Indianapolis StoryWalks: Take a Walk – Read a Story!

Take a walk and read a story as you go! The Indianapolis Public Library invites you to visit two Indianapolis StoryWalks. Stroll through the parks and read a book displayed in mounted frames. Stories will be rotated on a monthly basis. Families are encouraged to post photos of their visit on social media: &

There are TWO StoryWalks for you to choose from:

  • StoryWalk® in the Ruckle Street Park
  • StoryWalk® at Ft. Harrison State Park

Now appearing on StoryWalk® in the Ruckle Street Park 3025 Ruckle Street:

The Sunhat by Jennifer Ward – Rosa has a wonderful hat that fits her just right, but when the wind blows it away the hat shelters a wide variety of desert creatures from a storm.The Sunhat More about: Jennifer Ward This StoryWalk is made possible by Regions Bank through a gift to The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation.
NOTE: This storyWalk closes in December – it reopens in April/May, depending on the weather.

Now appearing on StoryWalk® at Delaware Lake in Ft. Harrison State Park:

Fort Harrison StorywalkWoodpecker Whem by April Pulley Sayre – Enter woodpecker world and get a bird’s eye view of everyday life: hiding from hawks, feeding hungry chicks, and drilling holes to build homes. Woodpeckers are nature’s home builders, creating holes that many other animals live in when the woodpeckers move on. A variety of woodpecker species fly through these pages–perhaps some that live near you! Woodpecker Wham Official Website: April Pulley SayreThis StoryWalk® is made possible by a grant from the Indiana Arts Commission. It is co-sponsored by the Department of Natural Resources, Friends of Ft. Harrison State Park, and The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation. The activity is also recognized as by the Indiana Bicentennial Commission.
NOTE: This StoryWalk is located INSIDE Fort Harrison State Park, which requires an entrance fee. The StoryWalk is available for families to visit through October of this year (2016).


Every Child Ready to Read® @ your library® is a program of the Association for Library Service to Children and Public Library Association, divisions of the American Library Association.

Use IndyPL’s Read Right Now! pages to have fun at home doing the five things that build early reading skills: Reading, Playing, Writing, Singing & Talking. Find books to read, songs to listen to, games to play, crafts to make and more! Things you can do RIGHT NOW, at home – no waiting!

FREE Online eBooks about Starting School:

School ToolsSchool HelpersWhat Good Is a LineEmilySchoolAreYouReadyForSchool

eBooks & eAudiobooks to Check out with your Library Card about Starting School:

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Use your indyPL Library Card number and PIN to check out FREE Online eBooks & eAudiobooks. Click on a book jacket & enter your Library Card number and PIN to borrow. What’s My PIN?
Alice Miranda at SchoolBack to School RulesThe Berenstain Bears and the Homework HassleThe Berenstain Bears Go to SchoolThe Berenstain Bears Trouble at SchoolBoomer Goes to SchoolCurious George First Day of SchoolDancing Dinos Go to SchoolA Day at SchoolEdward Almost Goes to SchoolFirst Day JittersFirst Year LettersFranklin Goes to SchoolKindergarten CountdownLate for SchoolMax Goes to SchoolOllie's School DayRufus and Friends School DaySammy Spider First Day of SchoolSchool Day MathSnuffy Goes to SchoolWe Love Our SchoolAmelia Bedelia First Day of SchoolPinkalicious School RulesBiscuit Goes to SchoolMittens at SchoolMorris Goes to School
Recommended by: Janet Spaulding, Selection Services

More FREE Online Reading:

Printables, Crafts & More about Starting School:


Family Music Play with Jim Gill Coming Soon!


Preschoolers and their families are invited to sing, clap, dance and sneeze along during this concert by award-winning musician and author Jim Gill. His distinctive music play creates the spirit of a family room in the concert hall and serves as an invitation to families to sign and play together. Schedule

Take a look at the fun you’ll have!:


Books & CDs:

Jim Gill Makes It Noisy in Boise, Idaho Jim Gill Sings Do Re Mi on His Toe Leg Knee Jim Gill Sings Moving Rhymes for Modern Times Jim Gill Sings the Sneezing Song
Jim Gills Irrantional Anthem and More Salutes to Nonsense Music Play for Folks of All Stripes Vote for Jim Gill May There Always Be Sunshine
Soup Opera

indyPL Children’s Librarians: Favorite Books for Starting Kindergarten

Going to Kindergarten for the first time is exciting…and maybe a little scary! IndyPL Children’s Librarians have put together this list of their favorites to put even the most reluctant student in the mood for school. Start a reading tradition in your family like this one from Shellie Rich, Public Services Librarian at Central Library:

“I love that book so much. With quotes like, “Alligator is for fancy. For school, stripes are nice,” I am pretty sure it is the best kindergarten book ever. And we still call my twelve-year-old’s school uniform her schooliform because of that book.”

