? There will be a range of activities available for your whānau.

  • Tuesday 7 July, 10.30am at Khandallah Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Tarikākā
  • Wednesday 8 July, 10.30am at Karori Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Māhanga
  • Monday 13 July, 10.30am at Wadestown Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Ōtari
  • Wednesday 15 July, 10.30am at Cummings Park Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Korimako

String Bean Puppets: Once in a Full Moon
Come along and celebrate Matariki at your local library with Anna Bailey and her string bean puppets! Anna’s puppets will be helping her perform the magical tale “Once in a Full Moon.” One evening, a lonely kiwi looks up in the sky and sees something remarkable… can kiwis fly after all?

  • Monday 13 July, 2.00pm at Karori Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Māhanga
  • Tuesday 14 July, 11.00am at He Matapihi Molesworth Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o He Matapihi
  • Wednesday 15 July, 2.00pm at Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Te Awa-a-Taia
  • Friday 17 July, 2.00pm at Johnsonville Library/Te Whare Pukapuka o Waitohi

Nō reira, nau mai, haere mai ki ōu tātou whare pukapuka ki te whakanui i tēnēi wā tino hirahira! So come on down to your library to celebrate this special time!

So many Christmas books and movies that you’ll love!

Christmas is coming to the Capital and to the library! Why not get into the Christmas spirit and check out the amazing Christmas themed books and DVDs we have in our collection in between Christmas shopping and life! The countdown to Christmas and the end of 2019 is on!

Check out the following:

What’s Christmas? Find out with…

Christmas.

Learn what Christmas is, and how it is celebrated. Learn about the religion of Christianity, and what Christmas means to its followers.

Learn about prayers and carols, Santa Claus and his reindeer, and traditional decorations and gifts. Also learn about festive Christmas foods and traditions of giving to charity at Christmas.

 

Some handy ideas for Christmas Crafts:

Need some ideas on making Christmas cards, decoration and gifts? Why not check out books such as:

100 things to recycle and make.

Provides step-by-step, illustrated instructions for crafts made with everyday materials, including egg cartons, sticks, and cardboard tubes.

 

Christmas activities.

From baking Christmas pudding sweets to creating hand-printed angels. These projects include how to make a pop-up polar bear card, a snowman paper chain or glittery decorations. Two pages of stickers are included and each project is accompanied by simple step-by-step instructions and an illustration or photograph of the final creation.


Christmas.

This book explores the festival of Christmas and the story behind it and features six simple origami projects for your own festive fun! The book shows how people around the world celebrate Christmas both in church and at home. Attractively designed, its simple text and wonderful full-colour photos make this an essential book for children celebrating or learning about the festival. The origami activities are accessible to all and are explained with step-by-step illustrations. Your fantastic creations can be used as decorations for the festival, for presents, to impress your teacher for a Christmas school project or simply to wow your friends!

 

Read stories about Christmas or Christmas themed:

Picture Books:

A very Marley Christmas.

With all the excitement of Christmas approaching, it’s no surprise that Marley, the loveable pup with a nose for trouble, wants to get in on the action. Anticipating his very first snowfall and Santa’s arrival, Marley jumps in to help his family every way he can. But Marley, being Marley, always ends up on the wrong side of right.


The Christmas Peg.

From Cameron Williams and Matthew Martin comes a hilarious and energetic story about the worst Christmas present ever.


How the Grinch stole Christmas!

When the grumpy Grinch tries to steal Christmas from the citizens of Who-ville, he realises there’s more to it than presents and tinsel!


The Christmas caravan.

When Simon sees a competition in the newspaper for the best decorated Christmas house, he is keen to enter it. His mother says she can’t afford expensive lights and decorations. So Simon decides to decorate their caravan in his own way.


The Polar Express.

Late one Christmas Eve, a boy boards a mysterious train that waits for him- the Polar Express bound for the North Pole. When he arrives, Santa offers him any gift he desires. The boy modestly asks for one bell from the reindeer’s harness. It turns out to be a very special gift, for only believers in Santa can hear it ring.Liam Neeson’s gravitas lends the story just the right sense of magic and possibility in the book and CD edition.


