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Chess Universe App The New Chess Experience, Now Available for iOS and Android – News Anyway

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Are you ready to take a dive into a completely new world of chess?

Chess Universe is not just an ordinary chess game. Its built by gaming experts and chess grandmasters with the idea of presenting the best of both worlds in a unique, gamified chess adventure. It boasts a design and User Experience for the modern generation, while remaining true to the essence of chess.

The days when chess was perceived as a hard and boring game are numbered, because Chess Universe is all about FUN!

Everyone can progress and thrive in Chess Universe. If you are a newbie or an experienced player, if you want to play online or offline, against real live players or against a computer and want to have tons of fun, you have come to the right place. Oh, you just want to solve chess puzzles? Visit the Chess Academy and raid the Checkmate Maze Fischers Kingdom, Sacrifice pit

Earn your own collection of avatars and use your favorite avatars in live games.

Have fun communicating with your opponents during the games with animated emoticons and cannons. And take your pets with you to the games! After all, everyone needs the support of loved ones!

This new mobile chess game will definitely make a chess player out of you. If youve ever wanted to try chess, now is the time.

The game is free and available for both stores iOS and Android!

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Chess Universe App The New Chess Experience, Now Available for iOS and Android - News Anyway

The Case of the Purloined Picture (Christopher Bush) – stopthefud

The purloined picture is by Zurbarn, and may hold a clue to the murder of a town councillor found bashed and buried in a woodpile. Travers, visiting a country cousin, spends most of his time playing bridge and buying antiques.

Bush produced a string of boring books after WWII: Missing Men, Second Chance (both 1946), Curious Client (1947), Housekeepers Hair (1948) and Seven Bells (1949). (From this period, only the lightweight Haven Hotel is moderately entertaining.) Purloined Picture is one of Bushs more tedious books: the first four chapters, Travers admits, are only a kind of prelude, and maybe a dull one at that, and the rest of the book is equally dull. The problem is pedestrian, the detection vague, the suspects faceless, and the solution more convoluted than clever. Skip it.

The book was indifferently received in the United States. While critics acknowledged Bushs ingenuity (as brilliant a solution to a devious alibi-breaking puzzle as we are likely to see for some time), they also complained of the slow pace: Readers for whom the serial reporting of each infinitesimal fragment of a forward move has no charms will slowly fall by the wayside as the maze progresses (New York Times); Sleuths speculations and endless anecdotal asides make cold-molasses pace. Fuddy-duddy, but O.K. (Saturday Review of Literature).

1949 Macdonald (UK)

When Ludovic Travers went to stay with his cousin Bernard Ampling, in the East Anglian village of Stepford, he forgot about crime in favour of golf, bridge and his hosts enthusiasm for antiques. As in all country places there seemed to be one or two curious local undercurrents the feud between Councillor Drew and old Corbit for instance but nothing to concern a mere visitor. Nothing to concern him until he made two discoveries on the same day. First, he found himself looking at a picture that should have been in a distant village church. Second, he was able to identify the sallow young man whose appearance about the district had seemed oddly familiar. It was a prelude both to murder and the timely arrival of Superintendent George Wharton. Our own readers label this new casebook as Vintage, and it is written in Major Bushs best manner.

Observer (Maurice Richardson, 13th December 1949): Ludovic Travers on a quiet holiday in East Anglia, catching the bus into Ipswich and going to bridge parties, runs into a neat little murder with strong vengeance motive.

Kirkus (1st January 1951, 60w)

New Yorker (20th January 1951, 110w): A superior puzzle, but a little unfair, perhaps, in that the reader couldnt possibly solve it himself.

NY Times (Elizabeth Bullock, 21st January 1951, 150w): Travers combines his talents in a mixture of about six parts of brilliant analysis and one part inspiration, and comes up with as brilliant a solution to a devious alibi-breaking puzzle as we are likely to see for some time. However, readers for whom the serial reporting of each infinitesimal fragment of a forward move has no charms will slowly fall by the wayside as the maze progresses.

San Francisco Chronicle (L.G. Offord, 100w)

Sat R of Lit (27th January 1951): Queer goings-on in British village involve vacationing Ludovic Travers in riddles re stolen antiques and church pilferings and finally murder. Chess-puzzle type plus some erudition and plausible characters; but sleuths speculations and endless anecdotal asides make cold-molasses pace. Fuddy-duddy, but O.K.

NY Herald Tribune Bk R (28th January 1951, 180w): Mr. Bush writes the sort of mystery which the publishers describe as chess puzzles. One reads them slowly, but they are likeable because they pose a good mental problem. This one, however, is more intricate than ingenious and not quite up to Bushs usual standard.

Bookmark (March 1951)

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The Case of the Purloined Picture (Christopher Bush) - stopthefud

Online Games to Keep Your Mind Active – Pulse Headlines

One of the best ways to ensure that westay mentally sound well into old ageis by keeping our minds active. Whether thats by fully engaging with our work, throwing ourselves into new hobbies, or simply learning new things, an active brain is a healthy one.

Something that were perhaps all a little guilty of is spending too much unproductive time in front of a screen; but what if you could procrastinate in a way that would be beneficial for your brain? These games prove that having fun can be a great way to keep your grey matter moving.

Poker is famous for being the strategic thinkers game of choice, so signing up to an online provider is a good way to keep your mind busy.

Some sites keep the competition ramped up by featuring players on their game leader boards. For new players, this challenge can seem a little daunting, but they refresh their leader boards weekly so that even new sign-ups get a chance to compete. If youre already familiar with the rules then you might get the chance to see your name up there on the leader board, but even if you dont manage it at first, youll still be getting the benefits of a bit of mental exercise.

Poker playing encourages us to think on our feet, which can help to make us remain calmer in stressful situations. As well as this, our brains need to be sharp to look for patterns and to try to anticipate the other players next move. Using our brains in this multi-faceted way can help us to think more clearly, both in the game and in the rest of our lives.

In our increasingly global world, a second language is becoming more and more important. If youre looking for a change of career, then a second language is one of the most useful assets you can have on your CV, but even if youre happy in your career or already retired its a brilliant wayto keepyour mind active.

Whilst its certainly effective learning from a book or a series of DVDs, online games are actually getting the upper hand when it comes to effective learning. Interactivity is one of the ways that the things we learn sink into our brains the best. So, being able to play mini-games and interact with the environment as naturally as possible, has proven to be the best way of learning a new language.

Sites and apps like Duolingo and Babbel provide totally free language tuition and are as fun to use as they are effective.

Although chess is dwindling in popularity, the competition at the upper echelons is as fierce as ever. Perhaps its because Millennials have masses of computer games to play, and so the humble board games have lost their appeal. Whatever the reason, its high time that chess made a comeback. Its full of great strategic thinking and depending on how you choose to play it can be surprisingly fast-paced.

If the endless pondering over moves is what has put you off learning, then a great way to get past that is with online chess puzzles.

