Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Got to get your books back boys!

Don't let this happen to you!  Get those books back to the library now!  The 75 Summer Borrowers don't need to concern themselves with this but the rest of you who still have 172 books outstanding, you need to give them back.  Now!  Message ends!

Thursday, November 28, 2013

The BookGang choose the best best books 2013

Today we had a BookGang sugar festival.  Chocolate, lollypops, chocolate biscuits and a lollyscramble in the library.  It was all very loud, grabby and fun.  There was a quiz, there was fun choosing yet more books for the summer holidays and we made a list of the best books the BookGang have read this year.

So, without further ado, here is the list of the BookGang Best Books of 2013 (in no particular order) with the name of the nominator alongside.
  1. House of Hades by Rick Riordan (Paul)
  2. The Skeptics Guide to Conspiracies (Josh S)
  3. The Project by Brian Faulkner (Thijs)
  4. Mortal Instruments by Cassandra Clare (Billie)
  5. The Enemy Series by Charlie Higgson (Caedyn)
  6. Looking for Alaska by John Green (Braeden)
  7. Gone Series by Michael Grant (Jack)
  8. Emperor Series by Conn Iggulden (Billie)
  9. Silent Stars Go By (Doctor Who) (Mace)
  10. The Alchemist Series by Michael Scott (Taichi)
  11. Death Note (Manga) (Dom)
  12. Fairy Tail (Manga) (Liam)
  13. Furnace Series by Alexander Gordon Smith (Jordan M)
  14. World War Z by Max Brooks (Seth)
  15. Henderson's Boys Series (Connor)
  16. Vladimir Todd Series by Heather Brewster (Jeremy)
  17. I am Number 4 series, The Lorian Legacies by Pitacus Lore (Everyone)
  18. Power of Five Series by Anthony Horowitz (Riley)
  19. Tomorrow When The War Began by John Marsden (Jordan B)
  20. Department 19 series (Connor)
  21. Nowhere by Jon Robinson (Paul)
  22. Fever Crumb Series (Josh)
  23. Fanboy and Gothgirl by Barry Lyga (Dom)
  24. Wolf Squadron by Craig Simpson (Thijs)
  25. Young Bond Series by Charlie Higgson (Brandon)
  26. The Rangers Apprentice Series by John Flannagan (Mikey)
  27. The Dwarves Series by Marcus Heitz (Brandon)
  28. More Than This by Patrick Ness (Ms Schaumann)
  29. Wool Series by Hugh Howey (Ms Schaumann)
  30. Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn (Ms Schaumann)
 Because we didn't quite get to 30 I added my choices at the end.  As you can see there are varied tastes in our BookGang.  Some people really like war stories and action thrillers, others like series books.  Magic and wizardry are popular and this year far more than any other the manga are popular. BookGang continues to thrive and these boys are such fantastic booklovers and readers they are a pleasure to spend time with.
The 2013 BookGang of King's High School

Friday, November 15, 2013

Breathe by Sarah Crossan

Set in a world which has lost almost all its oxygen, the survivors live in a bubble under the protection of Breathe who manufacture the breathable air.  After an event called The Switch, there are no trees, no oceans and only limited amounts of breathable air.  The rebels have been trying to propagate plants in secret hoping that they can establish some kind of life outside the Pods but this is dangerous work and severe punishment would result if they were caught.  There is a rumour that outside the Pod there is a rebel stronghold where trees are growing but this seems too impossible to be true.  Alina, Quinn and Bea set off on a camping trip outside the Pod, they have enough oxygen in their tanks for two days and they hope for a bit of adventure.  What happens to them is scary and dangerous, and they will have to fight for their lives to make it back.  If you have enjoyed books like Tomorrow When The War Began and Divergent you are going to enjoy this book and even if you have read lots of dystopia you will find new ideas in this book.  Highly recommended.

Breathe is exciting and different. 

