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Spoilers, Sneak Peeks, and the Inside Scoop on Books, Reading, and What's Going On at Scholastic for KIDS in THE STACKS!
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1. Harry Potter Name Generator

Harry Potter StampThe Hogwarts Express Leaves Today!

If you received your Hogwarts letter this year, you are probably just now getting ready to board the Hogwarts Express to start your wizarding education. Congratulations! To help you get ready for your new life at Hogwarts, I created this Harry Potter name generator so you can invent yourself as a character in the wizarding world.

I tried not to include any actual character name combos. So you can be Ginny Wizangamot, but you can’t be Ginny Weasley. (But oh my goodness, how awesome would it be to actually BE Ginny Weasley???) For first name, you have the option to choose either a boy’s name or a girl’s name that starts with the first letter of your Muggle name. There’s nothing that says you have to choose the boy’s name of you’re a boy or the girl’s name if you’re a girl, but you have the choice. I tried not to choose any evil character names, but for some letters, it was impossible. (Sorry Yaxley Umbridge! I’m sure you’re very nice in real life.)

First name choices: 

  • Albus or Arabella
  • Buckbeak or Bellatrix
  • Cedric or Cho
  • Dobby or Demelza
  • Errol or Enid
  • Firenze or Fleur
  • Grawp or Ginny
  • Harry or Hermione
  • Igor or Irma
  • James or Jewelweed
  • Kreacher or Kendra
  • Ludo or Luna
  • Mundungus or Minerva
  • Neville or Nymphadora
  • Orion or Olympe
  • Patronus or Parvati
  • Quibbler or Quietus
  • Rubeus or Rosmerta
  • Severus or Sibyll
  • Trevor or Thistle
  • Urg or Unicorn
  • Viktor or Veela
  • Wulfric or Walberga
  • Xenophilius
  • Yaxley or Yew
  • Zacharias

Last name

  • Aragog
  • Beauxbatons
  • Crookshanks
  • Durmstrang
  • Evans
  • Flamel
  • Gryffindor
  • Hufflepuff
  • Imago
  • Jordan
  • Knockturn
  • Lumos
  • Mandragora
  • Nimbus
  • Ollivander
  • Padfoot
  • Quidditch
  • Ravenclaw
  • Slytherin
  • Thestral
  • Umbridge
  • Veela
  • Wizengamot
  • Xenophilius
  • Yeti
  • Zonko

Tell us your Harry Potter name in the Comments!

image from kids.scholastic.com— Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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2. SPONSORED POST: Money Confident Kids Contest

T-Rowe-Price_130x130_Stacks.v2This blog post is sponsored by T. Rowe Price.

Are you a money confident kid? Here’s a chance to win one of six different prizes including $1,500 and a library of books for your classroom! All you need to do is interview your parent or guardian and write a short essay about the experience. Go to scholastic.com/mck/entryform.pdf for all the details and to download the entry form. 

Questions? Post below!

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3. Song-Inspired Drabble Challenge

HippolyteHippolyte posted this awesome-tastic challenge for you on the Fan Fiction Message Board!

Heeeeeeeeey all!

So! This is a thing I saw in a STACKS Message Board a LONG time ago and though I’ve never participated myself, I figured it’s high time someone brings a new writing challenge. Here’s the deal:

You are to write a drabble inspired by the first song that comes up on shuffle. Grab your phones/ipods/mp3s/playlists or anything you have with music stored in it and a shuffle option, and enable said option. Your task is to write a short story (fan fiction or original) inspired by the song, for as long as the song is playing. Once the song is over, you stop writing and completely leave it be.

Rules:

  • You may skip songs in case you can’t get inspired, but don’t be too picky or you’ll just be shuffling forever.
  • You must skip any songs that are inappropriate either because of language or content. Any song that receives a rating beyond PG 13 according to your judgment should better be avoided. We trust your judgment.
  • In case you feel that a song with questionable content is still appropriate enough for this board, please mention all warnings that apply. Your story has to be 100% appropriate for all people on this boards. (As Moderator Katie says, don’t write something you wouldn’t say to a 7/8-year-old.)
  • Your drabble can be a fan fiction or an original one. No preferences, but in case of fan fiction, make sure that the fandom you’re writing for is appropriate for younger kids on STACKS (PG 13 at most).
    • “Completely leave it be” is just that. Don’t correct anything. Don’t play the song again. Don’t touch it; it’s already a masterpiece.
    • Stories are expected to be short. Just brainstorm something and leave it in its raw beauty for the world to see.
    • Of course, you’re never obliged to post what you just wrote if you don’t want to. We’re only doing this for fun.

I hope everyone has fun! I also hope you’re not weak enough to decline the challenge. Mwahaha!

So leave your song title and artist in the Comments, and then go to the Fan Fiction Message Board to share your whole story.

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4. Bad Kitty Readalikes

Bad Kitty Gets A BathIf you like the Bad Kitty chapter books by Nick Bruel, try these other funny books about mischief and mayhem for ages 7-9.

