Pink Shirt Day 2018

If you have ever been bullied, you will know what it is like. You might wonder why they are doing it and when they will stop. You might feel sad or depressed. You might feel anxious, worried and alone. You are not alone, and you can get help.

It is tragic that bullying has become the huge problem that it now is. When I was at school, the school bully could torment kids to and from school. Play time and lunch time was another opportunity for bullying. Lesson time was usually safe, because the bully was older and in another class. Bullies rarely bullied you in your own home. Now, with social media and cell phones, bullies can torment their victims any time. It has to end.

There is never a good reason for bullying. I know people are more likely to be bullied if they seem different from their peers in some way. They might be clever or popular, different race, have different religious views. They might have disabilities. They might be a different weight or height. It could be a difference in sexuality or gender identity. We need to celebrate diversity and embrace our differences. We are not all the same and isn’t that good?

Pink Shirt Day started in 2007. Two Canadian students took action against homophobic bullying, getting the whole school involved, when a fellow student was bullied for wearing a pink shirt. In New Zealand, Pink Shirt Day will be on Friday, 18th May. Show your support for diversity in you school or workplace. Stand up and speak up.

Will you wear a pink shirt on Friday 18th May? Will you join me in saying “No” to bullying behaviour?

For tips on how to prevent bullying, check our catalogue for books about school bullying, cyber bullying and workplace bullying. Or check out some selected titles about bullying below.

Pink Shirt Day 2018

List created by Valerie_L

Cover of Bullies, bigmouths and so-called friendsCover of How can I deal with bullying?Cover of Bullies, cyberbullies and frenemiesCover of How to handle bullying and gangsCover of How can I deal with bullying?Cover of Bullying beyond the schoolyardCover of Dealing with bullyingCover of Bullying: How to Help your Child Cope With Bullying

View Full List

Be an Eco-Champ for Science Week

Start championing the environment. Become an Eco Champ –  here’s how:

This year’s Primary Science Week (14-18 May) is where the action is. Have a look to see how you can take part.

  • Find something that is important to your school
  • Record observations like the number of pieces of litter picked up on the beach, how many grams of soft plastic collected at school, the number of footprints on tunnel traps, chew marks on cards, observe number of birds at the local park or collect weed seeds off socks and count them.
  • Collect and record data over time and analyse it.
  • Discuss the changes you observed and suggest how you could find solutions.
  • Look at what happened after you made changes, what happened before and after.
  • Communicate what you did.

Take a look at our Science Fairs page and books for more information on getting scientrific!

Gardening

So why not pick a project you want to champion and get stuck in cleaning up the environment? Why not start a worm farm or compost heap at school for all those apple cores from your lunch boxes then use all that lovely compost to start a school vegetable garden? Be part of Sustainable Christchurch at home, in school or out in the community.

Become an environmentally friendly school with the help of Enviroschools and see what’s growing near you by visiting a community garden.

School Gardens

Learn how to grow your own food in school and start a school garden. There are lots of resources to help take a look at:

Recycling

Clean up rubbish at your school beach or local park or start a recycling scheme at your school or find out more about soft plastics recycling  Check out information on tackling litter and resources for school  from  Keep New Zealand beautiful. Check out how the Recycling plant (Material Recovery Facility) works and how to recycle right with these videos:

Find out all about recycling  and the 4R’s Reduce Reuse Recycle and Rebuy in these resources:

Eco-pests

Learn about what pests visit your school or park by making a tracking tunnel and chew cards. Find out how you can remove them from your school and community from Predator Free New Zealand. 

Become a weedbuster by cleaning up a local beach piece of bush or participate in the restoration of a local stream. Take a look at what to plant streamside in this handy booklet on what to plant produced by Christchurch City Council.

More information

Does your school already do a lot? Then share what you have done by making a poster, infographic, display or video.

Tell us what you are doing for National Primary Science Week. We’d love to hear.

The Amazing Jeff Kinney – WORD Christchurch

He’s the author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series, creator of Poptropica, and thanks to WORD Christchurch I got to see him speak on Wednesday.

The auditorium was packed full of excited kids and parents. We were all waiting for 6 o’clock to finally arrive and the star to walk out on stage, I looked around at the demographics represented. It was wonderful seeing kids of all ages present – most clutching well-worn copies of Diary of a Wimpy Kid books. I’m sure one kid was carrying the whole series, his stack of books was almost too big to carry. Several kids got up to boogie along to the pumped vibe music – it was just too exciting to keep still.

Finally Jeff Kinney himself walked on stage – oh my gosh, one of the coolest authors for kids was actually within throwing distance!

If you want to get your kid into reading, introduce them to Diary of a Wimpy kid. You won’t regret it.

