Listed below is a Black history timeline of important events of the civil rights movement. These events led to the passing of the Civil Rights Act in 1964 and the Voting Rights Act in 1965. The fiction and non-fiction books listed bring the events and people to life. Take a book walk through history to learn about these determined, brave people who stood together so no one stood alone.

Ruby Bridges

At the age of six Ruby Bridges became the first Black child to integrate an all-white elementary school in New Orleans. This Is Your Time is a new book for kids written by Ruby herself and is a great introduction to one of the key moments in the Black history timeline. It is a letter she has written to children today, more than 60 years after her historic first, to share her story and share her thoughts on what children can do to effect change. As Ruby says, “what can inspire tomorrow often lies in our past.”

This Is Your Time includes many historical photos, some from Ruby’s private collection. I especially enjoyed learning about Ruby’s first grade teacher that year and the photo of Ruby and her teacher at school, as well as the recent picture of the two of them together.

The image on the book’s cover is “The Problem We All Live With,” a 1964 painting by Norman Rockwell that shows Ruby being escorted to school by four US Marshals. In 2011 President Barack Obama arranged to borrow the painting from the Norman Rockwell museum. He had it hung outside the Oval Office and invited Ruby to come see it. Watch this video carefully to hear President Obama say something important:

“I think it’s fair to say that if it hadn’t been for you guys, I might not be here and we wouldn’t be looking at this together.”

Ruby Bridges visits with the President and her portrait

He said something very similar during his campaign for the presidency in 2007.

“I’m here because somebody marched. I’m here because you all sacrificed for me. I stand on the shoulders of giants.” ~Speech, Selma Voting Rights March Commemoration in Selma, Alabama, March 4, 2007

Black History Timeline

The books suggested in the Black history timeline below make great selections every day, but are especially meaningful on Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day in January, and on January 18th, the National Day of Racial Healing. On these days we turn our attention to specifically remember history and re-commit to the goal of racial justice.

1954

Brown v. Board of Education was a very important United States Supreme Court case. The Court decided state laws that separated Black students from white students in public schools were unconstitutional. In other words, the Court said this separation of students was not legal. The decision by the Court was unanimous (9–0). Unanimous means all of the supreme court justices agreed.

title - When the Schools Shut Downtitle - Remembertitle - Brown V. Board of Education : A Day That Changed Americatitle - Brown V. Board of Education

1954

The Murder of Emmett Till – Accused of offending a white woman at a grocery store, Emmett was a 14-year-old Black boy lynched in Mississippi in 1955. The brutality of his murder and the fact that his killers were acquitted highlighted the long history of violent persecution of African Americans. Like Ruby Bridges, Emmett became an icon of the civil rights movement.

title - Choosing Bravetitle - Ghost Boystitle - In the Name of Emmett Tilltitle - A Wreath for Emmett Till

1955-1956

The Montgomery Bus Boycott was a protest against segregated seats on the public buses in Montgomery, Alabama. Back then Black people had to ride in the seats at the back of the bus, and if the seats were all full and a white person got on the bus, a Black rider would have to give their seat to the white person. A boycott a tactic people use to point out something they think is not right. They stop buying something or stop using something to draw attention to the problem. In this case, people boycotted the buses; they stopped paying to ride them.

title - Rosa Parks and the Montgomery Bus Boycotttitle - Rosa Parks & Claudette Colvintitle - Sweet Justicetitle - Rosa

1957

The Little Rock Nine was a group of Black students who signed up to go to Little Rock Central High School. Even though the U.S. Supreme Court had already said it was not legal to separate Black students from white students in public schools, officials blocked these Black students from entering the school. President Eisenhower sent the 101st Airborne and the Arkansas National Guard to escort the students to school.

title - The Little Rock Nine Challenge Segregationtitle - March Forward, Girltitle - Daisy Bates and the Little Rock Ninetitle - The Lions of Little Rock

1960

The Greensboro Sit-ins were nonviolent protests against segregated seating in restaurants. The sit-ins began in Greensboro, North Carolina when four Black men sat down in the white section of a restaurant. No one would take their order because they were not sitting in the “right” seats. They sat quietly until the restaurant closed. Because they were sitting in the seats, white people could not sit in the seats and make an order. The next day more people came and did the same thing, filling up the seats. More people joined each day at more restaurants and in more cities. The restaurants did not make any money. Eventually, the restaurants changed their segregation rules so that they could do business again.

