Reviews

Featured Staff Review

I found this book looking for something new for my book club Around Words that runs on the first Wednesday of the month at Yarra Junction Library. Allegra is eleven and has three important people in her life. She lives with one grandmother, Matilde, who is from Hungary and with her own story to tell. Next door is Joy, her other grandmother. They both love Allegra but can't stand each other. Rick, her Dad lives at the end of Matilde's garden and is Joy's son. As Allegra says, Matilde's 'got a blind spot when it comes to Rick'. He is trying to be a good dad to 'Al Pal' but has his own issues and the absence of her mother affects all four of them. These relationships cause a great deal of tension in the child's life and culminate in a very dramatic conclusion. A gripping book with many life lessons for all of us. I loved the rich, full blooded characters of the grandmothers but also the secondary characters, the people Allegra comes in contact with, her friends and neighbors. What an exciting new novelist.

Maria M
4.5/5

Latest Staff Reviews

Milkman is the type of book that you want to give your full attention to, to get the most out of it. You’ll want to spend hours at time reading on the couch absorbing each poetic sentence.
What I loved most about the Milkman is the lack of names and the ambiguity. The story follows ‘middle sister’ as she struggles to live her life on ‘this side of the road’ hiding her ‘maybe-boyfriend’ from her family, and her encounter with the Milkman from a town full of gossip and rumours.
I have never read anything like this book, and I doubt I ever will again. The writing is unique and beautiful. If you’re looking to mix up your summer reading list, I highly recommend it.

Tanisha T
5/5

This is a book of beautiful description and imagery, fierce battles and more than interesting characters. Orario Celavini, an ex soldier now law enforcer in 16th Century Florence needs to confront his troubled and traumatic past when he must solve two murders in Florence. A past feud between two wealth families in the area, which ended in the massacre of one of the families, is linked to the murders and Onorio's past. He must solve the murders, save a friend and confront his own past to find peace and harmony in his future.

Lucy I
4/5

I thoroughly enjoyed reading In the Footsteps of Zen, written by local author Dr Lim Meng Sing (Peter). He explains what “Zen” is and how it can be used to create a more happy and peaceful life in our modern, chaotic world. He speaks about silence, mindfulness, having purpose and using Zen as therapy through difficult times.
The beauty of this book is in its simplicity. Written by someone who has for many years travelled the Zen path, it is clear and uncluttered. It includes poetry and quotations from authors, teachers, philosophers and scientists.
Peter’s own 150 brief reflections (which make up the second half of the book) are also simple, but very thoughtful.
This book is small in size, but big in content.

Heather M
5/5

This is Holly Ringland’s debut novel, she grew up barefoot and wild in her mother’s tropical garden on the East coast of Australia. Her interest in cultures and stories was sparked by a two-year journey her family took in North America when she was nine years old, living in a camper van and travelling from one national park to another. In her twenties, Holly worked for four years in a remote Indigenous community in the central Australian desert.
In the novel Alice suffers a tragedy at 9 years old when a fire destroys her home and she loses her parents. She is taken in by her estranged grandmother, a flower farmer who raises Alice on the language of flowers, but Alice also learns that there are secrets about her past that her grandmother is reluctant to speak about. An unexpected betrayal sees Alice leave the farm and she ends up in the central Australian desert where she learns the culture of the people and their relation to their plants.

Maria B
4/5
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Beyond Sparkles and Superheroes

Children receive messages about gender everyday through behaviours, images, written and spoken words at home, at school and in other settings. 
These picture books present child characters in a way that challenges gender stereotypes. They are just a sample of books available on the theme of gender equality or gender equity and have been chosen because they are both enjoyable stories to read with your child and because they represent a range of approaches to the topic of gender equity.
We hope you enjoy them.

Download the Beyond Sparkles And Superheroes Poster here

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Yarra Ranges Council
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Services for Schools

Table of Contents

Schools Database Program

Our Schools Database Program is designed to make it as easy as possible for your students to become library members. We create a special listing for your school, and your students can immediately use our simplified remote sign-up form – simply send your students home with a link, and we’ll take care of the rest. You will receive a weekly list of students who have signed up, and resources to support them in making the most of our free services. We can get you set up with a Discover Your Library visit, digital information packs, and library introduction videos. To get started, head to our schools contact page.

Discover Your Library visits

Get your students excited about membership with Your Library by organising a free visit from our team. We’ll introduce them to a range of services that they can access in and outside of the classroom, explore a variety of online resources, and discuss what they can expect on a visit to their local library. School visits can be arranged in the classroom or at your local library for both an activity for students or professional development for your staff. We can be flexible to your school calendar.

Highlighted Resources

Studiosity

Studiosity is an exciting and essential resource for all students. With Studiosity, all students can have access to extra support outside of class, whatever their circumstances. Students can access:

  • ConnectLive – Get live one-on-one online support on core literacy, numeracy, science, study skills, and more. This is available via chat (text) as well as audio. Designed to help overcome key problems so a study session isn’t derailed by a misunderstanding.
  • Writing Feedback – Submit essays, job applications and any other written content and receive high-quality academic feedback on grammar, spelling, structure and readability, in less than 24 hours.
  • Quizzes – Access more than 750 practice tests for grades 3–12. These are aligned with the Australian National Curriculum for High School Competency.
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The Age Online

Relevant Faculties: English, EAL, Hums, Library

All library members have free access to The Age Online, with editions dating back to 2006. This includes every page, article, photo, table, advertisement and cartoon published in the printed edition. This is a fantastic resources for essays and research, or just practicing searching and referencing skills.

