About Belinda McGrath Witzenhausen

Belinda McGrath Witzenhausen ~ Writer, Creativity Coach, Artist, Book Reviewer, Amateur Photographer, Lover of Psychology/Neurology, Armchair Archaeologist, Paleography Nut, Coffee Addict, Book Worm, Tea Lover & Hubby's Grossly Under-Paid Bass Roadie 😊

“To the Bully” by author & poet Rich Weatherly ( @richweatherly43 )

Oh yes, we’ve seen you in action

even when you tried to hide it.

You taunt, tease, belittle,

provoke and pester

those who you find weaker than you,

or those you think are different.

You know…

the little guy, the geek,

someone from a different race, religion or region.

You make anonymous threats on social media,

a trip in the hallway or push in the back.

Or do you whisper about others to friends

just out of earshot of your victims?

Do you brush your teeth in front of a convex mirror,

Trying to build an inflated ego?

Do you pick fights or openly confront

or do you step out from behind your anonymous curtain

to push, shove or strike unprovoked blows?

Have you taken more trips to the principal’s office

than you can remember

or been taken into custody by local police.


If this is you, then you need help. See a counselor before it’s too late.


  About Rich Weatherly


Rich Weatherly’s professional career spanned several decades. Much of that career included technical writing and copy writing. He also worked in media production and corporate photography.

After retiring from the corporate world, Rich focused his attention on creative writing. He continues to work on a series of short stories, and a collection of works that will include poetry, photography and miscellaneous writings.

Rich Weatherly is a descendant of one of General Marion’s militia at the Battle of Cowpens during the Revolutionary War. His maternal Great-Grandmother’s father scouted western Dallas, County and was numbered among the first 50 families to settle western Dallas, Co., Texas.

Rich is working on an historical fiction novel, Boundless Honor which begins in the fall of 1835. The story features the Texas Revolution and the Trail of Tears.

You can visit Rich at:

Links: WebsiteTwitterFacebook

Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ March 2015 Newsletter

March Banner

Welcome to the New Professor Owl’s Book Corner

In every month’s issue we will share with you

the wonderful world of books!


The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.”~ Dr. Seuss


 banner Happy ST Pat


Saint Patrick was the patron saint and national apostle of Ireland who is recognized  with bringing Christianity to Ireland. Most of what is known about him comes from his two works, the Confession, a spiritual autobiography, and his writings, a denunciation of British mistreatment of Irish Christians.

Saint Patrick described himself as a “most humble-minded man, pouring forth continuous hymns of thanks to his Maker for having chosen him as the instrument whereby multitudes who had worshipped idols and unclean things had become the people of God.”

Saint Patrick is most known for driving the snakes from Ireland. It is true there are no snakes in Ireland, but there probably never have been – the island was separated from the rest of the continent at the end of the Ice Age.

As in many old pagan religions, serpent symbols were common and often worshipped. Driving the snakes from Ireland was probably symbolic of putting an end to that pagan practice. While not the first to bring Christianity to Ireland, Patrick is said to have encountered the Druids at Tara and abolished their pagan rites. The story holds that he converted the warrior chiefs and princes, baptizing them and thousands of their subjects in the “Holy Wells” that still bear this name.

There are several accounts of Saint Patrick’s death. One says that Patrick died at Saul, Downpatrick, Ireland, on March 17, 460 A.D.


 March is Easter Seals Awareness Month

by Sylvia McGrath

Helping children with disabilities gain greater independence

In 1922 a group of Rotary Clubs formed the American Easter Seals Programs in the United States of America. The province of Alberta founded the first Canadian Easter Seals program in 1945. Today, 40,000 children and their families across Canada have access to licensed agencies helping children with physical and/or mental disabilities

The most common disabilities that Easter Seals programs help are:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Autism
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Spina bifida

The best known services are the camp programs. There are twelve camps across Canada providing camp opportunities to over 4600 children. These camps provide programs for disabled children to participate in activities such as:

  • Archery
  • Sledge hockey
  • Music
  • Drama
  • Arts and crafts
  • Pottery
  • Camping in Tents
  • High Ropes
  • Fun sports
  • Swimming

These Camps are available to children at little or no cost to the families. Easter Seals also provides services such as mobility aids, adaptive computers, communication aids, wheelchair-accessibility, as well as modifications to vehicles and homes.