Santa’s worst Christmas.

There are just a few days to go before Christmas, and everyone’s busy putting up decorations, preparing food and getting ready for the big day. Then comes the shock news – Santa’s cancelled Christmas. Santa had so many disasters last year that he can’t face it again, and he’s quit. The elves try everything, but they can’t get him to change his mind. In this Aotearoa Christmas picture book, the kids come up with a clever plan and amazing gadgets to get Christmas back on and Santa back in the sleigh delivering presents.


 

Chapter Books:

Christmas in Camelot.

A cup, a compass, a key: the magic tree house has brought siblings Annie and Jack to Camelot, where they embark on a mysterious mission to find these enigmatic gifts. In this special hardcover addition to the bestselling Magic Tree House series, the young adventurers must travel to the Otherworld, an “ancient, enchanted land beyond the edge of the Earth, the place where all magic began” to save Camelot from dark wizard Mordred’s evil spell. If they fail, Camelot will be forgotten forever. Fans of the beloved, highly readable series by Mary Pope Osborne will rise to the challenge of this longer, more complex companion to her other titles, which include Earthquake in the Early Morning and Twister on Tuesday. As in every story in the sequence, Jack and Annie bravely plunge into their quest, learning about a culture and time very far removed from their own, and prove once again that children can make a difference.


A Christmas carol by Geronimo Stilton.

Ebenezer Scrooge is a cranky old mouse who is only concerned with his business and making money. Scrooge thinks Christmas is just a waste of time. But on the night of Christmas Eve, he is visited by three ghosts who take him on a journey through his past, present, and future. His experience could change him forever and teach him the true meaning of Christmas!


The Christmasaurus and the Winter Witch.

One year has passed since William Trundle’s incredible adventure with the most extraordinary dinosaur: the Christmasaurus. Now, William is swept back to the magical North Pole, where he meets a mysterious witch – whose power to control time allows Santa Claus to make the long journey all around the world every Christmas Eve. And when they learn that the fate of Christmas itself hangs in the balance, William and the Christmasaurus must work with the Winter Witch to protect it.


Quentin Blake’s A Christmas carol.

A beautiful edition of the timeless Christmas classic. A Christmas Carol is the book that defines the Christmas spirit. Ebenezer Scrooge, a mean-spirited miser, is visited by three ghosts one Christmas Eve. The ghosts show Scrooge the true value of Christmas: charity, good humour and love for his fellow man.


 

Stuck inside? Try some Christmas movies:

image courtesy of amazon.co.ukHome Alone.

When the McCallisters went on holiday they forgot eight year old Kevin. When two bungling burglars break into the house Kevin outwits them.


The Grinch

A re-telling of the classic tale about a grumpy old creature living in a cave on Mt. Crumpet who can’t stand to see his neighbors in Whoville enjoying themselves. Things are especially bad at Christmas, when the Whos kick their merriment into high gear with fantastic celebrations. This year, the Grinch decides to dress up like Santa Claus on Christmas Eve and steal all the Christmas gifts and decorations so the Whos can’t enjoy the season. What he finds, however, is that Christmas in Whoville is much more than gifts and decorations, it’s a time to celebrate love and friendship.


curtesy of amazon.co.ukThe Polar Express.

Santa Claus does not exist. Or does he? For one doubting boy (voice of Daryl Sabara and Tom Hanks), an astonishing event occurs. Late on Christmas Eve night, he lies in bed hoping to hear the sound of reindeer bells from Santa’s sleigh. When to his surprise, a steam engine’s roar and whistle can be heard outside his window. The conductor (voice of Tom Hanks) invites him on board to take an extraordinary journey to the North Pole with many other pajama-clad children. There, he receives an extraordinary gift only those who still believe in Santa can experience.


image courtesy of amazon.co.ukRise of the Guardians.

When an evil spirit known as Pitch lays down the gauntlet to take over the world, the immortal Guardians must join forces for the first time to protect the hopes, beliefs, and imagination of children all over the world.


image courtesy of amazon.co.ukOlaf’s Frozen Christmas.