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

NCEA and Scholarship Examinations have started

Good luck to all our senior students who are busy working in classrooms in C and B Block here at King's on their NCEA Level 1, 2 and 3 examinations, and not forgetting those who are doing Scholarship Exams too! 

If you are looking for help with study there are some easy things you can do:
  • Come to tutorials - these are still being run by teachers and are at times you can easily make them.  This is a great way to add polish to your knowledge, talk through things you are having trouble with and get some extra help prior to your exams.
  • Use Studyit  This page will give you really good advice for how to cope with exams, how to organise your study programme and what to look for in your examination questions.  
  • Do some group study with friends doing the same topics.  Students have been using the Williams Room for silent or quiet study and tutorials.  Maybe you should too!  Make sure you choose people who won't distract you and who will help you work not prevent you from working!
Lost your timetable of NCEA exams?  Click here for the official one.

Lester studies in the International Dept Study Room this morning

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Doctor Who Fans - spot the secrets of the trailer!

As you know the trailer is just out for the 50th Anniversary of Doctor Who.  And it has been watched avidly by the King's Whovians, but did you know there are a heap of hidden treats within the trailer.
This website will give you all the details of the 24 hidden "Easter Eggs" within the trailer.  Read the comments at the bottom for even more insights.

We now have so many Doctor Who books in the library that they are about to get their own section!  If you want particular titles then write them in the suggestions book at the front counter.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Zac and Mia by A.J. Betts

This book is one of those that stays with you long after you've finished it.  The story of two teenagers who meet in hospital where they are both being treated for cancer.  It doesn't sound like a cheerful subject does it?  But this book is full of real moments of humour, it is the story of two very real sounding teenagers and they both have plenty to deal with in their lives without having to deal with cancer as well!  Zac is a great kid, friendly, dealing with a Mum who wants to befriend everyone in the ward where he is trapped in isolation as he nears the end of his treatment.  Mia on the other hand is prickly, loud, full of anger and screams at her Mum in a very unrestrained way.  They seem unlikely friends but after a rocky start they become very close.

I think that it will appeal to students who like a story that feels real, those who like to read a story with heart and those who want a book which will make them feel what it is like to be isolated and angry and trapped in a room where you can't get out and talk to people, where your world has shrunk to such a tiny space.  Highly recommended.  Here is author A.J. Betts talking about the book.

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

The BookGang go to the movies

Last night a bunch of the junior members of the BookGang gathered at the Rialto Theatre for the 6pm screening of Percy Jackson And The Sea Of Monsters.  It was a small select group of 6 students, due to the short notice but was the only night we could manage to get there.  The movie was awesome.  A huge amount of popcorn was ingested over the hour and a half of the movie and everyone had a good time.  Below the trailer of the movie.

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

You asked for them! Here are your eBooks!

Breaking News!!!  Yes, they are finally here.  King's High School has eBooks available for those of you with a King's High student or staff account.  Head over to here to access them.  Instructions for access are on the Help page and a simple instruction sheet is available from the Issues Desk.  We have 55 titles available at the moment.  Any problems see Ms Schaumann.

Monday, September 2, 2013

How much science can you fit into 6 seconds? - The video

Science geeks this is for you.  A competition recently held on Vine asked participants to produce a 6 second video showing science in action.
On August 15th, GE launched the world's first #6SecondScience Fair, a week-long celebration of science on Vine. By the time the week ended, over 600 projects had been submitted. From frog dissection to dry ice explosions, here's a compilation of some of our favorites.
Some of these are of the 'don't try this at home' variety but some are definitely worth doing yourself.  The library has lots of books which will show you how to do these experiments.

Thursday, August 29, 2013

The new improved King's High School Facebook presence

King's High School has a new and official Facebook page.  It will give you a snapshot of life at school, events of interest, activities the students are involved in and information you might need to know.  Like it to keep in touch with King's life!