Franny K. Stein, Mad Scientist Book #1: Lunch Walks Among Us by Jim Benton
Mad scientist Franny is having trouble making friends at her new school, so she begins to experiment with fitting in. The result of her experiment is not so great though. You could even call it . . . monstrous.

Dragonbreath by Ursula Vernon
Danny Dragonbreath and his iguana best friend, Wendell, attend the Herpitax-PhibbiasSchool for Reptiles and Amphibians, and deal with bullies, bad grades, nerves of steel, and of course, fire breath. See also the other books in the Dragonbreath series.

Great Critter Capers: The Great Hamster Massacre by Katie Davis
After years of begging their parents for pet hamsters, Anna and Tom’s beloved pets mysteriously die! Anna and Tom begin a humorous murder investigation throughout their neighborhood. See also the other books in the Great Critter Caper series.

Geronimo Stilton Book #1: Lost Treasure of the Emerald Eye by Geronimo Stilton
Search for buried treasure, uncover a great pyramid of cheese, and uncover haunted cats with famed mouse reporter Geronimo Stilton and his sister Thea. See also the other books in the Geronimo Stilton series.

Babymouse Book #1: Queen of the World! by Jennifer L. Holm and Matthew Holm
Meet the wildly imaginative Babymouse as she rocks out, camps out, and breaks hearts. See also the other books in the Babymouse series.

Stink Book #1: The Incredible Shrinking Kid by Megan McDonald
Judy Moody’s little terror of a brother now has his own series full strange antics, from getting free candy to super stinky sneakers. See also the other books in the Stink series.

Cat Diaries: Secret Writings of the MEOW Society by Betsy Byars, Betsy Duffey, and Laurie Myers
At the annual gathering of the MEOW society, cats of all kinds gather to tell cat stories. Find out the stories of Chico, the smallest cat in the world, a Pirate Cat, and Georgio the chef cat.

Dog Diaries: Secret Writings of the WOOF Society by Betsy Byars, Betsy Duffey, and Laurie Myers
It is the first annual meeting of the WOOF Society, a yearly storytelling extravaganza where dogs from all over the world gather to share funny diary entries from their ancestors.

Chi’s Sweet Home by Kanata Konami
In this adorable manga, Yohei and his family learn how difficult it is to keep their mischievous kitten a secret from their landlords. See also the other books in the Chi’s Sweet Home series.

Binky the Space Cat by Ashley Spires
Binky prepares for his first trip into space, but begins to worry how his humans would protect themselves if he left for good. See also the other books in the Binky Adventure series.

Golden Hamster Saga Book # 1: I Freddy by Dietlof Reiche
Intelligent golden hamster Freddy aspires to escape captivity and to become an independent and civilized creature.

Fashion Kitty by Charise Mericle Harper
After a stack of fashion magazines falls on Kiki Kitty’s head while she is blowing out the candles on her birthday cake, Kiki turns into Fashion Kitty, a feline superhero who saves other kitties from fashion disaster.

Charlotte’s Web by E. B. White
A pig named Wilbur befriends a spider named Charlotte, who tries to convince the farmer that Wilbur is no ordinary animal.

Amanda, STACKS Writer

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5. Epic Character Questions Quiz

Writing PromptEpic Character Questions Quiz

PurpleFashionista86 posted these questions on the Harry Potter Message Board but they could also apply to any characters in any book series.

  1. Who is your favorite character?
  2. Which character would you go on a date with?
  3. If you were away, what character would take care of your pet for you?
  4. What character would you like to live with?
  5. What character would be your best friend?
  6. If you could take a character camping who would it be?
  7. If you had the choice to go anywhere with a character, what place would you go, and whom would you go with? 
  8. If you could be a character, which one would it be? 
  9. Which character would you want in your dorm?

Leave YOUR answers in the Comments!

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6. Back-to-School Poetry Generator

Back to SchoolWrite A Back-to-School Poem With Our Back-to-School Poetry Generator!

It’s that time again. Back. To. School. To get you in the back-to-school zone, for today’s Writing Prompt, your “homework” is to take the 25 words below and generate your own poem. The poems you guys came up with for the Spring Poetry Generator totally gave us spring fever!

You can add articles (little words like “a”, and “the”), verbs, or anything that will help it flow, but try to include as many of these 25 words as you can in your poem. Any style of poem works – rhyming, non-rhyming, couplet, haiku, free-form, or even random. It’s up to you!

  • school
  • rule
  • friends
  • books
  • looks
  • lunch
  • gross
  • desk
  • heart
  • bus
  • homework
  • homeroom
  • teacher
  • locker
  • soccer
  • race
  • leap
  • joy
  • playground
  • awaken
  • 7 am
  • weekend
  • bell
  • beautiful
  • pencil sharpener

Leave your poem in the Comments. We can’t wait to take a lesson . . . from YOU!