Also, you can read FREE books online, play online games & find FREE printables at: IndyPL Read Right Now! Starting School

New York Public Library: The Top 3 Books to Read Before Starting Kindergarten

More Recommendations:

Chicka Chicka Boom BoomClick Clack Moo Cows That TypeCorduroyFoxyGreen Eggs and HamI Like MeI Like MyselfThe Kissing HandLeaf ManMonkey Not Ready For KindergartenThe Pigeon Wants a PuppyPlease Baby PleaseTell Me a DragonThe Very Hungry CaterpillarZ is for Moose

Elections for Kids

Watch right now! A video story about elections:


Indiana Websites:

Artifacts at The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis:

Voting Machine

Thousands of Marion County, Indiana residents voted at this machine between the 1930s and the 1980 election. During this time, many African Americans struggled to gain the civil rights Caucasian men and women enjoyed. Even though the 15th Amendment granted all American citizens the right to vote regardless of “race, color or previous condition of servitude,” African Americans still struggled for the right to vote particularly in the southern United States. In Indiana, African Americans continued to Voting Machine 2work for equal rights welcoming two significant federal laws, the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and the Voter Rights Act of 1965, helped to ensure African Americans the right to vote. Artifacts at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis 

See More Elections Artifacts from the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis’ Collection

Picture Books about Elections:

Elizabeth Leads the Way Susan B. Anthony Does My Vote Count Vote A Call for a New Alphabet Amelia Bedelias First Vote Duck for President I Could Do That Monster Needs Your Vote Vote for Me Woodrow for President

A Scare-Free Halloween


“It can be fun to be scared, as many of us will recall from Halloweens past. But if we think back, we’ll probably agree that there were two things that made it possible for that scariness to be fun. First, that we knew we were safe because someone we loved was nearby. Second, we knew that whatever was scaring us was only pretend.” ~Fred Rogers

Smart words from Mr. Rogers! Many small children don’t find Halloween fun at all!…the masks, the jumping out surprises and all the ghosts & vampires & scary looking pumpkins. Below are several stories that can help kids turn their Halloween fears into Halloween fun. If Arthur & Scaredy Squirrel can do it, so can your child!

CursedCastleVertical4C_ONBAlso consider a trip to The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis Haunted Housebut go during lights ON hours. The volunteers go out of their way to be extra friendly as your child walks through.




Scare-Free Stories:

HalSquaredySquirrel Read Scaredy Squirrels Prepares for Halloween – Scaredy Squirrel puts together a collection of helpful safety tips and step-by-step instructions to guide you through common Halloween obstacles such as carnivorous plants, haunted houses and encountering the infamous Frankenstein.

HalDragonScared Read Me and My Dragon Scared of Halloween – A boy tries to find the perfect Halloween costume for his pet dragon, so they can go trick-or-treating together.

HalBooBunny Read Boo Bunny – Two small bunnies face their fears while trick-or-treating on Halloween night.

HalGoAway Read Go Away Big Green Monster – A scary green monster begins to disappear, piece by piece and page by page, in a die-cut picture book that lets youngsters take control of the monsters in their lives.

HalOldLady Read The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything – A brave little old lady who was not afraid of anything receives the scare of her life and comes up with an ingenious solution to conquer her fears.

HalArthur Read Arthur’s Halloween – Arthur finds everything about Halloween scary, including his little sister’s costume, his morning snack, and the big house on the corner.

HalNeverBoo Read Never Say Boo – When Gordon, a ghost, moves to a new school, everyone is afraid of him until they learn that he is not as scary as they thought he was.

HalGeorgie Read Georgie – Georgie the friendly ghost is happy living with the Whittakers, but then things change and he decides to find a new place to haunt.

HalWinifred Read One Wish for Winifred Witch – In this rhyming story, little Winifred Witch is excited about enjoying Halloween night with the big witches, but she has one small problem–she is afraid of the dark. Her secret wish is never to be scared of the dark again. She asks her Aunt Broomhilda, who owns a shop of spells, to help. When magic fails, Broomhilda shows her another solution to her fears.

HalVunce Read Vunce Upon a Time – A fearful, young vampire, who prefers candy to blood, bravely ventures into the human world on Halloween night to satisfy his sweet too.

HalHumbugWitch Read Humbug Witch – A little girl tries unsuccessfully to do all the tricks of a witch.

Staff Pick: Poo in the Zoo

Poo in the Zoo

Bob McGrew, the head keeper at the zoo, loves his job, except when he has to clean up after the animals! One day, after escaping his cage, the iguana leaves behind something that catches the attention of the entire town, and a poo museum owner, that ends up making Bob’s messy job a lot easier!

“A children’s picture book about the everyday responsibilities of the zoo keeper, including the not so desirable task of cleaning up the poo!
As soon as I saw the title for this book, I knew it was going to be good. Poo in the Zoo is a laugh out loud tale of Bob McGrew, the zoo keeper.

Poor Bob has lots to do each day including cleaning up after all the zoo animals. In a rhyming tale of descriptive poo proportions, Bob starts out a normal day only to have it end extraordinarily different. There’s an escaped iguana, glow in the dark poo and a poo museum! In the end, Bob finds a solution to his problems and he and the animals are able to enjoy their days a little easier and a little less smelly.

This story is great to engage a large group of kids. They laugh and ‘eww’ at all the mentions of poo. It catches their attention from the beginning and keeps them watching and listening till the very end. Smallman spins a great tale for the imagination and Ada Grey’s illustrations are ‘illuminating’ and engaging for any young reader’s eye.
I’d recommend this book for anyone with a sense of humor and who’s not too squeamish!”

Recommended by Maggie Ward – Warren Branch

Staff Pick: Runaway Tomato

Runaway Tomato

After dodging an enormous, rolling tomato, townsfolk hold a festival to honor the red fruit.

“The Runaway Tomato is an action packed story of what happens when a giant tomato grows on a hill above the town. The town comes together to save the city from the huge tomato and even turns the giant mess into a fun time for all. The quirky story and vivid illustrations make this a fun story to read aloud and share the pictures with a small group. There are so many fun things to find in the illustrations it can keep a family occupied for an afternoon. With a nod to the classic “cloudy with a chance of meatballs”, this book brings the tomato into the realm of fun food.”

Recommended by Catherine Scheib – Wayne Branch