Cuddle your Teddy Bear in Troubling Times!

Teddy twins reading in the library. Image: Sue Jane

Why are teddy bears so popular with children and adults alike? Is it because they can be your softest, most huggable companions?! You can hug them for as long as you want, and in return get the best ‘cuddly’ feel ever. Their soft fur and smooth textures make you feel better and immediately cheers you up. Psychologists refer to them as “comfort objects,” and they can help us feel a greater sense of security when moving from one life stage to another, or when things get a little sad and scary.

We love our teddy bears so much that there’s even a Teddy Bears’ Picnic Day to help celebrate your special friend.


Some of our best loved bear stories are based on real events, and, sadly, these events are often about war and conflict. Here are just a few that will make you want to cuddle up with your own teddy and get reading:

Winnie the Pooh

Everyone knows about Winnie the Pooh, but did you know that these stories came about because of a real bear called Winnie? The real Winnie was a black bear who was brought to England from Canada with a vet on his way to World War 1.

Finding Winnie : the story of the real bear who inspired Winnie-the-Pooh / Mattick, Lindsay
“Before there was Winnie-the-Pooh, there was a real bear named Winnie. Here begins the moving true story of the real bear named Winnie adopted by soldiers during World War 1, and the inspiration behind the nation’s best-loved bear, Winnie-the-Pooh. In 1914, Harry Colebourn, a vet on his way to tend horses in World War 1, followed his heart and rescued a baby bear. He named her Winnie, and he took her to war. Harry Colebourn’s real-life great-granddaughter tells the true story of a remarkable friendship and an even more remarkable journey – from the fields of Canada to an army base in England …and finally to London Zoo, where Winnie made another new friend – a boy named Christopher Robin Milne” (Catalogue)

This amazing story has also been published as a chapter book:

Winnie’s Great War / Mattick, Lindsay
“Everyone has heard of Winnie-the-Pooh, but not everyone knows about the real Canadian bear who lent him her name. This is a wonderful tale of courage and friendship, for fans of Michael Morpurgo. Come on a heart-warming adventure, inspired by the journey undertaken by an extraordinary bear called Winnie during World War One.” (Catalogue)

 Anzac Ted

Anzac Ted, tells the story of a teddy bear, that was taken to the front line in World War 1 and then passed through the generations. Although this book is fictional, many ANZAC soldiers did in fact take treasured toys to the front line as a reminder of home and happier times.

Anzac Ted / Landsberry, Belinda
“Anzac Ted is the powerful, poignant story of a little boy’s teddy bear that was passed down to him from his grandfather. Battered, torn, missing an eye and an ear, he might look scary but he’s got a great story to tell. For Anzac Ted went to war, keeping soldiers company and giving them comfort. And while he never won a medal, and now doesn’t even attract a single vote at classroom Toy Shows, if only everyone looked a little deeper: ‘They’d see a hero, plain as day who sits upon my bed. A hero, who saved me and you. His name …is Anzac Ted.’ While several children’s picture books cover the world wars, none has ever made the conflict so accessible to children by telling the story of a bear who went to war. Belinda’s exquisite watercolour illustrations combine with her rhyming text to create a book that, while perfect for parents and teachers to share with children, is also guaranteed to touch the heart of every adult.” (Catalogue)

Josef’s Bear

Josef’s bear is a little wooden bear that was his father’s. This story is set in Germany just after World War 2…

Josef’s bear / Beames, Margaret
“It is Germany in 1948 and the war is over, but 11-year-old Josef still dreams of finding his father. All he has to remember him by is a little wooden bear. When Josef’s home in Berlin was destroyed during the war, he was rescued by Helga, a farmer’s wife, but now Josef is driven from the farm by Helga’s husband. With the bear in his pocket and a pistol in his pack, he heads for Berlin. In the war-ravaged city, now in the throes of the Russian blockade, he is befriended by Elsa and 6-year-old Trudi. Survival is a daily struggle, made possible by the Allied airlift. Josef tries to find work, while continuing to search for his father, and is drawn into an attempt to smuggle a German scientist, wanted by the Russians, out of Berlin. When he meets the Professor and sees a collection of hand-carved animals in his room he realises his search is over – but the house is burning, the Russians are closing in and the only way out is over the roof-tops” (Catalogue)

Pink Rabbit

You couldn’t call Pink Rabbit a teddy Bear, but it is still a cuddly and much-loved soft toy. The book “When Hitler Stole Pink Rabbit” is also set in World War 2 and is based on the true story of the book’s author, Judith Kerr. In the book Anna has to choose which toy she wishes to take with her when her family flee their home. She opts to take her new woolly dog, and leave behind her pink rabbit toy, believing she will return to Berlin after a short time. It is from this that the title is derived as she considers that Hitler and the Nazis have “stolen” her much-loved toy.