For more information on Easter Seals in your area, please see the links below:








Our International Affiliates Easter Seals Disability Services



Classic Books

Every month download to your I-pad, Reader or Computer “A Classic Book” ~ Completely FREE!



King Of The Tinkers

King of The Tinkers

About the story:

A boy and girl in rural Ireland fall into adventures with strange people from the Celtic past and almost as strange people from their own day. The lost Kerry Blue dog they find, and named Danny, until he is reunited with his owner who unimaginatively called him Kerry.

This  is great fun read where you can absorb a lot of misty myths and details about rural life before telephones and plentiful cars.  I read this  when I was  about ten and loved it, it hooked me into a life of adventure for the taking within the library walls. I highly recommend this book  for children or the young at heart.

Patricia Lynch is a wonderful storyteller with a  beautiful style of writing. Her people and animals become very real.


About The Authorlynchpatricia

Patricia Lynch

Patricia Lynch (1894 – 1972) was an Irish author of children’s literature and journalist. She was the author of some 48 novels and 200 short stories. She is best known for blending Irish rural life and fantasy as in The Turf-Cutter’s Donkey.


Patricia Lynch was born in Cork, Ireland. She received her education at schools in Ireland, England, Scotland and Belgium. She became a journalist and in 1916 was sent to Dublin by Sylvia Pankhurst to report on the Easter Rising for The Workers’ Dreadnought. Although a committed Irish nationalist, she retained a London accent to the end of her life.[1]

Lynch married socialist historian R. M. Fox in Dublin on 31 October 1922 and they settled in Glasnevin. She died in Monkstown, County Dublin on 1 September 1972 and is buried in Glasnevin Cemetery with her husband. Her semi-autobiographical A Story-Teller’s Childhood was published in 1947.[1]

 Also available at www.amazon.ca and www.amazon.com


New Book Release

Carravagio ~ Signed in Blood

Gravaggio Signed in Blood-crop

Author Mark Smith

In 17th Century Rome, connections are everything. But for 15-year-old Beppo Ghirlandi, an indentured servant accused of murder, there is nowhere to turn. The only one who will help him is the painter from across the Piazza, the madman-genius known as Caravaggio – who, unfortunately, has serious troubles of his own. By helping Caravaggio flee, Beppo might just be able to stay alive.

I do not usually read historical fiction. However, this book was a great read.  Details in the description of characters, and history were very well written by the author.  Once I started reading the book, I could not put it down until it was finished.  Looking forward to reading another book in this series.

Reviewed by Sylvia McGrath, Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~  Newsletter March 2015


189658005X, 9781896580050

176 pages

Available from:

 www.amazon.ca  and www.amazon.com



Writing Prompt

“Discover how to visit the past and bring yesterday’s stories into our lives today” ~ Gillian Hovell

You are an archaeologist from the year 3015 and your site is believed to be from the year 2015 (present day in your city/town). Describe what artifacts and structures you find; what do these tell you about this “ancient” society?

Get creative, write and more importantly have fun! 🙂

POBC Picks

Sight Words Learning Games

This month Professor Owl picks an app to help your child learn to read! 🙂


Via GooglePlay


• Sight Words Reading Learning Games for Kids – overabundance of words! Features over 300 SIGHT WORDS from the popularDolch word list!• Sight Words Reading Learning Games for Kids by Abby Monkey ® – great learning reading games for Preschool, Kindergarten, 1st Grade• Learn to read Elementary Sight Words in 6 engaging super duper EDUCATIONAL GAMES!

Award-winning educational software publisher introduces Action Sight Words Games & Flash Cards for Reading Success.

Abby Monkey® Action Sight Words Learn to Read Adventure with Star Fall Word Aliens for School Reading Success is a new educational READING APPLICATION by 22learn. The app is designed to help children learn and practice reading the most common sight words.

Sight words are words in English language that do not have a simple one-to-one correspondence between sounds and written letters, and therefore have to be learned “by sight.”

Being able to quickly recognize sight words is a crucial part of learning how to read. Sight words mastery is a necessary step towards an enormous reading improvement.

Sight Words offers children an easy-to-use interface and a grand choice of six fun educational games through which children can acquire mastery over this subject matter.


Control the Word Machine. Supply all the words that need to be produced by tapping on the words called.

(2) SPELLING (full version)
Your dog is hungry! Make cans to feed him! To make a can, drag the letter cards to their correct place and make a word you have just heard pronounced.