Themost popular site for learning chessallows you to choose whether youd like to play standard games against a computer, against a random opponent, or against somebody you know. The chatbox means that even if you live far apart you can keep in touch with somebody in a moreinteractive way than just texting or emailing.

Of course, if youd like to bolster up your skills first then there are timed chess puzzles available on, which typically require you to reach checkmate in the quickest time possible. They encourage you to be logical, strategic and fast-developing critical ways of thinking that are brilliant for your brain.

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Online Games to Keep Your Mind Active - Pulse Headlines

5 Best Chess Games for Android and iOS – Techlomedia

Chess is a popular indoor game that several people like to play. It is a board game played between two people. Now this board game is also available to play on computers and smartphones where you can play it against a computer player or against friends. If you are bored at home and want to enjoy chess, you can download a good chess game on your smartphone to play. If you are not sure about a good chess app, this article is recommending a few. Here is the list of best chess games for Android and iOs devices. You can download any of these chess games on your phone and enjoy the game.

Also see: Best Ludo Games for Android and iOS

Have a look at the list of best chess games for smartphones. This list contains chess games for Android and Chess games for iOS. You can download any of the games to play. Read the description to know more about a game.

This Chess app for Android and iOS lets people enjoy Chess on their smartphone. The app not just lets you play Chess, but also teaches you so that you can improve your skills. You can use this chess app to play chess with online players around the world or with your friends. You can also play against computer players to improve your game. It also gives you an option to analyze your game and learn where you went wrong. It has thousands of videos and interactive lessons from top Grandmasters along with interactive tutorials.

The game comes with 20+ themes for boards, pieces, and backgrounds for customized play options.

Download: Android | iOS

Lichess brings free online chess on your phone. The app claims that there are more than 150000 individual users on the app to play with. You can find players and challenge them for a game. You can also take part in arena tournaments. The game comes with the bullet, blitz, classical, and correspondence chess. You can practice with chess puzzles. When you do not have an active internet connection, you can also play offline with computer players.

This app is open-source and free to download for all.

Download: Android | iOS

Also see: Best Carrom Games for Android

Really Bad Chess is a different kind of chess game you must try if you love playing chess. It lets you play with totally random pieces. When I say random, it doesnt mean pieces at random places. It means you could get 8 Knights, 4 Bishops, and 3 pawns. It may look weird initially but you will surely like playing this random chess thing. Try this game if you think you are good at chess. If you are still learning, try other chess games on this list.

Download: Android | iOS

Play Magnus is also an interesting chess game for iOS and Android. This game gives you an opportunity to challenge World Champion Magnus Carlsen. No, he will not be playing against you. You will be playing against a computer player trained by Magnus Carlsen. If you perform well, you also get a chance to qualify to Play Magnus Live.

Download: Android | iOS

Chess Free is also an interesting free Chess game for Android and iOS. It supports 1 player and 2 player gameplay. So, you can play against your friends or challenge a computer opponent. The game claims to have a good AI engine with the configurable difficulty level. It also features board rotation for two player games. When you get a call or exit the app, it saves your game so you can always resume.

Download: Android | iOS

Wrap Up

This was the list of best chess apps for Android and iOS. If you want to learn chess and theres no one to help you, you can try installing a good chess app on your phone. This list has some good chess games for Android and iOS. If you are an expert in chess, I recommend you to try Really Bad Chess. Other games are also good for playing a regular chess game.

If you have any recommendations that I can add to this list, let me know using the comment. I will update this list to add a few more good Chess games.

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5 Best Chess Games for Android and iOS - Techlomedia

SwitchArcade Round-Up: ‘Kemono Heroes’ Review, Mini-Views Featuring ‘Unlock The King’, Today’s New Releases, the Latest Sales, and More – Touch Arcade

Hello gentle readers, and welcome to the SwitchArcade Round-Up for March 9th, 2020. In todays article, weve got a review of the recently-released Kemono Heroes, Mini-Views of a couple of puzzle games, summaries of the latest releases, and as usual a nice big list of sales to check out. Not so much news, but thats perhaps understandable given the general state of affairs at the moment. Lets check it out!

Kemono Heroes is a side-scrolling action-platformer that allows up to four players to team up using a variety of animal characters, each with their own unique ability to differentiate them. Wow, that is an extremely clinical description. The truth is that I ran through this game by myself in a single sitting, then ran through it again in multiplayer, and while I had a good enough time in both modes I cant say the experience really stuck with me. Its a solidly-built albeit somewhat brief action game, the kind of thing that used to crop up on mobile devices every now and then.

The story involves some sort of evil moon god turning your friends into stone. You set out as one of four characters to defeat the wicked deity and set things right again. In terms of basic functions, all four characters are similar. At the outset, they can jump, perform a melee attack, throw a ranged weapon, and use a screen-clearing magic attack. As you progress through the game, youll gain access to new tools and abilities like a grappling hook and block-destroying bombs. Each character also has one ability that is entirely their own. One character can shimmy along vines strewn about the stages, another can climb walls, another can glide, and the last can transform into copies of the enemies.

As you defeat enemies and open treasure chests in each stage, youll earn coins that you can spend at shops to upgrade your weapons, life meter, and magic attack. If youre playing alone, youll earn more than enough coins to upgrade everything before the end of the game, but the economy can be a little tighter in multiplayer. The multiplayer mode is more difficult in general, as the game scales its challenge based on how many people are playing. Boss battles that were a breeze in one-player were sometimes quite nasty with other players joining in. On the whole, though, Kemono Heroes is quite manageable.

I did find myself wishing the game had just a bit more to it. The overall length from start to finish isnt bad, but theres a whole lot of recycling of content included in that. On top of that, the unique animal abilities feel like an afterthought most of the time. Sure, you technically have access to marginally different routes, but its not like the games stages are very complex in their design. Its more a choice of sticking to the upper half of the screen versus the bottom half. And once you get the grappling hook, even that becomes largely moot.

Nevertheless, I did enjoy playing through Kemono Heroes. The presentation is nice, with some really gorgeous spritework to take in, and the controls are very responsive. The overall brevity and somewhat plain nature of the action mean that its not exactly the most memorable of experiences, and those going the multiplayer route are going to find the game a bit nasty in its difficulty in places. For the price point its currently at, it feels just a little on the slight side. But if youre looking for an enjoyable side-scrolling romp that to play with friends, Kemono Heroes may well fit the bill.

SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5

I like chess puzzles a lot, but I recognize that they can be a bit opaque for people who arent already familiar with the game of chess. Thats perhaps what makes Unlock The King such a clever little game. This is technically a batch of 100 chess puzzles, but theyre so bite-sized and abstract that I think the appeal here is much broader than usual. The idea in each puzzle is to move pieces to create a path for the king to reach the goal. Each board has a different shape and size to it, so youre not moving pieces around on a full board by any means. The pieces do follow standard chess rules of movement, but thats easy enough to pick up if you arent already familiar. As a big fan of logic puzzles I had a really good time completing this one, and for the price its a real steal.

