French Christmas

Find out about some French Christmas Traditions - present your findings in a powerpoint or poster.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Santa Claus is known as le Père Noël. In some parts they celebrate the feast day of St Nicolas on the 6th.

St Nicolas has a helper le Père Fouettard.

In the city of Lyon there is a Festival of Lights known as La Fête des Lumières.

In Provence it's traditional to display a nativity scene (une crèche) which always includes a figure called le ravi.

Instead of a stocking hung by the fire, French children use a shoe (Le soulier de Noël).

On the 6th of January (L' Épiphanie) they traditionally eat King's Cake (La galette des Rois).

In Quebec, Canada (where French is the main language) it's so cold that every year they can build an Ice Hotel - where even the beds are made of ice! They also have a Winter Carnival (Carnaval de Québec) complete with a mascot called Bonhomme.

More information:

German Christmas

Find out about some German Christmas Traditions - present your findings in a powerpoint or poster.

Here are some ideas to get you started:

Is that you Santa Claus? 
There are four different names given to Santa Claus in Germany depending on where you live. He is called Weihnachtsmann, Nickel, Klaus, or Niglo.

Many Germans celebrate Nikolaustag (St. Nicolas Day) on the 6th of December.

If you fancy a bit of history have a look at:
Belsnickel - an older fur glad gift bringer who is said to be the inspiration for the Father Christmas described in the classic Christmas poem 'A Visit from St Nicolas'.

If you fancy a bit of creepy Christmas fun have a look for:
Knecht Ruprecht - St. Nicolas's Helper in Germany
Krampus - St. Nicolas's Helper in Austria

Food Glorious Food
Just like in the UK food forms an important part of the festivities. For example on Christmas Eve, there's an evening feast, generally of carp and potato salad.

das Christbaumgebäck - German Christmas tree pastry
der Lebkuchen, ginger spice cookies
der Dresdner Stollen, a moist, heavy bread filled with fruit and marzipan.

More Information

5 Things to help you read for school

Photo from D Sharon Pruitt

1. Limit distractions
Your environment matters so hide the technology away or sit away from it. Ask yourself if listening to music really helps you focus. If it does you might want to consider what type of music helps you most.  Where are you reading? If you are lying in bed is that more likely to make you sleep than sitting at a desk?

2. Have a pen and paper handy
As you read make a note of questions you want to check or thoughts you have. Then once you've done your reading go through your notes and look up anything you wanted to check.

3. Get comfy
You are reading for a wee while so be prepared for that. Use a comfy chair or a cushion and have a drink and snack on hand. You could even reward yourself with a little treat for reading each paragraph or similar (just be careful not to use eating as a distraction).

4. Talk about it
Once you've done your reading find someone to talk to about what you've been reading. Having the chance to discuss what you've read can help you better understand what you've been reading.

5. Don't give up.
Like any skill reading for study takes practice, keep at and you will soon find you will be able to read for longer periods of time without loosing focus.

8 Modern Fairy Tales

Fairy Tales aren't a thing of the past modern authors are creating their own from the Harry Potter to the novels of Terry Pratchett there are lots to choose from. So to help you out here are 8 we recommend:

1. The Princess Bride by Willam Goldman

2. An Accident of Stars by Foz Meadows

3. Tithe by Holly Black

4. Stardust by Neil Gaiman

5. Wicked Lovely by Melissa Marr

6. The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly

7. Princess Princess by Katie O'Neill
(you can read the webcomic online or buy her book)

8. Princess Academy by Shannon Hale

For more ideas head into to the JYHS Library or the Lanthorn Library.

Lari Don - visits JYHS Library

Were are delighted that award winning author Lari Don is joining us as part of our #bookweekscot fun to run a session with around 60 S1 pupils.

Lari has lived most of her life in Scotland, a writer and storyteller, she has written a number of books with a fairy tale link.

Her first series The Fabled Beast Chronicles starts with 'First Aid for Fairies' where a girl finds an injured animal but it's not one she can take to the local vet. So begins a series filled with mythical creatures, enchantments and dangerous enemies.

