Category Archives: St John’s Wood Library

Books we love

For a different view this week we have reviews from the readers taking part in the St John’s Wood Library Book Club.  Two members have reviewed The Long Song by Andrea Levy, which was a  finalist for the Booker Prize in 2010 and has since been made into a BBC TV series.

“Set in Jamaica during the last turbulent years of slavery and the early years of freedom that followed, this novel follows the life of July, a slave girl, who lives upon a sugar plantation named Amity.”

This is a summary of answers given by Louise to the reading group questions:

“An excellent book in general, but I must say that I did not like the structure at all. She tries to make it similar to the oral tradition (as she says) but it does not work  on the page “Dear Reader” sounds very clumsy and I found it very irritating.   The book is about people and history, particularly about people. The history is lightly treated.   She has given the slaves a voice which can be heard, and certainly a tribute to their resilience.

She evokes scene and atmosphere with all the details she provides. The horrible details of the manure sliding down the face and into the eyes and nostrils from the basket as it is being carried in for instance.Her life with Thomas provides a good counterpoint to her life on the plantation. Her version of events is shown to be faulty at the end of the book, where she makes a different narrative at the time.

Robert Goodwin is still a bit of an enigma to me. A “good” white man who is swayed by his father and the power of the church, but in fact I think the second half of the book is rather rushed and his character not explored fully.

I thought the humour was good and was pleased and surprised by it.”

Farangis says:

“I did manage to finish the “Long Song” and really, really liked it, even though I found the beginning a bit puzzling and difficult to understand. I did quite a lot of reading afterwards and eventually got the gist of what was going on. I even researched to see if it was based on a true story, and no, it is not. All characters invented!

However, reading further about the writer, I still think there is a hint of it being based on someone’s ancestral experience. Whether or not, I still loved it and was truly touched.”

 

Summer Reading Challenge 2018: join in!

This year’s Summer Reading Challenge launches in our libraries tomorrow, Saturday 14 July. The challenge is fun, free and designed for all children whatever their reading ability and it’s been designed to help children to improve their reading skills and confidence during the long summer holidays.

Children can read whatever they like for the challenge – fact books, joke books,
picture books, audio books or you can download a book,  just as long as they are borrowed from the library.

This year’s Summer Reading Challenge is called Mischief Makers – Dennis the Menace, Gnasher and friends invite the children taking part to set off on a hunt for Beanotown’s famous buried treasure.

 

Each of our libraries will be holding special events for children of all ages, some of these are listed now on our website  Pop in to your local Westminster library to find out more about the Summer Reading Challenge and collect a special  events programme.

Boom! Free Comic Book Day arrives once again…

Free Comic Book Day is an international celebration of all things comics – taking place on the first Saturday in May – tomorrow – it is a day where new titles are released and shops offer a giveaway of free issues – our libraries are taking part, courtesy of those lovely folks at Forbidden Planet

The day is perfect for both collector fanatics and those who are picking up a comic for the first time.

We will also be hosting two special events on the day –

St John’s Wood Library make superhero masks and stick figures, 10.30am to 12pm . This free event is open to children of all ages.

Maida Vale Library – learn how to draw your own cartoon characters, 2.30pm to 4pm. Free event which is suitable for children aged 5 and over.

Queen’s Park Library – create your own mini comic, a superhero (or a super-villain!) and we’ll display the best, 2pm to 4.30pm. This free event is open to children of all ages.

Explore all this and more at one of our libraries and don’t forget to ask staff for your free comic book. We have three titles to give out, while stocks last – head on in before missing out. You’ll discover characters from the DC Universe including Superhero girls, Doctor Who, plus look out for the exclusive DC Nation!

Why not also check out the graphic novel selection? or the new release DVDs available while you are there and see what else your local Westminster  library has to offer?

Matthew

Never too young

You’re never too young to enjoy a good story, and at your local library children are welcome to join from birth. It’s absolutely free and for children there aren’t any fines for returning books late.

Did you know that all families with babies aged 0-12 months are eligible for a free Bookstart baby pack?  Each pack contains two books, a rhyme sheet and a booklet of tips and ideas for sharing stories with your child. Pop into your local library to pick yours up today.

If you’re interested in getting involved in your local reading community, check out the fun under-fives activities on offer at your local library.

And remember, we understand that children can be noisy (and sometimes messy!) so don’t worry too much about being quiet; we love to see young children enjoying our libraries and welcome their enthusiasm!