-Ratha, STACKS Writer

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7. Goosebumps Movie Preview

Goosebumps logoGoosebumps Movie Comes to Theaters October 16!

I love the Goosebumps series so much because it’s just the right amount of scary and surprising! So it was a dream-come-true when I was invited to an early screening of the Goosebumps movie (rated PG).

Let me tell you, the movie does not disappoint! It is so cool to see all the monsters from R. L. Stine’s stories come together in one action-packed movie. Jack Black does a wonderful job playing R. L. Stine, and the whole cast really brings the Goosebumps series to life on the big screen! The movie features all my favorite Goosebumps monsters and shows Stine’s huge imagination and creativity to the fullest. I was hanging on the edge of my seat and wishing it would never end!

Goosebumps Movie

Photo courtesy of Sony Pictures

At one point in the movie, the R. L. Stine character says, “A good story has three parts: the beginning, the middle, and the twist!” I think that quote sums up the movie for me because it includes all of my favorite classic Goosebumps moments while also ending with a shocking twist! Sorry, no spoilers! You have to wait until October 16 when the movie comes to theaters.

Goosebumps movie

photo courtesy of Sony Pictures

If you were writing your own Goosebumps story, which monsters would you include? Would you keep all the classic characters or make up your own? And what fun twist would you throw in to take readers on your exciting and spooky journey?

Let us know the details of your Goosebumps story in the Comments below, and remember not to be too graphic or scary for kids younger than you!

Megan, STACKS Intern

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8. Back-to-School Tips

Back to SchoolQuick Tips for Back-to-School

AmusedBrain4 has some back-to-school tips for freshman on the Reading Buzz Board, but they can really help for any grade, so take a look and see what you think.

Ahhhh, so school is just around the corner. I thought I would give some quick tips for those who are starting their first year of high school . . .

  1. Don’t sign up for more than 2 Honors classes your first year. You might regret taking too many.
  2. It’s okay to make new friends.
  3. Don’t stress yourself out over school work. I know it can get overwhelming but you don’t want to look back on your first year and remember hating it.
  4. If you have been studying for hours IT’S OKAY TO TAKE A BREAK. Go out with some friends, and eat lots of ice cream. Ice cream makes everything better!
  5. If you get a bad grade on something remember that someone else probably did worse.
  6. Make sure you eat lunch! (Even if you only have 20 minutes, grab a yogurt or some fruit.)
  7. Have at least one fun class like band or art or something you love.
  8. After-school clubs are worth it. It can be scary joining stuff but trust me, you won’t regret it.
  9. Try new things. Join the school play, or marching band, or something you’ve never thought of trying. Freshman year is a year for you to figure out what you want to do.
  10. Lastly, don’t let one bad teacher ruin your year. It’s just one class, and it won’t ruin your grades.

Do you think these tips will help you this school year? Whatever grade you are starting this year, tell us your tips in the Comments! Happy new school year!

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

 

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9. El Deafo

el deafoNew El Deafo Book Trailer!

Have you seen STACKS Writer En-Szu’s awesome video for El Deafo by Cece Bell? If you love hilarious graphic novels about unusual superheroes, watch this video!

el deafo book trailer

Tell us what you think in the Comments! Are you already a fan of El Deafo?

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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10. Fly Guy Would You Rather

fly guySuper Fly! Fly Guy Would You Rather . . .

In the Fly Guy series, boy meets fly, and a beautiful friendship is born. Fly Guy is extremely smart and even knows how to say the boy’s name (“Buzz”). They have hilarious (and sometimes slightly gross) adventures together in school, at restaurants, picnics, and even when Fly Guy gets married to Fly Girl, Buzz and Fly Guy are eventually reunited. So take a buzz at our Fly Guy Would You Rather below.

Would you rather . . .

1. Be a fly guy OR lightning bug?

2. Go swimming in someone’s soup OR chocolate pudding pie?

3. Be able to talk to animals OR transform into animals?

4. See Fly Guy team up with Spider-Man OR Ant-Man?

5. Have a FLY fly up your nose OR a LADYBUG?

6. Have a Fly Guy video game OR a Fly Guy movie?

7. Have the next book be American Ninja Fly Guy OR Fly Guy Dances with the Stars?

Leave your answers in the Comments below and let us know what you think of the Fly Guy books!

-Ratha, STACKS Writer

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11. Bunk’d, Jessie Spin-Off Show

BUNK'D - Disney Channel's "Bunk'd" stars Karan Brar as Ravi, Skai Jackson as Zuri and Peyton List as Emma. Bunk’d: Disney Channel’s New Jessie Spin-Off Show

Emma, Ravi, and Zuri Ross leave their extravagant New York City penthouse and head off to Camp Kikiwaka, a rustic summer camp in Maine where their parents met as teenagers. The Ross kids are complete fish out of water in their new setting and must band together for support.

Emma and Ravi step into new roles as CIT’s (Counselor in Training), learning how to be resourceful, responsible role models to their campers. Lou, the cheerful head counselor, and Xander, the camp heartthrob, step in to show them the ropes. Meanwhile, Zuri makes new friends with her fellow campers.