Make a Bingo to get a ticket for Aliens back home! (All star fall Wordaliens are animated.) Tap on the word corresponding to the one that you heard pronounced. Once you have matched cards from one side of the board to the next… Bingo! Aliens are back home!

(4) MEMORY GAME (full version)
Match the sounds to correct word forms! To do so, tap on one of the speakers, hear the word, and then select one of the cards below with a correct word. Do it for all words!

Tap on one of the speakers on the screen, hear the word pronounced, and place the word across the speaker. Repeat for all words to see wonderful gears animation.

(6) FLASH CARDS (full version)
Practice in the Flash Card mode. List through the words and top on the cards to hear the words pronounced again and again!

• Selection of individual words to be practiced within each category
• Avatar selection
• Choice of capitalized words and upper-case or lower-case letters
• Access to best scores

Get this app now and enjoy the progress your children are going to make in their reading skills. We are sure they will love the app the same way our little beta-testers did!

Check out more educational apps from 22learn:

Kids Alphabet Aquarium (Super ABC alphabet adventure for kids – Parents‘ Choice Award winner)

Abby Basic Skills Preschool (Winner Parents’ Choice Award)

APC Phonics Train Adventure (fun phonics school for kids – Parents‘ Choice Award winner)

If you have any suggestions on improvement, please leave us a message at info@22learn.com. We are always glad to hear about your experience with our applications and publications.

Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ December 2014 Newsletter

Banner Dec

Welcome to the New Professor Owl’s Book Corner

In every month’s issue we will share with you

the wonderful world of books!


The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

~~ Dr. Seuss, “I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!”


December is Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month

By Sylvia McGrath


Children Should Spend the Holidays with Friends and Family, Not in the Emergency Room

Holiday shopping season is already in full swing for shoppers and retailers who are eager to begin purchasing everything on their lists; however, when it comes to toys and gifts, lowest sale price may not be the safest for children.

In its most recent report The United States Product Safety Report on Toys estimated that hospital emergency rooms treated 256,780 Toy related injuries in 2013 throughout the United States.

Additionally, the CPSC found that 43% of the estimated 256,780 ER-treated injuries occurred to the head and face area. Lacerations, abrasions and contusions made up most of these injuries.

Prevent Blindness America, the nation’s oldest eye health and safety organization, has declared December as Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month. The group encourages everyone to make conscientious purchasing decisions based on what is best for each individual child.

There has also been a lot of attention around lead levels in children’s toys lately, but have you ever thought about toys as a possible cause of eye injuries? According to the Canadian Association of Optometrists, each holiday season thousands of children end up in emergency rooms because of eye-related injuries caused by unsafe toys. Here is how you can create a safer play environment all year long.

Tips on How to Purchase Safe Toys and Gifts for Kids

With so many toys filling up store shelves and the hustle and bustle of holiday shopping, it may be a lot to have to think about toy safety as well; but it does not have to be that difficult.

“The key to ensuring a toy is safe is to buy something that is age-appropriate as labelled on the product,” says Joey Rathwell, a spokesperson for Health Canada. “A toy that is appropriate for a six-year-old may not necessarily be safe for a toddler.”

Mr. Rathwell, suggests that teaching older children to keep their games and toys out of the reach of younger children can help avoid all sorts of injuries, including eye injuries.

The following may assist parents and caregivers:

  • Do not give  toys with arrows, bullets and missiles. Projectile toys can cause damage if they hit the eye, no matter how soft they are.
  • Discard or repair old or damaged toys. Loose parts and broken pieces are dangerous.
  • Have their child wash their hands after playing with slimy gel and gooey plastic toys. The chemical residue can easily get into a child’s eyes and cause irritation.
  • Avoid buying toys with sharp points or edges.

Nothing Substitutes for Supervision

Even if your child is mature enough to play with a specific toy, parents and caregivers should still keep a watchful eye. Children’s injuries often occur when there is no adult around.

It is also an excellent idea to read warnings and other safety messages on toy packaging together with your child before play. Teaching your child how to play safely can help prevent unnecessary eye injuries.

Toy Regulation in Canada

In Canada, toy safety is regulated by the “Hazardous Products Act” and the “Hazardous Products (Toys) Regulations.”

Health Canada works with manufacturers to ensure they observe these regulations. It also carries out toy testing and research. Any toy that does not meet the required regulations is removed from the market.