By taking out books and reading with your child every day you can help their physical, mental and emotional development as well as language and listening skills. Plus, you get to enjoy some fantastic stories!

“A love of reading is more important in academic achievement than a child’s social or economic background.” –Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development, ‘Reading for change’ 2001

Happy reading!

Harriet Skinner

Libraries Children’s Officer

Summer Reading Challenge 2017: Animal Agents

 

Are you ready to sign up to this year’s Summer Reading  Challenge, read six books over the holidays AND solve a mystery? If you are, then visit your local Westminster library at the start of the summer holidays to register!

All you have to do to take part in Animal Agents, Summer Reading Challenge 2017 is read six library books over the holidays, collecting stickers, rewards and clues along the way. If you read six library books, you’ll receive a certificate and might solve the mystery too. The Summer Reading Challenge is free and children of all ages can take part.

We have a fun programme of free events across our libraries this summer –

Charing Cross Library

Church Street Library

Maida Vale Library

Marylebone Library

Mayfair Library

Paddington Children’s Library

Pimlico Library

Queen’s Park Library

St John’s Wood Library

Victoria Library


Charing Cross Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Tuesday 25th July, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Boo Hiccup Tuesday 1st August, 10.30-11.30am
Boo Hiccup will excite and entertain with magic and puppets in a delightful Animal Agents themed show for young children and their parents.

Animal Party Tuesday 8th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and games for the little ones. Come to celebrate our animal friends at the library this summer.

Animal Party Tuesday 15th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and games for the little ones. Come to celebrate our animal friends at the library this summer.

Animal Party Tuesday 22nd August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and games for the little ones. Come to celebrate our animal friends at the library this summer.

Animal Party Tuesday 29th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and games for the little ones. Come to celebrate our animal friends at the library this summer


Church Street Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Thursday 27th July, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Five Little Monkeys Thursday 3rd August, 10.30-11.30am
Fun songs and action rhymes for pre-school children.

Along Came Mr Crocodile Thursday 10th August, 10.30-11.30am
Rhymes and songs for little ones.

Wake Up Bunnies! Thursday 17th August, 10.30-11.30am
Join in our fun singing session for younger children and their grown-ups.

Incy Wincy Spider Thursday 24th August, 10.30-11.30am
Learn some new songs and enjoy familiar ones at our weekly rhyme time.

The Mouse Ran up the Clock Thursday 31st August, 10.30-11.30am
Songs and stories for babies and toddlers.

For the over 5s

Jeremy Strong’s ‘100 Mile an hour Dog’ Wednesday 26th July, 3.30-4.15pm
Can Trevor train Streaker the dog before the end of the holidays, or will he lose his bet with Charlie Smugg? Interactive drama show with actor John Kirk.
For ages 6+.

Cool Cats Friday 28th July, 2-4pm
Family craft workshop with Learning Unlimited. Come and make cat masks, take part in a quiz and make a cat game to take home. Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Creature Workshop Wednesday 2nd August, 2.30-3.30pm
Invent some fantastic creatures and colourful bugs using different craft materials.

We’re Going to the Zoo Wednesday 9th August, 2.30-3.30pm
An animal themed craft activity. Get busy with recycled materials, scissors and glue and build some amazing animals.

Amazing Animal Agents Monday 14th August, 2.30-4pm
Come and discover some of the amazing animals from the Wallace Collection, then make a marvellous animal mask to disguise yourself! What will you be?

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Wednesday 23rd August, 2.30-4pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

The Summer Reading Challenge Party Wednesday 30th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Celebrate the Summer Reading Challenge and join us for some fun party games.


Maida Vale Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Friday 28th July, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Going to the Zoo Friday 4th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and a story, followed by a simple craft activity.

Beware of the Bear! Friday 11th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and a story, followed by a simple craft activity.

Farmyard Fun Friday 18th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and a story, followed by a simple craft activity.

Dogs, Dogs, Dogs Friday 25th August, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and a story, followed by a simple craft activity.

Party Animals Friday 1st September, 10.30-11am
Songs, rhymes and a story, followed by a simple craft activity.

For the over 5s

Dinosaur Fun Monday 24th July, 2-4pm
Family craft workshop with Learning Unlimited, including a dino quiz. Find out some fun facts and make a dino board game to take home. Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Amazing Animal Agents Monday 31st July, 2.30-4pm
Come and discover some of the amazing animals from the Wallace Collection, then make a marvellous animal mask to disguise yourself! What will you be?