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

The Shock of the Fall by Nathan Filer

This is a book to mull over and to carry around with you in your heart.  The main character is a young man, Matt, who is reflecting on his life from the psychiatric hospital where he has been placed.  He traces back through his life to where his troubles began, and on the way exposes the family secrets and the terrible truths of his family.  Matt recalls his older brothers death, the brother who was born with special needs but whom he loved unreservedly, unfortunately with his death Matt's family begins to unravel and Matt himself begins his journey into schizophrenia.  This is an unusually written book, it is deeply personal and full of sadness and grief, but at the same time has humour and sensitivity.  I recommend this book very highly to senior students looking for something full of heart. Prepare to be moved, prepare to be challenged and prepare to meet an unforgettable character in Matt who traces his journey back to the day he believes he killed his brother accidentally, in the hope he can get some some closure.  Highly recommended to students Yr 11 up especially fans of John Green. Below is a short film inspired by the book.

Friday, August 23, 2013

Do you love a quiz?

If you are a quiz kind of guy, you could have yourself some fun by regularly having a go at the World Book Trivia Quiz.

It will stretch your brain, and test your knowledge of the news. This is the advanced quiz and it is really quite hard, if you want an easier challenge you could go to this link, where you will find lots and lots of quizzes about specific topics and lots of general knowledge challenges.  Below is the QR code which links to all the trivia quizzes.  Try them out!
QR code for trivia quizzes!  Scan with your smartphone or iPod

Friday, August 9, 2013

The boys meet Maryanne Scott

On Wednesday this week we were very lucky to have had an author visit the library.  The authors name is Maryanne Scott and she is the author of a fantastic book for young adults called Snakes and Ladders.  It was a finalist in the New Zealand Post Children's Book Awards and very deservedly so.  Maryanne spoke to 10EA and 10TG about writing, the process of getting her book published, why she wrote the book and also gave the boys advice which they can use in their creative writing.  She told stories about what influenced her book and why she wrote that particular story and how having teenage boys and watching them take risks was influential in her story. 

Maryanne is obviously used to teenage boys (having four of her own) and she had the students totally engaged in her stories and answered lots of questions from the audience.  It was a really cool opportunity and everyone was queuing for the book after her talk.  I suspect the library will need to buy more copies!

Below is a photo of Maryanne speaking to her audience gathered around the pit in the library.
Author Maryanne Scott having a laugh with our students

The audience listening attentively to Maryanne

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Noble Conflict by Malorie Blackman

This is the latest novel by well known British author Malorie Blackman.  The thing you get when you read one of her books is a chance to mull over some big issues, and she challenges you to decide what is right and what is wrong, and then turns things on their head to surprise you and offer you even more to think about.  In this book she introduces you to Kaspar.  He is the son of two war heroes.  He has grown up in the peace and quiet of a farm, being bought up by his uncle but has left that behind to train to be a Guardian.  These are the troops who protect the city, who guard against the rebels who are trying to cause havoc in the city.  Kaspar notices that there is some odd behaviour amongst the rebels, strange things seem to be happening, he begins to investigate and enlists the services of Mac a librarian who teaches him how to harness the power of the web to take his investigations further.  Together they will become entangled in a mystery that is way bigger than the two of them.  They won't know who to trust, and even worse they wont know who is the enemy. 

This book has a lot going on, especially in the last half.  You'll have to read carefully to keep up with all the action.  It will appeal to people who like war or spy novels and like suspense.  Coming very soon to the library!