title - Lunch Counter Sit-institle - The Greensboro Lunch Countertitle - Freedom on the Menutitle - Sit-in

1960

Ruby Bridges was the first Black student to attend an all-white elementary school in New Orleans, Louisiana. Four federal marshals escorted Ruby and her mother for the entire school year.

title - Ruby Bridges Takes Her Seattitle - I Am Ruby Bridgestitle - Ruby Bridgestitle - This Is your Time

1961

Freedom Riders were people who rode on buses to protest segregated seating. The United States Supreme Court had already ruled that it was illegal to separate Black people from white people on public buses. The authorities did not enforce the law. To protest this, groups of people, both Black and white, rode the buses together to challenge the rules. The riders drew attention to the states that were not following federal law.

title - The Story of the Civil Rights Freedom Rides in Photographstitle - Night on Firetitle - Twelve Days in May

1963

The Birmingham Children’s March was a march by hundreds of school children in Birmingham, Alabama. The children left school and walked downtown to talk to the mayor about segregation. Authorities used fire hoses and police dogs to try to stop the march. Many children were arrested. This event inspired President Kennedy to publicly support federal civil rights legislation and the Civil Rights Act in 1964.

title - We've Got A Jobtitle - The Youngest Marchertitle - Let the Children March

1963

The March on Washington took place in Washington D.C. on August 28, 1963. At the march, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his historic “I Have a Dream” speech. The march helped pass the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

title - More Than A Dreamtitle - Unstoppabletitle - A Song for the Unsungtitle - March On!title - A Place to Landtitle - I Have A Dream

1963

The 16th Street Baptist Church Bombing in Birmingham, Alabama, on Sunday, September 15, 1963 killed four little girls and injured 22 other people. Three Klansmen were thought by the FBI to be responsible and were eventually prosecuted for the crime, but not until 1977, 2001 and 2002. A fourth man died before he could be prosecuted. The bombing contributed to support for the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

title - Birmingham, 1963title - Birmingham Sunday

1964

The Civil Rights Act enacted on July 2, 1964. It is a landmark law in the United States that outlaws discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex, or national origin.

title - The Civil Rights Act of 1964title - Glory Betitle - All the Days Past, All the Days to Cometitle - Freedom Summer

1965

The Selma to Montgomery Voting Marches were three protest marches along a 54-mile highway from Selma, Alabama, to the Alabama state capital of Montgomery. Black citizens who were being prevented from exercising their constitutional right to vote organized the marches. The marches contributed to the passing of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.

title - Because They Marchedtitle - Lillian's Right to Votetitle - Turning 15 on the Road to Freedomtitle - The Teachers March!

1968

Dr. Martin Luther King assassinated in Memphis, Tennessee on April 4, 1968. While his death silenced his own voice, it did not end the civil rights movement. The movement continues to this day as people work to ensure and preserve opportunities for racial equity, inclusion, justice, and peace.

title - Martin Risingtitle - The Cart That Carried Martintitle - Chasing King's Killer

To learn even more about fascinating and inspiring black history makers, visit the Center for Black Literature & Culture at Central Library. The Center is dedicated to celebrating the vibrant and resilient heritage and triumphs of those born of African roots.

Kids of all ages can learn about more than a dozen trailblazing women in science, art, law, politics, and sports by listening to these video storytimes. Our featured story is called Equality’s Call, by Deborah Diesen, illustrated by Magdalena Mora. It is the story of the history of voting rights in the United States from our nation’s founding until today. The story is read by National Women’s History Museum Ambassador, actress Logan Browning.

To hear even more stories about amazing women, just click on a book cover to listen to another one!

title - Althea Gibsontitle - Drum Dream Girltitle - The House That Jane Builttitle - Frida Kahlo and Her Animalitostitle - Game Changerstitle - Hidden Figurestitle - Joan Procter, Dragon Doctortitle - Kamala and Maya's Big Ideatitle - Separate Is Never Equaltitle - Shaking Things uptitle - Turning Pagestitle - When Harriet Met Sojournertitle - The Youngest Marcher

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about trailblazing women at any of our locations, or check out books about trailblazing women e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Find more FREE online reading at Free Video Read Alouds or try storytime at home!

