Monthly Archives: April 2013

April 18, 2013

Earth Day No-Plastic Pledge

Posted by at 1:59 am in Kid Power | Permalink

EarthEarth Day No-Plastic Pledge!

According to Sierra Club, we throw away 24 billion plastic water bottles each year in the U.S. alone. And these bottles can sit in landfills for over 200 years without decomposing! Imagine all those billions of plastic bottles just piling up and piling up over the years! Gross!

Now, think about your lunch, your after-school snack, your sports practice, dance class, etc. Do you ever open up a plastic drink bottle and then throw it away when you’re finished? We all do it at least once in a while, but today I’m asking you to take a pledge to reduce the amount of plastic drink bottles you throw away.

Repeat after me:

I, [state your name], refuse to open another disposable drink bottle. Instead, I will get a reusable thermos, fill it up, and carry it to school, practice, class, and anywhere I get thirsty. This is my pledge to planet Earth so I don’t add any more to the growing pile of plastic bottles.

Did you take the pledge? Leave a Comment if you did, and get all your friends and family to take the no-plastic pledge, too. Every little bit counts. You CAN make a difference!

image from kids.scholastic.comSonja, STACKS Staffer

April 17, 2013

Infestation Book Review

Posted by at 3:38 am in Reads | Permalink

Infestation book cover by Timothy J. BradleyInfestation by Timothy J. Bradley

You’ll never look at bugs the same way again after reading this gruesome tale!

Andy Greenwood is what you’d called a “troubled youth.” After a string of naughty behavior (including running away from FOUR foster homes, and setting a car on fire), Andy is sent to the Reclamation School for Boys. It’s that, or he has to spend time in a juvenile detention center.

Turns out, the Reclamation School is worse than any prison he could imagine.
Stuck in the middle of the Arizona desert in an ant-infested building without air-conditioning, Andy is surrounded by hundreds of other boys who are always looking to pick a fight. But after an earthquake, Andy discovers it isn’t just bullies he has to look out for. There are giant mutant bugs that are eating the students and adults! In order to survive, the boys must put their fighting aside and band together.

This story will make your heart pound as the boys race to escape this prison. Full of action, mystery, and gore, anyone who loves a thrill will enjoy this book. Let us know what you think in the Comments section!

—Elysse, STACKS Writer

April 16, 2013

Spring Would You Rather

WouldYouRatherSpring Would You Rather!!

Welcome spring with these would you rather questions created by AquaCat586 from the STACK Back Message Board.

Would you rather. . .

  1. Get a really heavy rainstorm in one day OR get a bunch of light rains over a few days?
  2. Have it snow later than expected OR have all the flowers bloom early?
  3. Have good weather in early spring and bad weather in late spring OR have bad weather in early spring and good weather in late spring?
  4. Go to school dressed as the Easter Bunny OR go to school in a daffodil costume?
  5. Have spring be more like summer OR have spring be more like winter?
  6. Do spring cleaning in spring OR do spring cleaning in summer?
  7. Go on vacation over spring break OR stay at home on spring break?
  8. Go to New York City for spring break OR go to Washington, D.C.?
  9. Plant a flower OR plant a tree for Earth Day?
  10. If your parents gave you a reward for spring cleaning your room, would you rather it be 5 big pieces of candy OR 10 small pieces of candy?

Thanks, AquaCat, for these awesome questions! Have a happy spring!

image from kids.scholastic.comSonja, STACKS Staffer

April 15, 2013

Writing Prompt: You Have Not Lived Until. . .

Posted by at 4:10 am in Writing Prompt | Permalink

Writing_prompt_rainbow_penWriting Prompt: You have not lived until. . .

Have you had any life-changing experiences? Any one thing that makes it easy to answer today's Writing Prompt? Maybe it's something fun, or silly, or just a little moment that makes you appreciate life, or something small and ordinary but so awesome-tastic you could not imagine your life without it (like chocolate).

Maybe . . .

  • Your crush “elbow touched” you in the lunch line.
  • You went to Disney World.
  • You read the most amazing book ever and it blew your mind.
  • You sat with your family eating ice cream watching the sun set over the beach on vacation. (“Ah, this is the life!”)

If you could tell the whole STACKS universe out there, how would you finish this sentence?


Let us know in the Comments below!

—Ratha, STACKS Writer

April 12, 2013


EPIC_blogpost_130x130Create an EPIC Caption!

This post is sponsored by 20th Century Fox.

In the new movie Epic, hitting theaters May 24th, you’ll experience an incredible world unlike any you’ve seen before! The movie is about a battle between the forces of good who keep the natural world alive, and the forces of evil who want to destroy it. When a teenage girl named M.K. is magically transported into this secret universe, she meets a crew of fun characters who do everything they can to save their world . . . and ours.
Amanda Seyfried plays M.K., Josh Hutcherson plays Nod, Pitbull plays a toad named Bufo, and Beyoncé Knowles plays the Queen of this special world. Pretty cool cast, huh?

To get you in an “epic” mood, fill in this caption. It’s M.K. and Mub the Slug. (Not to be confused with a snail. “I’m a sluuuug. No shell over here, baby.”) Mub is one funny slug. What do you think he is saying to M.K.?


Fill in your caption in the Comments below!

This post is sponsored by 20th Century Fox.

April 11, 2013

Save Energy From the Energy Vampires

Posted by at 1:55 am in Kid Power | Permalink


Save the Planet From the Energy Vampires

Did you know that there are electronic vampires in your house? They suck out energy and contribute greenhouse gasses into the air, even while everyone is asleep!

“What?!” you say. “How is that possible? I never leave my electronics on when I’m asleep.”

Even when the devices are turned off, they are still sucking energy through the power cord. TVs are the biggest culprits, but cable boxes, DVD players, video game consoles, cell phone chargers, and computers also have vampiric tendencies.

