I’m sure some of you don’t want to be reminded that school starts back next week (or maybe the week after). It’s the start of a new year, with a new teacher, a new classroom, and possibly a new school. I was one of those weird kids that got bored after a couple of weeks of holidays and was dying to go back to school. For some of you though school might be one of those things that you just want to survive, and your favourite part of the day is either lunch time or 3 o’clock.
We want to know what is your best school survival tip? What helps you get through the school year? Leave a comment on this post and let us know.
On Wednesday we celebrated The Big Read in Christchurch as part of the NZ Post Children’s Book Awards. Ms. Hill (the fabulous librarian at Queenspark School) and I joined the children at Thorrington School to share some of the finalist books in this year’s awards.
With Year 5 and 6 Ms. Hill and I read some of the finalist picture books, including one of the most popular books, Baa Baa Smart Sheep by Mark and Rowan Sommerset. If you haven’t read this hilarious (and gross) picture book, make sure you get a copy from the library. We also tested how well the children at Thorrington knew their book characters by challenging them to a book quiz.
After lunch, the Year 1-4 children were in for a treat. As well as listening to the librarians reading the finalist picture books, they were also lucky enough to have Margaret Mahy come and tell some stories. She told her fantastic story, Down the Back of the Chair and read her latest book, The Moon and Farmer McPhee, which is also a finalist in the book awards this year.
How did you celebrate The Big Read?
Artichoke hearts is a book to make you cry. With laughter as well as sadness. It is Sita’s first book and it is brilliant. Mira is entering her teens and is dealing with the usual growing up problems, boys, best mates and periods. There is also a bit of bullying chucked in. She is dealing with so many changes but on top of that her beloved nana Josie is dying.
Nana Josie is a great character. She is strong, wise, funny and fiesty. Mira and her are really close although sometimes she is a little outspoken for the quiet Mira. She’s an artist with a wide group of friends who used to go on political demonstrations. Josie has a love of nature which she has passed on to her granddaughter.
Mira’s family life is chaotic. Mum and dad are always busy, little brother Krish is a pain and there is baby Laila to add to the mix. There are bullies at school but she does have her best friend Millie. So why has she started to keep secrets from her? She’s discovering boys and is somehow drawn to Jide, a boy who has secrets of his own.
This is a beautiful story. It feels very true to life and except for the fact that it is set in London it could be a family we know. The pace and mood of the characters change so much through the book as they come to terms with more than the fact that Nana Josie is dying. It is an emotional roller coaster ride but a pleasurable one as we get to know Mira better.
The book has just won Waterstones Books childrens fiction award which I think it highly deserves. It’s going on my list of best of 2011. Find a comfortable spot and curl up with this wonderful book and get to know the Levenson family, especially Mira.
From October to December 2010 Caledon Public Library in Ontario, Canada, ran a postcard exchange programme with libraries from other countries to celebrate different cultures from around the world.
Where in the world has your postcard ended?
The New Brighton Library joined the programme and we had local children and young adults writing and sending postcards representing Christchurch, New Zealand. We also had the special participation of Nova Montessori and Central New Brighton Schools, the kids did a fantastic job!
Christchurch City Libraries provided blank postcards for the patrons involved to draw and write on. They have mostly written about themselves and their favourite books and hobbies. You can have a peek at some of the ones we have sent here.
The postcards we received are on display at the New Brighton Library from 15 Jan-15 Feb 2011 but feel free to check out the webpage that Caledon Public Library has set up for the kids to find out where in the world their postcards have ended.
- Display at the New Brighton Library
It has been great to participate in such an inspiring Project!
The Floods Playschool is about the day-to-day life at Quicklime College. The main characters, Orkward Warlock and his sad sidekick, the Toad, are plotting to kill the Flood children on Sports Day.
I loved this book because it was funny and full of action at the same time. Narled, the talking suitcase, was really funny, going around collecting other people’s belongings. The funniest part was Narled’s ‘trundle, trundle, pick up … trundle, trundle, pick up”’– his actions were very low-key and no drama as opposed to the very high drama actions of Orkward and the Toad.
The Toad was my favourite character because he was very sad at the beginning but he got what he wanted and needed at the end, which was great. The characters were so well written (it was especially useful to have the profiles at the end!) and very believable in a weird sort of way. I really enjoyed the ending but I can’t give it away … just to say it was satisfying!
I recommend this book to people who enjoy having a laugh and are keen on adventures. A good author can have you on the edge of your seat and have a laugh at the same time – Colin Thompson is one of these. I give this book a 10 out of 10 because I can’t go any higher!
Hot off the press and ready for the Christmas gift giving comes The Longest Whale Song. Ellas life isn’t going so great. She doesn’t like her grumpy step-dad, baby Sam cries all the time and her best friend wants to be friends with Dory. The worst, worst, worst thing of all is that her mum is in hospital in a coma.
Ellas school project on Whales helps Ella discover that Whales sing to each other underwater and lots of other amazing things about them. Could a whale song help them get through to her mum?
This is yet another very readable book by Jacqueline. Ella does alot of growing up in this book and a number of her relationships with people change. She even makes a new friend. The medical stuff about Ellas mum can be quite difficult to read so I’m recommending this for intermediate aged kids 11 to 13.
If you haven’t already, reserve your copy of Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Ugly Truth now and be one of the first to read it.
Hi I’m Andrew, I’m 10 years old.
I have three rabbits, one cat. We have gone through lots of goldfish over time. I used to play cricket, but I grew out of that last year.
My favourite sport is soccer. I play for Woolston Technical A.
During the summer, I play indoor soccer, it is a fun game but you get very tired.
I like fish and chips, ice cream and lots of other things. One thing that I really want to do when I’m older is go on a plane out of New Zealand, as I have never been on a plane.
I like playing on Miniclip, Club Penguin, Free rider 2 and lots of other things.
I think that busses should be free because if I don’t have a car, I have to waste all my money just on a bus. Also, if it were free more people would travel by bus and there would be less pollution. I also think that there should be more busses going at the same time and more bus stops instead of walking very far just for a bus. Maybe there should be busses down every street.
today st michaels went to the big bang concert at the town hall Christchurch we walked there and back it was cool because we got too see so many wonderful instrumants!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!