Jeff Kinney
Jeff Kinney, author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. WORD-JeffKinney-IMG_7788

He talked a bit about his history, why he became an author and things from his childhood that shaped him. Reading all kinds of things from his local bookstore was a big part of his childhood, particularly comics.

“Comics can also be literature” he said.

Remember that, pictures and the meaning they bring are so important. His books have his cartoons dispersed throughout the text. He describes this as “little islands to swim to,” which is why these books are so great for all levels of readers.

Encourage your kid to read comics, if that’s what they like.

Jeff Kinney and young artist
Jeff Kinney, author of the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series. WORD-JeffKinney-IMG_7798

Jeff’s iPad was hooked up to the big screens, so we could see him draw in action. He taught us how to draw his main characters, and showed us how a slight difference in line can make the character have a completely different emotion.

Have a go! Then try do it blindfolded. He had a couple of volunteers up on stage drawing with him, with hilarious results.

It all ended too quickly, and I can’t wait till I get to see him speak again.

*scurries off to read Diary of a Wimpy kid again*

More Jeff Kinney

Another great writer for kids coming to town …

Heads up! Andy Griffiths and Terry Denton (the Treehouse series guys) are coming to New Zealand! The Christchurch show is sold out – but there’s still space in the Dunedin one!

Andy Griffiths. Image supplied.

Inter Library Robotics Competition

The atmosphere was tense.
The clock ticked down.
Sumner fought hard.
South fought back.

South 1st, South 2nd, Sumner 3rd

Next competition will see Fendalton up against South. Watch this space.

Robotics

Robotics is a six week after school programme for boys and girls Year 4 to 8. Students will learn how to programme an mBot to complete a set of challenges.

Great reads for not-so-eager readers

Ever found yourself asking “What will get my younger reader hooked on reading? Here’s a few key tips from librarians:

  • Graphic novels (or comics) are legit
    They actually use more of your brain than just reading words alone, because you’re deciphering the messages from the words and the pictures together – so don’t tell me they’re not real reading, ok!
  • Audio books are also great
    If the reading isn’t for school and you just want to foster a love of reading – include some audio books! Kids don’t need to be challenged all the time. With an audio book, a kid can get the joy of the story and use their imagination, without the possible struggle or brain strain of reading
  • Over-size fiction = amazing
    Ask a librarian where they’re stored at your local library. They’re kind of a cross between a picture book and a chapter book. Sometimes they don’t have many words at all, but the meaning is really deep. Otherwise, just pick up a great picture book!
  • Be the change
    Are you reading yourself? Do you read to them? Also, start to think about reading being fun and model that in how you react to what they choose (or don’t choose) to read (that Minecraft book is reading too).

Here’s a few great lists with fantastic titles to hook your younger reader:

Best of 2017: Younger Fiction – Christchurch City Libraries

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Best of 2017: Picture Books – Christchurch City Libraries

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Good reads for younger dudes

View Full List

When was the last time you read a kid’s book yourself? Here’s a fantastic recommendation: the Diary of a Wimpy Kid series by Jeff Kinney!

Stay tuned to hear more about the author Jeff Kinney – he is talking in Christchurch tomorrow, brought to you by WORD Christchurch and Penguin Books NZ in a sold-out event. We will be reporting back!

Pax: searching for peace

A recent addition to the children’s fiction shelves, Pax by Sara Pennypacker is a deeply emotional story that explores the special connection between a boy and his fox. The narratives of the two main characters, Peter and his fox Pax, are beautifully entwined in the tale of an epic journey through a world threatened by war.

Peter and Pax have both faced difficult family challenges early in their lives. When Peter finds and rescues Pax, an important relationship begins to develop that proves mutually supportive and healing. When Peter and Pax are separated by forces beyond their control (the decisions of their human elders and the destructive forces of war) the strength of their bond calls each of them back to one another. Their journey to be reunited turns into a voyage of self discovery. Along the way, both characters encounter two- and four-legged companions that hesitantly, yet expertly, guide them. But will they ever manage to find each other and will their respective experiences have changed the bond between them?

CoverThis is a story that presents a realistic view of life from the perspective of both children and animals. As hinted at in the naming of the fox Pax, it explores the journey taken to find an inner peace. The novel addresses mature topics such as war, grief and anger. These are treated sensitively, and balanced with discussion of ideas such as acceptance, the peace and freedom that comes from knowing oneself, what it really means to be home – and the importance of letting go.

Perhaps more suitable for readers 8 years and older, it may still suit those in the younger age bracket if time is allowed for discussion around some of the heavier themes involved. It is also a fantastic read for teenagers and adults! I particularly enjoyed the way in which Pennypacker’s extensive research of red fox behaviour lent credibility to the story of Pax. The portrayal of Pax’s thoughts and feelings is realistic and offers the kind of insight not often seen in more idealised animal characters of children’s fiction.