When Hitler stole pink rabbit / Kerr, Judith
“Suppose your country began to change. Suppose that without your noticing, it became dangerous for some people to live in Germany any longer. Suppose you found, to your complete surprise, that your own father was one of those people. That is what happened to Anna in 1933. She was nine years old when it began, too busy with her schoolwork and toboganning to take much notice of political posters, but out of them glared the face of Adolf Hitler, the man who would soon change the whole of Europe — starting with her own small life. Anna suddenly found things moving too fast for her to understand. One day, her father was unaccountably missing. Then she herself and her brother Max were being rushed by their mother, in alarming secrecy, away from everything they knew — home and schoolmates and well-loved toys — right out of Germany!” (Catalogue)


Leave a poppy

Online Cenotaph of the Auckland War Memorial

image courtesy of rsa.co.nzIf you want to do some searching for family members who fought for New Zealand in World War I or World War II, the Online Cenotaph of the Auckland War Memorial is a great resource. You can even lay a virtual poppy on the wall of a loved one, or the UNKNOWN WARRIOR



And some of our furry friends have overcome scary times to give their humans comfort:

Edward Tulane

The miraculous journey of Edward Tulane / DiCamillo, Kate
“Edward Tulane, a cold-hearted and proud toy rabbit, loves only himself until he is separated from the little girl who adores him and travels across the country, acquiring new owners and listening to their hopes, dreams, and histories.” (Catalogue)

Lockdown Bear

There’s a bear in the window / Pitman-Hayes, June
“There’s a bear in the window of the house across the street. It’s tall and round, with great big feet! I wonder what I would see if I were that bear, and that bear were me? From singer-songwriter June Pitman-Hayes comes a story told in both English and Māori that celebrates the great teddy bear hunt, that entertained thousands of children during lockdown in 2020” (Catalogue)

Public Holidays: Why Do We Have Them?

Apart from school holidays, there are other holidays in New Zealand that everyone gets to enjoy – even the adults! These are called Public Holidays and they must be enacted into law under the Holidays Act 2003 to be official public holidays.

aerial photography of city beside body of water during daytimeWellington Anniversary Day is regional holiday celebrated on the fourth Monday in January. The holiday commemorates the arrival of the first settler ship to New Zealand on 22 January 1840.

But there are also public holidays that are observed throughout New Zealand. Starting with the national holiday that’s coming up very soon (Labour Day), here’s a list all of New Zealand’s official holidays:

Labour Day – 4th Monday of October

Labour Day falls on the fourth Monday of October, so in 2021 it will be on Monday 25 October. New Zealand Labour Day is a holiday commemorating the fight for an eight-hour working day and New Zealand’s first Labour Day holiday was celebrated in 1890. Before that, often a working day could be very long with only a half-day or one day off a week.

According to NZHistory, the changes were started by a Wellington carpenter called Samuel Parnell. The story goes that Purnell was hired by a shipping agent, who commissioned him to construct a new store for him. Parnell agreed-but stipulated some terms of his own. He is famously said to have answered:

“There are twenty-four hours per day given us; eight of these should be for work, eight for sleep, and the remaining eight for recreation and in which for me to do what little things they want for themselves.”

Christmas Day and Boxing Day – 25 and 26 December

Christmas Day is an important festival in the Christian Calendar where they celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ – a pivotal deity in the Christian faith. Christmas in New Zealand is less about snow and sleigh bells and more about sun, sand and barbecues in the backyard! The name Boxing Day comes from a time when the rich used to box up gifts to give to the poor, their servants and tenant farmers.

New Year’s Day and the day after New Year’s Day – 1 and 2 January

Due to its geographical position close to the International Date Line, New Zealand is one of the first countries in the world to welcome in a new calendar year.

Waitangi Day – 6 February

Waitangi Day marks the anniversary of the initial signing – on 6 February 1840 – of the Treaty of Waitangi, which is regarded as the founding document of the nation. The first Waitangi Day was not celebrated until 1934, and it was made a national public holiday in 1974.

Good Friday & Easter Monday

Easter is traditionally celebrated on the first Sunday following the full moon that lands on or just after the spring equinox. Easter is a Christian holiday that celebrates the belief in the resurrection of Jesus Christ (see Christmas Day and Boxing Day, above).

