Working Parents

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When mummies and daddies go to work, young children often wonder what they are doing – are they in an office, do they drive a truck, are they helping people?  Some children also worry about who will look after them when their parents are away and if their mum and dad will come back home again.  These stories may help to calm their fears.

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The Best Bit of Daddy’s Day – Claire Alexander

Bertie wants to drive trucks, diggers and cranes, just like his daddy, but he is too young so he goes to school instead.  What will be the best part of their days?
Age: 3+

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Mum goes to Work – Libby Gleeson & Leila Rudge

What do mums do at work while their children are busy at the childcare centre?
Age: 3+

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Mummy’s Home – Christopher MacGregor & Emma Yarlett

This lovely book shows how a child copes when her mummy has to go away for work for a long time.
Age: 3+

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My Mum Goes to Work – Kes Gray & David Milgrim

A child’s perspective on how much a working mum misses him, and how she makes up for it when they are together.
Age: 3+

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Who Will Sing My Puff-a-bye – Charlotte Hudson & Mary McQuillan

Crossfire’s mummy has got a job, so Crossfire has a dragon au pair to look after him, and finds that change can be fun.
Age: 3+

Quick Reads 2017

If you find reading difficult and never know what to read, then look no further!

Quick Reads have released their 2017 titles, these books have been commissioned by big named authors and specially designed to make reading easy!

Here are the new books for Quick Reads 2017.

Dead simple,  Harry Bingham

A crime collection bringing together eight writers including , Mark Billingham, Clare Mackintosh, James Oswald, CL Taylor, Angela Marsons, Jane Casey and Antonia Hodgson.

Looking for Captain Poldark, Rowan Coleman

Four strangers, united by their shared love of POLDARK, come together on a trip to Cornwall in search of their hero…Lisa has sworn off love and relationships after a really bad experience, but lately she’s been tempted to take a chance on a more exciting life. First she meets other fans of the TV show Poldark online. Then she proposes a very special road trip to Cornwall, in search of where their favourite show is being filmed.But can four strangers find friendship, as well as a certain sexy hunk on their trip south?

A very distant shore, Jenny Colgan

Wanted: doctor for small island. Must like boats, the seaside and having no hope of keeping a secret… Lorna lives on the tiny Scottish island of Mure, a peaceful place where everyone helps their neighbour. But the local GP is retiring, and nobody wants his job. Mure is too small and too remote. Far away, in a crowded camp, Saif is treating a little boy with a badly-cut hand. Saif is a refugee, but he’s also a doctor: exactly what Mure needs. Saif is welcome in Mure, but can he forget his past? Over one summer, Saif will find a place to call home, and Lorna’s life will change forever.

The other side of you, Amanda Craig

Will must run, or die. He’s seen a murder, and the gang on his estate are after him. Hurt, hungry and afraid, he comes to an abandoned house in a different part of the city. Behind its high fences is a place of safety. Here, he can hide like a wounded beast. He can find food, and healing – and learn how to do more than survive. But when Will meets Padma, he must choose between his good side and his bad one. For the gang he left behind is still there. How can he live without becoming a killer? How can he love without being a thief? Exciting, fast-paced and different, this is a story that keeps you reading until the last line.

Feel the fear and do it anyway, Susan Jeffers

What is stopping you from being the person you want to be and living your life the way you want to live it? Fear of tackling an issue with your boss, fear of getting to grips with a problem in your home. Fear of change. Fear of taking control… Everyone has these fears, and they run throughout our lives. Susan Jeffers’ inspiring and mould-breaking self-help book shows how to break this Catch 22 cycle and work through fear to a resolution. Feel the fear, she argues, but do it anyway.

One false move Dreda Say Mitchell

Hayley swore when she got out of prison that she would turn her life around. But living on the Devil’s Estate doesn’t make that easy. She spends her days looking after her daughter, and her nights collecting cash from people who can’t get loans any other way. But someone has just robbed her. And she has twenty-four hours to get the money back, or her boss will come for her. Her criminal ex-boyfriend says he can help. Hayley wants nothing to do with him. But time is running out, and she has to choose – save herself, or save her soul?


Come along to Winchester Discovery Centre on Saturday 11th March at 7.30pm, to listen to Ezio!

Ezio deliver the most exquisitely crafted and varied songs with a skill that can only come from having toured and recorded constantly for many years. Ezio’s style has always been nearly impossible to describe, their music can range from the highly rhythmical almost manic Latin feeling rock to delicate dreamy ballads that are heartbreakingly honest and deeply poetic.

Grab your tickets here, at £12.50 each.


Comedy Club for kids

Do your children love jokes? Then if so don’t miss out! At Winchester Discovery Centre there will be a comedy club for kids, on Sunday 19th February at 11.30am.