Need help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text, or email Ask-a-Librarian. The Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Websites, Activities & Printables

Women’s History for Kids

Fun books to help kids learn about women’s history and get inspired to make a difference!

Title - NinaTitle - Red Bird SingsTitle - BaseballTitle - 2017 Women

Women and Girls Make Amazing Music!

These compelling documentaries shed light on the lives and careers of women and girls working in a range of genres and musical settings.

Title - Sisters With TransistorsTitle - Tokyo idolsTitle - FannyTitle - Joan Baez

Game Changers: 25 Books About Female Athletes Who Took the Lead

Listed here are more stories about trailblazing female athletes. “Stories, both real and imagined, show what girls can do. The stories of women’s lives, and the choices they made, encourage girls to think larger and bolder, and give boys and men a fuller understanding of the female experience.” ~National Women’s History Project

Title - Breaking ThroughTitle - I Am A PromiseTitle - Girl RunningTitle - Anybody

Women Make Amazing Art!

Invite the budding young artists in your life to explore art by women from around the planet!

Title - The Life and Art of Ningiukulu TeeveeTitle - We Are ArtistsTitle - Through GeorgiaTitle - Faith Ringgold

Reading the words Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. left behind, thinking about them and talking to others about them, is one way to honor him on January 15, 2024, the day commemorating his birth and legacy.

Dr. King’s writings include not only books, but masterful speeches and many letters. Below is a selection of his books, his speeches and one letter, which is regarded as one of the most important documents of the Civil Rights Movement. These featured writing selections are available to you for reading or listening online, or for check out with your IndyPL library card. You can take just ten minutes to read a letter, 20 minutes to listen to one of his speeches, or several days to do a deep dive into one of his books to learn about, re-connect with, remember, or re-commit to his messages about community, equality, and social justice.

“Well, I don’t know what will happen now. We’ve got some difficult days ahead. But it really doesn’t matter with me now, because I’ve been to the mountaintop…and I’ve seen the Promised Land. I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we, as a people, will get to the Promised Land.”

~ Martin Luther King Jr., Memphis, Tennessee, April 3, 1968, delivered less than 24 hours before he was assassinated on April 4, 1968.

Five Speeches

I Have a Dream
Delivered on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C., August 28, 1963. Read and listen to audio of his “I Have a Dream” speech.

Our God is Marching On
Delivered in Selma, Alabama after the march to Montgomery, March 25, 1965. Read or listen to audio of his “Our God is Marching On” speech.

Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break the Silence
Delivered at Riverside Church, New York City, April 4, 1967. Read or listen to audio of his “Beyond Vietnam: A Time to Break the Silence” speech.

The Other America
Delivered at Grosse Pointe High School, March 14, 1968. Read his “The Other America” speech.

I’ve Been to the Mountaintop
Delivered in Memphis, Tennessee, April 3, 1968, one day before he was assassinated on April 4, 1968. Read his “I’ve Been to the Mountaintop” speech.

(More Fascinating featured documents can be found at the Stanford Martin Luther King Jr. Research and Education Institute.)

One Letter

Letter From a Birmingham Jail
Written April 16, 1963 from the Birmingham jail where Dr. King was held for participating in a nonviolent demonstration against segregation. The letter was written in response to a letter called “A Call for Unity” published on April 12, 1963 by eight white religious leaders of the South who took issue with the demonstration.

Six Books

Stride Toward Freedom: The Montgomery Story (1958) Dr. King’s first book, it tells the story of the Montgomery Bus Boycott from the early strategic planning to pushback from the white community to the eventual success of establishing a desegregated city bus service. print | print | e-bookaudiobook

The Measure of a Man (1959)
A collection of meditations and prayers written 10 years before the civil rights leader was assassinated. print

Strength to Love (1963)
This is a collection of Dr. King’s iconic sermons. print | print | print | e-book

Why We Can’t Wait (1963)
His argument for equality and an end to racial discrimination that explains why the civil rights struggle is vital to the United States. print | print | e-bookdownloadable audiobook | audiobook CD

Where Do We Go From Here: Chaos or Community? (1967)
The book in which he outlines the trends in the African American struggle during the sixties, and calls for peaceful coexistence between the African American and white communities. print | e-bookaudiobook | audiobook CD

The Trumpet of Conscience (1968)
A collection of five lectures from 1967 that address racial equality, conscience and war, the mobilization of young people, and nonviolence. print | e-book

Visit the Center for Black Literature & Culture at Central Library

You can check out Dr. King’s books and many more at the Center for Black Literature & Culture (CBLC), a space at Central Library dedicated to celebrating the vibrant and resilient heritage and triumphs of those born of African roots. The CBLC’s collection includes specially selected literature, music, movies, and artwork highlighting the contributions of black icons, specifically those with Indiana roots.