Olaf teams up with Sven on a merry mission. It’s the first holiday season since the gates re-opened and Anna and Elsa host a celebration for all of Arendelle. When the townspeople unexpectedly leave early to enjoy their individual holiday customs, the sisters realise they have no family traditions of their own. So, Olaf sets out to comb the kingdom to bring home the best traditions and save this first Christmas for his friends.


Check out the movie trailer for Frozen II!


 

Not Christmas, but just as amazing and new to the Childrens DVD collection is…

The Lion King.

The Lion King is finally at WCL! Why rent the DVD… rent the original film this Christmas and relive the class tale of Simba, a delightful lion cub who is heir to the throne of the pride lands. However, when Simba’s father is killed… by Simba’s treacherous uncle, Scar, poor Simba, feeling guilt ridden lion cub flees into exile until the moment where he must confront his uncle and reclaim his identity , as well as destiny as the future King. Another movie trailer filled with (wild) animals and cute baby animals!!!

image courtesy of amazon.co.uk

image courtesy of amazon.co.uk


 

And coming soon to movie theaters…

Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, produced, co-written and directed by J. J. Abrams. It will be the third installment of the Star Wars sequel trilogy, following The Force Awakens (2015) and The Last Jedi (2017), and the ninth and final episode of the main Star Wars film franchise.

“The saga comes to an end”… on December 19th 2019, and from the looks of this trailer, they definitely saved the best for last.

 

To get into the spirit of a Kiwi Christmas, relive the magic of Kiwi Christmas song, Summer Wonderland 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 spirit and essence of a Kiwi Christmas of tucking into ham and pavlova, playing cricket, mozzie spray and tan marks. Check it out!

On behalf of the staff at Wellington City Libraries, we would like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a happy new year!

Special Christmas Storytimes and Craft

Our popular annual Christmas Storytimes are back for 2019. Grab the family and head along to your nearest location for some festive fun.

There will be fun crafts, carols, stories and activities. Have a bilingual or multicultural christmas experience with two special events.

The storytimes are free, everyone is welcome, and suitable for preschoolers and children or all ages with their caregivers.

 

Here’s the where and when:

12th December:

Karori Library 6 – 7 pm
Mervyn Kemp (Tawa) Library  6.30 – 7.30 pm

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13th December:

He Matapihi Library 10 – 10.45 am

Special bilingual session

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14th December:

Arapaki Library 10.30 – 11.15 am

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16th December:

Cummings Park (Ngaio) Library 6 – 7 pm
Miramar Library 6 – 6.45 pm
Brooklyn Library 6.30 – 7.15 pm

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19th December:

Island Bay Library 6 – 6.45 pm

Ruth Gotlieb (Kilbirnie) Library 6 – 6.45 pm

Khandallah Library 6 – 7 pm

Wadestown Library 6.30 -7.15 pm

and

Island Bay Community Centre 4.30 – 5.30 pm

Special Christmas crafts event

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20th December:

Newtown Library 6 – 6.45 pm

special multicultural storytime

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21st December:

Johnsonville Library at Waitohi Hub 2 – 3 pm

Summer Reading Challenge

You can even read a book at the beach!

The 2019 – 2020 Summer Reading Challenge is here!

We challenge you! How many can you read? From 1 December to 31 January you can pick up a challenge booklet from your local library, or download and print, and get Reading, Reviewing and Winning!

An extra special treat for this year… Win more prizes by doing the Book Bingo!

Find out more and get started at the Summer Reading Challenge page.

Summer Reading Challenge – starts this week!

Summer Reading 2017Look out! It’s back again! Your favourite reading challenge starts this week on 1st December. Welcome to Summer, and welcome to the annual Summer Reading Challenge!

Drop into to any Wellington City Library, or go online to the kids’ webpages to pick up or print the Summer Reading Challenge booklet. You can start reading and reviewing, and completing the challenges from this Sunday.

The Summer Reading Challenge runs through to 31st January 2020, and is open to all 5 – 12 year olds with a Wellington City libraries card.

Don’t forget that schools are also competing to see who has the most students involved in the challenge, so make sure you tell your friends and get them on board.