MIRANDA MAY, SKAI JACKSON, PEYTON LIST in Bunk'd

Photo credit Disney Channel/Greg Gayne

Together the Ross kids and their friends must navigate the hijinks and curveballs thrown by the owner of the camp, Gladys, who with the help of her sneaky niece, Hazel, is out to get them because of her decades-old rivalry with their mom. Nevertheless, along with their new friends, Emma, Ravi, and Zuri adapt to their new “home away from home” and settle into their exciting new lives at Camp Kikiwaka.

Have you seen this show yet? Are you a fan? Is it as good as Jessie? Leave a Comment and tell us what you think.

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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12. August STACKS Star

Stacks starsMeet MerryAngel32!

August Stacks Star

Merryangel32

This month’s STACKS Star is MerryAngel32! She loves to read horror books like Goosebumps and if she could be any fruit in the world, she would be an apple because it’s crunchy, sweet, has small seeds and is so “easy-peasy” to cut. One thing she would love to give every child across the world is access to a free library so that everyone can read books! Read more about MerryAngel32 in our STACKS Blast newsletter!

Now, I have two super-serious questions to ask you:

1. Would YOU like a chance to become the next star?
2. How well do you know Harry Potter?

This month’s questions are all about Harry Potter and I want to see how many of you know, like, really, really know the books, characters, and movies. If you know all the answers to the questions, then you might become the next STACKS Star! I will be picking a random user who answers these questions correctly:

  1. When is Harry Potter’s birthday? (Hint: It just passed.)
  2. Where is Harry’s first bedroom located in the Dursley’s home?
  3. How many siblings does Ron Weasley have?
  4. What do Hermione Granger’s parents do for a living?
  5. Who is the real Half-Blood Prince?
  6. Besides English, what other language does Harry speak?
  7. Who is the youngest Quidditch player of all time at Hogwarts?
  8. In Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, who are the last two competitors standing inside the maze?
  9. What does Hagrid do to Dudley after he sees him eating Harry’s birthday cake on Harry’s 11th birthday?
  10. What is Voldemort’s real name?

Good luck everyone and leave your answers to these HP questions in the Comments! Don’t forget to update your profile and avatar to make it look your best in case you are the next STACKS Star!

Sandy, STACKS Staffer

 

 

 

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13. Book Wars: The Maze Runner vs. The Selection

Book warsWait! Hold it right there. Have you ever read two completely different books and noticed similarities between the two? If this sounds like you, proceed to read the article below.

On the surface, the two books I’m comparing would seem to have nothing in common. In fact, just by looking at the covers, one would assume them to be polar opposites. The Maze Runner (for ages 12 and up) by James Dashner is a futuristic fantasy. The Selection (for ages 12 and up) by Kiera Cass is a romantic story about a competition for the prince’s hand in marriage. What could these two books possibly have in common?

In The Maze Runner, the main character, Thomas, is sent to the Glade, not necessarily by force but because he thinks it is for “the good of the people.” Same thing goes for America, the main character in The Selection, whose choice ensures her family’s safety. America despises the idea of going to the palace, but goes along with it for her family, just as Thomas goes into the elevator to the Maze. Both want to run away from their surroundings; one desires to leave from a death trap of monsters, the other from frilly dresses. Thomas and America both want to “escape” but not leave the friends they’ve made. Both situations require survival skills as well. Thomas must know how to fight monsters, and America must know how to curtsey in heels. These stories are different, but their underlying plots have similarities.

The Maze Runner and The Selection both have bad guys as well. All the people in the Glade are faced with WICKED, an organization dedicated to making their lives as painful as possible. Thomas’ chances of escaping are in their clenched fists. America is also confronted with challenges herself. In addition to the snooty girls and king determined to send her home, there are rebel groups storming the palace and turning it into a war zone.

Oh, and don’t forget the sidekicks! America’s new best friend is Marlee, whose enthusiasm can light up a room. Her sweetness makes her a very likable companion. This reminds me of Chuck (Thomas’ new best friend), whose personality is always fun to be around. Thomas always seems to smile with happiness when around him. Both are kind and befriend the protagonists on their first day. However, their fates are anything but happy!

As you can see, the similarities are carried throughout both stories. Next time you read two different books, see what’s hidden in the pages.

Emma Rose, Scholastic Kids Council

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14. Beach Trivia Quiz

question marksSoak up the Sun Beach Trivia Quiz!

Have you been to the beach this summer for vacation? Or maybe you have dreams of going to the beach . . . living on the beach . . . starring in Teen Beach 2? You know the usual. Well if you love the beach, try “digging deeper” into our beach trivia . . .

1. Ocean tides are pulled by the _________. (Hint: it’s not the sun.)

jellyfish

Sea Nettles photo by Kirt Edblom

2. Why do jellyfish sting? A) To capture prey and act as a defense mechanism. B) They are really mean. C) Their stingers are painful, and they just want to get rid of them.