Anzac Day – 25 April

Anzac Day, for both Australians and New Zealanders, first started in 1916 to commemorate those that were killed in the World War 1 (“The Great War”). Now we remember  all New Zealanders and Australians who served and died in all wars, conflicts, and peacekeeping operations. There are dawn remembrance services all around the country which New Zealanders old and young are attend. ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corp.

Queen’s Birthday – Second Monday in June

The day has been celebrated since 1788, when Arthur Phillip, Governor of New South Wales (Australia), declared a holiday to mark the birthday of the king of Great Britain. Until 1936, it was held on the actual birthday of the monarch, but, after King George V died, it was decided to keep the date on the second Monday in June.

Matariki 2022

This will be a new public holiday from June 2022! New Zealand will celebrate Matariki as a public holiday from 24 June 2022. The calendar date for the Matariki public holiday will shift each year to align with the maramataka (Māori lunar calendar).

 


New Zealand’s history and how it’s public holidays came about, is a fascinating thing. Why not check out:

Labour Day / Boon, Kevin
“Outlines the history of the eight-hour working day in New Zealand and the role of Samuel Parnell in bringing this about. Looks at working conditions and labour relations in New Zealand, including sweatshops, the 1890 maritime strike, the Waihi Miners’ strike of 1912, the Great Strike of 1913, and the 1951 waterfront dispute.” (Catalogue)

The house that Jack built / Bishop, Gavin
“Uses the cumulative nursery rhyme, about the chain of events that started when Jack built a house, as a metaphor to illustrate the arrival and settlement of the European settlers in New Zealand during the early 19th century. Includes references to Maori folklore.” (Catalogue)

Illustrated history of New Zealand / Stenson, Marcia
Contents include: How we know about the past — Land of birds — Arrival of the Māori — Māori settlement — European explorers — Sealing, whaling, timber and trade — Missionaries and musket wars — Treaty of Waitangi — Pioneer settlers — Gold — Conflict between the races — Political changes — Changing ways of earning a living — Fighting outside New Zealand — Bad times and the role of the government — Disasters — Changes in our lives — Changes in Māori lives — Some of our heroes and heroines — How has human occupation affected New Zealand? (Catalogue)

Running the country : a look inside New Zealand’s government / Gill, Maria
“From the Bill of rights to the way we vote, from parliamentary headquarters to local council – and everything in between – Maria Gill explains our system of government. You will discover facts about laws, our currency, voting at the elections and the role of the media. There are fascinating profiles of New Zealand leaders, illustrated by cartoonist Malcolm Evans, along with photographs, amazing statistics and useful “google this” internet links to find out more. This revised edition brings us right up to the new Labour Government of October 2017 (in coalition with New Zealand First and The Green Party).” (Catalogue)

Te Tiriti o Waitangi / Morris, Toby
“Dual-language, flip-book, graphic-novel-style non-fiction about about the Treaty of Waitangi developed for a general audience” (Catalogue)

Christian church / Wood, Angela
“What is a church for? Who is Jesus? What is the Bible? What happens in a church service? All these questions and more are explored in this first introduction to the religion of Christianity. The We Worship Here series introduces children aged 6+ to the main religions of the world. Each book features information about beliefs, values and the ways people worship. The books are clearly and sensitively written, checked by expert consultants and the text is supported with beautiful illustrations.” (Catalogue)

If I ran the country / Knight, Rich
“Congratulations! You’ve just become the leader of your own country! There are a lot of decisions to be made, and not long to make them. The good news is you’ve got your hands on this funny, fact-packed book, covering everything you need to know to rule effectively – no matter where in the world you are. But it’s not just about political systems, elections, climate change, justice and all those other things we hear politicians talking about. You also need to learn how to lead. With essential life and leadership skills and tips – from teamwork, confidence and compassion to discovering who you are and what you believe in – If I Ran The Country answers all the questions most often posed by first-time top dogs like you. You’ll be ruling like a pro in no time!” (Catalogue)

Horrible Christmas / Deary, Terry
“The complete horrible history of Christmas tells tales from the dark days when the Puritans tried to abolish Christmas, to Christmas in the trenches when the British and Germans traded bullets for footballs. Plus dreadful jokes, rotten recipes, and a Christmas quiz!” (Catalogue)

