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Staff Pick: Mysterious Patterns: Finding Fractals in Nature

Staff Pick: Mysterious Patterns: Finding Fractals in Nature

Mysterious Patterns: Finding Fractals in Nature

Introduces readers to naturally repeating fractals while discussing what makes them unique, explaining how to move beyond familiar shapes in nature to recognize more intricate patterns.

Have you ever seen colorful computer fractal designs on a computer screen?  Did you know that we can find fractals in nature and even inside our bodies?  This outstanding book will tell you about and also show you photographs of mysterious patterns named fractals by the scientist Benoit Mandelbrot, who once was a curious boy fascinated by shapes and the connections between different ideas.  This book will open your eyes to the many fractals all around you.  Be prepared to be amazed!

Recommended by: Tamara Baumgartner – Wayne Branch

 

 

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Staff Pick: Poop Fountain!

Staff Pick: Poop Fountain!

Poop Fountain

Three friends spend Christmas day breaking into the town of Crickenburg’s antiquated sewage treatment plant in order to witness with their own eyes the soon-to-be-replaced “poopfountain.”

Who wouldn’t want to read a book called Poop Fountain? The title alone should peak your curiosity. Well, maybe if you are an 8 year old boy. Even though I was one once, what really drew me to this book was the author. Tom Angleberger is best known for his Origami Yoda series and like those, this one is presented as if the children in the story have written it themselves.

Three bored kids (Lyle, Marilla and Dave) want to do something exciting on Christmas Day. A busy day for others is a free one for them: Dave’s parents work all day at the Qwikpick gas station and convenience store; Marilla’s family exchanges gifts on Christmas Eve; and Dave is Jewish. Their small town of Crickenburg does not offer a lot of excitement, so the newly formed Qwikpick Adventure Society is hard pressed to find something worthy of their name. When they hear the town’s waste treatment plant will be closing down its poop fountain, they know they have found their goal. They will not only be the first kids to see it, but some of the last people to ever see it in operation.

They secretly plan their trip, mapping out their walking route across fields and over hills and pack enough snacks for the whole day. Marilla brings her new camera to capture important moments including a picture of all of them with the fountain.

What trip really goes as planned? With so much potential for messiness (not to mention the possibility of getting caught sneaking into the sewage plant), this is an adventure worth reading.

Recommended by: Will Smither – Decatur Branch

 

 

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Black History: Cowboys, Pioneers & the West

Black History: Cowboys, Pioneers & the West

Bad News for Outlaws

Featured Old West Marshall: Bass Reeves Bass Reeves grew up as a slave in Texas. Even as a young boy he was good with a gun. His master used to take him to shooting contests to show him off. One night though, when Bass was a young man, he and his master got in a fight and Bass punched his owner. Hitting a white man was punishable by death – so Bass ran, and he ran as a fast and as far as he could – all the way to Indian Territory in the West.

The frontier wasn’t called the Wild West for nothing. It was rough country with outlaws roaming around. The West was a great place for bad guys to hide. In 1875 the government hired 200 deputy marshals to help bring order to the frontier and Bass Reeves was one of them. He was also the best one. He could fight and he could shoot when he had too, but mostly, he was smart. He was also known for his honesty and integrity. One time, he had to arrest his own son! Author: Vaunda Micheaux Nelson

The Legend of Bass Reeves

Another great book about Bass is The Legend of Bass Reeves. Gary Paulsen, the author of this book, calls it “the true and fictional account of the most valiant marshal in the West.” Mr. Paulsen adds a little here and there to fill in the places where history left gaps…but for the most part, this is the story of Bass the real guy – the first African-American U.S. Deputy Marshal west of the Mississippi – and this was in the 1870s! Bass became a legend, even in his own time. Some outlaws turned themselves in once they heard it was Bass that would be looking for them! Bass Reeves – an American original!

Websites:

Pinterest Logo 25 IndyPL Kids Pinterest Board: Black History – Cowboys & Pioneers

Books:

Nat Love BlackIndians BestShot Pickett
Nothing Thunder Buffalo Hurry
OldWest Nicodemus Frontiers

More Info Guides about Black History:

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Black History – IndyPL Digital Collections

Black History – IndyPL Digital Collections

The Indianapolis Public Library has a digital collection full of digital images that will give you a good look at black history in America and right here in Indiana. These items are the real thing. The collection includes photographs, photographs of artifacts and documents which would be great resources for school reports.

 

tcm_walker tcm_sign

Artifacts at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis – A digital collection of 1,000 artifacts from the museum collection. Selected objects range over school subjects from Social Studies to Science to Geography with a particular emphasis on Indiana. You can visit the whole collection or you can see just the African-American artifacts.

free_soil

 

Free Soil Banner – The Free Soil Banner was a newspaper published in Indianapolis from 1848 to 1854 published by the Free Soil Party. The main plank in the Party’s platform was that slavery should not be extended to the territories newly gained in the war with Mexico, but should be “free soil”, worked by free (as opposed to slave) labor. They stopped short at advocating the abolition of slavery, preferring to contain it to the areas where it was already allowed, believing that it would eventually die out. “Free soil, free speech, free labor, free men.”

 

 

African American Firefighters – On May 19, 1876 Fire Chief W. O. Sherwood appointed the first black men to the Indianapolis Fire Department 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.

clowns

The Indianapolis Postcard Collection – This postcard is a photo of the 1943 Negro League Indianapolis Clowns. The postcard collection is a great resource for Indianapolis history, especially if you have to know about a landmark in the city. The we_are_the_shipcollection is mostly made up of postcards of buildings, but I didn’t want to miss pointing out this one. For more information about the negro leagues and black athletes take a look at Black History: Athletes. Especially don’t miss We Are the Ship by Kadir Nelson.

 

More Info Guides about Black History:

 

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