Category Archives: Summer

August 19, 2014

Ice Cream Personality Quiz

Posted by at 1:40 am in Personality Quiz, Summer | Permalink

Ice creamWhat Ice Cream Flavor Are You?

Who doesn’t love ice cream on a hot summer day? It’s no wonder why the ice cream truck always stops at the beach or why your local ice cream parlor is always open late during the summer months. I know I sure crave a cool, sweet treat when the sun is blazing! Even though National Ice Cream Month is over, it’s always a good time to find out what ice cream flavor YOU are! Continue reading

August 12, 2014

Surrounded by Sharks

Posted by at 4:12 pm in Authors, Reads, Summer | Permalink

Surrounded by SharksTop 5 things I learned while writing Surrounded by Sharks (for ages 12 and up)

By Michael Northrop

I’ve always been fascinated by sharks and have been a devoted viewer of Shark Week since it first aired in 1987, but even I was surprised by some of the things I discovered when I waded into the research for my latest book.

  1. Sharks are nature’s true smelling machines. Unlike bloodhounds and the owners of the world’s other notable noses, sharks don’t breathe through their nostrils. They use them for only one thing: finding food (and, okay, the occasional mate).
  2. Sharks’ senses are all sharp, but the one they use up close is a sort of underwater spider-sense. They can detect even the tiniest electrical charges in the water, as small as five one-billionths of a volt. If a fish swims by, the shark can sense its bioelectric field, each flick of its tail and beat of its heart.
  3. In the book, Davey stays afloat with the help of a discarded water cooler bottle. About ten million tons of plastic make their way into the ocean each year. And, fictional flotation devices aside, they serve absolutely no purpose other than pollution.
  4. The cool stripes that give tiger sharks their name fade out as they reach adulthood. As with humans, it’s the young ones that have all the style!
  5. While sharks get all the attention, riptides are the real killers at the beach. Over the past ten years, rip currents have killed an estimated one hundred people annually in the US alone. That’s more than floods, tornadoes, lightning, or hurricanes. Sharks are responsible for about one fatality every two years, fewer than fireworks, roller coasters, or falling vending machines.
August 12, 2014

Shark Week Who Would Win

Posted by at 1:37 am in Summer, Who Would Win | Permalink

Shark WeekWho would win this Shark Week match-up?

I am not ashamed to admit that I am TERRIFIED of sharks. I will literally not go swimming in the ocean because, even though you can’t see them, I know the sharks ARE THERE, LURKING! So, I know who I would pick for this week’s Who Would Win. How about you?

Who Would Win? Shark vs. baby hedgehog

Shark photo courtesy Brook Ward. Hedgehog photo courtesy Tiffany Bailey

Are you loving Shark Week this year, or are you like me, hiding under your covers and thinking about baby hedgehogs? Leave your answer in the Comments!

image from kids.scholastic.com Sonja, STACKS Staffer

August 6, 2014

Authors Talk Summer Reading

Posted by at 2:14 pm in Authors, Gordon Korman, Summer | Permalink

Scholastic Summer Reading ChallengeWhat’s the Big Deal About Summer Reading?

You have probably heard over and over again how important it is to keep reading during the summer while you’re not in school. If you haven’t heard this before, well then let me be the first person to tell you summer reading is important, people! You SHOULD read over the summer while you’re not in school!

We asked 2 very special Scholastic authors why this is true. Gordon Korman is the author of the Swindle series, a few books in The 39 Clues series, and, like, a million other books. He published his first book when he was 14 years old! David Shannon is the author of picture books such as Alice the Fairy, A Bad Case of Stripes, and No, David!

Q: What is the top reason kids should read over the summer?

Gordon Korman: I think reading is kind of a self-feeding cycle — the more you read, the more you WANT to read. But when I write, my goal is primarily to entertain my readers. So my top reason kids should read over the summer is for fun.

David Shannon: To keep from becoming a slug! Reading keeps your imagination running in a way that TV and video games can’t. It works out your brain but relaxes your body, and those are both good things. There’s more down time in the summer, too, and you can read whatever you want.

So there you have it. Have fun and don’t be a slug! READ! When you do, you can log your minutes and be eligible for prizes in the Scholastic Summer Reading Challenge. Leave a Comment to tell us why YOU love summer reading, and whether or not you agree with these authors’ advice.