Her latest series The Spellchasers Trilogy launches with 'The Beginners Guide to Curses' sees our heroine cursed to turn into a hare whenever she hears a dog bark. It's only when she try to lift the curse by attending a special course for young cursed people that the problems really start.

Lari has also written riveting versions of traditional tales from around the world. If it's a straight re-telling you fancy then check out 'Serpents and Werewolves', 'Winter's Tales' or 'Girls, Goddesses and Giants'.

All of these and more of her titles are available in the school library.

5 Fairy Tales Retold

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen is perhaps the most famous reworking of Cinderella but Austen isn't the only author to take a traditional tale and create something original. Here are 5 more you could pick up in the library today.

1. Cinder by Marissa Meyer
Cinderella but as a android and in space.
2. Bloody Chamber and other stories by Angela Constance
An adult book this contains versions of Beauty and the Beast, Puss in Boots and others.
3. Tinder by Sally Gardner
A reworking of The Tinderbox by Hans Christian Andersen featuring wicked queens, werewolves and more.
4. Rapunzel's Revenge by Shannon Hale
Rapunzel gets to be the hero in a Wild West setting.
5. Beastly by Alex Flinn
Set in modern day New York, this version of Beauty and the Beast is told from the Beasts perspective.

Think you know Sleeping Beauty?

Fairy Tales aren't the cuddly versions Disney has given us, the originals are much darker so why not take some time out and read some of them.

WARNING: These stories contain gruesome, disturbing and bizarre events.

Grimms' Fairy Tales by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm
Includes the Frog Prince (Disney's The Princess and the Frog), Rapunzel (which Disney filmed as Tangled), Hansel and Gretel, Little Red-Cap (a version of Little Red Riding Hood) and Snow-White and Rose-Red.

Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Anderson
This volume includes The Snow Queen (which inspired Frozen), The Little Mermaid and The Emperor's New Clothes.

The Fairy Tales of Charles Perrault
Includes Puss in Boots, Little Red Riding Hood, Cinderella and Sleeping Beauty.

Arabian Nights by Andrew Lang
This series of tales includes Aladdin. It is also known as 1001 nights as each night a young girl tells a story to ensure that the Sultan doesn't kill her in the morning.

The Happy Prince and other Tales by Oscar Wilde 
Includes the story of the Selfish Giant.

If you'd rather listen to some stories then why not try a podcast -

Myths and Legends offers a short retelling of various tales and creature of the week.

A wee JYHS Fairy Tale Reading Challenge

It's #bookweekscot and we are celebrating with a #fairytalefeast - why not join in and challenge yourself to read 8 short fairy tales this week.

Language -
Yeh- Shen: Chinese Cinderella

Music and Theater -
The Red Shoes by Hans Christian Anderson

Creativity -
The Gingerbread Boy
(there are a number of versions of the tale including a bunch from Scotland were it's a bannock)

Health -
The Tortoise and the Hare by Aesop
(You can listen to an audio version on the BBC website)

Wellbeing -
Ugly Duckling by Hans Christian Anderson

Maths and Computing -
Computational Fairy Tales by Jeremy Kubica

Science -
The Fairy-Land of Science by Arabella B. Buckley

Social Subjects -
Arabian Nights 

Read them all (at least a story from the longer books) - comment on this post or pop in to the library and tell Mrs. Wilson for house points and a special pin badge.

What did Mrs Wilson read for the JYHS Reading Challenge?

Language - The Thirteen Clocks by James Thurber.
Creativity - Steal Like an Artist by Austin Kleon
Health - Rivers of London: Black Mould by Ben Aaronovitch and Andrew Cartmel
Music and Theater -Curious by Rebecca Front
Wellbeing - Nancy Drew and The Hardy Boys: The Big Lie by Anthony Del Col
Maths and Computing - Too Much Information by Dave Gorman
Science - Moon Girl and Devil Dinosaur by Amy Reeder
Social Subjects - Goodnight Stories for Rebel Girls by Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo

The 5 E's of Reading

1. Escape
Bored of Livingston but no option for holiday - read. You can travel to other countries, planets, worlds and realities when you read.