3. What should you do if you get stung by a jellyfish? A) Scream! B) Remain calm and tell a grown up or find a lifeguard. C) Rub the stingers off with your hand.

4. Name the two ingredients required to build a sandcastle.

5. Would you rather . . .  surf waves with a boogie board OR jump over waves?

6. Name a popular surfing destination. A) Hawaii. B) Germany. C) Egypt. D) New York City.

punaluuhawaii

Punalu’u, Hawaii photo by Ryan Lackey

7. What does “Hang 10” mean?

8. Name the type of bird that may swoop down and eat all your potato chips at the beach.

9. There is a place in Hawaii where the beach is black. What causes it to be black? A) People littering. B) Basalt from volcanoes. C) It is painted. D) Animals . . . um . . . you know!

See below for the answers!

1. Ocean tides are pulled by the _________. ANSWER: Tides are pulled by the moon. The gravity of the moon pulls the water towards it. That’s what gives us the high tide. We have a high tide when the moon is up (dusk until early morning) and a low tide when the moon is on the other side of the earth. So basically you end up with a bulge of water being pulled towards the moon, and a bulge away from it.

2. Why do jellyfish sting? ANSWER: To capture prey and act as a defense mechanism. When their tentacles encounter prey (or a human!) they fire tiny stingers filled with venom. It will paralyze the prey, but for humans, it will just really, really hurt.

3. What should you do if you get stung by a jellyfish? ANSWER: Remain calm and tell a grown up or lifeguard. Most jellyfish stings are fine, except for the pain! But when it stings, it’s usually not just one stinger, but thousands of very tiny stingers called nematocysts that continuously release venom into your body. Sometimes they can be rinsed off with sea water. They can also be scraped off using something like a credit card (NOT your hand unless you want to get re-stung!). Then it might help to soak the area in vinegar, or use a cream pain reliever.

4. Name the 2 ingredients required to build a sandcastle. ANSWER: Sand and water!

5. Would you rather . . .  surf waves with a boogie board OR jump over waves? ANSWER: No wrong answer! Whatever floats your boat!

6. Name a popular surfing destination. ANSWER: Hawaii! There is also good surfing all over the world from Australia to Canada, to Costa Rica to Japan. The perfect waves are where wind, swell (a slow continuous movement of waves), tides, and seafloor meet.

7. What does “Hang 10” mean? ANSWER: When you’re surfing and all 10 toes hang off the front of your surf board. (Cowabunga!)

8. Name the type of bird that may swoop down and eat all your potato chips at the beach. ANSWER: Sea gulls. Don’t leave food out in the open because they are known to be very aggressive going after snacks!

9. There is a place in Hawaii where the beach is black. What causes it to be black?  ANSWER: Basalt from volcanoes, and the waves eroding volcanic rock and ash.

What are your favorite things about the beach? Let us know in the Comments, and watch out for sharks!

-Ratha, STACKS Writer

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15. Fatboy Dog Create a Caption

Create a captionFatboy Dog Create a Caption

Woof! Woof! This dog’s name is Fatboy and he seems like he might have gotten into some trouble! What would you say he might be thinking?

Fatboy dog

Here’s my caption:

“I thought any food that fell off of your plate was mine!”

Write YOUR caption in the Comments below!

Megan, STACKS Intern

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16. SPONSORED POST Pan

PAN Sponsored PostThis Blog Post Is Sponsored by Warner Bros. Pictures.

Hey! You look like the type who might appreciate a good book, is that right? You might even like a good origin story—the story of how a hero ends up with incredible abilities!

Levi Miller as PANIn the new live-action film Pan (not yet rated), opening October 9, Peter (played by Levi Miller) is a mischievous 12-year-old boy with a rebellious streak, but in the bleak London orphanage where he has lived his whole life, those qualities do not exactly fly. One night, Peter is spirited off to a fantastical world of pirates, warriors, and fairies called Neverland. There he is tasked with defeating the ruthless pirate Blackbeard (played by Hugh Jackman) to save Neverland and discover his true destiny—to become the hero who will forever be known as Peter Pan.Hugh Jackman in Pan

Tell us about the most amazing book you’ve ever read in the Comments section below.

Plus, check out the Book Explorer Quiz to discover more great books! And while we’re at it, watch the movie trailer and read more about Pan in this mini movie magazine.

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17. Diary of a Wimpy Kid 10 News

Diary of a Wimpy KidBook 10 Is Coming Out November 3, 2015!Diary of a Wimpy Kid Old School

Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Old School by Jeff Kinney

Life was better in the old days. Or was it? That’s the question Greg Heffley is asking as his town voluntarily unplugs and goes electronics-free. But modern life has its conveniences, and Greg isn’t cut out for an old-fashioned world.

With tension building inside and outside the Heffley home, will Greg find a way to survive? Or is going “old school” just too hard for a kid like Greg?