Real Animal Agents Wednesday 2nd August, 2.30-3.30pm
Come and meet some real life animals and find out some cool animal facts with this hands-on workshop from Wild Science!

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Wednesday 9th August, 2.30- 3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

Puppet Pets Thursday 17th August, 2.30-4pm
Make a felt animal puppet to take home. Please note adult help may be needed for younger children.

Marvellous Masks Thursday 24th August, 2.30-4pm
Fierce or friendly, what animal mask will you make?

For all ages

Animal Agents Party Thursday 31st August, 2.30-4pm
Celebrate this year’s Summer Reading Challenge with games, quizzes, food and fun! Booking essential. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.


Marylebone Library

For the under 5s
Cool Cats Tuesday 25th July, 10.30-11am
Come along for songs, rhymes, stories and a cool cat craft.

Five Little Ducks Tuesday 1st August, 10.30-11am
Join us for musical fun, stories, and the making of your very own little ducks.

Down on the Farm Tuesday 8th August, 10.30-11am
Enjoy animal songs, stories and a fun farmyard craft activity.

Polar Bear, Polar Bear Tuesday 15th August, 10.30-11am
Come along to make a pretty polar bear and to hear your favourite songs, rhymes and stories.

Walking through the Jungle Tuesday 22nd August, 10.30-11am
Join us for songs aplenty and a special jungle animal craft.

How much is that Doggy? Tuesday 29th August, 10.30-11am
Enjoy songs, stories, rhymes and a playful puppy dog craft

For the over 5s

Amazing Animal Agents Monday 24th July, 2.30-4pm
Come and discover some of the amazing animals from the Wallace Collection, then make a marvellous animal mask to disguise yourself! What will you be?

Dinosaur Fun Tuesday 25th July, 2-4pm
Family craft workshop with Learning Unlimited including a dino quiz. Find out some fun facts and make a dino board game to take home. Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Friday 28th July, 2.30-3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

ZooLab presents Animal Detectives! Friday 4th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Join ZooLab for an animal handling workshop full of mystery and intrigue designed to fire children’s imagination, confidence and love of the written word.
Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Learn and Play Tuesday 8th August, 2-4pm
Inspirational craft for kids and grown-ups. Easy and fun sensory art with Georgia Vossou from the Westminster Archives Centre.

Hermelin’s Mystery Hunt Thursday 17th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Be a detective for the afternoon and join us for a fun mystery hunt, based on the book by Mini Grey. Solve the clues to win a prize!

Secret Book Safe Thursday 24th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Come along and make your own secret storage safe, disguised as a book on your shelf!

For all ages

Summer Reading Party! Thursday 31st August, 10.30-11.30am
Come along to celebrate the end of the Summer Reading Challenge with party
games and prizes!


Mayfair Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Wednesday 9th August, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Boo Hiccup Tuesday 22nd August, 10.30-11.30am
Boo Hiccup will excite and entertain with magic and puppets in a delightful Animal Agents themed show for young children and their parents

For the over 5s

ZooLab presents Animal Detectives! Tuesday 19th September, 4-5pm
Join ZooLab for an animal handling workshop full of mystery and intrigue designed to fire children’s imagination, confidence and love of the written word.
Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.


Paddington Children’s Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Wednesday 26th July, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Animal Agents Toddler Time Friday 28th July, 10.30-11am
A time to meet for toy time and animal colouring sheets.

Crafty Cats Baby Rhyme Time Wednesday 2nd August, 10.30-11am
Rhymes, songs and stories.

Crafty Cats Toddler Time Friday 4th August, 10.30-11am
Sharing toys and cat themed colouring.

Up in the Sky Baby Rhyme Time Wednesday 9th August, 10.30-11am
Rhymes, songs and stories.

Up in the Sky Toddler Time Friday 11th August, 10.30-11am
Explore and have fun with things that fly.

Furry Things Baby Rhyme Time Wednesday 16th August, 10.30-11am
Rhymes, songs and stories.

Furry Things Toddler Time Friday 18th August, 10.30-11am
Come and play and colour creatures.

Under the Sea Baby Rhyme Time Wednesday 23rd August, 10.30-11am
Rhymes, songs and stories.

Under the Sea Toddler Time Friday 25th August, 10.30-11am
Who lives here? Toys and colouring.  This event has now been cancelled.