Catching Fire - the Hunger Games Part 2

Yes!  It is coming.  The boys are talking about it all over the library at the moment.  Those who haven't read it are making a rush to the library to get it out.  Those who have read it are having a re-read to make sure they remember every single part of it.  The BookGang are talking about our trip to go and see it - even though it is still some way away from release which will be in November.  In the meantime trailers for the movie are coming at us.  Here is one of the more recent ones.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Tamati Ellison visits King's High

Tamati Ellison is an All Black and a member of the Highlanders team.  He visited King's High to speak to our students who are team captains of lots of different sports and he spoke to them in the library last week.  He spoke with passion and commitment and he encouraged the boys to make great decisions and he gave them a list of targets to use when they wanted to reach high levels in sport.  It goes like this:
  • See yourself as that person now
  • Set your grand dream goals
  • Find out what the first step you need to take is
  • Take action now
  • Write down all the things you dream of - fill a page with dreams
  • Test and measure your performance to see what you have to do to improve
  • Network - make contact with people who can help you
  • Follow through

This is great advice for anybody stiving to do well in anything whether it be sport or other types of goals.  The students who attended the two hour session really enjoyed it, they got a lot out of meeting Tamati and came away determined to work hard on their sporting goals. 

Tamati Ellison is a reader, he loves books and he was really keen to read some of the books we had in the library and particularly a book on Maori tattoo which was on a shelf near where he was speaking.  He told me he reads all the time - all kinds of books.  He highly recommends reading as a great way to fill time and get interested in lots of different things.  Awesome!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

It is finally here.  The trailer for the second movie.  Stand back boys, hold on to something and prepare to be awed!  The awe of awesome!

Watching this is like being inside the book.  For those of you who are reading it now for the first time this video will spur you along.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

The Boy With Two Heads by Andy Mulligan

Can you imagine how you would feel if you developed a growth on your neck, which just kept on growing and then growing some more, and eventually turned into a head.  An unexpected twin but sharing the same body as you!  It would be bizarre and weird and not only would you look odd you would have to put up with someone else being close to you at all times, being a different personality to you and wanting very different things to you and yet sharing your clothes, your food - well everything with you.  This is what happens to Richard in this book.  His life is taken over by an unwelcome brother who sprouts from his neck.  His parents are shocked.  His doctors are amazed.  Richard himself is not overly impressed either.

This book is sometimes funny, has lots of action which includes evil doctors, dodgy football and a bunch of friends who stick with Richard through all his hard times, and lets face it it would be a tough thing to deal with, the whole 'you've got two heads' phenomenon!

It is just out, a brand new book.  I recommend it for those who like a book with a really different storyline and lots of great characters who you will be able to relate to.  A great read!  If you want you can find out more here.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Dog Stars by Peter Heller

The other book I spoke about in assembly, a great book IMHO.
The Dog Stars is a book about survival, the story of Hig, a man who is nearly alone in the world, except for his neighbour who spends his time developing weapons to defend their territory and his beloved old dog.  Hig has lost everyone he knows, his wife and friends have all died along with much of the rest of the world from a flu mutation which has devastated the world.  He can fly planes, and so has moved into a small airport and is living in the hangar.  He has fuel supplies and is able to fly around and find supplies from time to time, he also delivers supplies to a group of people who struggle to survive out in the wilderness but whom he has a fondness for.  This is the limit of his world, fishing, hunting and flying, and his dog.  Until he sets out on a journey, a journey into the unknown to see what is out there, to investigate a strange static on his radio.

This is an unusually written book, it takes a little while to get used to the writing style, after all Hig has nobody to talk to, what you get is his stream of consciousness.  Highly recommended.

The Age of Miracles by Karen Thompson Walker

 I spoke about this book in assembly on Friday as a favourite of mine from the last few years.  Here is the part of the book I read, and also a booktrailer for you to look at.  This is the story of a world changed, when time slowed down, when the seasons went on and on, when time dragged...  this is one girls life as she looks back on the time it all started.

"This was middle school, the age of miracles, when kids shot up three inches over the summer, .... when voices dipped and dove.  Our first flaws were emerging, but they were being corrected.  Blurry vision could be fixed invisibly with the magic of the contact lens.  Crooked teeth were pulled straight with braces.  Spotty skin could be chemically cleared.  Some girls were turning beautiful.  A few boys were growing tall. ...... It was that time of life:  Talents were rising to the surface, weaknesses were beginning to show through, we were finding out what kinds of people we would be.  Some would turn out beautiful, some funny, some shy.  Some would be smart, some smarter.  The beloved, I sensed, would be beloved for life.  And I worried that loneliness might work that way too.  Maybe loneliness was imprinted in my genes, lying dormant for years but now coming into full bloom."

