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Summer Reading Challenge Begins June 1

Ames Public Library's 2022 summer reading challenge, "Read Beyond the Beaten Path," will begin for all ages on June 1. Participants will earn prizes just for keeping track of their reading! Head over to www.AmesPL.org/summer2022 to get signed up on the Reading Challenge website or to download the Beanstack app, so you'll be ready to go on June 1! You can also pick up a reading challenge gameboard from the Library or Bookmobile starting June 1 to track your reading on paper.

We also have a summer full of fun events planned for all ages to help you go beyond the beaten path! Kids an... Read Full Blog

Road Trip!

by Jillian Ocken

Who’s ready for vacation? It’s almost time to pack up the family, hop in the car, and head out in search of adventure!

If you haven’t picked a destination yet, be sure to check out Ames Public Library’s Adventure Passes. There are a lot of great places to visit nearby, and even some in Ames! Adventure Passes are like tickets to local attractions that you can borrow from the Library for free. Choose from places like Blank Park Zoo, Reiman Gardens, The Science Center of Iowa, the African American Museum of Iowa, and more! Be sure to reserve your Adventure Pa... Read Full Blog

All the World’s a Stage at the Ames Public Library

by Danielle Ziegler

Do you know kids and teens aged 7 to 14 years old who are interested in theater? Is your family’s summer filling up already, with no time for months of rehearsals and shows? Or maybe your child has never been in a show before and you’re not sure if they’d love it or not. Why not try Prairie Fire Theater’s “Peter Pan” at your Ames Public Library this summer?

Prairie Fire Theater is a professional theater company out of Barrett, MN.  How it works is that they send two professional actors/directors to a community where, in just one week, they will put on a... Read Full Blog

The Magic of Story Time

Brianne Anderson

“When I say to a parent, "read to a child", I don't want it to sound like medicine. I want it to sound like chocolate. " — Mem Fox

Mem Fox is a hugely prolific Australian author whose picture books have graced our library shelves for years. Her quote above perfectly describes what we strive for every day at the Library- to make reading a fun and enjoyable activity for children (and parents!) instead of something prescribed.  

Even before your child is born, you become their most important teacher. It doesn’t matter how prepared you are, or how mu... Read Full Blog

What a Novel Idea!

by Anastasia Tuckness

What do roleplaying games, flip-flops, and magnetic cup holders have in common? Not much, you might say, except this: they all became part of Ames Public Library as a result of our Novel Ideas program! Novel Ideas fosters innovation and creative thinking among Library staff. In the four years since its inception, it has done just that, prompting some unique and interesting initiatives. Any staff member can propose an idea to be considered by the Novel Ideas team. After approval, a cross-department team works together to implement it. Funding comes from a specia... Read Full Blog

Acts of Service Matter - No Matter the Size

by Brianne Anderson

 

“If you want to be important—wonderful. If you want to be recognized—wonderful. If you want to be great—wonderful. But recognize that he who is greatest among you shall be your servant. That’s a new definition of greatness...”

On February 4, 1968, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave what was to be his last sermon, ‘‘The Drum Major Instinct,’’ from the pulpit of Ebenezer Baptist Church. If you have never listened to a recording of Dr. King giving this speech, I highly recommend you head on over to YouTube and look it up. The poetry and art embe... Read Full Blog

Wrapped Up in Christmas

by Anastasia Tuckness

Holiday picture books are a delightful part of the Christmas season, their illustrations inviting readers to imagine Christmases past and present. Our library has a great section of them, shelved all together in one place for easy browsing. But maybe this year you’d like to get truly wrapped up into a Christmas story you can read over several nights, a story that can transport you back in time or off to some other place. You need a juvenile fiction Christmas story! Read on to hear about several I’ve discovered this year as I wandered the stacks looking f... Read Full Blog

Learning to Play

by Jill Philby

Quite a few years ago, my husband and I brought home our first child.  He went back to work after a few days.  I stayed home with our daughter.  I held her, fed her, bathed her, rocked her, and repeated all of that until I couldn’t stand it anymore. 

My husband and I had planned for me to stay at home. I wanted to be home with her.  It wasn’t that I didn’t love her, and I certainly wanted the best for her.  I just didn’t know what to DO with her.  I had never been around babies, and though I had been assured that it would c... Read Full Blog

Student Library Cards

by Tracy Briseño

When my middle schooler came home yesterday, she was excited to have met her school librarian and check out some books she’d never read before. Also, she wanted to share with me some big news. “Did you know that we all have library cards?!” Cue my shocked face. Actually, I did know this as I was part of the team at Ames Public Library (APL) who worked with a school district team to organize this. In June, APL partnered with Ames Community School District (ACSD) to issue over 5,000 public library cards to students.

My daughter has always had library access.... Read Full Blog

Next Generation of Homeschooling Resources

by Brianne Anderson

At the end of last school year, most of us parents were celebrating a return to “normal” over the summer. The pool was opening again, the summer reading program was back at the Library, and we could again look forward to spending time outside with our families at summer concerts and fun events.

I don’t know about you, but the fact that we are not totally back to pre-COVID normal is still a hard pill for me to swallow. Masks are again donning faces as cases surge and social distancing is definitely still an important part of being out in society. Our are... Read Full Blog

Sidewalk Science – Exploring Science with a Hands-on Approach

by Rosie Francis

 

Friday mornings are busy at the Ames Public Library. Patrons come in for browsing and borrowing material for the weekend, readers stop in to record their reading minutes and pick up prizes, and families gather in the library for Sidewalk Science – a STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) program where we explore science and engineering concepts with a hands-on approach.        

STEM influences every part of our life from the food we eat, to the technology we interact with, to the transport systems we use... Read Full Blog

Reading Colors Your World

byJerri Heid

Summer reading and activities are back at your Ames Public Library! Thanks to technology the Library has continued reading challenges and activities throughout the pandemic, but this summer will be more like a normal summer.

For youth, a normal summer means school’s out. It means time for activities, reading, and exploring and learning in a different way than they do in a classroom. After a hectic school year, participating in special Library events and the reading challenge can help your family relax, return to a familiar routine, and refocus.

This year’... Read Full Blog

Summer Reading Begins!

Ames Public Library's annual Summer Reading Challenge is here!
 

Read for Prizes

Do you love free stuff? Are you between the ages of 0 and 120? Then join our Summer Reading Challenge starting Tuesday, June 1!

Three Ways to Play

Visit amespubliclibrary.beanstack.com Download the Beanstack Tracker app Or pick up a Summer Reading Challenge gameboard at the Library

Find out more at www.amespubliclibrary.org/summer2021.
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Events for Everyone

We have a summer full of fun and learning planned for all ages, incl... Read Full Blog

Better Together

by Jill Philby

When kids ask for help finding books here at the library, it seems as if they fall into one of two camps.  They like either fiction or non-fiction, and there isn’t much overlap.  Once in a while someone will ask for non-fiction books about dragons or some other magical creature—which always makes me chuckle—but in general, it’s a definite one or the other. 

But the few kids who ask for both are on to something.

When you pair fiction with nonfiction, you learn better.

Reading fiction works on your emotional brain.  Fict... Read Full Blog

Full STEAM Ahead

by Jerri Heid

 

Everyone’s talking about STEM and STEAM lately; what are they and why do we care?

STEAM Education is an approach to learning that uses Science, Technology, Engineering, the Arts, and Mathematics as access points for guiding student inquiry, dialogue, and critical thinking. We definitely see this approach in K-12 school classrooms, but did you know that even younger children are capable of using it in their learning through play?

You may have heard the saying that play is a child’s work, and it is true! During play, children learn to... Read Full Blog