July 14, 2014

Vacation Would You Rather

Posted by at 1:46 am in Summer, Would You Rather | Permalink

Dream vacationSummer Vacation Would You Rather

It’s finally summer! Do you have wonderful plans to celebrate and have a great time on vacation? Think about these questions and leave your answers in the Comments.

Would you rather . . . 

  1. Go away with your family OR friends?
  2. Educational trip OR fun trip?
  3. Safari OR boat cruise?
  4. Road trip OR Let’s just fly and get there already?
  5. Play games in the car to pass the time? OR just sleep?
  6. Somewhere tropical OR I don’t care as long as it’s not home?
  7. Disney World OR Six Flags?
  8. Horseback riding in Wyoming OR surfing in California?
  9. Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco OR Statue of Liberty in New York?
  10. Rodeo in Texas OR jet ski in South Carolina?
  11. Camp in the rain forest in South America OR the Sahara desert in Africa?
  12. The coast of Maine OR the Canadian Rockies?
  13. The Australian bush OR the Caribbean island of St. John?
  14. The Great Wall of China OR the Pyramids of Egypt?
  15. Yellowstone National Park OR Everglades National Park?
  16. Water park OR ocean?
  17. Aquarium OR drive-through safari?
  18. Botanical garden OR zoo?
  19. Stay in touch with a friend you met on vacation OR long-distance relationships don’t work?
  20. What’s the best part of staying at a hotel? The tiny bottles of shampoo OR room service?
  21. Wander around the hotel to see what it looks like OR head straight for the pool?
  22. Go out to dinner at a fancy restaurant OR stay in for room service?
  23. Take a lot of pictures OR just enjoy the sights?
  24. Always go to the same place OR somewhere different?
  25. Family vacations are the best OR Get me home already?
July 8, 2014

July Is Ice Cream Month

Posted by at 1:58 am in Summer, Would You Rather | Permalink

Ice creamIce Cream Would You Rather

You probably eat plenty of ice cream in the summer, but did you know that July is actually National Ice Cream Month? Not kidding! It all started back in 1984, when President Reagan designated July as National Ice Cream Month, and the third Sunday of the month as National Ice Cream Day. (In 2014, this awesome day will fall on July 20.) Some ice cream stores will even give away free scoops of ice cream on National Ice Cream Day!

We’re getting into the spirit with a serving of Would You Rather! Ice cream lovers, would you rather . . . 

  1. Vanilla OR chocolate?
  2. Cup OR cone?
  3. Sprinkles OR crunchies?
  4. Regular OR soft serve?
  5. Dairy Queen OR Ben & Jerry’s?
  6. Make-your-own-sundae bar OR frozen yogurt?
  7. Ice cream cake for your birthday OR regular cake?
  8. Ice pop OR ice cream?

“Scoop up” your answers, and leave them in the Comments below. And tell us how you will celebrate Ice Cream Month this year. Happy summer!

Ratha, STACKS Writer

Image credit Food and Drink/SuperStock

July 4, 2014

Patriotic Puppy

Create a CaptionHappy 4th of July to all my American friends! Hope you have a fun day of patriotic parades, picnics, and fireworks.

This Independence Day doggie is celebrating the Fourth in style! What do you think she would say if she could talk?

Patriotic Pup

Image credit: Randy Robertson

Leave your caption in the Comments!

— Sonja, STACKS Staffer

July 1, 2014

World Cup Soccer Who Would Win

Posted by at 1:17 am in News, Summer, Who Would Win | Permalink

FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014Who will win the 2014 World Cup?

I am completely obsessed with the 2014 World Cup tournament in Brazil. There are so many amazing teams playing that I don’t want to miss a single game! While you might not actually see both of these competitors in Brazil, what do you think of today’s match-up? Team Kitten vs. Arjen Robben from Team Holland!

Kitten vs. Arjen RobbenAre you loving the World Cup this year, or do you love kittens more? Which team do you support, and who will be the 2014 champions? Leave your World Cup predictions in the Comments!

image from kids.scholastic.com Sonja, STACKS Staffer

Kitten photo credit plizzba. Arjen Robben photo credit Global Panorama.

June 24, 2014

World Cup Soccer Trivia Quiz Answers

Posted by at 9:34 am in Summer, Trivia | Permalink

FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014World Cup 2014 Brazil!!

Attention, all you footballers (or soccer fans if you’re American)! Last week we posted a World Cup Trivia Quiz in honor of all the awesome World Cup soccer action we’ve been seeing. A few teams have already been eliminated.

World-Cup-2014elims

How did you score? Check out the answers below!