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

For the Doctor Who fans

As has previously been noted on this blog Doctor Who is very hot right now at King's High.  I thought that the Whovians might be interested in reading tasters of some new stories.   These are from the Guardian Books Site and the links are below.  The latest story is by Patrick Ness who is the author of the very popular Chaos Walking series which begins with The Knife of Never Letting Go.  That news alone is enough to hook some non-Whovians into reading the extract of the story.  Here is ex student Micah discussing The Knife of Never Letting Go on this blog a while ago.  There is also a story by Michael Scott, who writes the popular Nicholas Flamell books and another by Marcus Sedgwick who writes creepy fiction like Midwinter Blood and Revolver which we have in the library.  You will also see Eoin Colfer of Artemis Fowl claim.  These are fantastic writers and the stories are very cool.  You will only get a taster, but that is fine, it will whet your appetite for when the programmes come onto TV and later when the books are available.

Doctor Who: Tip of the Tongue by Patrick Ness - extract

Sample the fifth in a new series of Doctor Who stories. Written by Patrick Ness, author of the Chaos Walking series and A Monster Calls, the story focuses on the fifth Doctor. In 1945, a strange new craze for Truth Tellers is sweeping the kids of small-town America. The Doctor and Nyssa soon discover that the actual truth behind the Truth Tellers is far more sinister than anyone could have imagined...

Read an extract from A Big Hand for the Doctor by Eoin Colfer

Read an extract from The Nameless City by Michael Scott

Read an extract from The Spear of Destiny by Marcus Sedgwick

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Anzac Day at King's High School

Our Anzac Day service is a sombre occasion at King's High School, there is a full school assembly with knowledgeable speakers, staff and students, together with representatives of our Old Boys Association.  All then gather at the flagpole to reflect and remember those who lost their lives at war, students play bagpipes and drums and the last post is performed.  This year the students who are involved in Army Cadets marched in formation and presented arms at the flagpole as well.  Quite a few of the students involved in this are regulars of the library and BookGang.  They gathered prior to the ceremony in the library and read the Army News, in which two of them, Jesse and Kameron feature this month.  Here is a photo of them during a lighter moment before they went to do their duty.  They did an excellent job!

Thursday, April 18, 2013

Classics for the Classics Class

Pictured is Mr Nathan Tane, guitar virtuoso extraordinaire.  Mr Tane is our Maori and Music teacher and he is also a highly awarded classical guitarist.  Yesterday Mr Tane gave his annual concert in the library for the students of Classics. Prior to the concert Mr Frost spoke of Mr Tane and mentioned to the students how in life we make assumptions about people based on what we know of them, and many of them would only have known Mr Tane as a Maori and Music teacher but they may not have realised how talented he is at guitar.  Mr Frost said in life we must avoid making assumptions on limited knowledge and that often we are surprised to find the hidden depths even in people we think we know.  The performance the students witnessed yesterday would have left them in no doubt of Mr Tane's talent.

Mr Tane played  The Usher Waltz by Nakita Koshkin, Gantasia by John Dowland and Seville by Isaac Albinez.  He also played Mr Frost's favourite piece called Classical Gas.

The staff also all look forward to this concert and as many as possible try to make it to hear it and there was an extensive audience in the library to listen.  A fabulous musical interlude in a very busy day in the library.

