The Indiana Wildlife Federation has an online contest going on during the month of April called “What’s in your Wild Backyard? Take the online quiz for your age group (1st – 8th grade) and be entered to win one of three great prizes. Deadline to enter the contest is April 22, 2012.
We’ve had great Indiana weather this Spring! Here are some ideas to get you started exploring and having fun in your own wild backyard:
Charge up your mp3 players, Nooks, Kindles, iPads and all that – as of today, Tuesday, March 27, all seven Harry Potter books are available as eBooks and digital audio books from the Pottermore Shop. Love that Jim Dale on the audio books!
The site says about eBooks: “Harry Potter eBooks are compatible with all leading eReaders, tablets and smartphones.”
The site says about audio books: “Harry Potter digital audio books are compatible with MP3 players, including iPods and hundreds of other audio devices.”
I read this in Publisher’s Weekly, “The full Pottermore site has ended beta testing and is expected to launch in early April. The site will showcase new writing by J.K. Rowling and include extensive interactive content.” Sign me up for the “new writing”!
Annnnnd, you can borrow them with your Indianapolis library card already! Just put “harry potter” in the search box.
Lemonade Day is Saturday, May 19, 2012, a day when kids all over Indianapolis will sell lemonade.
Get a leg-up on Lemonade Day competition at the Kidz Biz Workshop in the Learning Curve on Saturday, April 14, 2012 from 1-4 pm! Young entrepreneurs can learn skills to run their own lemonade stand.
You don’t have to wait for the workshop day to get started!
In March and April kids all over Indianapolis will learn how to start, own and operate their own business – a lemonade stand. Each kid who registers will receive a bright yellow backpack - inside is everything you need to prepare for Lemonade Day. Get a backpack, make a plan and get started making some money! Here’s how:
Prepare for Lemonade Day
When you get your backpack, you’ll find two workbooks: one for you and one for the adult working with you. Spend the next few weeks – at your own pace – working through these lessons about starting, owning and operating a business.
5. Set Up Your Stand on May 19th: Check the Lemonade Day Indianapolis Official Website. That site will be posting information about other places (in addition to your neighborhood) where you can set up your stand, so be sure to re-visit their web site in the coming days…..On May 19th, you’ll be one of thousands of kids across the Greater Indianapolis Area selling lemonade – think about how to stand out from your competitors and have a blast…and make some summer spending money!
Here are some books that have great tips for starting a business and some stories about other kids who gave it a try:
In this online digital collection you can see pictures of Indianapolis African American Firefighters from the late 1800s until today. The pictures come from the Indianapolis Firefighters Museum and the Indianapolis Black Firefighters Association. View the Pictures
On May 19, 1876 Fire Chief W. O. Sherwood appointed the first four Black men to the Indianapolis Fire Department to replace four White firefighters on Hose Company 9, located at 31 West Saint Joseph Street. This station, eventually renumbered as Station 1 and relocated to 441 Indiana Avenue, grew to become an all-Black double company firehouse, with approximately 24 firefighters who rotated through two 24-hour shifts.
Black firefighters remained segregated from the rest of the Fire Department until the practice was officially ended on Jan. 1, 1960. Hired before integration in 1955, Joseph Kimbrew became the first Black Fire Chief of the Indianapolis Fire Department on January 19, 1987.
15 stand outs from 2011 – perfect choices for your wish list. These are especially original or funny or action-packed. All of them have memorable characters and are the kind of stories that stick with you long after the last page .
If you like warriors:
Heart of a Samurai by Margi Preus Based on the true story of a boy who is shipwrecked, rescued, threatened with execution, and thought to be the first Japanese person to ever set foot in America. He goes to school and learns to run a farm in 1840s America. Have you ever heard of this in history class? Me neither!
The Brotherband Chronicles #1: The Outcasts by John Flanagan Hal and his friends do battle against their peers in contests set up to test their strength, cunning and leadership. They outplay, outlast, and outsmart other teams that are bigger, stronger, older…and cheat! How the boys figure out how to cheat the cheaters would make even The Survivors proud. From the author of The Ranger’s Apprentice.
If You Like Magic and Fantasy:
Beyonders: A World Without Heroes by Brandon Mull the author of the Fablehaven series. I like it when characters are smart – even the bad guys. In this one, the bad guy is really, really bad. And he’s smart. And ruthless. It’s going to take some special people to defeat him. One of them is Jason, a kid probably a lot like you. Like Percy Jackson he is pulled into a new world and has to find his way on his own – discovering he has mortal enemies he never even new existed.
Heroes of Olympus #2: The Son of Neptune by Rick Riordan Demigod Percy Jackson, still with no memory, and his new friends from Camp Jupiter, Hazel and Frank, go on a quest to free Death, but their bigger task is to unite the Greek and Roman camps so that the Prophecy of Seven can be fulfilled.