Top Dogs Baby Rhyme Time Wednesday 30th August, 10.30-11am
Rhymes, songs and stories.

Top Dogs Toddler Time Friday 1st September, 10.30-11am
Dogs, toys and colours to explore.

For the over 5s

‘100 Mile and Hour Dog’ Wednesday 26th July, 1-2.15pm
Can Trevor train Streaker the Dog before the end of the holidays, or will he lose his bet with Charlie Smugg? Interactive drama show with actor John Kirk.
For ages 6+.

Animal Rap and Rhyme Monday 31st July, 2.30-3.30pm
Celebrate the Animal Agents Summer Reading Challenge by having fun with words courtesy of award-winning children’s poet, author and entertainer, Neal Zetter.

I Spy Animals Thursday 3rd August, 2-3.30pm
Come along and make crafty animals.

Learn and Play Monday 7th August, 2-4pm
Inspirational craft for kids and grown-ups.
Easy and fun sensory art with Georgia Vossou from the Westminster Archives Centre.

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Wednesday 16th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

Mouse Mats Thursday 24th August, 2-3.30pm
Use amazing mice to make your own colourful mouse mats. Please note this event will now take place at Paddington Library.

Animal Papercraft Tuesday 29th August, 2-3.30pm
Use your imagination to create amazing animal agents at our paper craft session. Please note this event will now take place at Paddington Library.


Pimlico Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Monday 31st July, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Safari Stories with Slivery Craft Monday 7th August, 10.30-11.30am
Stories and snake craft.

Music for Little Monkeys Monday 14th August, 10.30-11am
Songs and rhymes.

Mischievous Music Monday 21st August, 10.30-11am
Songs and rhymes.

For the over 5s

Cool Cats Wednesday 26th July, 2-4pm
Family craft workshop with Learning Unlimited. Come and make cat masks, take part in a quiz and make a cat game to take home.

Learn and Play Tuesday 1st August, 2-4pm
Inspirational craft for kids and grown-ups. Easy and fun sensory art with Georgia Vossou from the Westminster Archives Centre.

ZooLab presents Animal Detectives! Thursday 3rd August, 2.30-3.30pm
Join ZooLab for an animal handling workshop full of mystery and intrigue designed to fire children’s imagination, confidence and love of the written word.
Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Friday 4th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

Make your own Animal Comic Book Thursday 10th August, 10.30-11.30am
Create your own animal inspired comic book.

Amazing Animal Agents Tuesday 15th August, 2.30-4pm
Come and discover some of the amazing animals from the Wallace Collection, then make a marvellous animal mask to disguise yourself! What will you be?

Lego Club Saturday 26th August, 10.30-11.30am
Lego Club with the theme of Animal Agents.

For all ages

End of Summer Party Tuesday 29th August, 10.30-11.30am
Animal fancy dress party with games.


Queen’s Park Library

For the under 5s

Down in the Jungle Monday 24th July, 10.30-11.30am
Learn some jungle songs and rhymes, and then make a super snake.

Tiny Tunes Friday 4th August, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Bonkers for Bears Monday 7th August, 10.30-11.30am
Join us for a bear hunt in this interactive story session, followed by your favourite songs and rhymes.

Fabulous Fish Monday 14th August, 10.30-11.30am
Stories and songs from under the sea!

Big and Small Monday 21st August, 10.30-11.30am
Enjoy all kinds of animal songs and rhymes, from elephants to spiders!

Party Time! Friday 1st September, 10.30-11.30am
Simple games, songs and some yummy party snacks.

For the over 5s

Cool Cats Friday 28th July, 2-4pm
Family craft workshop with Learning Unlimited. Come and make cat masks, take part in a quiz and make a cat game to take home. Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

ZooLab presents Animal Detectives! Wednesday 2nd August, 2.30-3.30pm
Join ZooLab for an animal handling workshop full of mystery and intrigue designed to fire children’s imagination, confidence and love of the written word.
Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Beastly Super Sleuths Tuesday 8th August, 2.30-4pm
Are you smart enough to be an Animal Agent? Answer our beastly questions, find the hidden clues and win a prize!

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Tuesday 15th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

Funny Furry Faces Thursday 17th August, 2.30-4pm
What’s your favourite animal? Use collage and colouring to make your animal’s face on a paper plate.

Canine Culture Tuesday 22nd August, 2.30-4pm
Meet beautiful rescue dog Kalecka and find out how to care for canines, plus puzzles and crafts. Perfect if you’re nervous around dogs.