Celebrating Matariki / MacGregor, Jill
“In New Zealand, Mataraki is a time to remember ancestors and traditions of long ago. Maori iwi celebrate Matariki in different ways at different times. Tamarau and his friends share some ideas and activities for celebrating Mataraki.” (Catalogue)

Dawn of the twentieth century / Boon, Kevin
“Tracks key events in the first decades of the twentieth century as New Zealand became a more distinctive and independent society. Suggested level: primary, intermediate, junior secondary.” (Catalogue)

Waitangi Day : the New Zealand story : what it is and why it matters / Werry, Philippa
“Reviews the historic events behind the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi in 1840 and charts the celebrations, tensions and protests witnessed in the years that followed, concluding with a summary of the Waitangi Day events held around the country on 6th February today” (Catalogue)

The Mates That Went to War

Three Australian soldiers - WW1 - PICRYL Public Domain Image

Three Australian soldiers – WW1 – PICRYL Public Domain Image

Over 107 years ago, young men from all over New Zealand and Australia (The ANZACs – Australian and New Zealand Army Corp) left on troop ships from the port of Albany in Western Australia heading for Egypt and then on to Gallipoli in Turkey, to fight in “The Great War,” “the war to end all wars” – World War 1. By the end of this bloody conflict in 1918, 16,000 New Zealand soldiers had died in battle and 41,000 injured. Many of these young men had enlisted in the army thinking that it would be an adventure of a lifetime. Friends and neighbours joined up together excited to be leaving what many saw as a boring life here in New Zealand!

This postcard, sent by New Zealand soldier, Edwin Bennett to his older brother Gifford shows that the adventure of a lifetime wasn’t what Edwin was expecting. Edwin was killed a month later on 16 April 1918. He was 20 years old.

Postcard sent by NZ soldier Edwin Bennett to older brother Gifford, 4 March 1918. Photo courtesy of Sue Jane, Wellington City Libraries

Dear Gif, Just a note to see if I can waken you up a little. I haven’t heard from you now, for some time. What about dropping a line or two. Letters are very acceptable here. How are you keeping? How is work? Well old chap you’re in a great position and a good home to go to and for God’s sake and Mother’s and Father’s sake look after it. I’m sorry I ever stepped across here. But well I did want to come, and I did, now I’ve found my mistake when it’s too late. I could of had another twelve quiet months if my head was firmly turned the right way. But still there is a happy day coming, when we’ll all be home again. Sitting round a nice cosy fire telling some of our experiences. Well old boy I must go. God bless you. Best love from your loving brother Ed. xxxxxx


Sometimes it’s hard to get our head around such big statistics like 16,000 deaths and 41,000 casualties, but when we read about individuals and their war experiences, it can be so much easier to relate to what they went through. Here are a couple World War 1 stories that are written from an individual soldier’s point of view:

Best mates : three lads who went to war together / Werry, Philippa
“The three young soldiers in the story are best friends from school, and they leave New Zealand together to go and fight at Gallipoli. Landing first in Egypt, they travel by ship to Anzac Cove and dig into trenches to fight the Turkish troops holding the peninsula. Conditions are tough and Joe gets sick, but his mates help him off on the hospital ship. Then Harry is fatally wounded and his burial has to take place on the cliff-top, away from the snipers. The three friends are reunited many years later, when two men fly to Gallipoli and lay poppies on Harry’s grave. Taking her inspiration from Anzac Day, the New Zealand story Philippa Werry captures the essence of the Anzac spirit with her moving tale about mateship. The illustrated factual text on pages 30-31 spread provides extra information about the events pictured in the story.” (Catalogue)

Nice day for a war / Slane, Chris
“One man’s war tells the story of a generation. A totally unique graphic novel about NZ soldiers in World War I, based on the diaries of the author’s grandfather. A fictional story (based on fact) of a Kiwi lad as he heads away, full of excitement, to war with his mates from rural New Zealand. there he encounters the horror that was the Western front. It is primarily based on the diary of Matt’s Grandfather, and postcards he had sent home to the family. It also draws on published histories of the Kiwi military in WW1. the book aims to capture what the new experiences of war were like for the young soldiers. A fictional story (based on fact) of a Kiwi lad as he heads away, full of excitement, to war with his mates from rural New Zealand. There he encounters the horror that was the Western front.” (Catalogue)


Online Cenotaph of the Auckland War Memorial

image courtesy of rsa.co.nzIf you want to do some searching for family members who fought for New Zealand in World War I or World War II, the Online Cenotaph of the Auckland War Memorial is a great resource. You can even lay a virtual poppy on the wall of a loved one, or the UNKNOWN WARRIOR


 

 

 

Commemorate ANZAC Day 2021

ANZAC Day is a very special public New Zealand holiday that falls this year on Sunday 25th April.image courtesy of wikipedia

What is ANZAC Day?

