Saturday, June 14, 2008

Gnomes in the Garden

One morning, Jake wakes up and looks out of the window. He sees that his two gnomes in the garden are trashed. He wonders why but can't get an answer.

In the middle of the night, Jake wakes to the sound of a disturbing noise. He creeps out of bed and goes into the garden with his flashlight. He goes behind a bush, and in front of the bush he sees the two gnomes fighting. Jake is terrified. The gnomes are alive! So that's why they were trashed to bits. Then Jake jumps out and shines his flashlight on the gnomes. At once, they freeze and turn back into statues.

The following night Jake is ready for them. When the sun is down and the moon is up, Jake prepares himself behind the same bush. Then he hears them. The gnomes start fighting, as usual. Jake counts to three and jumpsout of the bush. But this time the gnomes are quick and run into the bushes. But Jake follows them. He crushes through the bushes and catches up with them.

Suddenly, Jake stops. In front of him is a porthole. The gnomes are on the other side, ready to jump in. Jake tries to shine the flashlight on them, but they have already gone through the porthole. Jake closes his eyes and does the same.

He falls to the ground and gets up. He looks around and realises that he is right outside his house in the garden. Then Jake quickly turns around expecting to see the gnomes. But instead he sees two statues. They are his parents. How can this be? Is this another world? He hears noise coming from the house. And then he understands. He has jumped into a porthole that transported him into another world. A place where everything is switched around. His parents are the gnomes frozen outside in the garden, and inside the house are the two gnomes alive.

Jake knew what he has to do. He opens the front door and waves at the gnomes. And they see him. Then Jake runs into the garden and waits. The two gnomes run out and stop, rooted to the spot. They are frozen. They have turned back into statues.

Jake knows this was happening because this world is the other way round and his parents are frozen in dark not sunlight, like the gnomes. So the live gnomes that are in the house will get frozen in the dark. Then Jake starts feeling stiff. He can't move his legs. He is turning to stone! Into a statue!

Julian - Grade 7.3

WINNER of WORLD BOOK WEEK 2008 Short Story Competition

Good Deeds Bounce Back

One bright sunny morning in July, a man named Alan McGregor was walking on the beach. The sun shone in his face as he walked across the golden beach. As he was staring out at a calm, blue sea he spotted two bobs of gold paddling their way across the waves. As they came closer, Alan saw that they were two dogs. He jumped into the sea and rescued them. When he brought them back, he saw that they had name tags. He returned them to their owners and to say thank you, the owners gave Alan one of their puppies. He named the puppy Pink.

Alan went everywhere with Pink and they soon became the greatest of friends. Alan felt secure when Pink was with him. In the afternoons, Alan took Pink to the beach with him and used to meditate. Alan felt even more secure beacuse cars could not drive through to the beach. That afternoon, a car drove through the beach without noticing the signs. Since Alan was meditating he could not see or hear the car coming. Only Pink noticed the car coming their way. Pink barked, but Alan was still lost in his meditating.

Pink put herself directly in the way of the car. Just as Alan became aware of what was going on, the man in the car saw Pink and dodged her. This further strenghtened Alan and Pink's friendship. This just proves that since Alan saved the dogs and brought them back to their home, Pink, the daughter of the dogs saved Alan's life. It proves that every good deed that we do bounces back at us.

Matthew - Grade 7.3

RUNNER-UP WORLD BOOK WEEK Short Story Competition

The Day Everything Disappeared

One day there was a lovely blue bird in an oak tree, there was a flock of sheep running in a meadow. There were pretty pink buterflies flying in the air.

The following day there was a magician at a boys' birthday party. The magician wanted to make a ball disappear but the trick went horribly wrong because he was so so rushed by the children, that he made everything disappear.

The children in the party disappeared, the blue bird disappeared, even the oak tree disappeared, the sheep stopped running and disappeared, the pretty pink butterflies disappeared, every living creature, every country, state, continent and planet disappeared, the whole world disappeared. Everything in the universe disappeared. So there was nothing else to disappear, not even a pretty pink butterfly.