SwitchArcade Score: 4/5

While Im not as big a fan of 3D Picross as I am of the regular variety, its safe to say that those who enjoy that particular subset are criminally under-served on the Switch. There are probably somewhere near twenty regular Picross games available on the platform, and unless Ive missed something along the way, I believe Voxelgram is the first 3D-style release. And its not bad at all. You get a good amount of puzzles for the price, and I like the way the game organizes them into little dioramas that get completed as you check off each puzzle. You get your choice of button controls or touch controls if youre playing handheld, with the latter generally working a lot better than the former. Unfortunately, those button controls take some real getting used to, and if youre playing on your TV youre stuck with them. Still, you can get used to them and if you do youll find this a rather pleasant whack at the 3D Picross concept.

SwitchArcade Score: 3.5/5

Lets hope Primrose Lake goes better than my visit to Jurassic Park. Anyway, sometimes a screenshot tells you almost everything you need to know about a game, and thats mostly the case here. You can easily see that this game is a Diner Dash-style time management deal where you need to serve customers the food they want before they get impatient and leave. You can also see by the text on the screenshot that this is a port of a mobile game. Indeed, you can play a bit of it for free on your mobile device, but the full game unlock IAP on the App Store is more expensive than what theyre charging here. Thats nice! And as for what the screenshot doesnt tell you? Theres a weird mystery story happening here that gets told as you complete the games 60 story stages. Well, its something.

Of all the mediocre top-down twin-stick shooters on the Switch, this is certainly one of the cheaper ones. It certainly looks the part. Anyway, battle endless waves until you finally succumb to the enemies, grab some weapon power-ups, customize your character, and above all try not to think of the better games in this genre you could be playing if you had only spent a few more dollars. There is support for a second player in local co-op if you want to drag a friend into this business.

(North American eShop, US Prices)

Tomorrow is Mario Day, or so were told these days. MAR10 and all that. In celebration, a handful of Mario-related games are enjoying some rare discounts at the moment, including the excellent Super Mario Maker 2. Aside from that bunch, lots of fresh sales sprung up over the weekend, with the coolest pick of the bunch being VA-11 Hall-A in my opinion. Horror fans will definitely want to check out the Amnesia Collection, as well. In the outbox, the Mega Man sale is coming to a close. It may be as many as four or five weeks before they go on sale again, so act now! Fans of the Hero Quest board game will want to check out Dark Quest 2 while its still cheap, as discounts on that one are a lot rarer than the average eShop title. Otherwise, feel free to save some money for whatever other fancy sales may come along later in the week.

Select New Games on Sale

Super Mario Maker 2 ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)Yoshis Crafted World ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)Mario & Sonic at the Olympic Games ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)Super Mario Party ($39.99 from $59.99 until 3/15)VA-11 Hall-A ($10.04 from $14.99 until 3/24)Deployment ($0.99 from $9.99 until 3/14)City of Brass ($6.99 from $19.99 until 3/16)Submerged ($1.99 from $9.99 until 3/16)Escape from the Universe ($0.99 from $9.99 until 3/22)Wuppo: Definitive ($9.99 from $14.99 until 3/20)Amnesia: Collection ($11.99 from $29.99 until 3/20)Troubleshooter ($2.39 from $2.99 until 3/26)Super Ping Pong Trick Shot ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Ping Pong Trick Shot Evolution ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Caveman Warriors ($3.24 from $12.99 until 3/26)Bingo ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)

Neonwall ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Super Hyperactive Ninja ($2.24 from $8.99 until 3/26)Animal Hunter Z ($4.99 from $9.99 until 3/26)Guess the Character ($1.01 from $2.99 until 3/26)Caterpillar Royale ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)V.O.I.D. ($0.99 from $3.99 until 3/26)Sushi Time! ($3.74 from $4.99 until 3/27)Furwind ($5.99 from $9.99 until 3/26)Battle & Crash ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Collide-a-Ball 2 ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Ellen ($4.79 from $7.99 until 3/26)Island Maze ($1.49 from $2.99 until 3/16)Safari Pinball ($1.49 from $2.99 until 3/26)Dungeon Shooting ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/26)Adventure Pinball Bundle ($4.49 from $8.99 until 3/26)

Build a Bridge! ($2.99 from $14.99 until 3/23)Tardy ($1.99 from $9.99 until 3/17)Atomic Heist ($1.49 fromm $7.99 until 3/17)Pixel Gladiator ($1.74 from $6.99 until 3/16)Spirit Roots ($2.44 from $6.99 until 3/16)Tactical Mind 2 ($1.49 from $4.99 until 3/17)Drawngeon ($3.49 from $4.99 until 3/16)Funny Bunny Adventures ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/16)Swordbreaker ($2.49 from $4.99 until 3/27)Welcome to Primrose Lake ($5.99 from $7.99 until 3/28)

Sales Ending Tomorrow, Tuesday, March 10th

AvoCuddle ($11.04 from $12.99 until 3/10)Dark Quest 2 ($5.49 from $10.99 until 3/10)Dead Dungeon ($0.99 from $4.99 until 3/10)Event Horizon ($1.49 from $5.99 until 3/10)Farabel ($1.99 from $9.99 until 3/10)Lines XL ($0.99 from $1.99 until 3/10)Mega Man 11 ($14.99 from $29.99 until 3/10)Mega Man Legacy Collection ($9.99 from $14.99 until 3/10)Mega Man Legacy Collection 2 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 3/10)Mega Man X Legacy Collection ($9.99 from $19.99 until 3/10)Mega Man X Legacy Collection 2 ($9.99 from $19.99 until 3/10)Sports Party ($4.99 from $39.99 until 3/10)

Thats all thats good for today, friends. Tomorrow has a couple of interesting new releases that well be checking out, and provided I have the time I do have a couple of reviews and Mini-Views Id like to post as well. Whatever news and new sales come along will be included as usual, of course. I hope you all have a solid Monday, and as always, thanks for reading!

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SwitchArcade Round-Up: 'Kemono Heroes' Review, Mini-Views Featuring 'Unlock The King', Today's New Releases, the Latest Sales, and More - Touch Arcade

School’s out, but the learning needn’t stop: teach your kids a new skill this half-term –

Twenty hours. This, according to TED speaker Josh Kaufman, is all it takes to become proficient at a new skill which makes half term an ideal time to take up something new.

Forget 10,000 hours; people get good at things with just a little bit of focused and deliberate practice, says Kaufman, who became good at the ukulele in just 20 hours.

The benefit of intensive learning over a week or two is clear: Children really recognise an improvement by the end, says Simon Yeo of Ninja Kids, which runs marital arts camps in London. They try the same challenges multiple times until they succeed, and when they do, they walk away with heads held higher, he says.

Plus, the resources required to learn a new skill, match those required in the modern workplace: adaptability, communication, presentation and innerconfidence.