ANZAC is an acronym for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps and is a very special day where New Zealanders and Australians remember the men and women that served and lost their lives in War.

Why is ANZAC Day commemorated on 25th April?

April 25th was the day when the New Zealand and Australian soldiers first landed at Gallipoli in 1915.

image courtesy of rsa.co.nzHow do we commemorate this day?

  • Going to the Dawn Parade and watching the service men and women march to their local war memorial where they are met by family and the community.
  • Going to the ANZAC Day Service were the community come to lay wreaths in remembrance of the fallen soldiers.
  • Wearing a red poppy. Why? These flowers were the first to bloom over the graves of soldiers in France and Belgium and have become a symbol of remembrance. Information about the red poppy can be found on New Zealand History and the Returned Services Association (RSA).
  • Eating ANZAC biscuits. Why? The biscuits were sent by wives and women’s groups to soldiers abroad because the ingredients did not spoil and the biscuits kept well during naval transportation. Click here for a yummy recipe!
  • Recite the Ode of Remembrance:

“They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning,
We will remember them.”

FACT: The Ode of Remembrance came from Laurence Binyon’s poem For the Fallen and it was first published in The Times of London in September 1914. Since then, it has been incorporated into the ritual of remembrance in many countries.


Will the libraries be open on ANZAC Day? 

We are closed on ANZAC Day and Monday 26th April (Anzac Day Holiday). Wellington City Libraries  will open usual hours from Tuesday 27th April.


Where can I find information about the ANZACs and Anzac Day?

  • ManyAnswers has a page dedicated to websites, resources and ways to search for information about the ANZACs and ANZAC Day. You can also refer to last year’s blog post, 2019’s post and this previous post, which  provides a list of websites that will provide you with reliable information about ANZAC Day and World War 1.
  • The Returned Services Association (RSA) has some brief information on ANZAC Day, and is good for finding out about what happens at an ANZAC Day service and where they are happening.
  • New Zealand History provides information about the history of the day, the ceremony, and modern ANZAC day.
  • Wellington City Libraries has some amazing fiction and non fiction about ANZAC day and World War 1 such as:


Non Fiction:

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Anzac violin : Alexander Aitken’s story.

“This a WWI-era picture book intended for children and based on true events and a real-life young soldier from Dunedin named Alexander Aitken, who was a brilliant mathematician and a gifted violinist, as well as an artifact – the violin – that has survived the war and remains on display at Otago Boys High to this day” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsArchie’s letter : an Anzac day story.

“On Anzac Day 2010, a 96-year-old man in Hobart, a returned soldier from World War II, wrote a letter to the local paper thanking the people who were going to that morning’s dawn service. Who was this man? Why did he write this letter? Archie’s Letter tells the story of an ordinary man who went off to fight in World War II. His experiences included surviving the Burma Railway, where he was under the command of Australian war hero, Weary Dunlop. Archie’s Letter also tells how he dealt with his wartime experiences; how, at the age of 91, he agreed to meet a group of elderly Japanese women interested in world peace; how he could never forget the young men who were with him during the war and who didn’t come back” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Anzacs at Gallipoli : a story for Anzac day.

“Explains the history behind Anzac day describing how New Zealand and Australian soldiers went to fight on the battlefields of Gallipoli. Includes personal narratives from New Zealand soldiers describing the horrific conditions they were subjected too and the events which took place including, the Battle for Chunuk Bair and the Battle for Hill. Suggested level: primary, intermediate, junior secondary” (Catalogue).

image courtesy of syndeticsMeet the ANZACs.

“A picture book series about the extraordinary men and women who have shaped Australian history. ANZAC stands for Australian and New Zealand Army Corps. It is the name given to the troops who fought in the Battle of Gallipoli in World War I. The name ANZAC is now a symbol of bravery and mateship. This is the story of how the ANZAC legend began.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsAnzac Day : the New Zealand story : what it is and why it matters.

“This book exposes the rich history behind Anzac Day, seeking to answer the many questions children often ask their parents and teachers around the 25th of April every year. It covers all aspects of Anzac Day, from the Gallipoli Campaign and the Great War, right through to the format of the commemorative services held annually throughout the country. The author identifies important memorials around New Zealand, examines the national anthem, the tradition of Anzac biscuits and the Last Post, Reveille music, plus much more. She also offers websites and projects for further study. The thoroughly researched information is presented alongside numerous images, both historic and contemporary, giving children a very clear view of the significance and background to Anzac Day” (Catalogue)


Picture Books:
image courtesy of syndeticsAnzac Ted.

