Author Archives: scholastickids

May 26, 2016

How To Make an Art Bot

Posted by at 1:32 am in Games, Kid Power | Permalink

Make Your Own Art Bot!

An art bot is a thing that uses a motor to in some way create art with drawing implements attached to it. There are many different possible designs. This is a guide to make the one I made, which does not require any expensive or hard-to-get materials. Make sure you read the entire procedure before attempting.

You will need:art bot

  • A large paper or plastic cup that you can cut
  • At least three markers or colored pencils (markers work a lot better because colored pencils don’t have enough pressure to draw well and need to be sharpened)
  • An electric toothbrush (you can get really cheap ones at the dollar store)
  • If they’re not included in the toothbrush, batteries
  • Paper
  • Tape
  • Scissors

Procedure:

  1. Remove the motor from the toothbrush. I’m not sure what brand I used, but the motor came out easily. If there aren’t any, put in batteries.
  2. Cut a hole in the bottom of the cup that the motor can fit halfway into. Turn it over so the hole is on top, and tape the motor in halfway so that the end with a button on it is sticking halfway out. If the button is in a different place, find a way to arrange it so it is reachable from outside.
  3. Tape your pencils or markers around the outside of the cup, drawing ends down (away from the motor end). Make sure they are evenly spaced and the drawing ends are the same distance away from the rim of the cup.
  4. Place the art bot on a piece of paper with the motor on top, and turn it on! If not every marker/pencil is drawing, adjust them so that they are all touching the paper.
  5. If you used markers, make sure to cap them when you are done.

Julie, Scholastic Kids Council

May 23, 2016

Cat Breeds Trivia Quiz

Posted by at 1:58 am in Trivia | Permalink

cat computerCat Breeds Trivia Quiz: How well do you know cat breeds?

1. Which of these cat breeds is noted for its wild appearance and its dog-like personality? A) American Bobtail B) Maine Coon C) Persian D) Korat

2. One of these cat breeds does NOT have long hair. Which one is it? A) Maine Coon B) Persian C) Oriental D) Birman

3. In the Austin Powers movies, Dr. Evil had what kind of cat? A) Persian B) Siamese C) Sphynx D) British Shorthair

4. What is the best name for an evil villain’s cat? A) Mrs. Ugly B) Mr. Bigglesworth C) Little Devil D) Auntie Evil

5. What kind of cats are Si and Am from Lady and the Tramp? A) Siamese B) Russian Blue C) Manx D) Angora

6. What color eyes do Siamese cats have? A) Green B) Orange C) Blue D) Brown

7. If you are allergic to cats but still want one, which breed should you consider? A) Balinese B) Persian C) Maine Coon D) Angora

8. Which of these is a trait of the Ragdoll cat? A) They go limp when you pick them up. B) They howl like a dog. C) They are toothless. D) They are outdoor cats.

9. Since 1871, this kind of cat has been considered the most popular breed by the Cat Fanciers’ Association: A) Abyssinian B) American Shorthair C) Persian D) Exotic

10. One of these breeds looks and behaves like a Siamese but comes in two fur lengths and over 300 color combinations? A) The Oriental B) The Birman C) The Maine Coon D) LaPerm

Read on for the answers.  Continue reading

May 20, 2016

Wacky Sports From Around The World

Posted by at 1:39 am in Games | Permalink

Wacky Sports From Around The World

Baseball is America’s pastime and millions of people watch the Super Bowl every year. While these mainstream sports get all the attention, there are super-wacky sports played all over the globe.

Every year, Port Lincoln is home to the Tuna Tossing World Championship. The rules are simple: contestants try to toss a 10 kilogram tuna as far as they can. The world record is 25 meters.

Cheese rolling may sounds like a simple sport, but is actually very dangerous. Participants chase a wheel of cheese down a steep hill and the first person to grab the cheese wins. While the rules are simple enough, most people end up falling head over heals in their attempt to catch the coveted cheese.

Bun climbing is an annual competition held at the Cheung Chau Bun Festival in China. Men compete in a race to climb towers decorated in steamed buns and bamboo. The person to collect the most buns wins.

Bossaball is a wacky sport that combines soccer, volleyball, gymnastics, and a trampoline. The game is played a lot like volleyball, but teams can use their feet, head, and hands to touch the ball. Also, the court has a giant trampoline in the middle to help people get giant jumps.

Quidditch is the flying sport played in J. K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. Although they can’t fly, Muggles actually play Quidditch by running around on a field with brooms between their legs.

It seems like every year someone is inventing a new wacky sport. What wacky sports would you like to play? Tell us in the Comments!

May 19, 2016

Message Board Personality Quiz

Posted by at 1:02 am in Personality Quiz | Permalink

Which Message Board Is Right For You?