A cat for Braeden's birthday

Yesterday was Braeden's birthday.  Braeden is in the library every single day for interval and lunchtimes and is a huge reader and extreme BookGang member.  He is particularly keen on John Green and J.K. Rowling having read all of their books over and over.  Yesterday for his birthday the library organised a cat.  Braeden loves cats!  He was delighted.  Unfortunately he couldn't keep the cat because it has another home, although we are not sure where that is.  It is back in the library today sleeping in a sunny spot trying very hard not to be disturbed by hoards of students - this is not going well because everyone thinks it is so cute and needs to be cuddled.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

An evening of Doctor Whoness

Last Thursday night the BookMafia (the senior BookGang) organised a great night of entertainment for the BookGang.  Lachlan, Ben and Brin are mad keen Doctor Who fans.  They knew that there would be plenty of other fans in the BookGang, so they decided we would have an evening of fun and watch some episodes of classic Doctor Who and also some modern ones if time allowed.  They made the invitations and sorted out the episodes.  Drink and snacks were provided, enough to ensure a sugar high for the boys - in well established BookGang fashion.  About 25 BookGangers and fans attended and we had an excellent night.  When the Doctor Who action wasn't enough to keep us totally enthralled we had other things going on, cards, gameing, 4 pics one word and plenty of laughs.  They boys bought their Doctor Who gear, which included costumes (cosplay), lighting, body art and screwdrivers!  Many many thanks to Mr Flemming and Mr McPherson who came along for some of the time. 
If you have a good idea for a BookGang event come and chat about it with Ms Schaumann.  All great ideas are welcome.  Below is a photo of those who stayed till the end with Lachlan and Ben at the back - representing BookMafia.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Our wonderful new books from Rotary

This year Ali and Callum took part in the annual Rotary Speech Competition and they were rewarded after their great performances with a lovely stack of books for the library.  Rotary are so generous to give us these lovely books and we are really grateful.  Miss Harford, our intrepid photographer, came to the library with the boys the following morning and snapped us posing with the books.  We had a great time finding books which we felt suited our personalities.  Thank you so much Rotary, these books will be well used and loved by our students.
Below Callum, Ali and Ms S have a little bit of fun with our lovely new books.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Author R.L. Stedman visits the BookGang

On Thursday at BookGang we were really privileged to have the author of the great new fantasy book A Necklace of Souls visit with us at BookGang.  Rachel is the Mum of one of our year 10 students and  has a busy schedule of book promotion and a day job, so we were delighted that she was able to join us for a chat about writing, reading and what it is like to have a book published, and indeed to win a prestigious prize.  The highs the lows and all the rest.  Because the book is so new, only a couple of people in the school have read it, but those people are recommending it very highly.

Rachel answered questions from the boys about the process of writing, about the characters in the book and gave us her thoughts on the kind of heroes and heroines she likes to read about in books.  This was a great topic of discussion and could have gone on for far longer then we had time for.  We talked about how there are recurrent themes in fantasy books, things like talisman in the form of gems which crop up very frequently and how this has been a long tradition.  Rachel also had words of advice for several members of BookGang who are writing their own books at the moment.  The boys asked heaps of questions and answered some of Rachel's, about what they liked to read, the sort of books they would recommend people to read and also about what happens to the stories when books get turned into movies.  We would love a sequel to Rachel's book and the boy's have even seen the manuscript for the second book!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Reading Period with 9Mn

King's boys love to read!  On Monday I took photos of every period in the library for a day in the life project.  These photos were taken when 9Mn came to the library for their fortnightly reading period.  Their teacher Mr McLean, avid reader himself, is seen showing some books to some of the boys.  There are some great readers in this class and they issued a mountain of books at the end of the period.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Michael Campbell, Celebration of a champion

A review by Sam Ballantyne (Year 9)

This is a book for any golfer.  It explains Michael's build up to the 2005 U.S. Open.  The years before are terrible but he comes out fighting in 2005.

He was born and raised in Taranaki and Michael first swang a club when he was 5!  Michael is our best golfer since Bob Charles and I really encourage any golfer to pick it up and read it.