Max - Grade 7.1

RUNNER-UP WORLD BOOK WEEK 2008 Short Story Competition

Friday, June 13, 2008

Me and My Books

I am sometimes teased,
and not very pleased
because I read books
which don't improve my looks.

I just can't help it,
I'll go and sit
take a book,
and give it a good look.

Time flies when I'm reading a book,
so I don't bother to give the clock a look
when we go back to class
I wonder how the time passed so fast.

On Book Day,
some children try to stay away
when books are such fun
especially if you have more than one.

In the end it was their loss,
I showed them who is boss;
with books I am always on top
that's why I will never stop.

Dawn - Grade 6.1

WINNER of WORLD BOOK WEEK 2008 Poetry Competition.

The Wizard's Story

Once, there was a wizard,
who swallowed a lizard
and got caught in a blizzard.

His name was Fay,
he was born in May,
and, they say,
was born in a barnyard of hay.

He lives in a number of flats,
his neighbours have rats
and lots of bats.

He flew to the moon
on his broom
while holding a spoon.

Later, he went to Pluto,
and found a creature called Muto,
which was half hog and half dog.

Then, he coughed the lizard,
so more bad luck for the Wizard!!

If you look at the sky,
you will see someone saying bye,
on a star so far,
on the Milky Way;
if you look closely,
that is Fay.

Bettina - Grade 6.1

RUNNER-UP for WORLD BOOK DAY 2008 Poetry Competition.

My Dream

Last night I had a dream,
of dolphins in the sea.
Strange creatures in their team
all waiting for their tea.
Shining diamonds in the sky
and aliens flying by
all waving me goodbye.
Hope I'll see them again next time.

Andrew - Grade 6.4

RUNNER-UP for WORLD BOOK DAY 2008 Poetry Competition.

Monday, May 05, 2008

In The Name Of Science

As dawn crawls quietly across the morning sky

The hounds pretend to sleep; silent they lie.

They know that when the door will let in rays of light

The one that will be taken won’t live another night.

When sudden brightness comes and overwhelms the room,

It brings with it the shadow of one unlucky hound’s doom.

They choose at random; any animal will do.

The one that is chosen has eyes of brightest blue.

Men take him to a place where surfaces gleam bright.

The hound struggles and thrashes with all his might.

Then he feels the needle; it’s way too sharp and cold

And he’s engulfed in blackness, far too vast and bold.

And those who’ll finish like him yowl in despair,

Because their grief and sadness is too much to bear.

Their howls cleave the silence, but the world pays no heed.

For people only care about what people need.

Over the hound which for the sake of science died,

No soul, no person, no one has ever cried.

Giulia 9.3

Thursday, April 24, 2008

World Book Week

Last week was World Book and Copyright Day. The 23rd of April was chosen to celebrate books and reading for a very specific purpose. William Shakespeare, the most famous playwright ever, was born on this day. He became famous for his absorbing plots and superb command of the English language. Therefore it seemed quite fitting that his birthday would be chosen to make people more aware of the wonderful world of books.

San Anton School decided to go a step further and instead of devoting just one day to this event, a week full of activities was planned. All the school was involved, from the very young ones in the Junior Sector to the oldest students in Senior Sector. A number of guest authors also visited the school... but let's go through the whole event day-by-day.

On Monday, Mikiel, the popular children's mascot of Agenda Kids Club, together with story-teller Rita Antoinette Borg, visited the Junior Sector. Children and teachers were thrilled at the sight of the big friendly giant dog and his companion. After much cheering and clapping, Ms Borg then proceeded to read a story to the children.

As this was going on, the Grade 5 were busy with their Class Atlas. This consisted of a worksheet wherein each class had to put down the topographical details of their classroon. Width, height, number of chairs, doors and windows, subjects they study - EVERYTHING. By the end of the activity they had a fact sheet of their classroom.