STEAM Visits

We love STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics)! We have a variety of programs to bring to you, or to be arranged as an excursion to your local library. Whether it’s a full year level, a small STEAM club or faculty members looking at running the programs themselves, All our programs are flexible to suit your needs. All these programs can be easily modified to align with your curriculum

Class in school lab for group of multiracial diverse schoolkids interacting using gadgets for building engineering robots. Elementary science classroom of ai technologies. STEM education concept.
Young smart girls learning 3D printing at home, they are using a 3D printer and a laptop, science and education concept

3D Printing

Relevant Faculties: Digital Technology, Design Technology, Science, Art

This session focuses on 3D design with students using creative and critical thinking to build a model. Students will work on their problem-solving skills as they learn what works and what doesn’t work. They will have the opportunity to watch the 3D printer at work, before receiving their own 3D printed designs at a later date.

CNC Laser cutting of metal, modern industrial technology. Small depth of field. Warning - authentic shooting in challenging conditions.

Laser Cutting

Relevant Faculties: Digital Technology, Design Technology, Maths, Science, Art

Design and laser operation are the two focuses of this session. Students will use visual-spatical skills, mathematics, and creative thinking to design a project for laser cutting and assembly. They will learn all about the laser cutter, including how it works and the implications of their design.

Concentrated elementary girl assembling circuit board on desk at electronics lab

Electronics (Microbits)

Relevant Faculties: Digital Technology, Maths, Science

Students will program a pocket sized computer that will introduce them to how software and hardware work together. They will develop technology skills inlcuding electronics, prototyping, testing, and coding. There are a range of programs that can be created, including a pedometer, video game, and thermometer. Microbits can be borrowed from the library for an extended period of time to allow for Design Thinking or Inquiry Based Learning projects

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Robots

Relevant Faculties: Digital Technology, Maths, Science, Art 

This session focuses on coding Spheros, Beebots, and Ozobots. Using critical thinking and problem solving skills, students will program these robots to peform specific tasks. They will also work on their collaboration skills as they program the robots to work together.  

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Virtual Reality

Faculties: English, Maths, Science, Library, EAL, VCE, Hums 

This incredible technology can be used for a variety of topics. Students can be immerssed in history and world culture, learn about the solar system and physics while floating around in space, or create lifesize 3D masterpieces. This can easily be aligned with current curriculum.  

Digital Literacy Visits

Your students deserve to get the most out of the wide world web while staying cyber safe. These programs are designed to arm your student with the skills they need to efficiently, and safely, browse the web. 

These sessions are flexible and can be presented to a full year level, a class, a small group, or even faculty members. These programs can be altered to align with school needs or curriculum.

Cyber Safety

Your students will be one step ahead when confronted with online scams and other online risks. They will learn essential skills to identify untrustworthy messages, suspicious links, and misleading websites.  

Online Research and Referencing

Ensure your students are looking in the right place for their next project. This session will teach them searching skills such as boolean, how to identify trustworthy information, how to select the best website/databases, and how to reference them correctly.   

Storytimes

Watch Storytime online!

You can still catch up on heaps of great storytime sessions online!

Our YouTube Channel has a wide range of Storytimes from all of our storytellers, available to view 24/7.

Get your free activity pack!

Stay entertained and get crafty with our home-delivered activity packs!

Each child is entitled to one activity pack per month. They are full of popular colouring activities, word searches and educational fun, and can be tailored to your child’s interests. There are packs for all ages including babies, toddlers, preschoolers, early primary and primary aged children.

The following conditions apply to all Storytime sessions:
  • Bookings are essential for every adult and child over 12 months
  • Bookings open 3 days before the session
  • Numbers are limited
  • Social distancing will be observed
  • Sessions will run for 20 minutes and include stories, songs, finger-plays and rhymes, plus a take-home craft activity
  • A face mask must be worn at all times, unless the person has a *lawful reason not to.  
  • Conditions of Entry to the library must be observed
 
  • Children must sit with their parent(s) or guardian(s)
  • One Storytime session per week will be delivered online
  • Saturday Storytime will return on Saturday 17 July
  • Chinese Storytime will return on Friday 16 July

Face masks – *lawful reasons:
Face masks must be worn, unless a person has a lawful reason not to.

Examples:

  • Infants and children under the age of 12 years.
  • A person who is affected by a relevant medical condition, including problems with their breathing, a serious condition of the face, a disability or a mental health condition.
  • Persons who are deaf or hard of hearing, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication.
  • Persons for whom wearing a face mask would create a risk to that person’s health and safety related to their work, as determined through OH&S guidelines.
  • When directed to remove the face mask to ascertain identity.
  • During emergencies.

Kids

Featured For Kids

Online Storytimes
Be sure to follow our Facebook page here to access live storytimes! Times will be posted to let you know exactly when we will be live.

Kanopy Kids
Kanopy Kids highlights films and TV series that inspire and inform, helping children develop empathy, mindfulness, and self-esteem through entertaining and educational videos. Stream now!