2. Enjoyment
A book can pull you in make you laugh, cry and everything in between. A good story will pull you in and stay with you even when you are finished.

3. Empathy 
It's hard to care about strangers with problems far removed from your own but when you read you care about the people, about their struggle. It gives you a better understanding of other people and where they come from.

4. mE time
When you read for fun, read stuff you want to read, do something just for you. Reading is a personal thing no two people read a book the same, even re-reading can make you think differently.

5. Education 
As Dr. Seuss once said "the more you read, the more you know." Learn how to wrestle bears, protect yourself from kelpies and dye your hair using kool-aid, how the White House kitchens work, how the Roman sewage system operated and how to rise the the rank of Commander in the time of Horatio Nelson. Know more.

'The Red Ribbon' by Lucy Adlington

JYHS Library monitors got the chance to read 'The Red Ribbon' by Lucy Adlington.

What was the book about?
"The Red Ribbon is a story about love, loss and most importantly hope."

What did you think of it?
The general consensus was that it was a slow start but well worth reading on.

"I surprisingly liked this book. It had compelling characters and an interesting plot."

"It was really good. I didn't want to stop reading it. I liked the historical accuracy."

" the story developed I became more immersed."

"This book had me grinning then crying the next minute I can't recommend reading it enough."

"I thought it was a brilliant book with with a powerful meaning and was extremely moving."

"I really connected with all the characters and felt what they felt!"

"This was the best book I've read so far, I loved it!"

"...the actual book is perfect."

"...she needs to do a sequel to The Red Ribbon"

Fancy reading it yourself? Pop into JYHS Library and borrow a copy.

#TheRedRibbon @HotKeyBooks

8 Books you could pick up and read today.

The Phantom Tollbooth - Norton Juster (Maths and Computing)
The Kingdom of Wisdom is a strange land, full of dangers and challenges that Milo must navigate.

One Hit Wonderland - Tony Hawks (Music)
Tony Hawks had a chart hit in the 1980s but is out to prove he wasn't a one-hit wonder by getting other - in whatever country he can.

The Highwayman's Footsteps - Nicola Morgan (Social Subjects)
Set in the 18th Century and full of dark deeds and difficult choices. Will and Bess must work together to get revenge for Will and survive.

The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde - Robert Louis Stevenson (Science)
The respectable Dr Jekyll finds himself transformed into the vicious Mr Hyde when he drinks a potion.

Popular: a memoir - Maya Van Wagenen (Wellbeing)
In an attempt to fit in at High School, Maya turns to a book written in the 1950s on how to be popular. This is her diary of her, charting her challenge from girdle to pearls.

Billy Elliot - Melvin Burgess (Health)
Told from different viewpoints, this is the story of a boy who wants to do ballet but his coal mining dad wants him to pursue boxing. Based on the movie of the same name it's a powerful story about being who you want to be.

A Dissertation Upon Roast Pig - Charles Lamb (Creativity)
A collection of short articles about food written in the 19th Centenary. It makes for interesting reading including talk about Christmas feasting, pineapples and pork scratching. Probably best read after lunch.  

The Pale Assassin - Patricia Elliot (Language)
Set during the French Revolution, it follows girl whose aristocratic background has placed her in grave danger. Now she is running to save her life from the mob, the revolutionary guard and the pale assassin.

Mr Holt's Home Schooling Links

In Scotland children must be educated between the ages of five and 16, but they need not attend school.

Arguments for and against Homeschooling 
(warning- some of this may not be correct for Scotland)

IDEA - This House Supports Home Schooling

8 Books to Read

Looking for ideas for the reading challenge?

Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
This is a classic book and full of just the most wonderful language - both real and invented.
(you can also read the book online or download it via Project Gutenberg)

Piggies - Nick Gifford
This is about keeping animals for food. The twist? Humans are the food.

Pride and Penalties - Chris Higgins
Looks at gender roles, family dynamics but most of all about a girl growing up.