Next was the Grade 7s turn. They were treated to a very interesting talk by Joe Attard about the goings about of publishing a research book. Mr Attard is one of the local authorities about Maltese flora and fauna and his talk proved to be a stimulating experience.

The Grade 7s were busy the following day as well. They had a Short Story Competition. The librarian visited each class and expalined the rules of the competition, after which the students had an entire lesson in which to write their own, original story. The best one of the Grade shall win a prize.

Local children's illustrator Marisa Attard visited the school and did a workshop with the Grade 5s. This proved to be a huge success as the children were awed at Ms Attard's dexterity with her pen and were very keen to try their own illustrations. The library was transformed into a hullaballoo of activity as children posed, sketched and giggled at each other's drawings.

On this day, the Write-A-Story activity kicked off as well. This is activity consisted of a big book with the beginning of a story. Starting from Grade 0.1, the book is going through all the classes in the Junior Sector, and each class has to read the story so far, add its bit, and pass it on to the next class. Thus, in the end, there will be a story written by the entire Junior Sector.

On Wednesday, Trevor Zahra visited the school. He is undoubtedly the most prolific of children's authors and well-loved by readers of all ages. It was quite an honour to have him over to speak to the Grade 9s. The latter, in collaboration with the librarian and the Maltese Department, prepared a surprise for Mr Zahra. A number of students stayed after school hours and filmed a trailer for Fuklar Qadim u Bnadar Imcarrta, the book they are presently doing in class. Mr Zahra was extremely pleased with this and congratulated everyone involved on doing a great job.

Later on the Grade 6s had a Story-Telling Session with Ms Vicki, the Head of San Anton School. She chose a beautiful and challenging story written by Malorie Blackman that dealt with bullying. The children were absorbed in the story throughout the entire session and one could tell that they were paying attention to every single word.

During break there was a book sale. This proved to be an enormous hit. The stand was literally stormed by children, eager to buy a book. The selection, supplied to us by Merlin Library, was superb and therefore there was something for everyone. There were many students who left the stall with a satisfied grin and a book clutched in their hands. (A big thank you goes to all the members of staff who volunteered to help during this activity.)

Thursday kicked off with the Grade 6s Poetry Competition. Once again, the librarian popped over to each class and explained the rules. The students had one lesson in which to write their original poem., which was then collected by the class teacher. The best one of the lot shall be awarded a prize.

As this was going on, Ms Vicki was conducting a workshop for parents. She used her own experience both as a mother and as an educator to share strategies on how to get children enamoured with books and reading. The parents found this extremely helpful and their enthusiasm was obvious during the group exercise at the end of the session.

A couple of hours later, Ms Vicki was once again on the centre stage as she read a story to the Grade 11s. She chose a supernatural story by Ray Bradbury. It was a very intense experience and there were a couple of students who actually jumped during some moments of the story. So kudos to Mr Bradbury as a writer and Ms Anastasi as a story-teller.

On the last day of World Book Week, the school in general and the Grade 10s in particular were given a very special treat. Merlin Library chose San Anton School to launch a week-long tour by authors Simon Bartolo and Lorrane Vella, whose book Wied Wirdien hit the bookshops that very day. It was a very special moment as their previous book, Sqaq l-Infern, had sold over a thousand copies in a couple of days. Also, a television crew came over to film the event. It was a special moment that was enjoyed by everyone around.

Next came Spot the Dog. The latter is a very popular and much beloved character amongst the younger students of the Junior Sector. Merlin Library had kindly supplied the school with a number of Spot the Dog beanies, together with a certificate of adoption, and therefore, the librarian, together with Ms Maria Pia Galea, the Head of Administration, went round the Grade 0 and Grade 1 classes to give a Spot the Dog to each class. He will be the class mascot and whenever they read a story, they can use him to animate his adventures.