“How can I kill these energy vampires in my house?” you ask. “Do I have to wear a garlic necklace, or drive a stake into my TV’s heart? Does my TV even HAVE a heart?”

No, silly. All you have to do is unplug it. If you have a power cord, you can plug all your devices into the power cord, and then just flip the power cord switch off when you are done using the device. That will deprive all the vampires of their power source. It will also save energy and reduce the amount of harmful greenhouse gasses that go up into the atmosphere.

Now, go save your house from energy vampires! Do you have other ideas for how to save the planet? Tell everyone about it on the Save the Planet Message Board.

image from kids.scholastic.comSonja, STACKS Staffer

April 10, 2013

When the Butterflies Came Book Review

Posted by at 3:40 am in Reads | Permalink

9780545425131_xlgWhen the Butterflies Came
by Kimberley Griffiths Little

Murder, mystery, and . . . butterflies?
There are secrets the townspeople wouldn't suspect about 12-year-old Tara Doucet. First of all, Tara feels like her world is falling apart. Her depressed mother won't leave her room and may be taken away to a mental hospital. Tara keeps fighting with her sister Riley about everything, including the volume of the screaming Riley calls music. Even more horrible, Grammy Claire, the person she was closest to in the whole world, just died!

On the day of the funeral, Tara notices purple and pink butterflies are following her everywhere. Can they be a sign from Grammy Claire? Then Tara starts receiving letters and keys from Grammy Claire from beyond the grave. They are filled with warnings and information that don’t make sense. What can all of this mean? Tara is the only one who can figure out the clues left behind in an ultimate scavenger hunt that can mean life or death. It is of upmost importance that no one else knows what she is up to, since someone is also after the same secret Tara is trying to uncover. When unexplainable and dangerous things start happening, Tara knows that she can’t trust anyone but Riley.

This beautifully written tale of magic isn’t for the faint of heart. Did you find you couldn’t put it down? Or do you think you are smarter than Tara and could figure out the clues like it was a piece of cake? For those who do read the book, let us knows what you think in the Comments!

If you like When the Butterflies Came, check out Kimberley Griffiths Little’s other books:
The Healing Spell, Circle of Secrets, The Last Snake Runner, Enchanted Runner, and Breakaway Avon.

—Elysse, STACKS Writer

April 8, 2013

One Direction ABC

Posted by at 1:08 am in Music, One Direction, Writing Prompt | Permalink

1d_takemehome_130One Direction ABC

Is there anything you’d rather write about in today’s Writing Prompt than One Direction? If you’re a big fan, then this one is for you.
It’s kind of like that game you play on car trips. Name something that starts with A, then B, then C. . . with a 1D twist, of course.

For instance:

  • A is for AmaZayn
  • B is for Beautiful (What Makes You Beautiful!)
  • C is for Columbus, OH (which is where their tour stops June 18th!)
  • D is for Directioner

Can you make it all the way through the alphabet? Be as creative as you want! Leave your One Direction A,B,C’s in the Comments below. We can’t wait to see what you come up with!

—Ratha, Stacks Writer

April 5, 2013

April Pop-Corn

Posted by at 1:06 am in Movies & TV | Permalink

BLOG_POP-CORNTV, Movies, and Music you won’t want to miss this April!

The Academy of Country Music Awards will be broadcast on April 7 at 8 p.m. on CBS. Last year’s “Entertainer of the Year” Taylor Swift is nominated for 4 awards!

Demi Lovato‘s new album Demi won’t be out until May 14, but it’s available for
Demi pre-order now on iTunes and Amazon. Her “Heart Attack” video will premiere on E! News at 7 p.m. ET/PT on April 9. “I’m incredibly proud of this album,” says Demi.  ”It’s better than anything I have ever done! I experimented with a variety of different sounds and poured my heart into writing these songs. I’m so excited for everyone to finally get the chance to hear them!” She’ll be making lots of TV
appearances coming up, including Good Morning America on April 10, Live With Kelly & Michael on April 11, and Ellen on May 13.

Do you spoil your pet? Even if you do, it probably can’t top the over-pampered dogs, cats, ferrets, pigs, tortoises, and more creatures that get the royal treatment on the Nat Geo Wild series Spoiled Rotten Pets, premiering April 20 at 9 p.m. You’ll see fashion shows, a “bark mitzvah,” a dance class for dogs, and even a spa for pigs!

Earth Day is April 22, and PBS KIDS is celebrating the entire Earth Month of April with programs celebrating nature and the outdoors. You’ll find eco-themed programming on Wild Kratts and The Cat in the Hat Knows a Lot About That. On Earth Day, a Curious George special will air, and will repeat on April 26 and throughout the weekend.

Teen Titans gets animated—literally—when the series premieres in cartoon form on April 23 at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT on Cartoon Network. The superhero series features the same voice cast as the original live action show, and the same but remixed theme song. Starting April 27, Teen Titans Go! will be rebroadcast each week on Saturday mornings at 10:30 a.m. as part of the DC Nation block.

On April 28, Good Luck Charlie returns to Disney Channel for its fourth season with an episode featuring the Muppets in a dream sequence. It debuts at 7:30 p.m. ET/PT. Luke Benward joins the cast for six episodes as a teenage bug expert and love interest for Bridgit Mendler’s character Teddy.

And finally, be on the lookout for Adventures in Zambezia (rated G), the first full
Zambezia length animated feature film from South Africa. It features the voice of Abigail Breslin, and tells the story of an adventurous young falcon that leaves his home to find the famed bird city of Zambezia, near Victoria Falls, South Africa.

What will you be watching this month? Leave a Comment!

—Gerri, STACKS Writer