Health Canada officers regularly check toys for compliance, unsafe toys sometimes find their way into your home. “Some toys that are no longer considered safe may still be in people’s homes – they may be older toys, borrowed from a friend or handed down from an older child, or purchased at a garage sale. For this reason, parents and caregivers should check toys often and immediately report any safety concerns to the Consumer Product Safety Office.”

In the event that a toy is unsafe, Health Canada will work with the manufacturer to recall the product and have it removed from the market, and advise consumers of how to return or dispose of the product.

You can view Canadian Toy Council on its website.

Visit CNIB’s website for more information on eye safety.

For more information about toy safety, or if you think you have a toy that could be dangerous, contact Health Canada.

“In the excitement of the season, sometimes we may forget that not every gift is appropriate for every child,” said Hugh R. Parry, president and CEO of Prevent Blindness America. “By taking a few, easy safety precautions, we can keep the holidays happy for everyone!

Prevent Blindness America suggests:

  • Make recommendations to family members and friends about gifts that you feel are appropriate for your child. Be thorough about inspecting these gifts before allowing your child to play with them.
  • Inspect all toys before purchasing.  Check toys that your child has received as gifts to make sure they are appropriate for your child’s age and developmental level.
  • For younger children, avoid play sets with small magnets and make sure batteries are safe within the toy. If magnets or batteries are ingested, serious injuries and/or death can occur.
  • Gifts of sports equipment should not be used unless the appropriate protective gear (such as a basketball along with eye goggles or a face guard with a new batting helmet for baseball or softball) is worn.
  • Any toy that is marked “supervision required” must always be used in the presence of an adult. Keep toys meant for older children away from younger ones.
  • Always save the warranties and directions for every toy. If possible, include a gift receipt. Repair or throw away damaged toys.
  • Avoid toys that shoot or include parts that fly off.
  • Inspect toys for sturdiness. Your child’s toys should be durable, with no sharp edges or points. The toys should also withstand impact. Dispose of plastic wrapping material immediately on toys as they may have sharp edges.
  • Do not give toys with small parts to young children. Young children tend to put things in their mouths, increasing the risk of choking. If the part of a toy can fit in a toilet paper roll, the toy is not appropriate for children under the age of three.

For more information on safe toys and gifts for children as well as general children’s eye health topics, please contact

Prevent Blindness America by calling (800) 331-2020 or visit preventblindness.org


Classic Books

Every month download to your I-pad, Reader or Computer “A Classic Book” ~ Completely FREE!


Christmas stories

by Charles Dickens.

Published 1910 by McLoughlin in [New York?] . Written in English.

 Christmas Stories by Charles Dickensfinal


Many of us are familiar with Charles Dickens Book “Christmas Carol,” this month we will learn about some other Christmas Stories he has written.

 Table of Contents

The cricket on the hearth.  The seven poor travellers.

Edition Notes

Other TitlesCricket on the hearth., Seven poor travellers.


Library of Congress PR4557 .A1 1910x
The Physical Object
Number of pages 143

ID Numbers

Open Library OL24197445M
Internet Archive christmascricket00dick
OCLC/WorldCat 5011611

Charles Dickens

About the author

Charles John Huffam Dickens (/ˈɑrlz ˈdɪkɪnz/; 7 February 1812 – 9 June 1870) was an English writer and social critic. He created some of the world’s most well-known fictional characters and is generally regarded as the greatest novelist of the Victorian period.[1] During his life, his works enjoyed unprecedented popularity, and by the twentieth century he was widely seen as a literary genius by critics and scholars. His novels and short stories continue to be widely popular.[2][3]

Born in Portsmouth, England, Dickens was forced to leave school to work in a factory when his father was thrown into debtors’ prison. Although he had little formal education, his early impoverishment drove him to succeed. Over his career he edited a weekly journal for 20 years, wrote 15 novels, five novellas and hundreds of short stories and non-fiction articles, lectured and performed extensively, was an indefatigable letter writer, and campaigned vigorously for children’s rights, education, and other social reforms.