Last but not least on the agenda, were the Grade 4s. Each class came to the library and they did a session about bookmarks. The librarian explained what a bookmark is and how to use it and then proceeded to give each student an empty bookmark. They had to draw on it pictures about their favourite books. Not only this, but Merlin Library supplied the school with a number of freebie books, and therefore each child went home with a book and a bookmark.

Besides the above activities, there were other sessions being held throughout the school. The French and Italian departments had book review and book author projects going on, which are at the moment being displayed in the library. The English and Maltese departments, on the other hand, had short stories and fairy tales which are also beng displayed in the library.

It was an eventful week packed with activities and it was clear that the children were enjoying every single bit of it. Reading and story-telling is an enjoyable experience that stimulates and excites one's imagination. Nurturing the latter is as important as having food on the table. Imagination is an essential tool towards the intellectual and emotional development of any individual.

Thursday, March 06, 2008

The Spiderwick Chronicles

The Spiderwick Chronicles will soon be released in the local cinemas. This is a fantastic adventure based on the series of books by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi. The film tells the story of Simon and his brother Jared who, together with their sister Mallory and their mum, go to live in the secluded mansion owned by their great great uncle Arthur Spiderwick. There is some seriously creepy stuff going on and everyone seems to be blaming Jared. However, when he and his brother and sister start to investigate the strange occurences, a sinister explanation is unraveled...

To go on the Official Movie website CLICK HERE.
To go on Holly Black's site CLICK HERE.
To go on Tony DiTerlizzi's site CLICK HERE.
To go to the Spiderwick site CLICK HERE.

And here is the Trailer:

Wednesday, March 05, 2008

New Titles in the Library!

My Brother's Famous Bottom Gets Pinched!
by Jeremy Strong

'Now then, where's my fabulous bottom?' 'It's behind you,' said Dad. 'Where else could it be?'

Nicholas's brother's bottom is so famous it's going on tour. The TV people are taking the family on the road - but somebody has to look after the goat! And when the Bumper Dumper tour bus is kidnapped by giant babies it's up to Nicholas to save the day - can he get there in time?

To go to Jeremy Strong's site CLICK HERE.


Spiderman 3 : The Movie Novel
by Jasmine Jones

Everything's going great for Peter Parker - and Spiderman - until some mysterious black goo oozes into his life. It forms into a new black suit that leads Peter down a dark path of pride and revenge... and into the clutches of fearful villains Sandman and Venom. Will everyone's favourite hero ever be the same?

To go to Spiderman 3's site CLICK HERE.


The Tide Knot
by Helen Dunmore

I can't go back in the house. I'm restless, pricking all over. The wind hits me like slaps from huge invisible hands. But it's not the wind that worries me. It's something else, beyond the storm...

Sapphire and her brother Conor can't forget their adventures in Ingo, the mysterious world beneath the sea. They long to see their Mer friends once more. But a crisis is brewing far below the ocean's surface, where Saldowr, the wisest of the Mer, guards the Tide Knot. And soon both Sapphire and Conor will be drawn into Ingo's troubled waters...

To go to Helen Dunmore's site CLICK HERE.


Steven Gerrard : My Story
by Steven Gerrard

Have you ever wanted to be a football hero? To play for your favourite team, or even England?

This is Steven Gerrard's story - from kick-arounds woth his friends on the street outside his house to becoming captain of Liverpool and a vitally important player in the England team.

Did you know that when he was nine, just after he'd started training at Liverpool, Gerrard had an accident that nearly ended his career before it had even started?

Find out what it feels like to win the FA Cup, to walk up the tunnel at Wembley with the crowd going crazy and to score for England in Steven Gerrard's exciting autobiography!

To go to Steven Gerrard's site CLICK HERE.


101 Fantastic Things To Do With Your Computer
by Tony & Liz Wheeler

Jam-packed with jokes and other activities, this book helpsyou get the most from your computer. Easy-to-follow instructions mean the book and CD-Rom work together, to help you have all the kinds of digital fun.