“The poignant story of a little boy’s teddy bear that was passed down to him from his grandfather. He might look scary now but he’s got a great story to tell, for Anzac Ted went to war. Watercolour illustrations combine with rhyming text to create a picture book that will touch the hearts of children and adults alike.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsMy grandad marches on Anzac Day.

“This is a simple, moving look at Anzac Day through the eyes of a little girl. It explains what happens on the day and its significance in terms that a young child can understand.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsReflection : remembering those who serve in war.

“Left! Left! Left! Right! Left! We make our way in the dark. A family journeys through the early morning darkness… A group of young men huddle in a cold muddy trench… Reflection is a powerful tribute to those who have served their country.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsGrandad’s Medals.

“Every year Grandad marches in the Anzac Day parade and wears his medals, walking proudly beside his old friends. But this year Grandad’s best mate is too sick to walk and the number of old soldiers still marching is getting smaller. A touching story about the relationship between a young boy and his granddad.” (Catalogue)


Fiction:


image courtesy of syndeticsThe poppy.

“On Anzac Day, 1918, a desperate night counter-attack in the French village of Villers-Bretonneux became one of Australia’s greatest victories. A bond was forged that night between France and Australia that has never been broken. Villers-Bretonneux is ‘the town that never forgets’. What was achieved that terrible night and what happened after is a story that, likewise, Australians should never forget.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsStories of World War One.

“In this collection of short stories, twelve awarding-winning authors take you into the heart of the trenches and beyond – with powerful accounts of Zeppelin raids and front-line fighting, along with stories of everyday life lived under extraordinary circumstances. With tales of inspiring bravery, heartbreaking loss and overwhelming hope, this anthology brings to life the major events of World War One at home and around the globe.” (Catalogue)

image courtesy of syndeticsWar horse.

“In 1914, Joey, a beautiful bay-red foal with a distinctive cross on his nose, is sold to the army and thrust into the midst of the war on the Western Front. With his officer, he charges toward the enemy, witnessing the horror of the battles in France. But even in the desolation of the trenches, Joey’s courage touches the soldiers around him and he is able to find warmth and hope. But his heart aches for Albert, the farmer’s son he left behind. Will he ever see his true master again?” (Catalogue).

Also check out the picture book!

image courtesy of syndeticsWar Horse the picture book. 

“Master storyteller Michael Morpurgo has adapted his much-loved novel, War Horse, for a picture book audience. This powerful book for younger readers tells the enduring story of a friendship between a boy and his horse and is a gateway to help children understand the history and deadly chaos of the First World War. As we move beyond centenary commemorations and continue to strive for peace across the world, War Horse remains an important book for generations to come.” (Catalogue)


Search our catalogue for more books about ANZAC Day.

Family Lockdown Challenge: Stand Apart Together this ANZAC Day

We will be celebrating ANZAC Day differently this year. ANZAC Services are cancelled for the first time in 104 years. However there are many ways for you you can honor our fallen and returned soldiers from the safety of your doorstep. You can:

Virtual Dawn Service:image courtesy of standatdawn.com

Take part in Stand at Dawn. Stand at your letterbox, at the front door, your lounge rooms, etc, on Saturday 25th April at 6am to remember our fallen. The official dawn service starts at 6am on Saturday 25 April. It will be broadcasted on Radio NZ National. The morning service includes the Last Post, National Anthems, and an address by Hon. Ron Mark, Minister of Defence / Minister for Veterans. For more information about the virtual dawn service and other online events, please visit the Wellington City Council website.

Activities for kids:

You can make poppies at home. image courtesy of standatdawn.comYou can place them on your window, decorate your letter box and even create you own poppy garden. For more ideas, visit the Stand at Dawn Activities page

Bake ANZAC Biscuits:image courtesy of standatdawn.com

People are making the most of their time with cooking and baking since lockdown. Why not bake some yummy ANZAC biscuits with your whanau and serve them out of the oven with a nice cup of tea after the dawn service. Click here to view the recipe.

ANZAC Fact: The biscuits were sent by wives and women’s groups to soldiers abroad because the ingredients did not spoil and the biscuits kept well during naval transportation.