Diary of a Wimpy Kid 10

illustrations and text copyright Jeff Kinney

Are you excited for the new Wimpy Kid book coming out in November? Leave a Comment!

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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18. Amusement Park Ride Personality Quiz

amusement parkWhat Amusement Park Ride Are You?

Going to amusement parks is my most favorite summertime activity (aside from reading a billion books by the beach). So our next quiz for y’all is an Amusement Park Ride Personality Quiz! Are you a wild upside down roller coaster, a hot-headed bumper car, or a silly Tilt-a-Whirl? Take the quiz to find out!

  1. Your amusement park treat of choice is a) cotton candy. b) nachos. c) churros. d) hot dogs. e) a slushie.
  2. Your amusement park must-have is a a) cute outfit. b) backpack. c) bottle of sunscreen. d) baseball hat. e) cool sunglasses.
  3. Your favorite animal of the following is the a) koala. b) shark. c) giraffe. d) otter. e) tiger.
  4. You are most afraid of a) heights. b) clowns. c) gross bugs. d) the dark. e) zombies.
  5. Your favorite summertime outdoor activity is a) freeze tag. b) jungle gym acrobatics. c) tennis. d) swimming. e) water balloon fight.
  6. Your favorite rainy day summertime activity is a) learning a new craft. b) bowling. c) reading indoors. d) watching movies with your friends. e) napping.
  7. You most enjoy the color a) yellow. b) silver. c) blue. d) purple. e) red.
  8. Your favorite video game involves a) dancing or singing. b) racing cars. c) solving puzzles. d) building or creating something. e) combat fighting.
  9. Your dream ride would be a a) unicycle. b) really, really fast sports car. c) hot air balloon. d) sailboat. e) motorcycle.

Read on for your results!

If you picked mostly A’s, you are a TILT-A-WHIRL.
Your imagination has no limit! You are a free-spirited soul who never has to look far to find adventure. You are not only great at expressing yourself, you are also able to understand other people’s feelings well and be a great source of support. You’re usually able to find something to smile about—and you’re great at making other people smile, too!

If you picked mostly B’s, you are an UPSIDE-DOWN ROLLER COASTER.
You’re a daredevil!  You have never been afraid to speak your mind or try weird, new things. Even people you’re not friends with yet admire how brave you are! You are loud, you are proud, and you can never sit still. You don’t follow trends; you start them.

If you picked mostly C’s, you are a FERRIS WHEEL.
You aren’t flashy or noisy, and sometimes you can be overshadowed by louder people, but you are a steady and true friend. What’s more perfect than that? You are thoughtful and find joy in the little things, like first snowfall or a great hug from your best friend. You are calm, strong, and wise. Your levelheadedness will get you really, really far in life. You go, Ferris Wheel!

If you picked mostly D’s, you are the LOG FLUME.
Like the Log Flume, you’re popular because people think you’re lovable and fun. You don’t put on airs or try to be trendy. You’re just yourself, and people love inviting you to things because you’re so easy to get along with. You are reliable and know how to have a lot of fun without breaking any rules! Now that’s skill.

If you picked mostly E’s, you are BUMPER CARS.
You know what you like, and you stick to it! Nobody is as tough as you, but your friends all know that you are the most loyal person ever and will stand up for them no matter what. You always have something interesting to say, and your lively personality inspires people around you to believe in themselves, too. Bravo, Bumper Cars!

What amusement park ride personality are you? Share your result in the Comments below!

See ya around,

En-Szu

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19. Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library

Escape from Mr. Lemoncello's LibraryNew Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library Book Trailer!

Have you seen STACKS Writer En-Szu’s awesome video for Escape from Mr. Lemoncello’s Library by Chris Grabenstein? If you have ever thought about being trapped overnight in the coolest library in the world, watch this video!

Escape from Mr. Lemoncell's Library Video

Tell us what you think in the Comments! Are you already a fan of Mr. Lemoncello’s Library?

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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20. Meet August Maturo from Girl Meets World

Girl Meets World stars August Maturo as Auggie AUGUST MATURO from Girl Meets World (Auggie)

Q: Is there an actor or an actress that you would love to guest star on Girl Meets World?
August: I would say President Obama and the First Lady to guest star because I really want to meet them.

Q: Describe Sabrina and Rowan in real life.
August: Rowan is always hugging and kissing me, and whenever I’m in the hallway she just runs and grabs me and calls me her love. And Sabrina is just like a little bird singing in the halls always.

AUGUST MATURO in Girl Meets World

Photo credit: DISNEY CHANNEL/Kelsey McNeal

Q: Your birthday’s in August, right?
August: Yeah. That’s not why I’m named August. My mom was reading in the magazine that she saw . . .
Mom: Mariska Hargitay was talking about her son, August, who was just born.
August: And she was going to name me Ocean. And she saw that and she said, “I’m going to name my kid August.”
Mom: My husband’s a surfer and I wanted to name him Ocean, but I just didn’t have the guts because it was so different and everyone was giving me a hard time. “You can’t name your kid Ocean.” So then I said, “Ok, I’ll name this one August,” when I saw the name. But then when I found out I was having another boy, I’m like, “I don’t care what anybody thinks. I’m naming him Ocean. I like the name.” I’ll set the trend. I don’t need to follow a trend. I let Auggie pick through the names.
August: It was Ocean or Silas, and I picked Ocean. And she didn’t care. She just named him Ocean. Don’t think what other people think of you.