Music and Theatre:
The Positively Last Performance - Geraldine McCCaughrean
The Royal Theatre is set to close down for good but can Gracie help the resident ghosts save it or is this really going to be the last performace?

Everyday - David Levithan
Everyday they wake in a different body, taking on someone else's life for 24 hours but what happens when you fall in love and don't want to jump to a new host again?

Maths and Computing:
Hacking Timbuktu - Stephen Davies
Danny is on the hunt for £100 million in gold but he's not the only one and his hacking and traceur skills are tested to the limit in this fast paced story.

Call of the Wild - Jack London
Written from the point of view of a dog. It follows them from loving family home to harsh masters and a dog sled team. Can a family pet become a wild beast?
(you can also read the book online or download it via Project Gutenberg)

Social Subjects:
The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian - Sherman Alexie
Junior has to decide stay in his current school or go to the white school up the road? Better education or within his culture? It's about many things including the issues facing Native American's today if they stay on the reservations.

National Poetry Day

It's National Poetry Day and to celebrate you can download (or read online) this year's free poetry anthology  on the theme of Freedom.

The library is closed

Unfortunately, the library is closed from Wednesday 20th until Tuesday 25th due to CAT testing. This means that under NO CIRCUMSTANCE should you use the library nor should you walk through

Mrs.Davidson's Persuasive Essay Links

Topic 1 - America needs to change it's gun laws today.

Suggested essay plan:
  1. Introduction - What is the picture in the USA - why do they need to change gun laws? 
    1. New York Times article compares gun deaths in US to other countries.
    2. Everytown for Gun Safety has a running total and more information on School Shootings in the USA since 2013.
  2. Particular example - Sandy Hook Elementary. Why didn't America change then after that shooting?
    1. Article from The Guardian about the Sandy Hook Elementary Shooting
    2. This article from the BBC talks about why Obama couldn't change gun laws even after the Sandy Hook tragedy.
  3. Similar international example - Dunblane Primary plus what the UK government did about it.
    1. Article from The Independent on the Dunblane Primary shooting here in Scotland (it also talks about the actions taken by the government as a response).
  4. Widen up the argument - how does US response gun violence compare to elsewhere in the world?
    1. NBC report on Port Arthur massacre (includes comparison to USA)
  5. Example of a country similar to US who managed to change gun culture
    1. John Oliver's video on gun control in Australia (you can view the transcript if you don't want to watch it again).
    2. Guardian article about who Australian guns laws have stopped mass shootings. 
  6. Conclusion.

Topic 2 - Everyone should become a vegetarian to help save the planet.

Suggested essay plan:

Introduction - Meat production cannot be sustained - impact on planet
Meat production vs. plants - drain on water resources/ impact on waterways
Meat production vs. plants - strain on available land/ destruction of habitiat
Meat production vs. plants - greenhouse gas emmisions

Guardian article: There's a population crisis all right. But probably not the one you think. - George Monbiot

Additional resources can be found via Independence Issues and Complete Issues in book form or online (see notice board beside reference for the usernames and passwords)

Thank You!

Another year is drawing to a close and another batch of amazing young people are heading off to pastures new. So it's time for me to say a massive thanks to the library monitors who give up their free time to help make JYHS Library almost as fabulous as Steven.

As our Head Monitor once said 
"Everyone's experience in this library is uniquely different. Each and everyone of us come in here not as pupils or as friends, but as a collective. An exclusive club to only those brave enough to pick up a pen and fill out the form."

Thanks for being brave enough!

JYHS Library Annual Sponsored Readathon

30 pupils joined Mrs.Wilson in the Library for the 2nd Annual Readathon. 
Over the course of 12 hours they read 114 books.
So far nearly £200 has been raised for the school library and that number is set to grow as sponsorship money is collected. 
 Many thanks to all the pupils for taking part and the Senior Leadership Team who supported the event and stayed on in school until after 8pm to allow us to run it.

LGBTQ* resources online

It's not just books in the library that can help LGBTQ* pupils and their supporters (remember to look for the rainbow on the spine). All of these sites offer support and information about LGBTQ*.

Equality Network
A national charity working for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) equality and human rights in Scotland.