Watch the Ballet from your living room:

Watch the ballet, with your ANZAC biscuit and cup of tea, from confort of your own bubble… and living room. image courtesy of https://www.facebook.com/nzballet/The Royal New Zealand Ballet will be livestreaming on Facebook a special broadcast of ‘Dear Horizon’ and ‘Passchendaele’, two works that were commissioned for our Salute programme back in 2015 and performed live with the New Zealand Army Band, to commemorate the centenary of the Gallipoli landings. You can view the RNZB Facebook live event Anzac Salute here. For more information, visit the Royal New Zealand Ballet Facebook page and website.

Read up on the ANZACs and Anzac Day?

ManyAnswers has a page dedicated to websites, resources and ways to search for information about the ANZACs and ANZAC Day. You can also refer to last year’s blog post and this previous post, which  provides a list of websites that will provide you with reliable information about ANZAC Day and World War 1.
Remember stay safe in your bubble, stay at home and be kind. Kia kaha!

ANZAC Day 2019

ANZAC Day is a very special public New Zealand holiday that falls this year on Thursday 25th April.

What is ANZAC Day?

ANZAC is an acronym for the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps and is a very special day where New Zealanders and Australians remember the men and women that served and lost their lives in War.

Why is ANZAC Day celebrated on 25th April?

April 25th was the day when the New Zealand and Australian soldiers first landed at Gallipoli in 1915.

image courtesy of syndetics

image courtesy of syndeticsimage courtesy of syndetics

 

 

 

 

 

 

How do we commemorate this day?

  • Going to the Dawn Parade and watching the service men and women march to their local war memorial where they are met by family and the community.
  • Going to the ANZAC Day Service were the community come to lay wreaths in remembrance of the fallen soldiers.
  • Wearing a red poppy. Why? These flowers were the first to bloom over the graves of soldiers in France and Belgium and have become a symbol of remembrance.
  • Eating ANZAC biscuits. Why? The biscuits were sent by wives and women’s groups to soldiers abroad because the ingredients did not spoil and the biscuits kept well during naval transportation.

 

image courtesy of syndetics

Where can I find information about the ANZACs and Anzac Day?

ManyAnswers has a page dedicated to websites, resources and ways to search for information about the ANZACs and ANZAC Day. You can also refer to this previous post, which  provides a list of websites that will provide you with reliable information about ANZAC Day and World War 1.

Will the libraries be open on ANZAC Day?

We are closed on ANZAC Day and will open usual hours from Friday 26th April.

Also check out these amazing stories about ANZAC Day.

Enjoy!

image courtesy of syndeticsAnzac Day : the New Zealand story : what it is and why it matters.

“This book exposes the rich history behind Anzac Day, seeking to answer the many questions children often ask their parents and teachers around the 25th of April every year. It covers all aspects of Anzac Day, from the Gallipoli Campaign and the Great War, right through to the format of the commemorative services held annually throughout the country. The author identifies important memorials around New Zealand, examines the national anthem, the tradition of Anzac biscuits and the Last Post, Reveille music, plus much more. She also offers websites and projects for further study. The thoroughly researched information is presented alongside numerous images, both historic and contemporary, giving children a very clear view of the significance and background to Anzac Day”–Publisher information. Suggested level: primary, intermediate, junior secondary.

 


image courtesy of syndeticsMy grandad marches on Anzac Day.

“This is a simple, moving look at Anzac Day through the eyes of a little girl. It explains what happens on the day and its significance in terms that a young child can understand.”–Back cover.

image courtesy of syndetics

War Horse.

Joey the horse recalls his experiences growing up on an English farm, his struggle for survival as a cavalry horse during World War I, and his reunion with his beloved master.Joey the horse recalls his experiences growing up on an English farm, his struggle for survival as a cavalry horse during World War I, and his reunion with his beloved master.

 

image courtesy of syndetics ANZAC Animals.

“True tales of the mascots and working animals that helped Anzac soldiers, sailors, pilots and medics do their jobs in wartime. You’ll meet some well-known animals, such as Murphy the donkey, who carried the wounded in Gallipoli, and Caesar the Red Cross Dog. But also included are the hard-working horses, camels and mules, and the dogs that barked a warning when enemy planes were approaching, as well as the mischievous monkeys that had the men laughing”–Publisher information.

 

IMAGE COURTESY OF SYNDETICSThe Anzac violin : Alexander Aitken’s story.“This a WWI-era picture book intended for children and based on true events and a real-life young soldier from Dunedin named Alexander Aitken, who was a brilliant mathematician and a gifted violinist, as well as an artifact – the violin – that has survived the war and remains on display at Otago Boys High to this day”–Publisher information.