Dickens sprang to fame with the 1836 serial publication of The Pickwick Papers. Within a few years he had become an international literary celebrity, famous for his humour, satire, and keen observation of character and society. His novels, most published in monthly or weekly instalments, pioneered the serial publication of narrative fiction, which became the dominant Victorian mode for novel publication.[4][5] The instalment format allowed Dickens to evaluate his audience’s reaction, and he often modified his plot and character development based on such feedback.[5] For example, when his wife’s chiropodist expressed distress at the way Miss Mowcher in David Copperfield seemed to reflect her disabilities, Dickens went on to improve the character with positive features.[6] His plots were carefully constructed, and Dickens often wove in elements from topical events into his narratives.[7] Masses of the illiterate poor chipped in ha’pennies to have each new monthly episode read to them, opening up and inspiring a new class of readers.[8]

Dickens was regarded as the literary colossus of his age.[9] His 1843 novella, A Christmas Carol, remains popular and continues to inspire adaptations in every artistic genre. Set in London and Paris, his 1859 novel, A Tale of Two Cities, is the best selling novel of all time.[10] His creative genius has been praised by fellow writers—from Leo Tolstoy to George Orwell and G. K. Chesterton—for its realism, comedy, prose style, unique characterisations, and social criticism. On the other hand Oscar Wilde, Henry James and Virginia Woolf complained of a lack of psychological depth, loose writing, and a vein of saccharine sentimentalism. The term Dickensian is used to describe something that is reminiscent of Dickens and his writings, such as poor social conditions or comically repulsive characters.[11]

 Also available at www.amazon.ca and www.amazon.com


The Expatriates: Book One: Song of the Sending 


Corinne O’Flynn

 Age Level: 12 – 18 | Grade Level: 5 – 12
They told him his world was destroyed.
And they were the last to escape.
They thought he was safe.
They were wrong.
Jim Wales can communicate with animals, but that’s not why he lives with a traveling carnival. Turns out his family’s been hiding him there since he was little, since someone started hunting all the scholars. Jim is a scholar—someone who can manipulate energy using magic—and he has no idea.When a message arrives from Jim’s father—who supposedly died twelve years ago—Jim’s whereabouts are discovered, their carnival is attacked, and his mother is kidnapped. On the run with a strange glass map and a single coin, Jim finds himself racing to reclaim the father he thought he’d lost, plotting to save his mother, and discovering the truth about who he is.But going home isn’t the same as being safe, and trust is everything.

What readers are saying:


“Told in a beautiful, flowing style full of colorful images and adrenaline-pumping action.”

 “Pop some popcorn, sit back … and enjoy the thrill ride, right up to the end, which leaves you begging for more.”

 “Captures your attention from the start and then guides you through a roller coaster of adventure, drama, mystery, magic and young love.”

Corinne Headshot

About Corinne

Corinne O’Flynn is a native New Yorker who now lives in Colorado and wouldn’t trade life in the Rockies for anything. She loves writing flash and experimenting with short fiction. Her novel, THE EXPATRIATES (Oct. 2014) is a YA fantasy adventure with magic and creatures and lots of creepy stuff. She is a scone aficionado, has an entire section of her kitchen devoted to tea, and is always on the lookout for the elusive Peanut Chews candy. When she isn’t writing or hanging with her family, Corinne works as the executive director of a nonprofit. She is a member of Rocky Mountain Fiction Writers, Mystery Writers of America, and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators. The Expatriates is available on Amazon, iTunes, Barnes & Noble. She blogs about her adventures at www.corinneoflynn.com.


Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/Expatriates-Book-One-Song-Sending-ebook/dp/B00OLDLOBQ

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/expatriates-book-one-song/id931169374?mt=11

B&N: http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/the-expatriates-book-one-corinne-oflynn/1120628321?ean=2940150751088





Writing Prompt

“You have not lived today until you have done something for someone who can never repay you.”
~John Bunyan

Imagine you are walking down the street and find a hundred dollar bill with a note stating there is a spell attached to it.  The spell states you are not allowed to keep the money or spend it on yourself, if you did you would be plagued by bad luck. The notes suggests you donate it to a person in need or charity. Who would you give it to? How would you want them to spend it? Get creative, write and most of all…have fun! 🙂

POBC Picks

Booksy: learn to read platform

This month Professor Owl picks an app to help your child learn to read! 🙂


Via GooglePlay

Booksy is a learning-to-read platform for young kids (4-9). It’s designed from the ground up to help young children, K through 2nd grade, practice and develop their reading skills.*** FEATURED IN THE NEW YORK TIMES: LEARN TO READ WITH TABLETS ARTICLE!***This edition comes with 3 FREE Books. Books are only in ENGLISH. (A few Spanish books are available and Portuguese is coming).Think of Booksy as training wheels for books. It gives kids independence and security while providing help and support. Watch them glow with pride as they are able to read by themselves and gain independence.
Booksy is at its heart a library of age appropriate level-readers. We believe kids WANT to read when to give them fascinating and interesting books. That is why we partnered with experts to create books on topics kids will love. They will not only dive into reading, but with our nonfiction series also learn. Many books are written by experts and PhDs. Beautiful full-color images and illustrations.