We call it invisible learning, says Walter Kerr of Oppidan Education, which runs one-to-one mentoring and group workshops for children. Theyre focusing on things theyre not learning at school and picking up new social skills and confidence.

He adds that if you can provide a positive educational experience outside school, youll make their school life better.

For Kaufman, the biggest question is not whether to learn a new skill, but which one to choose. Its working out what lights you up, he says.

At a half-term pony camp, your child will master the arts of holding the reins, mucking out and grooming, while improving their balance and motor co-ordination, hand-eye co-ordination and core strength. Check your local stables for half-term availability; in London, Pony Weeks at Stag Lodge Stables are open to children aged five to 12, with two rides a day, stable management lessons and a gymkhana with rosettes (350 or 95 per day). Hoof Camp at Echo Equestrian in Buckinghamshire follows a similar format, with both indoor and outdoor pony-related fun (225).

If children learn the basics of cooking and preparing meals, they are likely to be more adventurous in what they eat, says Ruth Chubb, founder of the Three Bears Cookery Club in Derbyshire. This half term, shes running two-hourcookery workshops for budding chefs on Feb 17 and 20 (15), while at Abbey School in Reading, eight- to 14-year-olds will spend the week learning to cook a variety of sweet and savoury dishes (199.20). For those with deep pockets, Raymond Blanc is hosting a half-day Young Chefs Academy for youngsters aged 10 to 16 years on Feb 18 (185 per person) at Le Manoir aux QuatSaisons in Oxfordshire, plus anadult and child cookery day on Feb22 for seven to 12 years (555 per adult and child).

Sewing has fallen off the curriculum atschool, yet its a sustainable and incredibly useful skill that might alsoinspire a career in fashion (or surgery).The Village Haberdashery in north London is running half-term classes (40 per session including materials) where children can learn tosew hair accessories and pencil cases and screen-print cushions, while the Fashion School in Chelsea has a range of classes for children and teens, from a four-day dressmaking course, to pattern cutting, pyjama making anda dolls clothes workshop.

First aid is an essential life skill that can also bump up your teens CV. St John Ambulance runs regular first aid courses for 12 and overs if your child is under 16 you will need to go along with them. The course covers emergency life support procedures for babies, children and adults, including CPR and dealing with bleeding. Meanwhile, Daisy First Aid, founded by former police officer JenniDunman, is running courses for families and teenagers in Northampton, Tyneside, Bromley, Elstree, Croydon and Dulwich during this half term.

Or at least a climbing wall.Climbing builds physical strength and confidence and is a great opportunity for children to socialise through sport outside school. The Pinnacle Centre in Northamptonshire is running a climbing, caving and abseiling campthis half term for children aged six and up (from 31.50 per day), and Boulders in Cardiff is hosting a holiday club from 29 per day including lunch. For keen climbers who want to take their skills to the next level, centres including Glasgow Climbing Centreand Quay Climbingin Exeter are running National Indoor Climbing Award Scheme courses during half term.

In five days, your child could be playing a new musical instrument in a concert. The Strings Club is running half-term camps for children from reception age to year six in Islington (ukulele), Leamington Spa (ukulele), Tooting (violin), and Harborne, Birmingham (violin). Each camp includes expert tuition and interactive workshops and ends with a grand concert. For older children keen on a career in music, the Roundhouse, in Camden, is running drop-in sessions throughout half term for those aged 11 to 25 looking to explore DJing, music production, and podcasting.

A French camp sounds a little swotty but, according to former lawyer Caroline Eugenie, who founded Et Patati Patata language school in Hammersmith, learning a second language encourages cognitive, physical and emotional development and builds self-esteem. At her week-long, half-term French school, four- to 15-year-olds are immersed in French for 30 hours of counting, reading, acting, singing and football (400). The Little Language Academy in Gerrards Cross is running a two-day French camp where children aged three to 10 take part in baking, forest school and kungfu with a French twist (Feb 19 and 20, from 42 per day).

Martial arts require agility, co-ordination, determination and strength, and promote anti-bullying skills and courage, according to Simon Yeo, the jiu jitsu and ninjutsu black belt who runs Ninja Kids half-term camps in south-west London (35 per session). Children are encouraged to be brave and take risks, he says. Outside London, Fighting Fitness Judo Camp in Pyrford, Surrey, combines technical instruction with games and other sporting activities (185 for five days), while Blaze Martial Arts near Windsor is running a three-day high-energy martial arts camp (35 per day or 70 for three).

Self-motivation can be learnt, according to Walter Kerr and Henry Faber, the co-founders of mentoring organisation Oppidan Education. This half term theyre running a workshop series for children aged eight to 13 in London to help them understand how their brains work and develop pro-social skills, positive self-belief, cognitive creativity and flexibility of mind. If they learn these things now, they wont sleepwalk through school, points out Kerr. Workshops by sport stars and Cambridge academics focus on time management practice, debating, interview practice, podcast making and a Dragons Den. The company also offers one-to-one mentoring and summer residential courses in Henley and Hertfordshire.

Parents might not see skating as the most useful of skills, but it improves balance and fitness, builds confidence and takes a childs mind away from the pressures of school. Core Skate in Hereford is running a quad skate camp (quads are old-style roller skates) where kids aged seven and over will learn artistic, speed, hockey, jam and recreational skating and take part in a roller derby and roller disco each day (Feb 18-19 from 23, beginners welcome). In London, Baysixty6 is hosting a five-day skateboarding camp for beginners and intermediates aged seven and over (from 30 per day).

If your children are anything like mine, they will be obsessed with Bear Grylls and the idea of surviving on bugs in the wild. There are plenty of opportunities for young survivalists this half term; Bear Grylls Survival Academy, where children learn the basics to survive in the wild, is open to those eight and over staying at Park Dean resorts (12 for one session or 40 for four). Wild Thyme & Embers is hosting holiday bushcraft clubs at Milton Country Park and Wandlebury Nature Reserve in Cambridgeshire (38 per day). In Staffordshire, Trueways Survival is running a two-day Young Survivalist course for children aged seven and over with an adult (Feb 29, 195).

Playing chess is thought to improve childrens concentration, memory, creative thinking and problem-solving abilities and make them better at maths. Chess Entries for All is running a three-day holiday chess course with a chess master in Esher, Surrey, for players aged six to 15 years of any ability (30 per day). Wallace Chess is hosting four-day chess camps in Pimlico and Swiss Cottage for four- to 16-year-olds (230). The children will solve chess puzzles, listen to short lectures, learn about end games, strategies and tactics and explore clocks and notations.

For an animal-loving child, few things are more memorable than going behind the scenes at a local safari park. Close-up VIP experiences are now available at many parks and zoos. Woburn Safari Park is running half-day junior keeper experiences where youngsters aged eight to 15 help the keeperswith their daily routines, including mucking out, feeding and caring for the animals (229), and Edinburgh Zoo has some spaces available for its zookeeper experience. Longleat in Wiltshire also has a number of VIP opportunities for children to get closer to the animals, including a new koala experience, where they get to feed the bears breakfast (195,children aged eight to 15 must be accompanied by an adult).