Q: What is the thing that you’re most proud about doing?
August: Being a big brother to Ocean, and taking care of him, making sure that he’s always safe so he can learn more life lessons.

Q: What has made you laugh really hard?
August: Oh, every single day, every single night, any time, Ocean. He always makes me laugh – his Vines, his everything, really funny. I just have him do things and I videotape him with my iPad for the movie and we do it and it’s just . . . funny.

Q: Obviously you love acting but would you like to be anything else when you grow up?
A
ugust: Yeah. I would like to be lots of things when I grow up. Oh, top two? I’ll say . . . world traveler and . . . singer.

Q: What kind of music do you like?
August: Sabrina Carpenter’s new album. It’s called Eyes Wide Open. Her album is really good.
Mom:  It’s great. What’s your favorite song on that one?
August: “Right Now”.

Q: During the breaks on Girl Meets World, do you hang out together?
August: In my dressing room, if Ocean was there, I would play with him. If not, I would just play with my cast mates if they’re done with school and they’re not in rehearsal or filming.

Q: Have you ever been bullied?
August: Well, this boy bullied me. His mom died. He was bullying me because I had a mom and he didn’t have a mom.
Mom: We think that’s probably why he was bullying. So we explained to Auggie why maybe this boy was doing that because he was still hurting about losing his mom.

Q: If you could have only one toy, one game, one book, what would you like?
August: I would like an iPad that has lots of apps. It has all the apps in the world. I could get to it quickly. I wouldn’t have to swipe up to turn it on. Its battery would never die. It would still be at 100% and the memory would never get full.

Q: What is your favorite TV show?
August: How It’s Made – it’s on the Science Channel – because I just want to see how everything works and how it’s made. I want to be a scientist when I grow up, too.

Q: What do you do on your YouTube channel?
August: We do science videos. I have done “Rubber Egg and Chicken Bone”. It’s when you turn the egg – you don’t take the shell off, not hard boiled, just a regular egg – into rubber and a chicken bone, the leg, into rubber too. And you put them both in vinegar and the vinegar eats the calcium and it’s rubber.

We’ll do crazy science experiments, too. Ocean was saying, “Put this clay in a cup, mix it and put baking soda in it and it’s a weird experiment.”

Q: Do you have a favorite book now?
August: The Wayside School because it has lots of tales about the students and it’s really funny. It’s really funny.

Q: You actually read your scripts. When did you start doing that?
August: Yeah. I learned to read and write when I was two. I got a typewriter for Christmas and I can write notes and I’m going to write a script. I’m writing books too. I made my first book already. It’s called Uncle Cheese, and it’s about my uncle Steve. Because the three triplets that I have that are cousins can’t pronounce that so instead they call him “Uncle Cheese.”

Q: What grade are you in?
August: I’m turning eight this year. So I should be in third. But I’ve been in kindergarten for two years. I switched schools and they made me go back to kindergarten. Then I skipped second grade. When I’m going to turn eight I should’ve been in third grade, but in reality it’s fourth.
Mom: So he’ll be 16 when he graduates high school.

Q: Do you have advice for kids who might want to become an actor like you?
August: Get an agent and follow your dreams.

Interview by Marie Morreale

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21. Roller Coaster Name Generator

roller coasterWhat’s Your Roller Coaster Name?

I’m a sucker for a great roller coaster ride. Did it leave me winded? Did I almost puke? Did my soul leave my body at least once? Did I scream, “WHY DID I AGREE TO GET ON THIS RIDE?!” If yes to all the above, that was the BEST RIDE EVER! I’m always the one saying, “That was terrifying! Can we do that again? Pretty please?”

The major bummer about roller coaster rides, though, is that there are always waiting lines for the good ones that go on forEVER. If you’re looking for a way to pass the time, we would like to unveil our extremely awesome Roller Coaster Name Generator!!! Extra extreme! Extra wild!

If you’re new to our name generators, have no fear. Here’s how this works: Find the first initial of your first name in the list below. That word is your roller coaster first name. Then look at the list of the months below and find the month of your birthday. That word is your roller coaster last name. For example, my name begins with an E and my birthday is in March, so my new roller coaster name would be Sky Fury!