Common Core aligned! Books on science topics, social science, math and everyday activities.
But BOOKSY is so much more. It has amazing features that make learning to read simple and fun. And, it includes powerful tools for parents and teachers to track kids’ progress.

Booksy requires Android 3.0 or higher. For full functionality, it requires a microphone.
It’s a TABLET ONLY APP. It has been optimized for most 7 and 10 inch tablets including Nexus 7 and 10.

Booksy features:
• Kids can tap on ANY word to have it read out loud. Not just the whole page, but the words they find difficulty.
• Quizzes help cement reading comprehension.
• Up to 10 users can be tracked in this editions
• Record reading sessions and track their progress without looking over their shoulder (RECORDING WILL ONLY WORK ON DEVICES THAT SUPPORT THIS FEATURE)
• Adults/Teachers can track kids’ progress in the Parental Dashboard
• Awesome content: level-readers on science topics—not just of literacy, but of science literacy!
• Motivation engine! Stars, awards and trophies keep kids engaged and coming back for more. Kids get:
⁃ Stars for every book they finish
⁃ Stars for every quiz where they get all the answers right


LEVEL 0 (50-150 words, repetitive structures and words for kids who are just starting to read)
✓ Fruits
✓ Puppies!
✓ Hummingbirds!
✓ Snakes!
✓ The american Flag
✓ Hello Bunny!
✓ Pocket Animals
✓ Animal Colors
✓ Counting Robots
✓ All kinds of Fun: The Mc Penguin Brothers
✓ Mr. Talbot’s vacation
✓ Animal Orchestra
✓ The Four Seasons!
✓ Days of the Week
✓ Field trip!
✓ School is Fun!
✓ Tommy’s Day

LEVEL 1 (150-300 words, simplified structures, for readers who are beginning to venture into reading on their own)
✓ Humpback Whales!
✓ Dinosaurs!
✓ Volcanos!
✓ Exploring Mars!
✓ Chimpanzees!
✓ Emperor Penguins!
✓ Insects!
✓ Solar System!
✓ Elephants!
✓ In a Jam!
✓ Bacteria
✓ Plants
✓ The Ojibwe
✓ The President of the United Stated
✓ Ponies
✓ Caterpillar to Butterfly
✓ Rhymes & Poems 1
✓ The Ugly Duckling
✓ The Tortoise & the Hare
✓ The Ant & the Grasshopper
✓ Jack & the Beanstalk
✓ Little Red Riding Hood
✓ Water!
✓ The Moon

LEVEL 2 (300-500 words)
✓ Dolphins!
✓ Global Warming
✓ Chocolate!
✓ Flowers!
✓ George Washington & the revolutionary war
✓ Thomas Jefferson & the Declaration of Independence
✓ The pilgrims & the First Thanksgiving
✓ The Beaty & the Beast
✓ Pinocchio


Learning Fun. Fun Learning.

Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ September 2014 Newsletter

Banner sept

Welcome to the New Professor Owl’s Book Corner

In every month’s issue we will share with you

the wonderful world of books!


The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

~~ Dr. Seuss, “I Can Read With My Eyes Shut!”


Back to School is here and this month Professor Owl has some back to school tips, details of upcoming events, some interesting articles. Also, take Professor Owl’s reading challenge – write and let us know what books you are enjoying and win prizes. **Remember though you must let your parents know that you are writing to us…**



Make Reading a Habit! ~ In a world that is slowly replacing books with monitors, video consoles and television screens, the importance of developing your child’s passion for reading is essential. The key to getting your child to read is to make reading a habit when the child is relatively young.

What can you do to help promote this habit?

Make Reading a Social Event:

There are many well structured after school story groups that aim to encourage children to read.
At times authors will promote a new book by doing a public reading. For young children, these readings can be fun with animated characters and pictures.
Gathering a group of children to visit an author who perhaps will use illustrated picture books, rhymes, silly songs, and pretend stories all will make reading a positive experience for your child.
Check with local libraries and bookstores to see what programs or readings are available.
Encourage reading at home:

If your child seems interested in a certain genre pick up books from other authors that you think your child will like.
Although the internet is often distracting, encouraging your child to check out online versions of magazines and downloading parent approved e-books.
Also, check out online kids book clubs however, parents please be active in your child’s surfing habits to avoid them navigating to improper sites.
Pique your child’s curiosity:

If your child has a favorite character, pick a series of books that features this character. For some children it is comic book characters, encouraging your child to pick up that Spiderman comic may not be a bad thing if it gets them interested in reading.