Half term is the perfect time to ditch the stabilisers and learn to ride independently. Pop Cycle is running beginner courses across London (150 for four sessions), as is Betteshanger Park in Kent (17.50 per session), while Pop Cycle and Watford Cycle Hubare also running improver courses to teach more advanced riders to follow safely, negotiate obstacles and commute safely. Meanwhile, Cycle Experience inBerkshireand Better by Bike in Bristolare running the Bikeability training programme for olderchildren.

Alas, the National Youth Theatres celebrated start-up course for 11- to 14-year-olds is already sold out for thishalf term (hurry and book it up for May half term instead). Likewise, Globe Theatres As You Like It and A Midsummer Nights Dream workshops for five- to 12-year-olds, where children will learn about the characters through participation and play, are sold out so look for future dates, too. Sylvia Young Theatre School still has some places on its half-term camp. Young actors aged seven to 18 will work on audition techniques, singing, street dance, and drama (250). Perform, which runs camps across the country for children aged from four, is running three- to five-day courses culminating in a show on the final day (from 225).

If your child cant yet swim, a half-term crash course is a great use of time. Better Leisure Centresand Virgin Active gyms both run beginner and improver courses. Better Leisure Centres are also running week-long gymnastics and tennis camps for five- to 16-year-olds, while a five-day Paul Delgado tennis camp for six- to 12-year-olds is being held at The Royal Masonic School forGirls in Hertfordshire (204) and Power League is hosting week-long footballcamps across the country, with FA-accredited coaches, for children aged five to 14 (from 10 per day).

Paint Box Studios in Ravenscourt Park is hosting a week-long art camp for seven-and-overs, where children will work on their own projects, expanding their range of artistic techniques using acrylics, oils, charcoal, graphite pencils, pastels and collage (from 65 per day). In Cambridge, St Albans and Tonbridge, Central St Martins is running Future Creatives, a five-day course covering painting, drawing, sculpture, photography, printmaking and book arts (from 200).

Everyone should learn to program, as it teaches you how to think, Steve Jobs once reasoned. Code Kids courses teach children aged seven and over key programming and engineering concepts through Lego robotics, stop-motion animation, Minecraft coding and augmented/ virtual reality. No prior coding is necessary; the course takes place in Blackheath, Sevenoaks, Canterbury, and Wimbledon (from 49.50 per day). Meanwhile, in north-west London, Code Today is running three half days to five full days for those aged seven to 17 (from170).

Its not the best time of year to plant out your own garden, but all four RHS gardens are running Whatever the Weather half-term gardening clubs, with forest school sessions, tomato planting, and making weather wheels and wind socks. Dobbies Garden Centres are also running free workshops for children aged four to 10 at 67 branches across the country. Young gardeners will learn basic gardening skills and take part in games and activities.

Children are natural builders, which is why family workshops at the Royal Institute of British Architects (Riba) in Marylebone have proved a hit. This half term there is a Space Base workshop, where children aged six to 10 will research, design and build a place to live on the moon, plus a Home of Architecture workshop, where they will be asked to design a new Riba building. Both have sold out, but plan ahead for future events, including creative architecture workshops for secondary school children.

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School's out, but the learning needn't stop: teach your kids a new skill this half-term -

Why do so many kids quit chess in their teens? An advisory to parents – The Indian Express

Published: January 27, 2020 11:48:15 am

By Shilpa Mehra

Can India do to chess what Pakistan is doing to Scrabble? A 13-year-old Pakistani recently became the World Junior Scrabble Champion. So? India can claim a big group of Grandmasters, chess prodigies and several world champions in all age categories! Theres no comparison with Scrabble in Pakistan. Actually, there is: the dropout rate!

Indian kids who take up chess at age five and start playing Fide tournaments end up living a whirlwind childhood of travel, endless coaching, financial drain, school disruption, stress. Finally, if they dont make it to some level by age 13, they quit, returning to exams and a lost passion for chess.

This is a blueprint repeating quite often across India.

The child gives up and the parents give up after years of no great progress. The thing is, an invitation to a professional tournament offering prizes even in categories of under-7 age group doesnt tell you what it takes to play in such type of tournaments. The jazz surrounding the prize money offered hides the blood poured in training.

The chess dropout rate for every child that makes news in India is now in thousands. Our media and peer group tells us the only measure of chess ability is a professional tournament and Fide rating. No, thats not true.

To make chess a great part of your kids life you need to let them play it regularly at their level of choosing. Do you take your child out of music class just because theyre not singing like Lata Mangeshkar?

The competition is very tough in professional tournaments. And scoring zero after hours and days of struggle is no morale boost. Going there and being disappointed means chess as a tool for developing analytical skills, mathematical skills and personality goes out of a childs life.

The worth of chess is NOT measured only by a professional Fide rating performance in professional tournaments or national age-group championships.

After six years of a kid being on the professional chess circuit, suddenly you realise there is little scope for earning a livelihood out of chess. Its a painful reality if youve not known it when you started.

Read| Chess as a hobby or pro sport? A primer for newbie chess parents

That doesnt mean you shouldnt do chess. It means you should know what is realistically possible for your family and your kid and what the chess professional world is all about.

There is so much more to chess. Like Scrabble, for improving English, chess is a scholastic tool.

How do you measure the fun of seeing your first checkmate, or the joy of beating someone older, or the sheer beauty of tricky traps and combinations And, so much more. Its just about stretching the limits of a childs mind. The professional circuit must wait.

Thats where Scrabble wins in Pakistan. Theres hardly any dropout rate.

A Scrabble trainer on a BBC programme said recently the board game is viewed as a tool to improve English. No one is too bothered about competition. So a kid taking up Scrabble will continue to play it as a senior citizen and receive benefits for life.

However, an Indian kid taking up chess is more likely to quit in his teens losing out on all the allied benefits the board game brings just because he didnt get a high enough professional rating!

Heres a quick checklist to build your childs love for chess without getting into the circus of professional tournaments in a cycle of endless frustration.

1 Stop worrying about your kid being any less if hes not a chess newsmaker. Kids who do chess professionally spend 8-10 hours on the sport just like for any other profession. They have to travel the year round to requisite tournaments sacrificing much.

If your child shows exceptional inclination for chess and you want to get into the competition circuit ask yourself: Do you want your child to skip parties and school and train every day for so many hours?

If any coach or parent tells you that a kid can play at world or national level by training three hours a day and attending all birthday parties and doing school homework, they are lying. Period. Professional chess training is equal to professional training in any sport. Its not that it cant be done. Its about going pro when and if you are ready.

2 Dont rush to Fide-rated tournaments without having put in at least the minimum proper study and training worth of hard work. Wait even if it takes a couple of years.