The above information was copied from the blurbs of the respective titles.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Parents' Day Bookstand

The Junior Sector had Parents' Day on Friday the 15th and, as usual, the Librarian put up a bookstand. The latter has by now become a familiar beacon amidst the steady current of mummies and daddies who eagerly rush to confer with their child's teacher. On their way back, most parents cannot resist taking a peek at the numerous titles on display and, hooray hooray, purchasing a book or two.

The Librarian gets the said books from a supplier (a different one for each Parents' Day) who would offer to pay a commission to the school for every book sold. These would then go towards purchasing more resources for the library. Therefore the students get a double treat: a book to read at home and more books to read from school.

Last Friday sales went extremely well. In all, the school made around €180 profit, which is one of the highest ever in the venerable history of Parents' Day bookstands. An enormous thank you goes to Maria Pia and Agnes who helped tremendously throughout!

Tuesday, February 12, 2008


Il-klassi tal-Malti tal-Grade 8 ingħatalhom proġett li fih kellhom jagħżlu żewġt iħrejjef li jridu huma u jamalgamawhom flimkien. Għalhekk inkitbu stejjer fejn Sindirella u Pinokkjo ltaqgħu; fejn is-Sbejħa Rieqda u l-Qattus biż-Żarbun kellhom avventura; fejn Ġaħan u t-Tlett Iqżieqeż daħlu f’bawxata nobis; u ħafna u ħafna oħrajn.

Ix-xogħlijiet ta’ l-istudenti, apparti l-immaġinazzjoni fertilissima, għandhom preżentazzjoni mill-aqwa. Imżewqa b’bosta kuluri, disinji, stampi u rimiżolji oħra, fihom verament daqqa t’għajn sabiħa hekk kif tidħol fil-librerija.

Prosit tassew Grade 8!!

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Innocent - Book Review

Since I really like to read and it's one of my favourite hobbies, I'd like to write about a book which I really enjoyed.

Last month I read a book called Innocent written by Anne Cassidy. This book is really interesting. I had never read any books by Anne Cassidy before so I didn't really know what this book was about exactly. However I decided to read it because my classmate had suggested it. Before she gave it to me, she told me a bit about it, and I got really interested.

This book is about a family - a brother (Brad), a sister (Charlie) and their dad but there wasn't a mum. Their dad was trying to take care of them both. But one day the police came to their house and they took Brad to the police station. They were asking him questions about a crash that happened but he didn't know anything about it. Charlie was trying to help him but he didn't want and so she knew that he was innocent. She also knew who was the guy to blame - it was her brother's best friend, Denny, with whom she used to go out.

If you've never read the book, I suggest you do!

Thank you!


A Note Of Madness - Book Review

A Note Of Madness tells the story of Flynn, a talented young pianist who is reading for a degree at the Royal College of Music. One of his lecturers recommends him for a prestigious concert, which for Flynn would be the opportunity of a lifetime. He is eventually chosen but this means that there are hectic weeks ahead of him. Together with his mentor, Flynn opts for Rachmaninoff's 3rd concerto, one of the most difficult pieces ever written for piano. Therefore he has to cope with strenuous rehearsals, besides his coursework.

At first he is doing just fine, but before long, pressure starts mounting and Flynn finds it increasingly difficult to manage. He becomes hyperactive, moving from one thing to the next without ever pausing. These manic moments are intercut by episodes of extreme depression where he starts feeling that he is not good enough and will not be able to play properly. Flynn's mood swings drive Harry, his flatmate, nuts, and even his friend Jennah starts worrying about Flynn's lifestyle.

Tabitha Suzuma's book deals with manic depression. This is a condition where a person would be feeling on top of the world one moment, and very depressed the other. It is a good book that despite being derivative, tackles the issue of mental health in a very sensitive and humane manner. Recommended for readers 14+