Scottish Trans Alliance
An Equality Network project to improve gender identity and gender reassignment equality, rights and inclusion in Scotland.

Gender Identity Research and Education Society.

UK Trans Info
A national charity focused on improving the lives of trans and non-binary people in the UK.

Provides sexual health and wellbeing services for trans* people, their partners and friends.

Terrence Higgins Trust
Terrence Higgins Trust Scotland is part of the UK’s largest and leading HIV and sexual health charity.

Beyond the Binary
An online magazine for UK Non-Binary People.

Sexual Orientation for the Genderqueer Person
One of many helpful articles from blogger, activist, educator and artist Sam Killermann on 'it's pronounced Metrosexual'.

Gender Queer and Non-Binary Identities
Information, and resources for genderqueer, non-binary, questioning, and gender non-conforming people and their allies.

The Body Is Not An Apology
Radical self love for everybody and every body.

UK LGBTQ* charity. They also produce education resources.

Gender Wiki: Neutrois
Article on Gender Wiki about Neutrosis (a non-binary gender identity).

A curated list of resources and other websites relevant to those who identify as Neutrosis or want to learn more.

Androgyne Online
A curated online resource for those who identify as androgynous or want to know more.

Transitioning While Non-BinaryExcellent article by West Anderson on The Body Is Not an Apology.

This list was provided by Luca Fois, a student at University of Strathclyde MSc Library and Information Studies, is looking into LGBTQ* materials availability in Scottish high school libraries.

Harry Potter Day

For one day only JYHS Library was taken over by Hogwarts for a magical Harry Potter themed day. 37 pupils joined Mrs.Wilson for the day which included a sorting ceremony, potions class, dueling, butterbeer, creating a patronus, divination and quidditch.
As usual cosplay was a big part of the fun with Ron, Harry, Hedwig, Newt and many more joining us for the day.

Thanks to the pupils and staff who helped make the day such a success - role on SciFi Con next year!

May the 4th be with you

Are people who love Star Wars weird? Erso no! Yoda best if you love Star Wars. I cantina believe not everyone feels the same. Why Anakin’t we just all agree that it offers many great lessons.

Luke-ing at my life through the lens of Star Wars I can C3P0 many ways it has influenced me. I just can’t Leia it alone, I know you might think I’m a bit of a Windu bag for going on about it but Star Wars is a Rey of sunshine in my life. I’ve loved it since birth and I’m not gonna Bail on it now.

It would be a Grievous error to go a Kylo-ng time without watching at least the original trilogy. The new movies are K2 exciting, Sidious-ly it’s become as much a part of my winter season as Christmas. Rogue One did leave me with heart Palpantine-ations but that ending really Lando-ed well. I can’t Sith an end to the current production either which is BB-8 news.

Everything is better with Star Wars even food Andor drink can be made Star Wars themed. Even if you are a Poe student you can make pool noodle lightsabers. They are a tauntaun of fun, Hans down the most fun you can have with a pool noodle and some duct tape. Then you can go down in a Baze of lightsabre glory.

Comics for Gamers

Up to Four Players - a webcomic about Tabletop Gamers.

Awkward Zombie  and webcomics - both poke fun at the more ridiculous elements for your favourite video games.

A Tale of Two Rulers by Lorraine (@figmentforms) is a webcomic based on the Legend of Zelda.

Want more free comics? Sign up for Comics Plus Library Edition! Just ask Mrs. Wilson for your library user ID number.

Mr.Holt's S3 Sugar Tax Links

Aim: to get a better understanding of the effects of sugar, and the reasons for and against a tax on it.

Outcome: to have 5 or 6 points and quotations about the health effects of sugar and reasons for and against a sugar tax.

How Mexico Took on the Soda Giants - The Guardian

Why is Sugar so Addictive - BBC 

Sugar Free Check App

Sugar Tax Would Work - BBC

Sugar Health Threat Underestimated - The Guardian  

Jamie Oliver Calls for 20% Sugar Tax on Fizzy Drinks - City AM

Sugar Tax Debate - City AM