3 Have realistic goals and allow the trainer to guide you. If you dont trust the trainer at your local club, change. A non-chess playing parent reading up the Internet is not comparable to a professional trainer teaching chess. Dont fool yourself into believing otherwise.

4 Stick to hobby level chess tournaments unless ready to study. Do local school-level tournaments.

5 Switch off TV at least once a week and start solving chess puzzles or doing group games as a family. Ask your kids to teach chess to his grandparents. Its great for senior citizens to keep the mind active. They can solve puzzles together if not keen on playing.

6 Dont compare your kid or tell him about how hes wasting time and money going to chess class. If he finds a flavour for chess let him go have fun or otherwise switch to another activity.

7 There will be some amount of studying and practice involved in chess. Find your kids unique individual balance with the help of your chess trainer: how much to push the child or how much to let him go at his own pace.

8 As a parent, see if you find some interest in chess. Look at the very basics. Dont get hyper about it. (Yes, parents do lose control.) Playing endless chess online is no good for anyone but not playing at all is also no great progress. Find a balance. Some parents start looking for a business model in the local circuit when their kids start playing. Its a tricky idea: tread carefully. Chess organisation is a full-time profession in its own right. Know what youre doing before you start so that it doesnt end in your child and you both quitting chess.

Read| Chess parents are pushing kids to break down: Notes from a coach

9 Dont push your child into the big league for your own ambitions. Understandably, a chess prodigy is a glamorous idea, but stay grounded.

11 Steer clear of association politics for your childs benefit. Sports association politics is a sad reality, but unless youre in it professionally dont get involved. You will get more advice from people with agendas than from genuine chess lovers and players.

Let your kid start chess in a way that it stays with him for life. Professional tournaments can wait. If they have to happen, they will. Allow time to show you the way. All success takes sheer hard work and years of commitment. Youre only damaging your childs chess if you try to find shortcuts.

On average you need just about a year to play a good game of chess without the stress of studying. There has to be some regularity as well like a music class. Once a week may be too less or seven days a week may be too much. Draw up a schedule based on individual liking and inclination.

Best is to let your kids have fun and find learning with chess the Pakistani Scrabble way for life.

(The writer is a child psychologist with research interest in developing analytical skills at a young age. As founder-member of Chess Club Black & White in Lucknow, she published Indias first chess features print magazine from 2004 to 2012. She is also the 2002 Uttar Pradesh womens chess champion. Views are personal. Follow her on Facebook at BlackandWhiteChessMagazineIndia)

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Why do so many kids quit chess in their teens? An advisory to parents - The Indian Express

New Year’s themed crafts, activities mark the first month for local libraries – The Turlock Journal

The New Year kicks off at the TurlockLibrary with a STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) Workssession on robots at 4 p.m. Jan. 7. After a reading ofBoy + BotbyAme Dyckman, children will have an opportunity to design algorithms to instructa "robot" to stack cups in different patterns, using a set of symbols in place ofcode. Children will take turns participating as the robot, responding only tothe algorithm defined by their peers. STEAM Works is designed forchildren in kindergarten and older; children 4 and under must be supervised byan adult.

The Turlock Library Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m.Wednesday. This month's book club selection isThe Art of HearingHeartbeats,by Jan-Philipp Sendker. When a successful New York lawyersuddenly disappears without a trace, neither his wife nor his daughter Juliahas any idea where he might be--until they find a love letter he wrote manyyears ago to a Burmese woman they have never heard about. The Turlock LibraryBook Clubusually meets the first Wednesday of each month at 10:30 am. Due to theNew Year's Day holiday, the book club will meet on the second Wednesday.A limited number of copies of the book are available at the Turlock Library.Please call the library at 209-664-8100 for further information.

The Mystery Lovers Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m. Jan.10. This months selection will be Burglars Can't be Choosers,byLawrence Block. Bernie Rhodenbarr is a personable chap, a good neighbor, apassable poker player. His chosen profession, however, might not sit well withsome. Bernie is a burglar, a good one, effortlessly lifting valuables from thenot-so-well-protected abodes of well-to-do New Yorkers like a modern-day RobinHood. (The poor, as Bernie would be the first to tell you, alas, have nothingworth stealing.) He's not perfect, however; he occasionally makes mistakes.Like accepting a paid assignment from a total stranger to retrieve a particularitem from a rich man's apartment. Like still being there when the cops arrive.Like having a freshly slain corpse lying in the next room, and no proof thatBernie isn't the killer. Now he's really got his hands full, having to locatethe true perpetrator while somehow eluding the police -- a dirty job indeed,but if Bernie doesn't do it, who will? The Mystery Lovers Book Club meets thesecond Friday of each month at the Turlock Library.

The library will host a New Years themed escape room at10:30 a.m., 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. Jan. 11. The New Year is finally here and you'reready for the "new" version of you, however, the list of New Year'sresolutions was accidently locked away! In order to break out of your bad habits from2019 and create a new and improved you, you must get that list! Can you solveall of the puzzles, codes, and challenges in time? This program is designed forages 18 and older, and sign-ups are required. Call 209-664-8100 to reserve yourspot at one of three sessions.

Turlock Mayor Amy Bublak will be the special guest for familystory time at 6:30 p.m. Jan. 13. There will be stories, music and fingerplays. Thisprogram is ideal for 4 - 8 year-olds, however all ages are welcome.

Great Valley Museum will be in Turlock at 4 p.m. Jan. 14 fora presentation on volcanos. Children will learn about the different types ofvolcanoes, how volcanoes are formed, and have an opportunity to create theirown volcanoes. This program is designed for children in third through sixthgrades. Younger children must have direct adult supervision.

There will be an introduction to printmaking in a Fold Me aPrint class at 4 p.m. Jan. 21. Children will get an opportunity to experimentwith mirror images using tempera paint and cardstock paper. All ages welcome;children 4 and under must have direct adult supervision.

The Environmental Protection Agency is starting a series ofenvironmental programs that will span over five months. The first will be onair pollution and the environment at will be at 4 p.m. Jan. 22. This programhas activities for students in preschool through fifth grade. It follows SecondGrade Common Core Standards, as well as Next Generation Science Standards, butyounger and older grades are welcome to attend.

The Friends of the Turlock Public Library will be holdingtheir annual book sale Jan. 23 to 25. The book sale is the major fundraiser forthe group and helps fund various programs at the library for children, teensand adults. The book sale will be held at the First United Methodist Church at1600 Arbor Way in Turlock. A members only night will be from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m.Jan. 23 with memberships available at the door. The public sale will be from 9a.m. to 7 p.m. Jan. 24 and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 25. Prices are $1.00 for hardback and 50cents for paperback books.