The book is written by Martin Crowe and Craig Tiriana

Kia kaha - Be strong, be good is Michael Campbell's motto

Friday, March 1, 2013

Discworld on the iPad

Do you have an iPad?  Well if you do you might be interested in trying out the Discworld App which is freshly available in the iStore.  Familiar characters from the books roam the streets and get up to their Discworly business.  It looks like loads of fun and your librarian will be downloading the app this weekend to have a play with.  Such Fun!
Here is a taster!

Gandalf's Problem Solving Chart

Via the fabulous Kerikeri High School Cover to Cover blog, this is a helpful problem solving chart for Gandalf.  LOTR fans will love it!  And if you want to see the artist in action take some time to watch this TED talk.
If you are a LOTR kind of guy you might also enjoy this one.
Both of these images - and many other very awesome images come from here.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Social Studies Quiz - good mayhem in the library

At the end of last week two year 9 classes competed for the Social Studies Shield by competing in the Social Studies Quiz.  The quiz is great fun and highly competitive!  Year 13 students gave assistance by keeping track of the scores and making sure the answers were correct.

In the top photo are the champions:  Tame Govaerts, Oscar Arlidge and Kent Marshall, all from 9Ha
in the photo below are the year 13 assistants making sure everything was above board.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

People are awesome

Check this out!  Video of people being awesome - and scary - and very very dangerous!

The international students at King's have been doing a research assignment looking at extreme sports, this video is for them.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Infographica - The world as you have never seen it before

by Martin & Simon Toseland

New into the library this week!

Do you know what an infographic is?  Here is the definition according to Wikipedia:
Information graphics or infographics are graphic visual representations of information, data or knowledge intended to present complex information quickly and clearly.[1][2] They can improve cognition by utilizing graphics to enhance the human visual system’s ability to see patterns and trends.[3][4] The process of creating infographics can be referred to as data visualization, information design, or information architecture.[2]
Infographics are cool! This book is chock full of infographics on lots of different things.  You can see The number of satellites which orbit around the earth by country, the average time people spend watching television country by country, the number of McDonald's per country, the cars driven by James Bond, some of the longest words in various languages, the world's busiest airports, untimely deaths of rock legends.  As you can see, a lot of variety and a lot of wacky information in one handy volume.  


Thursday, February 14, 2013

Why We Broke Up by Daniel Handler and Maira Kalman

On Valentines Day it seems right to have a story about love on the blog.  Why We Broke Up is one of those quirky books which isn't everyone's cup of tea but those who love it - well, they really love it.  It is the story of Min and Ed.  First time girlfriend and boyfriend.  The book takes the form of a letter Min is writing to Ed, the letter is going to go in a box which is being delivered to Ed's place which contains everything that Ed has ever given her and souvenirs from their dates.  Each chapter starts with a picture of the item and the chapter then talks about the significance of it in their relationship.  The box has items in it such as movie tickets, a recipe book, two bottle caps, keys, a pennant, a folded note, all kinds of things that Mim has kept as mementos during their romance.

This book is going to appeal to the boys who liked Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist and the books of John Green. It is funny, sad and a great book for any boy who has been dumped, so really more suitable for year 10 up!

Thursday, February 7, 2013

BookGang 2013

This is the first post of 2013 and it is appropriate that the first post is to welcome in the new BookGang members and to appreciate the longstanding BookGangers!  Today was the first gathering of the boys for the year, there were quite a number of us, 21 or so, and several boys who couldn't make it to this meeting who intend to come along next year.  Warren was appointed Prefect In Charge of the BookGang and he will help marshal the troops and bring order to the chaos. 

It was a chance to have a chat and to think about some of the things we might do together this year.  A show of hands indicates that we are wild Hobbit fans and so a movie visit one evening soon will be our first activity for the year.  As usual there were heaps of new books and these were snaffled up eagerly!  It is great to have so many new guys in the group and I hope you all had fun and will be back for more mayhem next week.


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