21st Century Learning Space

Library News

Cicero the great Roman Statesman and philosopher once wrote that, “If you have a garden and a library, you have everything you need.” He lived 106 BC – 43 BC a very long time ago, yet I still admire those words today. Weather permitting, I’ve been sitting outside in my garden and reading a lot!  The Covid-19 restrictions have made all of us slow down a bit and appreciate the simple things. 


Focus on Non-fiction




Women’s Weekly Kids in the Garden: Gardening – Craft - Cooking

This book introduces children to gardening. There’s lots of information on how to grow vegetables, herbs and flowers. It has simple instructions on soil preparation and the right tools to use. It also has some easy recipes for children to prepare, cook and eat!


Focus on Fiction



The Secret Garden by Francis Hodgson Burnett 

I recommend this Children’s Classic to all. Enjoy reading about Mary Lennox who is sent to live with her Uncle and begin a new life in a stately manor. When Mary Lennox meets her cousin Colin Craven they are both looking for friendship and stability and want to overcome their                                      circumstances.  The discovery of The Secret Garden helps them both.


Focus on Picture Books



The Great Garden Mystery by Renee Treml

The summary for this fun picture book says “Someone is stealing the beetroots, who could that somebody be? Join us in the garden and we'll unravel this mystery. A mix of clever Australian animals examine the evidence, but can this cluey cast catch the thief before they strike again?” This is a lovely garden adventure!


                                             Enjoy some reading in the great outdoors!

Rowville Primary School Covid-19 History

Optional Activity – As previously advised, I am collecting articles titled “School Life during Covid-19.” I would love to archive your thoughts about school life during this time in our history.  Please refer to my Compass post for further details. I am collecting articles until the end of Term 2. 

Important: Please include your name, grade and the date on your article then email it to school at rowville.ps@edumail.vic.gov.au. 

Please include the subject line: School Life Covid-19. 

It would be great to get submissions from as many people as possible; students, parents, teachers and staff. I will collate them into a book and put them on display for all to share!     If you have any questions about this please email me. Thank you.



National Simultaneous Storytime                                     is Coming Next Week!

National Simultaneous Storytime will be held on Wednesday 27 May, 2020 at 11.00am all around Australia. Next week I will let everyone know the link (via Compass) so that we can all participate in this fun National reading storytime event. 


This year’s picture book title is Whitney and Britney Chicken Divas written by Lucinda Gifford. The blurb says “Whitney and Britney are two gorgeous chooks, fluffy and silky, with stunning good looks. Dora is perplexed. Where do her chickens disappear to each night? Little does she know they are Whitney and Britney – Chicken Divas!”  Lots of fun!


What is National Simultaneous Storytime? 

Information taken from the NSS website states:

“National Simultaneous Storytime (NSS) is held annually by the Australian Library and Information Association (ALIA). Every year a picture book, written and illustrated by an Australian author and illustrator, is read simultaneously in libraries, schools,                       pre-schools, childcare centres, family homes, bookshops and many other places around the country. Now in its 20th successful year, it is a colourful, vibrant, fun event that aims to promote the value of reading and literacy, using an Australian children's book that explores age-appropriate themes, and addresses key learning areas of the National Curriculum for Foundation to Year 6.


By facilitating National Simultaneous Storytime we aim to:

  • promote the value of reading and literacy,
  • promote the value and fun of books,
  • promote an Australian writer and publisher,
  • promote storytime activities in public libraries, schools and communities around the country.

National Simultaneous Storytime receives positive media coverage, generates a great deal of community interest and is held annually as part of Library and Information Week."

      Book Week 2020 Postponed


The Children’s Book Council of Australia has announced that Book Week 2020 will not be held in August this year due to the Covid-19 outbreak. Book Week celebrations have been moved to 17 - 23 October, 2020 and will revert back to August in 2021. 

The Theme for Book Week 2020 is Curious Creatures, Wild Minds!

Further information and Book Week celebrations for Rowville Primary                                        School will be announced later in the year.

Book Birthdays




                   Happy 80th Birthday Puffin 




This year is the 80th Anniversary of Puffin Children’s Books a subsidiary of Penguin Publishers. I challenge our students to find a Penguin or Puffin logo on a book in the library or at home. I’m sure you will be able to find one! The first Puffin books I read were Heidi and Little Women which I thoroughly enjoyed. 

The first Puffin books were released to help children understand the evacuations during World War II. They later published titles like Charlotte’s Web, The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, The Very Hungry Caterpillar and Where’s Spot. In Australia, Puffin published Kangaroo Tales, The Bunyip of Berkeley’s Creek and John Brown, Rose and the Midnight Cat which showcased quality Australian stories. Many are still in print. 

If you would like to see Jeff Kinney, author and illustrator of Diary of a Wimpy Kid, drawing his main character (Greg Heffley) go to https://www.puffin.com.au/.  

The Puffin website also has a list of recommended books for children. They feature Bluey, Kensy and Max and Atticus Van Tacticus this month. 

You could also try https://www.penguin.com.au/books/brands/puffin-classics if you are interested in Children’s Classics.



There's a Hippopotamuson the Roof Eating Cake by Hazel Edwards

Congratulations to Hazel Edwards on the 40th Anniversary Edition of There’s a Hippopotamus on the Roof Eating Cake. I was fortunate to meet Hazel Edwards a few years ago. She was the guest speaker at a function I attended. She spoke with enthusiasm about literature and writing and about the importance of keeping memories. She also told us about one of her adventures, a fantastic trip to Antarctica. She is a very successful Australian renowned Children’s Author.

There’s a Hippopotamus on the Roof Eating Cake, is enjoyed by children across the world. This wonderful imaginary hippo who gets to do all the fun things and eat a very large piece of cake as well.  If you haven’t read this for a while, grab some cake and read, children love it. 


Happy Reading! 


Jackie Hicks

Resource Centre Manager