With both dystopian and fairytale undertones, the world of Peter and Pax is brought to life in the book with the aid of the moody illustrations of Jon Klassen. The author Sara Pennypacker also wrote the acclaimed Clementine series as well as many other popular children’s stories.

If you are interested in this book you may also wish to take a look at…

Pax
by Sara Pennypacker and Jon Klassen
Published by HarperCollins New Zealand
ISBN: 9780008158286

The camel ride including two young travellers at the New Zealand International Exhibition 1906-1907: Picturing Canterbury

The camel ride including two young travellers at the New Zealand International Exhibition 1906-1907 [ca. 1906]. File Reference CCL PhotoCD 12, IMG0005.
The three adult camels which offered rides to vistors to the New Zealand International Exhibition (1906-1907) were purchased in Melbourne, Australia. Prior to their departure to New Zealand, the camels gave birth. Accompanied by two baby camels, the three adult camels arrived in Christchurch in October 1906 onboard the S.S. Wimmera. After being unloaded they were conveyed to their destination by cattle trucks which were impractical given their long necks.

Featured as part of the “Wonderland” amusement park section of the exhibition, it cost 3d to ride a camel. The camel handlers were Aboriginal Australians from South Australia. The use of animals at the exhibition was inspected by representatives of the Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals, but it was found that the camels were not being mistreated.

The exhibition closed in April 1907, after which some of the “Wonderland” amusements were dismantled and removed to Wellington where they were put on display at Miramar. Although one of the camels died in June 1907, the rest were relocated to Wellington. Following the Miramar “Wonderland” show, one of the camels was given to the zoo in Wellington.

Do you have any photographs of the New Zealand International Exhibition (1906-1907)? If so, feel free to contribute to our collection.

Kete Christchurch is a collection of photographs and stories about Christchurch and Canterbury, past and present. Anyone can join and contribute.

The Camel Ride Including Two Young Travellers At The New Zealand International Exhibition 1906-1907

Credo DK Eyewitness eBooks for Kids

Credo Reference is a great series of online eBooks that you can search and browse. Filled with pictures as well as information, they make a perfect starting point for that school project, or a interesting resource to satisfy a curious mind. Keep the kids entertained (and still learning) in the holidays, with this collection of eBooks.

Whatever they want to do when they grow up, we have it covered.

Meteorologist

Palaeontologist or Archaeologist

Astronaut or Astrophysicist

Geographer

Marine Biologist

Historian

Spy

International Tabletop Games Day Saturday 28 April – and more fun and games!

Saturday 28 April is International Tabletop Games Day. Celebrate with us at Fendalton Library from 2pm to 4pm.  A selection of board games will be laid out with a few being led by staff.  All games can be explained in 2-3 minutes and run for under an hour (most are 15-30 minutes) so that multiple games can be enjoyed. Games include 5 Second Rule, LINKEE, Pictionary, Connect 4, Sequence, Werewolves of Millers Hollow, Two Rooms and a Boom and more!

There is more fun if games are your thing. Come along and try a new board game in the library at Te Hāpua: Halswell Centre! We have:

  • Ticket to Ride
  • Civilisation
  • Agricola
  • Infernal Contraption

These fantastic games are aimed at ages 13 years plus but all are welcome on Tuesday 24 April from 9am to 3pm, and Friday 27 April from 9am to 5pm.

How about Magic: The Gathering? Bring your decks to Shirley Library! Come along to play, swap cards, or hang out (snacks provided). This is on the first Saturday of each month, from 1pm to 4pm (aimed at ages 8 to 18 years).

Haere ra Raumati, Kia ora Ngahuru: The change of season in children’s books

As the mother of a preschooler, one thing I’ve noticed is how much small children respond to learning about topics that they can see reflected in their day to day life. Whether it’s seeing a picture of a tuna (eel) or a duck (both creatures we’ve fed on the Avon River), or stories about diggers (of which there are many in Christchurch), or picture books about Christmas at that time of year – little ones really love stories that they can relate to what they see in the world.

Yesterday (21 March) marked the official beginning of autumn in the southern hemisphere and already there are clear signs of summer’s departure that even small folk can make note of – fruit from neighbourhood trees dropping, new warmer pyjamas being bought, some trees already losing their leaves, and the need for rainjackets or gumboots on rainy days. So now’s a great time to comb the library’s bookbins for titles that either explain the change of seasons or reinforce those signs of autumn that younger family members might be noticing.

There are plenty of titles in the library to choose from. Here are just a few to get you started:

Change of Season (Autumn)

List created by ChristchurchKids

Books about the change of seasons and the signs of autumn. A Christchurch City Libraries list.

Cover of LeavesCover of Weather and seasonsCover of Goodbye summer, hello autumnCover of AutumnCover of SeasonsCover of Awesome Autumn

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