For teens, the library will host the Turlock Teens TalkBooks group at 3 p.m. Jan. 4. Teens are encouraged to join other bibliophilesto discuss their newest favorite reads. The Turlock Teen Advisory Board willmeet at 4 p.m. Jan. 8. The board provides input on what kinds of programs andactivities teens would like the library to provide. During the hour-longmeeting, the group brainstorms and discusses ideas for library activities andservices for teens in Turlock. Community service hours are earned by attendingmeetings and helping with projects.

The Turlock Library is located at 550 Minaret Ave. For moreinformation on Turlock Library programs, call 209-664-8100.


The Denair Library will celebrate the New Years at 4 p.m.Jan. 2 with a craft day that will see participants making a resolution chain. Createa colorful paper chain to drape in your home to remind you of your 2020 goalsand aspirations. Paper in various colors and other supplies will be providedfor this craft.

The Drawing Club will meet from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Jan. 7, 14,21 and 28. Thismonth, Disney characters will be our focus for Drawing Club. Materials will beprovided for these events, but feel free to bring your own supplies as well.

Children will have the opportunity to play with LEGOandLEGODUPLOblocks from noon to 3 p.m. on Jan. 8, 15, 22, and 29. LEGOplayhelps children develop fine motor skills. Children under 4 are welcome, butmust have direct parental supervision.

The Denair Library will host its Chess Club from 3 p.m. to 5p.m. Jan. 8, 15, 22, and 29. Participants should bring their own chess boardsand pieces for a nice, friendly game of chess. Chess puzzles will also beavailable to solve. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, allare welcome. These will be unranked, fun games of chess. Come by and meetfellow players, and maybe even make a new friend.

Three more craft days will be held in January. On Jan. 9,participants can make snowy day paper people. On Jan. 16, the craft will be amagazine collage and on Jan. 23 the craft will be polar bear puppets. All craftdays start at 4 p.m. and all materials are provided.

The Denair Library is located at 4801 Kersey Rd. For moreinformation on Denair Library programs, call 209-634-1283.


The Keyes Library will help people keep track of their NewYears resolutions with a resolution board, which the library will help youdesign anytime from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Jan. 17.

Come to the Keyes Library to celebrate the Chinese New Year.Make a paper rat to celebrate the Year of the Rat from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Jan.23.

Create a winter scene on a piece of cardstock paper by usingpaint and your fingertips at a craft session open from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Jan.30.

The KeyesLibraryis located at 4420 Maud Ave. inKeyes. For more information about programs at the KeyesLibrary, call209-664-8000.

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New Year's themed crafts, activities mark the first month for local libraries - The Turlock Journal

How Viswanathan Anand created a chess legacy that changed India –

Few people in the current generation realise just how difficult it could be to follow chess in India in the 90s. The internet was a luxury. Cable television was in its nascent years. Books were hard to procure and following your favourite player was possible only through newspapers.

But even then the analysis would be limited. Most papers would report the news. A greater analysis of the games, which would lead to greater understanding, was often missing.

However, as Viswanathan Anand, climbed up the ranks after becoming the first Indian to become a Grandmaster in 1988, coverage increased. It still wasnt as much as a chess enthusiast would have liked, but it was better than nothing.

Then, the 1995 Professional Chess Associations title match came along. Indias Anand was going to take on Garry Kasparov, the best player of his generation, and perhaps the best player ever. It was to be played on the Observation Deck on the 107th floor of the World Trade Center in New York City. The prize fund was $1,500,000. And best of all, it was going to be shown on good, old Doordarshan.

A chance to watch Anand in action, with good analysis, was too rare to pass up on even though the games often went on into the wee hours of the morning. My elder brother and I were determined to watch it and we set up our tattered chessboard and played along... trying to analyse each move and see if we could follow the lines to their logical end. Of course, the greatest thrill was being able to pick the right move. It was like solving chess puzzles in real-time (with no Stockfish, Fritz, or Chessbase databases to help).

The match, which was to last 20 games instead of the traditional 24, started with eight straight draws (a record for the opening of a world championship match) until Anand drew first blood by winning game nine.

That moment seemed to tick off Kasparov. His preparation for Game 10, with white pieces, was magnificent. He drew level right away and to us amateurs, it had then seemed like Anand had had no way out of it.

Game 11 was seen by many as a chance for Anand to bounce back. He had the advantage of white pieces and a chance to lead the game to a position where he felt more comfortable. But Kasparov pulled a rabbit out of the hat by playing the Sicilian Dragon with black.

Anand still had the advantage but he missed a relatively simple combination and lost. It was a combination that even my brother and I saw but Anand didnt. After losing Game 9, Kasparov won four of the next five games to effectively end the contest.

For the 25-year-old Anand, this loss hurt. For all the fans, the loss hurt. Still, my brother and I were hooked. In the 25 years since The Lightning Kid has more than made up for it and as he celebrates his 50th birthday today, its hard not to be awed by his achievements.

In very few sports around the world can a starting point be identified, but for India and chess that starting point is Anand.

Also Read Chess and the city: How Chennai became Indias Soviet Union in miniature

He held the FIDE World Chess Championship from 2000 to 2002, becoming the first Asian to do so. He then became the undisputed World Champion in 2007 and defended his title against Vladimir Kramnik in 2008, Veselin Topalov in 2010, and Boris Gelfand in 2012.

In 2006, he also became only the fourth player ever to achieve an Elo rating of 2800 and but for a brief period in 2016, when P Harikrishna went past him, Anand has remained the highest-ranked Indian player and perhaps that defines his quest for excellence better than anything else.

But after 2012, Anand ran into the genius of Magnus Carlsen. The 2013 World Chess Championship match was played in his home town of Chennai and by the end of it, the Indian GM was well beaten by a 6.5-3.5 margin. So much so that it took him a while to get back to the chessboard.

But then, somehow, after going through the motions for a while, he seemed to pick himself up again. The joy returned to his chess and he fought his way to beat all comers in the Candidates Tournament and book himself another chance to beat Carlsen.

This time, Carlsen was the champion and Anand was the challenger. It was also the first time the same two opponents met in consecutive World Championship matches since Kasparov played Anatoly Karpov five times between 1984 and 1990.

But despite Anand entering the match in a relaxed frame of mind, Carlsen was just too strong. The Norwegian had a game that just seemed to get the worst out of Anand and he won by a 6.5-4.5 margin. This time, Anand won a game but the rest just didnt go as he would have imagined.

After this defeat, Anand almost seemed to cut a detached figure, as one driven not by ambition but by the joy he derives from the game. He was still very competitive and beating him was never easy but this wasnt the same Anand.

He had some good results but most reckoned that he was never going to be world champion or world No 1 again. Still, in 2017, he produced a result that even seemed to shock him he became the 2017 World Rapid Chess Champion.

I [have] won many world rapid titles but recently I had the feeling it was slipping away, Anand had said after the final day of the rapid tournament. Honestly I came here hoping for a good performance. I was not even thinking I could win.

And for a while, the halo remained. The triumph seemed to lift Anand, it seemed to allow him to dream again... it allowed India to celebrate him once again but the younger players kept getting stronger and once again, the now 50-year-old settled into a comfortable space.