Jungle-O-Rama Thursday 24th August, 2.30-4pm
Tear, cut and stick paper to make a jungle scene based on Rousseau’s paintings.

Party Animals Wednesday 30th August, 2.30-4pm
Join us for our end of summer party with games, fun and food.

For all ages

In Disguise Wednesday 26th July, 2.30-4pm
Design and make your own Animal Agent badge, plus animal themed face painting!

Nature Explorers Thursday 10th August, 2.30-4pm
Journey outside the library to explore local nature and find out about animals that live around us. This activity involves a short walk.


St John’s Wood Library

For the under 5s

Tiny Tunes Thursday 3rd August, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Walking the Jungle Path Tuesday 8th August, 10.30-11.30am
Songs and stories as you walk the jungle path.

Bear Picnic Thursday 17th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Have tea with your bear and go on a bear hunt.

Seashore Fun Thursday 24th August, 10.30-11.30am
Let’s see what’s in the sea with stories and songs.

Farm Fun Thursday 31st August, 10.30-11.30am
Songs and stories about the farm animals.

End of Summer Party Tuesday 5th September, 10.30am-12 midday
Party with games and fun.

For the over 5s

Animal Detectives! Tuesday 25th July, 2.30-3.30pm
Join ZooLab for an animal handling workshop full of mystery and intrigue designed to fire children’s imagination, confidence and love of the written word.
Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Dinosaur Fun Thursday 27th July, 2-4pm
Family craft workshop with Learning Unlimited, including a dino quiz, fun facts and make a dino board game to take home. Booking required. Call 020 7641 6200 to book.

Amazing Animal Agents Tuesday 1st August, 2.30-4pm
Come and discover some of the amazing animals from the Wallace Collection, then make a marvellous animal mask to disguise yourself! What will you be?

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Wednesday 2nd August, 2.30-3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

Learn and Play Wednesday 9th August, 2-4pm
Inspirational craft for kids and grown-ups. Easy and fun sensory art with Georgia Vossou from the Westminster Archives Centre.

Mixed-up Animal Wednesday 16th August, 2.30-4pm
Design your mixed-up animal.

Animal Faces Wednesday 23rd August, 2.30-4pm
Make an animal mask.

End of Summer Party Thursday 7th September, 2.30-4pm
Party with games and fun.

For all ages

Animal Puppet Show Tuesday 29th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Play with puppet animals.


Victoria Library

For the under 5s

Animal Craft Wednesday 26th July, 10.30-11.30am
Join us for an extended rhyme time with animal craft.

Tiny Tunes Wednesday 2nd August, 10.30-11am
Come and enjoy singing, using shakers and dancing with pom-poms for this fun musical session with Tiny Tunes!

Parachute Adventure Wednesday 9th August, 10.30-11.30am
Join us for an extended rhyme time with a parachute adventure.

Spy Face Painting Wednesday 16th August, 10.30-11.30am
Join us for an extended rhyme time with spy themed face painting.

Treasure Chests Wednesday 23rd August, 10.30-11.30am
Join us for an extended rhyme time with a treasure chest to find.

Summer Party Rhyme Time Wednesday 30th August, 10.30-11.30am
Join us for an extended rhyme time with party games and food

For the over 5s

Amazing Animal Agents Tuesday 25th July, 2.30-4pm
Come and discover some of the amazing animals from the Wallace
Collection, then make a marvellous animal mask to disguise yourself!
What will you be?

Animal Rap and Rhyme Tuesday 1st August, 2.30-3.30pm
Have fun with words courtesy of award winning children’s poet, author and entertainer, Neal Zetter.

Learn and Play Thursday 3rd August, 2-4pm
Inspirational craft for kids and grown-ups. Easy and fun sensory art with Georgia Vossou from the Westminster Archives Centre.

Feline Facts and Cat Crafts Friday 11th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Find out about how to look after cats, then take part in a cat themed craft activity with the charity Cats Protection.

Animal Masks Tuesday 15th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Create the ultimate disguise by making a with a fun mask of your favourite animal.

Animal Mix-Up Book Making Tuesday 22nd August, 2.30-3.30pm
Cow’s head, chicken tummy, rabbit legs? Create your own new animals and take home your own book.

Spy Hunt Tuesday 29th August, 2.30-3.30pm
Can you find the clues around the library
to claim your prize?