Also spend time with your child reading, sometimes alone time is precious and what better way to spend time with your child than by sharing with them the love of reading.


Do You Need A Homework Helper?


Back to school can be a lot of fun seeing old friends and teachers. One thing most children do not like about going back to school is the homework.

Listed below are some websites that can help you with every subject – helping elementary and high school kids find what they need on the ‘net. They cannot do your homework for you, but offer great age-appropriate kid-friendly links to sites, by e-mail.





It’s that time of year again ~ Back To School, many look forward to going back and some dread the homework and lack of playtime.  For some however it can be a very scary thought. It’s not school that bothers them but the thought of being beat up, embarrassed or tormented by bullies.  What is a bully? A bully is someone who finds power and self-worth by belittling or intimidating others. Bullies usually learn from usually being the victim of another bully.If you are being bullied the best thing you can do is tell someone.  It’s not tattling, you are not telling to get someone in trouble, you are telling to protect yourself. Another thing to do, if possible walk away or stay near an adult if you feel threatened.  Remember being the victim of a bully is not YOUR fault What if you are not being bullied but see someone else bein bullied? Don’t join in, encourage or give the bully an audience, if possible try to get help or find an adult. Whatever you do, do not try to fight the bully.




POBC Books

Classic Books

Every month download to your I-pad, Reader or Computer “A Classic Book” ~ Completely FREE!




 The Lost Locket (Nancy Drew Notebook #2)

Published 2002 by Scholastic .

Author Carolyn Keene

Nancy Drew and the lost locket.



Product Description

When her best friends start fighting, Nancy must find a special locket to save the day! Nancy’s best friends, Bess and George, may never speak to each other again. It all started because Bess wanted to jump rope. She asked George to hold on to her beautiful heart-shaped locket. George put it in her book bag to keep it safe. However, when she went to give it back, the locket was gone!      It is a mess of a mystery, but if Nancy Drew can find out where the locket went, she just might be able to get George and Bess to make up!

I loved this book as it has many interesting characters. It was fun trying to solve the mystery and I had to think hard about who stole the locket. I would recommend this book to all girls who love mystery stories.


About the Author


Bio: About Carolyn Keene, author of Nancy Drew mystery books

Carolyn Keene is a writer pen name that was used by many different people- both men and women- over the years. The company that was the creator of the Nancy Drew series, the Stratemeyer Syndicate, hired a variety of writers. For Nancy Drew, the writers used the pseudonym Carolyn Keene to assure anonymity of the creator.

Edna and Harriet Stratemeyer inherited the company from their father Edward Stratemeyer. Edna contributed 10 plot outlines before passing the reins to her sister. While Harriet is often credited as Carolyn Keene, several other authors assumed the pseudonym of Carolynn Keene. Starting in 1953, Harriet authored 24 volumes. In 1959, Harriet, along with several writers, began a 25-year project to revise the earlier Carolyn Keene novels. The Nancy Drew books were condensed, racial stereotypes were removed, and the language was updated. In a few cases, outdated plots were completely rewritten.

Other writers of Nancy Drew volumes include Mildred Wirt Benson who created 23 novels, including the first three Nancy Drew novels. The role of the writer of “Carolyn Keene” passed temporarily to Walter Karig who wrote three novels during the Great Depression. Also contributing to Nancy Drew’s prolific existence were Leslie McFarlane, James Duncan Lawrence, Nancy Axelrod, Priscilla Doll, Charles Strong, Alma Sasse, Wilhelmina Rankin, George Waller Jr., and Margaret Scherf.