You may know that Scholastic has Message Boards where you can sign on and post messages to other kids like you. It’s a great place to go and (safely) meet other kids who read the same books as you, like the same things, and have the problems. ReadingBrainy26 wrote a quiz to help you decide which board to try first.

1.What do you do in your free time? A) Write stories. B) Read books. C) Play video games. D) Make stuff. E) Play outside.

2.What is the best gift you have ever received? A) A new notebook. B) A signed book by my favorite author. C) An Xbox. D) Arts and crafts supplies. E) A pet.

3.What is your favorite book about? A) It’s blank. B) Something fictional. C) Minecraft. D) How to make homemade cards. E) Animals.

4.Where is your dream vacation spot? A) Unlimited time at my desk. B) A cozy villa with a library and an oceanfront view. C) The world’s largest arcade. D) Art camp.E) The Rainforest.

5.What is your favorite snack? A) Pretzel sticks. No mess on my papers, please! B) An ice cream sandwich . . . when I finish my book, of course. C) Goldfish crackers. D) Homemade cookies with rainbow icing. E) Fruit.

6. Favorite drink? A) Water. B) Hot chocolate. C) Soda. D) Fruit smoothie. E) Lemonade.

7. How would your friends describe you? A) Creative. B) Bookwormy. C) Boss. D) Crafty/creative. E) Caring.

8. How do you wear your hair? A) Long braid out of my face. B) Ponytail/bun/down. It’s gonna come undone anyway, C) C I don’t care! I’m about to beat this level! D) Different ways. I like to experiment with my style. E) Loose and natural.

9. What is the most important piece of furniture in your bedroom? A) My desk. B) My bookshelf/comfy reading spot. C) My tv/Xbox. D) My craft bin. E) My bed because that’s where I snuggle with my pet.

10. If there were only one store on your planet, what would it be? A) Office Depot. B) Barnes and Noble. C) GameStop. D) Hobby Lobby. E) PetSmart.

Results! Continue reading

May 18, 2016

Captain Underpants Kid Review

Posted by at 1:46 am in Dav Pilkey, Reads | Permalink

Captain Underpants and the Sensational Saga of Sir Stinks a Lot

I’m sure you’ve all heard about the Captain Underpants series, right? Well, the newest 12th novel of the series is out, and I LOVE it! I really like this story because it has a lot of humor; it is really action-packed, and I love the characters. The main characters are George, Harold, Mr. Meaner, and Captain Underpants. Their characters make the story really fun and interesting to read. The characters are very funny, in particular Captain Underpants and the teachers. If you see Mr. Meaner at all, watch out! He might spray you with a little something . . .

Not to spoil the story, but here is the main gist of what goes on. A planet just like Earth, but called Smart Earth, explodes (Read the book to find out how and why . . .), and a small piece flies out and lands on Earth, right in front of Mr. Meaner (the notorious gym teacher), and let’s just say things don’t work out very well! After EATING the piece of Smart Earth, he becomes really smart, obviously. He invents a spray called Rid-o-Kid 2000 and bad things happen, very bad things.

Dav Pilkey is a great author and really makes this story come to life. He does this by being very descriptive with his writing, and he uses this thing called Flip-O-Rama. Flip-O-Rama is a special comic book type of animated pictures. By flipping pages back and forth a certain way, Flip-O-Rama™ makes the pictures look really cool and animated.

I would highly recommend for all of you to read this great series, Captain Underpants, if you want to get lost in a great sea of awesomeness. Read a sneak peek here.

Alex, Scholastic Kids Council

May 13, 2016

High School Musical 4 Casting

Posted by at 1:31 am in Movies & TV | Permalink

By now, you know that Disney is making High School Musical 4, and instead of using the cast from the original High School Musical movies (remember Zac Efron, Vanessa Hudgens, Corbin Bleu, and Ashley Tisdale?), Disney is looking for all-new actors, singers, and dancers aged 14-17 to play the parts of all the Wildcats.

There is an open audition in Anaheim, CA on May 15. If you want to prepare at home, here’s the script:

PEYTON (MORNING, getting ready for school)
It’s like the adults had a meeting and said: “You know how teenagers have a biological need to sleep late? Let’s make them go to school super-crazy early!” Luckily I’ve got sports to keep me going. My family moves a lot for my dad’s job. Not great for making friends. But sports? They’re always there for me. I’ve got a jersey for every mood. Am I feeling Basketball “FUN,” Football “TOUGH” or Soccer “FOCUSED?” Which one says, “Today’s the Start of Something New…YET AGAIN”….??
(Pretends to hold up Soccer jersey) So “Soccer,” you gonna help me “Get My Head in the Game?!”