He is still enjoying the game, he hasnt put up his feet yet and as he showed in December 2017, one can never count him out. But at 50, he probably looks at the chessboard a little differently now and thats alright.

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How Viswanathan Anand created a chess legacy that changed India -

Seasonal crafts, Hobbit-themed escape room and Noon Year’s Eve party at local libraries – The Turlock Journal

December events at the Turlock Library will start with aSTEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics) Works session onsnow at 4 p.m. Tuesday. Following a reading ofToys Meet SnowbyEmily Jenkins, participants will make pretend snow out of baking soda andshaving cream. STEAM Works is designed for children in kindergarten and older;children 4 and under must be supervised by an adult.

The Turlock Library Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m.Wednesday. This month's book club selection isNight Road,byKristin Hannah. After a string of foster homes and the death of herheroin-addict mother, Lexi Baill is taken in by a newly discovered great-auntwho lives a spartan life near Seattle. Lexi soon meets Mia and her loving twinbrother, Zach. The friendship flourishes, and Mia's mother draws Lexi into thefamily circle. A slowly growing attraction between Zach and Lexi begins, butthen Lexi, Mia, and Zach collectively make a bad decision that results in atragedy with extreme repercussions. A limited number of copies are available atthe library. For more information, call 209-664-8100.

Adults can visit the library at 1 p.m. Dec. 4 to create stained-glassornaments. Crafters can select a candle holder or an ornament to stain. Allmaterials are provided. This craft is for ages 18 and older.

Friends of the Turlock Library group will meet at 6:30 p.m. Dec.4. All are invited to attend.

The Turlock Teens Talk Books group will meet at 3 p.m. Dec.7. Teens are encouraged to join other bibliophiles to discuss their newest favoritereads.

Craft a seasonal wreath with a variety of festive ribbon andcardboard tubes at the library from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Dec. 10.All ageswelcome; children 4 and under must have direct adult supervision.

Young children can explore different textures and activities duringa Sensory Play session at 10 a.m. Dec. 11. This session is designed forchildren ages 5 and younger. Each child must be directly supervised by a parentor adult guardian.

Adult crafters can make a mason jar full of hot chocolatemix at 1 p.m. Dec. 11. Created with a simple hot chocolate mix, chocolate,peppermint and marshmallows, this is the perfect winter pick me up for a treasuredfriend or keep it for yourself. All materials are provided. This craftis for ages 18 and older.

Young readers are encouraged to stop by the library from 3p.m. to 4:30 p.m. Dec. 11 and read a book to a dog. No sign-ups necessary. Thisprogram gives children a relaxed, non-judgmental atmosphere in which topractice reading aloud. Designed for independent readers up to age 12.

The Turlock Teen Advisory Board will meet at 4 p.m. Dec. 11.The board provides input on what kinds of programs and activities teens wouldlike the library to provide. During the hour-long meeting, the group brainstormsand discusses ideas for library activities and services for teens in Turlock.Community service hours are earned by attending meetings and helping withprojects.

The Mystery Lovers Book Club will meet at 10:30 a.m. Dec.13. This month's selection isDesert Heat,by J.A.Jance.Determined to clear her late husband Andy's name after police brassclaim that his shooting death was the result of his involvement in drugrunning, Joanna Brady attempts to find Andy's killers. For more information,call the Library at 209-664-8100.

The library will hold a craft-a-palooza at 4 p.m. Dec. 17.The library will have a variety of craft supplies out on the table while theylast. All ages welcome; children 4 and under must have direct adultsupervision.

A Whine and Chocolate event will be held at 1 p.m. Dec. 18. Start2020 with inner peace by letting go of the problems and irritations of 2019.Participants can write down whatever bothered them about the past year and letit go into the shredder. They can also relax, while tasting a variety ofchocolates. This event is for ages 18 and older.

Celebrate the classic novel "Little Women" withcrafts, games, reader's theater and refreshments at 4 p.m. Dec. 18. In keepingwith the novel's theme of caring for others, the library will be accepting newgloves and beanies which will be donated to the United Samaritans Foundation.This program is for ages 10-18.

A Hobbit themed escape room will come to the library on Dec.27 and 28. Participants must find the Arkenstone and escape before Smaugawakens by following clues and solving puzzles to unlock the locks that hide aspecial "jewel." This program is designed for ages 9 and older,and signups are required. Call 209-664-8100 to reserve a spot at one of threesessions at 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. or 3 p.m.

Celebrate the beginning of 2020 with a countdown at the libraryfor Noon Years Eve. Starting at 11 a.m. Dec. 31 the library will host fun NewYears Eve crafts and activities. Children 4 and under must have direct adultsupervision.

The Turlock Library is located at 550 Minaret Ave. For moreinformation on Turlock Library programs, call 209-664-8100.


The Keyes Library will hold three craft events in December.

Visitors to the library on Dec. 6 can make an ornament worthhanging up by painting and decorating a foam ball to their own unique style.

Using a piece of card stock paper, kids can cut it in aspecific way to be able to turn it into a tree that they can decorate on Dec.12. All supplies will be provided.

Library visitors on Dec. 19 can bring the magic of winterinto their home by making decorative snowflakes. Make a second snowflake to helpdecorate the library.

The KeyesLibraryis located at 4420 Maud Ave. inKeyes. For more information about programs at the KeyesLibrary, call209-664-8000.


December events at the Denair Library will begin with ameeting of the Drawing Club from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday. This club will meet from3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Dec. 3, 10 and 17. This month, animals will be thefocus. Materials will be provided for these events, but participants can bring theirown supplies as well.

Children will have the opportunity to play with LEGOandLEGODUPLOblocks from noon to 3 p.m. on Dec. 4, 11 and 18. LEGOplayhelps children develop fine motor skills. Children under 4 are welcome, butmust have direct parental supervision.

The Denair Library will host its Chess Club from 3 p.m. to 5p.m. Dec. 4, 11 and 18. Participants should bring their own chess boards andpieces for a nice, friendly game of chess. Chess puzzles will also be availableto solve. Whether you are a beginner or an experienced player, all are welcome.These will be unranked, fun games of chess. Come by and meet fellow players,and maybe even make a new friend.

There will be three craft day events at the library. Make acute winter stocking out of festive paper and sew the outside up with yarn at 4p.m. Dec. 5. Make a mouse or two out of a candy cane and crafting foam at 4p.m. Dec. 19. Make a non-edible gingerbread man out of paper and foam at 4 p.m.Dec. 26. All materials provided.

There will be a snowy scavenger hunt at 4 p.m. Dec. 12. Findall the hidden animals in the library to win a prize.

The Denair Library is located at 4801 Kersey Rd. For moreinformation on Denair Library programs, call 209-634-1283.

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Seasonal crafts, Hobbit-themed escape room and Noon Year's Eve party at local libraries - The Turlock Journal

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