Start with these Recommended Books by Carolyn Keene

New to Nancy Drew? Nancy Drew Starter Set by Carolyn Keene


Also available at www.amazon.ca and www.amazon.com



One Dog and His Boy

Eva Ibbotson (Author)


One Dog and his Boyf



Kindle Edition CDN$5.59

Paperback Edition CDN$8.89

Hardcover Edition CDN$12.95

Product Description:

Award-winning author Eva Ibbotson’s tale of a boy and dog who were meant to be together — now in paperback. All Hal had ever wanted was a dog. “Never!” cries his mother. “Think of the mess, the scratch-marks, the puddles on the floor.” But on the morning of Hal’s 10th birthday, the unbelievable happens. He is allowed to choose a dog at Easy Pets, a rent-a-pet agency (a fact his parents keep from him). The moment he sees the odd-looking terrier, he knows he has found a friend for life. But no one tells Hal that Fleck must be returned. When Hal wakes up on Monday morning, Fleck is gone. If dog and boy are to stay together, they will have to run away. . . . From the renowned, Eva Ibbotson comes a tale laced with humor and brimming over with heart, stunning in its beauty of the love of all things dog.

Reviews ~ Praise for One Dog and His Boy

“Readers who have grown to love Ibbotson’s bighearted heroes and larger-than-life adventure stories will relish this final novel.” —Publishers Weekly

“Ibbotson’s last novel is a mix of adventure, caricature, and child-and-dog love, in which loyal friends, skuduggerous louts and obtuse adults all have a part. The comforting feeling that everything will turn out right is nicely mixed with the spice of humour.” —The Toronto Star

“Ibbotson’s final book is a story with the heart of Lassie and the satirical bite of Roald Dahl…Themes of loyalty; greed, devotion, and home are woven through a text that is as funny as it is satisfying.” —Booklist

“A rousing, slightly surreal tale of rescue and redemption, this effort will appeal to animal lovers everywhere.” —Kirkus

“This satisfying novel combines humor with heart to great effect-a lovely parting gift from the masterful storyteller.” —School Library Journal

Available from www.amazon.ca and www.amazon.com






Writing Prompt

“I believe in everything until it’s disproved. So I believe in fairies, the myths, dragons. It all exists, even if it’s in your mind. Who’s to say that dreams and nightmares aren’t as real as the here and now?”~ John Lennon

Who is your favourite “magical” character?  Write about what happens when this character starts going to your school.  Do they hide their abilities or powers? Do they fit in or are they made fun of for being different? What happens on their first day of school? Get creative, write and most of all…have fun! 🙂

POBC Picks

Words for Kids – Reading Games

This month Professor Owl picks an app to help your child’s vocabulary grow! 🙂

 Nimble Minds

Via GooglePlay

+ Nimble Minds’ best seller Bud’s First Words – Reading Games’ is a beautifully illustrated word learning and reading game, loved by kids, parents and teachers all over the world.

Join Bud on a journey through his house, school, city and around as he and his friends go from place to place to learn and review everyday sight words used in English for naming things. There is a long list of vocabulary for the children to learn and practice.

In Bud’s First Words – Reading Games, toddlers and preschool kids will start learning by listening and reading nouns, the names of things found around them in everyday places like bedroom, bathroom, classroom, playground, park, etc. Then in Play mode children will read questions and they will be asked to identify the same objects and recognize their words to reinforce their learning. In no time you will see kids spotting and naming things around the house and increasing their vocabulary every time they play.

Along with the Common Core goals (described below), the aim of Words for Kids is to:

– improve reading skills by practicing words children hear at home and school
– improve reading fluency
– boost kids confidence and self esteem
– help children with difficulties like autism, add, adhd, speech delay, non-verbal in reading and learning English language and communication in a positive and stimulating way.

Activities in this game are based on the following Common Core State Standards:

Print many upper- and lowercase letters.

Use frequently occurring nouns and verbs.

Understand and use question words (interrogatives) (e.g., who, what, where, when, why, how).

Spell simple words phonetically, drawing on knowledge of sound-letter relationships.

Sort common objects into categories to gain a sense of the concepts the categories represent.

Identify real-life connections between words and their use.

Demonstrate understanding of spoken words, syllables, and sounds (phonemes).
Bud’s First Words – Reading Games is the first app in our collection of English learning games with a focus on vocabulary. Next to Bud’s First Words – Reading Games is our latest app Bud’s Rhyming words – Reading Games, which focuses on word families, rhymes and vocabulary through 3 amazingly adventurous games.

Via GooglePlay (Android)



For other Nimble Minds apps for  Itunes (iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch) & Android


Wednesday Wallpaper ~ Professor Owl’s Book Corner

Hesse Wallpaper

“It may be important to great thinkers to examine the world, to explain and despise it. But I think it is only
important to love the world, not to despise it, not for us to hate each other, but to be able to regard the world and ourselves
and all beings with love, admiration and respect.”

~ Hermann Hesse