 


image courtesy of syndeticsThe ANZAC Puppy.

“This story is based on the true story of Freda, a dalmatian and the dog mascot of the NZ Rifles during World War 1. It’s a simple story about the reality of war, hardship, friendship and love”–Publisher information.

image courtesy of syndeticsCaesar the Anzac dog.

A fictionalised account of Caesar the bulldog, the mascot of the 4th Battalion (A Company) New Zealand Rifle Brigade, who served in World War One and died in action. Suggested level: primary, intermediate.

image courtesy of syndeticsThe Anzac tree.

Inspired by the story of two soldiers who planted two trees on their farm before they headed to the Great War, the story of the Anzac Tree is one that looks at the lives of those left behind in times of war.

 

 

Remembering our ANZACs

Coming up on April 25 is ANZAC Day, a special day for remembering the New Zealand and Australian soldiers who fought and died for us in the first and second World Wars.ANZAC day You might remember the big celebrations last year, which marked the 100th anniversary of ANZAC Day with the opening of The Great War Exhibition.

Gallipoli landingThe date April 25 is the anniversary of the Australian and New Zealand Army Corps (the ANZACs) landing in Gallipoli, Turkey, during World War I. Thousands of soldiers lost their lives in the 8-month long battle, including 2779 New Zealanders. We have nearly 500 memorials in New Zealand to honour these soldiers.

To celebrate ANZAC Day we wear20110425_WN_S1015650_0015.jpg red poppies and bake ANZAC cookies. The day starts with the Dawn Parade and is followed by the Dawn Service, which is a bit like a funeral, where important people give speeches and we have a minute of silence to remember.

If you would like to learn more about Gallipoli, the World Wars or ANZAC Day, we have heaps of great books on our catalogue. Reserve yours today!

 

 

Top 10 children’s non-fiction for May

There’s a varied set of popular facts whisking out the library door for autumn time reading. World War One fascination has continued from the ANZAC centenary with some great books.  Philippa Werry, a NZ Post book awards Children’s finalist has created a great store of facts and stories surrounding ANZAC day in her book and her blog.  Star wars and minecraft still have a special place in the Top 10 – of course they do

1.  Minecraft, by Stephanie Milton

2.  Star Wars, by David West Reynolds

3.  Minecraft hacks master builder, by Megan Miller

4.  The LEGO ideas book, by Daniel Lipkowitz

5.   Star Wars character encyclopedia, by Simon Beecroft

6.  Minecraft,  by Nick Farwell

7.  Anzac Day, by Philippa Werry

8.  World War I, by Simon Adams

9.  Marvel super hero character encyclopedia, by Scott Peterson

10. See inside the First World War, by Rob Lloyd Jones

Don’t worry – our online library is still open today

Today’s public holiday means that our libraries are closed and there are no children’s programmes running. However you can still access our virtual library – thousands of books, magazines, audiobooks, newspapers, and games and puzzles are all waiting to be discovered.

Check out Overdrive and Bolinda for eBooks and Audiobooks that you can download to your device.

TumbleBooks also has many great picture books with activities that you can read.

Odizzi, ZooWhiz, and LanguageNut are all fun learning games that you can access through our website for free.

Zinio has free downloadable magazines that you can keep – sports, music, crafts, movies, pets and animals, and more. Can you find the horrible histories magazine? Search for newspapers from all around the world using Press Display. It’s fun to see the news reported in a different language and from a different country’s perspective.

Explore ANZAC day and WW1 with these great websites

Are you looking for reliable online info about World War One? We have created a lit of great websites that you can go to for info on the causes of the war, the treaty that ended that war, ANZAC Day and Gallipoli, New Zealand’s involvement, and websites that provide info on casualties and gravesites.

 

Websites about the causes of World War One

 

 

Websites about the Treaty of Versailles

 

 

Websites about ANZAC Day

 

 

Websites about New Zealand’s involvement

 

 

Websites with ANZAC Poetry

 

 

Websites with casualties, wounded, and graves information

 

 

Websites with primary sources

 

 

General World War One sites

 

You are also welcome to chat live with an online librarian, who will help you with your research and finding online resources. AnyQuestions is a government-funded homework help service for New Zealand School Students. It’s open 1pm – 6pm Monday to Friday. Go to the site, type in your question, and chat to a librarian who will help you with your question and finding online information sources. It’s fun and free!