This unique show features top comedians from around the world – but without rude words! A comedy club with jokes for kids and their parents! Previous acts have included Rich Hall, George Egg and Phil Jupitus, and the laughs are guaranteed…else the comics will all be grounded!

This show features “natural-born MC” Jim Smallman, Paul Duncan McGarrity “Like a very tall, funny, excited child…and history nerd” and much more!

For all the family but recommended for kids age 6+.                                           Grab your tickets here, at £10.00 each (or 4 for £35.00).

Inspiration for your 500 words

Need inspiration on writing your short story for the BBC Radio 2 – 500 words competition?

Then here is a booklist, for children to have a look at and read. With a range of books for readers aged 5-13 years old.

Follow the links available to reserve your copy of any of these books on Hampshire libraries website.

Room on the broom, Julia Donaldson

The witch and her cat fly happily over forests, rivers and mountains on their broomstick until a stormy wind blows away the witch’s hat, bow and wand. They are retrieved by a dog, a bird and a frog, and each animal asks for a ride on the broom. They climb on, one after the next, until the broom is so heavy that it snaps in two! What will happen next as they tumble into a bog and meet a greedy dragon?

Diary of a wimpy kid, Jeff Kinney

Greg Heffley finds himself thrust into a new year and a new school where undersize weaklings share the corridors with kids who are taller, meaner and already shaving. Greg is happy to have his sidekick, Rowley, along for the ride. When Rowley’s star starts to rise, Greg tries to use his best friend’s popularity to his own advantage.

Matilda, Roald Dahl

Matilda’s parents have called her some terrible things. The truth is, she’s a genius and they’re the stupid ones. Find out how she gets the better of them and her spiteful headmistress, as well as discovering that she has a very special power.

The Tiger who came to tea, Judith Kerr

The doorbell rings just as Sophie and her mummy are sitting down to tea. Who could it possibly be? What they certainly don’t expect to see at the door is a big furry, stripy tiger! This modern classic picture book is perfect for reading aloud, or for small children to read to themselves time and again.

Gangsta granny, David Walliams

Our hero Ben is bored beyond belief after he is made to stay at his grandma’s house. She’s the boringest grandma ever: all she wants to do is to play Scrabble, and eat cabbage soup. But there are two things Ben doesn’t know about his grandma.1) She was once an international jewel thief.2) All her life, she has been plotting to steal the Crown Jewels, and now she needs Ben’s help.

The sheep-pig, Dick King-Smith

The Sheep-pig is one of Dick King-Smith’s most famous tales. It shot to further fame when the film adaptation, Babe, was released in 1995. ‘Why can’t I learn to be a Sheep-Pig?’ When Babe, the little orphaned piglet, is won at a fair by Farmer Hogget, he is adopted by Fly, the kind-hearted sheep-dog. Babe is determined to learn everything he can from Fly. He knows he can’t be a sheep-dog. But maybe, just maybe, he might be a sheep-pig.

Bedknobs and broomsticks, Mary Norton

When the witch next door falls off her broomstick, it’s the start of an amazing adventure for Carey, Charles and Paul. Her spell turns out better than she’d hoped, and gives the children an enchanted bedknob which whisks them off anywhere they want, even back in time.

The worst witch, Jill Murphy

The Worst Witch is the first in the bestselling children’s series by Jill Murphy. Hold on to your broomstick for magical mayhem! Jill Murphy’s much-loved classic The Worst Witch is the original story of life at a magical boarding school, perfect for readers aged 5 – 9 years. Mildred Hubble is a trainee at Miss Cackle’s Academy for Witches, but she’s making an awful mess of it. She keeps getting her spells wrong and crashing her broomstick. And when she turns Ethel, the teacher’s pet into her worst enemy, chaos ensues…

The wolves of Willoughby Chase, Joan Aiken

a period of English History that never happened, when Good King James III is on the throne, and the whole country is ravaged by wolves which have migrated through the newly-opened Channel Tunnel. When orphans Bonnie and Sylvia fall into the hands of evil Miss Slighcarp, they need all their wits – and the help of Simon the goose-boy – to escape unscathed, for the governess is more cruel and merciless than the wolves that surround the great house of Willoughby Chase.

Clarice Bean – That’s me, Lauren Child

Clarice Bean is a funky new character with real girl power. All she wants is a bit of peace and quiet, away from her family and their annoying little habits that many of us will recognise only too well.

BBC Radio 2 – 500 Words Competition

Need some top tips for writing your 500 words short story for the BBC Radio 2 competition? Then look no further!

There are many different techniques for writing a short story, if you have lots of ideas and don’t know where to start then the best idea is to put them down on paper, either list your ideas or do a word map.

If you have a story in mind you want to write about then a story board is always a great way to get started! Story boards allow you to plot your storyline from beginning to middle to end.

Good luck to everyone entering this year’s competition!