1. Which country is the reigning World Cup champion? ANSWER: Spain. It won the World Cup in 2010. Sadly for them, they have already been eliminated from the 2014 tournament.

2. Which country has won the most World Cups? ANSWER: Brazil with 5 titles. (#2 Italy with 4 titles, #3 Germany with 3 titles. The U.S. has never won one yet!) UPDATE! After its 2014 World Cup win over Argentina, Germany now has 4 titles!

3. In every country in the world except for the United States, what is the sport of “soccer” called? ANSWER: Football . . . which is funny because around the world, they call American football . . . “American football.”

4. Name the Brazilian player who was named World Player of the Century and is considered to be the greatest player of all time. He won 3 World Cups in 1958, 1962, and 1970. ANSWER: Pele. His full name is Edson Arantes do Nascimento. He came from humble beginnings in Brazil, and couldn’t afford a soccer ball as a child, so he used to play with a sock stuffed with newspaper tied with a string. He began playing for the Brazil national team at age 16 (!) and went on to score 1,281 goals in 1,363 games. He’s totally a legend!

5. TRUE or FALSE. If you win the World Cup, you have to give it back at the end of your country’s reign. ANSWER: FALSE.  Well, kind of false.  There is ALL sorts of drama surrounding the history of the World Cup trophy. It was stolen twice, and in 1983 a new one had to be created because the original was believed to have been melted into gold pieces and sold by thieves!  So now Fédération Internationale de Football Association, or FIFA, the world governing body of soccer, keeps the official trophy.  The winners are awarded a gold plated replica to keep.

6. TRUE or FALSE. Most American soccer players stay in the U.S.A. instead of going abroad to play pro soccer. ANSWER: FALSE. While many other U.S. sports attract foreign players (like baseball, basketball, and hockey), there is actually a REVERSE migration of American professional soccer players. Many American players leave the U.S. to play soccer in other countries.  Only 3% of World Cup players from any country play for a U.S. Major League Soccer team. 

7. Lionel Messi is currently considered to be the best soccer player in the world, challenging even the great Pele. What country is he from? ANSWER: Argentina. He currently plays for the professional team FC Barcelona (in Spain) but was born in Argentina and plays for them in the World Cup. Although pro soccer players can play for any country, they usually play for the country where they were born, or where they hold citizenship, for the World Cup.

8. Where will the next World Cup be held in 2018? ANSWER: Russia. This will be the first time ever in Russia!

Are you a soccer fan? Or do you just love the 5 Seconds of Summer song “Hearts Upon Our Sleeve?” And more importantly, which team do you support in the World Cup? Yes, 5SOS totally counts. Let us know in the Comments below!

Ratha, STACKS Writer

June 17, 2014

World Cup Soccer Trivia Quiz

Posted by at 1:22 am in News, Summer, Trivia | Permalink

FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014FIFA World Cup Brazil 2014!

What’s the most popular sport in the world? Coming in as the most-watched, most-played in over 200 countries by over 3 billion people . . . soccer! In the streets, in backyards, schools and stadiums, all you need is a ball to get this game going.

As you may know, the World Cup is taking place now through July 13. Out of 209 countries with national teams, the top 32 teams qualified to compete for the title of World Cup champion. All month long, these 32 teams will play matches against each other until there is only 1 victorious team left. Who will it be in 2014?FIFA World Cup 2014 groups

The first World Cup was in 1930, and is held every 4 years. Like the Olympics, it alternates host countries and this year it is in Brazil. How much do you know about soccer and the World Cup? Compete in our Tuesday Trivia Quiz below:

  1. Which country is the reigning World Cup champion from 2010?
  2. Which country has won the most World Cups?
  3. In every country in the world except for the United States, what is the sport of “soccer” called?
  4. Name the Brazilian player who was named World Player of the Century and is considered to be the greatest player of all time. He won 3 World Cups in 1958, 1962, and 1970.
  5. TRUE or FALSE. If you win the World Cup, you have to give it back at the end of your country’s reign.
  6. TRUE or FALSE. Most American soccer players stay in the U.S.A. instead of going abroad to play pro soccer.
  7. Lionel Messi is currently considered to be the best soccer player in the world, challenging even the great Pele. What country is he from?
  8. Where will the next World Cup be held in 2018?

So kick off this quiz, and write down your best answers in the Comments below. Click here to check the score  . . . or to see how many you got right, that is!

Ratha, STACKS Writer