  • A – Monster
  • B – Crazy
  • C – Battle
  • D – Air
  • E – Sky 
  • F – Haunted
  • G – Iron
  • H – Mystic
  • I – Parachute
  • J – Magic
  • K – Pirate
  • L – Power
  • M – Rocket
  • N – Storm
  • O – Whitewater
  • P – River
  • Q – Nitro
  • R – Lightning
  • S – Dragon
  • T – Cannonball
  • U – Extreme
  • V – Slingshot
  • W – Space
  • X – Wipeout
  • Y – Cosmic
  • Z – Avalanche
  • JANUARY – Adventure
  • FEBRUARY – Loops
  • MARCH – Fury
  • APRIL – Drop
  • MAY – Whip
  • JUNE – Escape
  • JULY – Flyer
  • AUGUST – Runner
  • SEPTEMBER – Express
  • OCTOBER – Boomerang
  • NOVEMBER – Racer
  • DECEMBER – Chariot

Don’t forget to share your new Roller Coaster name in the Comments section below!

See ya later,

En-Szu (a.k.a. Sky Fury)

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22. Harry Potter Would You Rather

Harry Potter StampHarry Potter Would You Rather

EnergeticGriffin20 posted this Harry Potter Would You Rather Quiz on the Harry Potter Message Board.

Would You Rather . . . 

  1. Be a Slytherin or Gryffindor?
  2. Be a Hufflepuff or Ravenclaw?
  3. Get stuck in the Chamber of Secrets for 10 minutes or get stuck in a closed room with Dementors for 10 minutes?
  4. Be Professor Dumbledore or Professor McGonagall?
  5. Be a Quidditch player or not?
  6. Study Charms or Potions?
  7. Have a detention with Professor Snape or Professor Umbridge?
  8. Live with Harry Potter your whole life or live with Hermione your whole life?
  9. Be a professor at Hogwarts or a student at Hogwarts?

Leave your answers in the Comments and go visit the Harry Potter Message Board to join the conversation.

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23. New Magnus Chase Series from Rick Riordan

the sword of summerThe First Book in the New Magnus Chase Series Comes Out October 6, 2015!

If you are a Percy Jackson fan wondering what to read next, then Rick Riordan has just solved your problem! He is the author of the Percy Jackson series, and he is writing a NEW series about a NEW demi-god. Get ready to meet Magnus Chase!

Book #1: The Sword of Summer

Magnus Chase has seen his share of trouble. Ever since that terrible night two years ago when his mother told him to run, he has lived alone on the streets of Boston, surviving by his wits, staying one step ahead of the police and truant officers.

One day, someone else tracks him down—his uncle Randolph, a man his mother had always warned him about. Randolph starts rambling about Norse history and Magnus’s birthright: a weapon that has been lost for thousands years. And also, Magnus’ father was a Norse god.

But he doesn’t have time to consider it all before a fire giant attacks the city, forcing him to choose between his own safety and the lives of hundreds of innocents . . .

DUN DUN DUUUUNN! *dramatic sound effect*

Will you be reading this new series by the author of Percy Jackson, Heroes of Olympus, and Kane Chronicles? Leave a Comment!

Sonja, STACKS Staffer

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24. Disney Descendants Video Interview

Disney DescendantsMeet Cameron Boyce, Sofia Carson, and Booboo Stewart from Descendants

Attention villains and heroes alike! The new Disney Channel movie Descendants premieres Friday, July 31, at 8 p.m.! Are you excited to see what happens after “happily-ever-after?” Well, I got the chance to sit down with Cameron, Sofia, and Booboo and discuss their roles in the movie!

BOOBOO STEWART, DOVE CAMERON, CAMERON BOYCE, SOFIA CARSON, MITCHELL HOPE, SARAH JEFFERY

Image credit: Disney Channel/Jack Rowand

It was a blast getting to know Cameron, Sofia, and Booboo. I could see the camaraderie and friendship between them as they poked fun at each other and laughed together. They all reminded me in good, not evil, ways of their characters in Descendants. It was clear how much they loved creating this movie. Watch my exclusive videos with the stars below!

They started off with some words of wisdom about lessons fans can take away from Descendants. Apparently, this movie has a lot to teach you about growing up and becoming your own person.

Things became even more interesting when I asked what they wished they had known before filming the movie. Watch their funny responses here. Seems like Cameron Boyce did not like wearing that tight leather jacket!

Want to see more videos? Descendants stars reveal their favorite villains, other villain’s kids they would like to meet, glimpses into their own childhoods, second chances, and what it means to be the fairest of them all!

I could have hung out with these awesome stars all day, and I can’t wait to see Descendants! Leave a Comment about the interview and what about Descendants you’re most excited to see!

Megan, STACKS Intern

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25. Writitng Prompt: Reader Rejects

Writing PromptWriting Prompt: Do you give up on bad books?

You expect a book to be totally amazing, and you eagerly tear into the first few chapters only to discover . . . the book is utterly disappointing!!! Reader reject!

Either it’s completely boring, or not what you expected, or it started off great but now it can’t seem to hold your interest. What do you do? We want to know for today’s Writing Prompt . . .

Do you give up on bad books . . . or do you finish every book you start?

Bare your soul and tell us about your rejected reads in the Comments below!

- Ratha, STACKS Writer

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