Black Biopics

Biopics are films about historical figures and events. While directors and producers often take dramatic license in these films, at their core these films help audiences learn, become inspired, and share in the emotional journey of the characters. Below are biopics depicting Black stories and people.

Title - RayTitle - HarrietTitle - 42Title - RespectTitle - King RichardTitle - Hidden FiguresTitle - SelmaTitle - The Woman King

Books for Kids to Celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

In honor of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, here are 25 books for children that highlight Dr. King’s life and legacy fighting for justice.

Title - The Words of Martin Luther King JrTitle - Only Light Can Do ThatTitle - AinTitle - Martin Luther King Jr. DayTitle - Martin & AnneTitle - MartinTitle - Threads of PeaceTitle - Good Night Martin Luther King Jr

The Racial Equity Collection

The Racial Equity Collection makes it easier than ever for Library patrons to access antiracism and social justice resources. The Library purchased thousands of new materials including books, e-books, audiobooks, DVDs, and Blu-rays. The materials span a wide range of genres, with titles suited for children, teens, and adults. See the collection online.

The poet James Whitcomb Riley was born in Greenfield, Indiana on October 7, 1849. To give you an idea how long ago that was, he was about 12 years old when the U.S. Civil War started. Thomas Edison and Alexander Graham Bell were both born around the same time. At the time of his death on July 22, 1916, Riley was a beloved figure across the country, but especially so in Indiana. Many of his poems were funny. People really liked that. During his life he traveled the country giving live shows reading his poetry. In his time, he was a rock star!

James Whitcomb Riley’s death was such news it made front page headlines in major newspapers all across the country. One of the newspaper headlines about his funeral said, “35,000 People Pass Casket of Indiana Poet”. That is a lot of people paying their respects.

Riley Recordings

During Riley’s life people did not have radios in their homes yet. In order to listen to music or readings people used a hand cranked phonograph machine to listen to audio recordings on cylinders. Today you can play a digital file of an audiobook on your phone or computer. In 1912 Riley recorded poetry readings for the Victor Talking Machine Company so that people could listen at home. You can listen to old Riley Recordings in The Library’s digital collection. Open the James Whitcomb Riley Recordings to listen to the man himself reading his own poetry.

James Whitcomb Riley Books

Mr. Riley’s most famous poems for children were and still are, “Raggedy Man,” “The Little Orphant Annie,” “When the Frost is on the Punkin,” and “The Old Swimmin’ Hole.” You can read them right now in these free e-books from IUPUI. I recommend the deliciously scary “The Little Orphant Annie.” Annie is a great storyteller! She tells the story of why you better mind your parents because “The gobble-uns’ll git you ef you don’t watch out!” To read it click on the first book below, Riley Child Rhymes, and then click on page 23.

title - Blank Entrytitle - Blank Entrytitle - Blank Entry

Websites, Activities & Printables:

In the spirit of another beloved Hoosier, David Letterman:

Top 10 Ways to Know James Whitcomb Riley was a Rock Star of his Time:

10. His book Rhymes of Childhood, published in 1912, can still be found today over 100 years later. Find it at the library or go to an online bookstore. There are not very many books still available from that long ago!

9. In the late 1890s Riley encouraged the African American poet Paul Laurence Dunbar. He wrote Dunbar a letter of recommendation that helped get Dunbar’s work published.

8. When Riley died, the President of the United states, Woodrow Wilson, and the Vice-President of the United States, Thomas Riley Marshall (who was from Columbia City, Indiana), both sent messages of condolence to his family. The Governor of Indiana allowed Riley to lay in state at The Indiana Statehouse Rotunda so that people could come pay their respects. Until that time, only Abraham Lincoln had been honored in that way.

7. Greenfield, IN, his birthplace, and Indianapolis, IN, his home for over 20 years, fought over the location of Riley’s grave. Over Riley’s Dead Body: Indy’s Weirdest Civic Fight. Indianapolis won. He grave is at Crown Hill Cemetery in a tomb at the top of a hill, the highest point in Indianapolis.