May 12, 2016

Stephen Curry

Posted by at 1:01 am in Kid Power | Permalink

Many people know Stephen Curry for his amazing shots, but if you really pay attention to him, he is also an amazing dribbler. I have always admired Stephen Curry, and I think he is one of the best basketball players to play in the NBA. He was the 1st round, 7th pick by the Golden State Warriors in 2009.

He is 6’3″ and 190 pounds, which is pretty small to be playing against some guys that can be up to seven feet tall and weigh close to 300 pounds. Even with his height disadvantage, Curry was still the NBA MVP last year, and his team also won the NBA championship. He has changed the way people think about the NBA because he is a normal-sized guy, but he can play with the best of them, including LeBron James. I’m sure he has inspired some athletes who are not necessarily big or tall to consider playing in the NBA.

Stephen Curry started playing basketball when he was a young boy. His brother, Seth, helped him practice a lot. I believe that Stephen Curry is a phenomenal basketball player, a great athlete, and a great influence for a lot of people. I may never be even close to as tall as he is, but Stephen Curry has influenced me to live my dream, to play basketball.

Leah, Scholastic Kids Council

May 5, 2016

Baseball Books

Posted by at 1:37 am in Reads | Permalink

Baseball Books for Kids Aged 7-12

The Hero Two Doors Down: A Story of Friendship Between a Boy and a Baseball Legend by Sharon Robinson for Ages 8-12
Based on the true story of a boy in Brooklyn who became neighbors and friends with his hero, Jackie Robinson. The year is 1948, and Stephen Satlow, a local Jewish boy, is an avid Brooklyn Dodgers’ fan but a mediocre athlete, at best. When Jackie Robinson moves into his predominantly Jewish neighborhood and befriends Steve, his status changes instantly.
Their bond deepens when Jackie commits a well-intentioned blunder. He mistakenly gives Steve’s family a Christmas tree. As the tension clears, acceptance of Jackie’s gift of the tree becomes symbolic of two families from different religious and cultural backgrounds finding common ground. The friendship between the two families grows over the next few decades, when enormous social changes sweep the nation.

Little Rhino #1: My New Team by Ryan Howard and Krystle Howard; Illustrated by Erwin Madrid for Ages 7–10
From Major League Baseball superstar Ryan Howard and his wife, Krystle, this exciting new series is a fun read for sports and book fans alike.One afternoon, after a long day of second grade, Little Rhino comes home to find out that Grandpa James has signed him up for a baseball league. Little Rhino will finally be a part of a team. But Little Rhino will quickly learn that it is not always so easy to be a good teammate, especially when there’s a bully wearing the same uniform as you. See also the other Little Rhino books.

The Way Home Looks Now by Wendy Wan-Long Shang for Ages 8–12
Twelve-year-old Peter Lee and his family are baseball lovers who bond over back lot games and talk of the Pittsburgh Pirates. But when tragedy strikes, the family flies apart and baseball no longer seems to matter. Is that true? Peter wonders if just maybe the game they love can pull them together and bring them back, safe at home.

Game Changers #3: Heavy Hitters by Mike Lupica for Ages 8-12
Ben and his friends, the Core Four Plus One, are so excited to play in their town’s All-Star Baseball league. But in the first game of the season, Ben gets hit by a pitch. It’s never happened to him before and it shakes him up. Another player on Ben’s team, Justin, is acting really strange. Ben has known Justin for a while and they’re friendly, but he’s not one of Ben’s closest “boys.” Justin is the team’s best hitter, but his behavior on and off the field is erratic.
Ben discovers that Justin’s parents are getting a divorce and Justin is thinking about quitting the team. Like good teammates do, Justin helps Ben deal with his hitting issues while Ben is there for his friend while his family is struggling.

42: The Jackie Robinson Story by Aaron Rosenberg for Ages 8-12
This novel is based on the movie 42—a biopic about Jackie Robinson’s history-making signing with the Brooklyn Dodgers as the first African American Major League Baseball player.

Champ by Marcia Thornton Jones for Ages 7-10
Riley is awful at sports. He wants to quit the baseball team, but his dad won’t let him give up. So when one bad swing brings a three-legged dog into his life, Riley feels like he’s been thrown a curveball. How can he take care of a dog and make his dad proud? Champ is a former champion show dog. But when the accident that leaves him with Riley also leaves him with three legs, this dog has to learn some new tricks. Can Champ show Riley that winning doesn’t always mean coming in first? Together, Riley and Champ make a great team, but not everyone thinks so. Could they be separated?