The Inquisitor’s Apprentice by Chris Moriarty In early 20th Century New York, Sacha Kessler’s ability to see witches earns him an apprenticeship to the police department’s star Inquisitor, Maximillian Wolf. His job is to help stop magical crime. With fellow apprentice Lily Astral, Sacha investigates who is trying to kill Thomas Edison, whose mechanical witch detector could unleash the worst witch-hunt in American history.
If you Like the Offbeat and Unusual:
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place#2: The Hidden Gallery by Maryrose Wood If you A Series of Unfortunate Events, then I think you’ll like the Incorrigibles; the kids raised by wolves before acquiring their lovable nanny Penelope. Besides teaching the children grammar, history and geography, Penelope is their guide to the world of proper manners. She has to remind them “Hugs, not licks!”.
Peter Nimble and His Fantastic Eyes by Jonathon Auxier Peter Nimble is a boy on his own. Not only that, he’s blind. Peter is “discovered” by a man who decides to make Peter the very best thief ever. And so Peter’s life goes until the day he nicks a box that has something very unusual in it – three pairs of eyes. Peter pops a pair in and this begins a really original fantasy adventure with a blind thief as the swashbuckling hero fighting his way toward a destiny he never could have imagined.
If You Like Real Kids:
Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt When Doug’s Dad comes home early from work with his lunch pail and black eye, Doug knows that his Dad’s temper has cost him another job. The only thing Doug’s Dad has to say is, “we’re moving.” The rest of the family simply starts to pack. That’s how it is with Doug’s Dad because as Doug says, “Dad has quick hands.” Doug has learned to dodge them whenever possible. If you have ever felt trapped by the bad behavior of someone close to you, you’ll like Doug and his story.
The Absolute Value of Mike by Kathryn Erskine When Mike’s Dad wants to talk to him he calls. On the phone. From his study across the hall. Mike’s Dad is a genius and he’s busy. When he gets a chance to teach abroad he sends Mike away for the summer – living with an old Aunt and Uncle he’s never even met is NOT the summer Mike had in mind.
Penderwicks at Pointe Mouette by Jeanne Birdsall Skye, Jane and Batty are back for another Penderwick summer adventure. But where is Rosalind, the usual OAP (oldest available Penderwick)? She is off to spend two weeks with her friend at the beach. This leaves Skye, the second to oldest, in charge…and she isn’t too sure she wants to be! She is so nervous about her new responsibilities that she has been taking notes in preparation which are stuffed into her backpack so she won’t forget a single thing.
Darth Paper Strikes Back by John Anglebarger In The Strange Case of Origami Yoda we met Dwight and his finger puppet Yoda. Yoda was no ordinary finger puppet. He gave out wise advice and seemed to be able to see into the future. One person at school was NOT a true believer – Harvey. Harvey makes a finger puppet of his own and names it “Darth Paper”. He uses it to harrass Dwight and constantly remind everyone that Origami Yoda is a hoax. When Dwight gets in trouble for something Origami Yoda says and is suspended from school, it looks like the dark side is getting the upper hand.
If You Like Technology & Superheroes:
H.I.V.E. #5: Rogue by Mark Walden Wing, Laura, Shelby & Nigel are still at H.I.V.E., (Higher Institute of Villainous Education) learning how to become the world’s top supervillains. Otto isn’t there though, he’s been missing since their last mission months ago and a video camera catches him at the scene of an attack. But Otto would never turn on his friends, would he? Otto’s friends don’t think so, Otto might be a villain in training, but he’s no traitor. The kids decide it’s their job to find Otto and figure out what’s REALLY going on.
If You Like Comics:
Big Nate On a Roll by Lincoln Peirce Nate ends up in detention again but it isn’t his fault, it’s Artur’s fault. Nate loses his skateboard but it isn’t his fault, it’s Artur’s fault. Nate’s still in love with Jenny but she doesn’t love him back…and IT’S ARTUR’S FAULT.
Amelia Rules! The Meaning of Life by Jimmy Gownley Sassy Amelia is back in another book that clearly shows Mr. Gownley remembers EXACTLY what it’s like to be in Middle School and figure out that really, “fair” just doesn’t exist. Amelia’s visiting the principal a little too often again…language, tardiness, mumbling under her breath, constantly testing the boundaries, etc.
If You Like Shel!
Every Thing On It by Shel Silverstein When he died Shel left quite a few finished poems that he had not had a chance to publish in a book yet. For this book, his family selected the poems. Pretty nice to get one more gift from Uncle Shelby. You can tell by some of the poem titles they’re all his: “Burpin’ Ben,” “Nasty Nancy’s Store,” and “Transparent Tim.”