6. Both Riley’s boyhood home in Greenfield, IN and his adult home in Indianapolis, IN are museums and on the National Register of Historic Places.

5. Named in his honor, the James Whitcomb Riley Hospital for Children opened in 1924. In 1955 the hospital added Camp Riley, a camp for youth with disabilities.

4. In 1940, the U.S. Postal Service issued a 10-cent stamp honoring Riley.

3. Commissioned in 1942 during World War II, the cargo ship SS James Whitcomb Riley bears his name.

2. There used to be a Hoosier Poet Brand of coffee, oatmeal, vegetables, cigars and more.

1. James Whitcomb Riley donated the land Central Library is built on. The bronze gates at the main entrance on St. Clair Street were purchased with pennies donated by children. The bronze tablets on each of the iron gates say: The gates are the gift of the children of Indianapolis in loving remembrance of their friend James Whitcomb Riley

Famous Hoosiers for Kids

A look at an interesting group of the Indiana born or raised who have contributed to the history and life of the state and the nation from a millionaire businesswoman to a Disney animator to a lighthouse keeper (in Indiana!) as well as a U.S. President. #indyplkids

Title - Bill PeetTitle - John GreenTitle - Major Taylor, Champion CyclistTitle - Seed by Seed

Have you ever seen a “shooting” or “falling” star? These streaks of light are not actually stars at all, but space rocks falling through the earth’s atmosphere. These rocks, called meteoroids or meteors, rub against particle’s in the earth’s atmosphere as they fall. This creates friction, making the meteor extremely hot. Usually, the meteors become so hot they burn up and disappear before hitting the earth. The flame of that burning up is what we see and what makes meteors look like a star falling out of the sky. A meteor that survives its journey through the atmosphere and lands on the earth, is a meteorite.

At certain times of year we can see a lot of meteors all at once because the earth is passing through a field of space rocks. These times of year are called “meteor showers” because so many space rocks are falling through the earth’s atmosphere at one time. Each year in late summer the Earth passes through a trail of dust and debris left by an ancient comet called Comet Swift-Tuttle. This creates a lot of meteors that look like they are coming from the constellation Perseus. That’s we we call this time of year the Perseid Meteor Shower.

In 2023 the Perseid Meteor Shower will occur from July 17to August 24, and be at its peak around August 13.

The best way to see meteors is to go outside after dark when meteor showers are predicted, like the Perseid Meteor Shower, lie on your back and look straight up. You might have to wait. Bring a good snack like popcorn!

This meteorite is an Artifact at the Children’s Museum of Indianapolis. “Meteorites are one of the few extraterrestrial, from outer space, materials scientists have to study. Most meteorites found on the ground are iron, which are very dense and appear quite different from ordinary rock. This is a Gibeon meteorite made up mostly of iron and nickel.”

Websites, Activities & Printables:

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

Meteor Showers in Books

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about meteors at any of our locations, or check out meteor e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

What to Read

title - On the Night of the Shooting Startitle - Exploring Meteor Showerstitle - How the Meteorite Got to the Museumtitle - Rocket Says Look Up!

The water on the earth is in constant motion. Water falls to the earth as rain and then evaporates back up into the air forming clouds. Evaporation is the process that changes liquid (like water) to gas (water vapor in the air). Water vapor in the air forms tiny droplets. When there are a bunch of these droplets clouds form. When a bunch of the droplets stick together raindrops form and fall back to earth again. After the rain falls, some of it soaks into the earth, and some of it evaporates into the air again. This cycle is call the hydrologic or water cycle. You can build construct a DIY terrarium and observe the water cycle in it.

Make a DIY Terrarium

To see how the hydrologic cycle works you can make your own miniature model of the earth in a terrarium. A terrarium is a little garden inside a clear, sealed plastic or glass container. A canning jar is a common glass container with a lid that might be easy to find at home. You can probably find the other things you need for your terrarium in your own backyard: small stones go in the bottom of the container, dirt, and a small plant or two. Look in shady areas for moss, it grows really well in a terrarium! You can also plant seeds and watch them grow.

Here are two videos that will help you. One explains how the water cycle works and the other will take you through step-by-step directions for building your own DIY terrarium.