Down to the Last Out: The Journal of Biddy Owens, The Negro Leagues by Walter Dean Myers for Ages 8-12
Seventeen-year-old Biddy Owens is part of the Birmingham Black Barons baseball team and dreams of becoming a Major League Baseball player. However, in 1948 most black players can only play for the Negro Leagues. Jackie Robinson has just recently integrated and is playing for the Brooklyn Dodgers, but the white owners are reluctant to add too many blacks to their rosters. The Birmingham Black Barons are some of the best players in the league. But as they travel around playing ball, Biddy realizes that not everyone is ready for blacks and whites to play on the same team. Can Biddy prove he’s good enough to be part of the game he loves, no matter what color his skin is?

Plunked by Michael Northrop for Ages 8-12
When a young slugger gets hit by a pitch, he needs more than practice to get back his game.
Jack Mogens thinks he’s got it all figured out: he has his batting routine down, and now that he’s in sixth grade, he has a lock on a starting spot in Little League. (Well, almost. Okay, not really. It’s a two-man race, though, so he has a shot.) And if he can manage to have a not-totally-embarrassing conversation with Katie, his team’s killer shortstop, he’ll be golden. But when a powerful stray pitch turns his world upside down, Jack discovers it’s going to take more than a love of baseball to get back his game.

April 27, 2016

Twisted Fairy Tales

Posted by at 1:13 am in Reads | Permalink

I love all fairy tales whether they are books, movies, plays, or even ballets! From Frozen to Sisters Grimm, to Swan Lake, I love it all. The fairy tales in this list are a bit . . . twisted. They are based on the original stories, but then there is some kind of twist to make it different and interesting.

Big Bad Detective Agency by Bruce Hale for Ages 7–10
The houses of all Three (not-so-) Little Pigs were broken into and ransacked, and the Pigs are squealing for justice. So Prince Tyrone, ruler of Fairylandia, drags in the obvious suspect: Wolfgang.

The lone wolf has big teeth, sharp claws, no alibi—and a single day to find the real culprit and clear his big bad name. When Wolf (reluctantly) teams up with the fourth Little Pig to crack the case, the Big Bad Detective Agency—and an adventure way funnier than your average fairy tale—is born!

Tyme #1: Grounded: The Adventures of Rapunzel by Megan Morrison for Ages 8–12
In all of Tyme, from the Redlands to the Grey, no one is as lucky as Rapunzel. She lives in a magic tower that obeys her every wish; she reads wonderful books starring herself as the heroine; her hair is the longest, most glorious thing in the world. And she knows this because Witch tells her so—her beloved Witch, who protects her from evil princes, the dangerous ground under the tower, even unhappy thoughts. Rapunzel can’t imagine any other life.

Then a thief named Jack climbs into her room to steal one of her enchanted roses. He’s the first person Rapunzel’s ever met who isn’t completely charmed by her (well, the first person she’s met at all, really), and he is infuriating—especially when he hints that Witch isn’t telling her the whole truth. Driven by anger at Jack and her own nameless fears, Rapunzel descends to the ground for the first time, and finds a world filled with more peril than Witch promised . . . and more beauty, wonder, and adventure than she could have dreamed.

Whatever After: Beauty Queen by Sarah Mlynowski for Ages 8-12
This time, the magic mirror sucks Abby and Jonah into the story of Beauty and the Beast. When the siblings accidentally mess up this enchanting and magical tale, hijinks and hilarity ensue . . . and things get pretty ugly! See also the other books in the Whatever After series.

Grimmtastic Girls #6: Goldilocks Breaks In by Joan Holub and Suzanne Williams for Ages 8–12
Goldilocks wants everything in her life to be just right, but sometimes at Grimm Academy, there are too many choices. When she sneaks into Grimmstone Library after hours, she’ll have to make a tough decision if she wants to discover her magic charm! See also the other Grimmtastic books.

Twice Upon a Time #1: Rapunzel, the One With All the Hair by Wendy Mass for Ages 8-12
Rapunzel is having the ultimate bad day. She’s been stolen from home by an evil witch, locked in an incredibly high tower, and doesn’t even have a decent brush for her hair. Prince Benjamin is in a pretty uncomfortable situation himself. His father wants him to be more kingly, his mother wants him to never leave her sight, and his cousin wants to get him into as much trouble as possible. Plus, there’s the little matter of prearranged marriages. . . . Both Rapunzel and Prince Benjamin are trapped—in very different ways. It’s only when their paths cross, that things really start to change. Also available: Twice Upon a Time #2: Sleeping Beauty, The One Who Took the Really Long Nap. Twice Upon a Time #3: Beauty and the Beast, the Only One Who Didn’t Run Away

If you love fairy tales like I do, try these books and tell me what you think in the Comments.

Sonja