What You Need

  • a Clear Plastic or Glass Container With a Lid
  • Stones
  • Soil
  • Plants
  • Water
  • Little Toys for Decoration (optional)

Instructions

After planting, add enough water just to moisten the soil. You don’t want to flood your garden. You don’t want standing water in the bottom of the container. When you poor water into your terrarium you are starting the water cycle. Eventually, it will “rain” in the little glass world you have made! When you set your terrarium in the sun the water inside the terrarium will heat up and turn into water vapor in the air. This is called evaporation. When the water cools back down, it turns back into a liquid. You will see condensation – water droplets – sticking to the lid of your terrarium. If the drops get large enough, they will roll down the sides of the container or fall from the lid – rain!

The close-up on the left shows the condensation that began to form on the inside of the jar after only 1 hour sitting in the sun. If there is too much water just open the lid and let some of the water evaporate into the air outside the container. If your plants look wilted or dry, try adding a little more water. It might take some trial and error to get the amount of water needed just right.

Science Experiment Idea

Make three identical terrariums. You have to use the same kind of container, the same amount of soil & the same plants. Make your variable (the thing you are going to test) the amount of water you put into the terrariums. Measure a different amount of water into each terrarium. Close the lids and watch the terrariums over several days to see which amount of water made the best environment for your plants. A terrarium with too little water will have dry plants. A terrarium with too much water will have plants with yellow leaves and maybe even mold growing on the soil!

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about plants at any of our locations, or check out plant e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Little Indoor Gardens for Kids – Terrariums & the Hydrologic Cycle

To see how the hydrologic (water) cycle works you can make a miniature model of the earth in a terrarium. A terrarium is a little garden inside a clear, sealed plastic or glass container. After making one, you can watch how water evaporates, condenses and rains. Here are some books to help you learn about the hydrologic cycle and put together a terrarium of your own.

Title - A Family Guide to Terrariums for KidsTitle - DropTitle - Water CyclesTitle - The Water LadyTitle - WaterTitle - WaterTitle - How Long Is the Water Cycle?Title - The Water CycleTitle - From Raindrop to TapTitle - Fairy Garden DesignTitle - The Water CycleTitle - The Nitty-gritty Gardening Book

In How to Make Ice Cream in a Bag follow step-by-step directions at home for making your own ice cream. Find out the science behind how this works. Smart as well as delicious! Watch a demonstration of how this works in the video below. With a few simple ingredients you can be eating a DIY slushie cold treat in no time! Even on a very hot day!

A little bit simpler science recipe you can try is making a DIY slushie from your favorite drink. The same science principles apply! Your favorite drink is pretty good with ice floating in it. When your drink has ice cubes in it, the ice cubes make the drink colder, but the ice cubes don’t make the drink itself freeze. The ice cubes IN the drink melt because they are colder then the drink itself. The drink melts the ice cubes by lowering their temperature. If you want a slushie you need to put ice AROUND your drink instead of IN it.

Melting point is the temperature at which a solid will melt. For ice this temperature is 32 degrees. If you put a drink in the freezer, where the temperature is 32 degrees or colder, the drink itself will freeze. Solid. You won’t be able to drink it!

To make your DIY slushie you want the temperature around your favorite drink to be lower than 32 degrees so the drink itself will get really cold. Keep an eye on it and stir it a lot so it doesn’t freeze solid. Make an easy slushie using ice cubes and salt. Note: the salt does NOT go IN your drink!

Salt lowers the melting point of water. Adding salt to ice cubes makes them stay frozen longer. If ice with salt added to it is packed around a liquid, like your drink, the salted ice will make your drink so cold that it will turn into a slushie!\

What You Need:

  • Your Favorite Drink (Soda, orange juice, lemonade, etc.)
  • Quart-size zip-lock bag
  • Gallon-size zip-lock bag
  • 2 cups ice
  • 1/4 cup salt
  • Bowl

Fill the quart size bag with your favorite drink and zip it closed. HINT: Make sure the bag is zipped really good or your slushie will taste bad when some of the salt leaks into your bag. Put the quart size bag inside the gallon bag. Add the ice and salt to the gallon bag. Next, zip the gallon size bag closed. Finally, shake the bag a lot – even play catch with it…gently. In about 15 minutes you will feel the ingredients in the quart size bag starting to firm up. What started out as a liquid is changing to a solid. When it feels done take the quart size bag out of the gallon size bag. Rinse it off good in clean water. Then open the bag, squeeze the slushie into a glass and enjoy!

When you add salt to the ice cubes you lower the melting point of the ice cubes by several degrees. The ice cubes stay colder, longer – long enough to turn your drink slushie. The secret is the catalyst – the salt. A catalyst is a substance that increases the rate of a reaction.

Science Experiment Idea

Make 3 different quart size bags each filled with the exact same amount of your favorite drink. Fill each of three gallon size bag with the exact same number of ice cubes. Add 1/8 cup of salt to the first gallon size bag and label it with a sharpie, “1/8”. Then add 1/4 cup of salt to the second gallon size bag and label it “1/4”. Finally, add 1/3 cup of salt to the third gallon size bag and label it “1/3”. Have a couple friends help you shake and smoosh the bags to make the slushies. Time how long it takes each of the bags to turn into a slushie. Which amount of salt makes a DIY slushie the fastest?

Websites, Activities & Printables:

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out kitchen science books at any of our locations, or check out kitchen science e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. The Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Ice Cream and Other Edible Science for Kids

Let your kitchen become a science lab and bake, melt, freeze, or boil an experiment you can eat!

Title - The Chemistry of FoodTitle - The Complete Cookbook for Young ScientistsTitle - Kitchen ChemistryTitle - Hack Your Kitchen : Discover A World of Food Fun With Science BuddiesTitle - Kitchen Explorers!Title - Experiment With Kitchen ScienceTitle - Awesome Kitchen Science Experiments for KidsTitle - Kitchen ChemistryTitle - Melting MatterTitle - How to Make Ice Cream in A BagTitle - Curious Pearl Explains States of MatterTitle - The Kitchen Pantry Scientist

If you are a serious researcher, curious traveler, or proud resident, these links will help you explore Indiana and Indianapolis from collections of digitized photos and artifacts to letters, old newspapers articles, and more. Browse them from home or take an afternoon to visit the Indianapolis Special Collections Room at Central Library where you will find all things Indiana and Indianapolis complete with a beautiful sixth floor view of downtown Indianapolis.

Indianapolis Public Library Resources

Digital Indy Archives: Yearbooks, arts organizations, civic organizations, public safety, neighborhoods, newsmagazines all accessible online.

Hoosier State Chronicles
250+ scanned and searchable newspapers from every county in Indiana, with the earliest starting in 1804.

Indianapolis Star (1903-2004)
A full-text version of the Indianapolis Star from 1903-1922 including photographs, ads, obituaries, and marriage announcements.

Indianapolis Star (1991-Present)
Full-text coverage from the Indianapolis Star back to 1991, including obituaries, but excluding paid advertisements and freelance writers.

IndyPL Staff Reading Recommendation about Indiana and Indianapolis covering history, sports, art, nature, hoosier authors, and more.

Local Newspapers

  • Central Library has Indianapolis newspapers on microfilm from about 1822 to the present. You may access the microfilm collection in person during library hours.
  • Indianapolis Star (1903-2004) A full-text version of the Indianapolis Star from 1903-1922 including photographs, ads, obituaries, and marriage announcements.
  • Indianapolis Star (1991-Present) Full-text coverage from the Indianapolis Star back to 1991, including obituaries, but excluding paid advertisements and freelance writers.
  • Indianapolis Star ProQuest Online Database: Access 1903-present via indypl.org with a library card.
  • The Weekly View Published be Eastside Voice Community News Media for 24 zip codes in from Downtown Indy East to Greenfield, North to Lawrence, Geist, and Broad Ripple, and South to Beech Grove, New Pal & Southport.
  • La Voz de Indiana La Voz de Indiana Bilingual Newspaper serves all communities by concentrating on the Hispanic and American markets. As the “only” bilingual publication in the state of Indiana , La Voz is published in both Spanish and English. Their goals are to Embrace Diversity by promoting understanding and improve communication between people.
  • The Free Soil Banner The Free Soil Banner was published in Indianapolis from 1848 to 1854. Other cities had newspapers by the same name, but the Indiana version was edited by Lew Wallace and William B. Greer, and reportedly funded by Ovid Butler, the founder of North Western Christian University, later renamed Butler University.

Museums

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis Archive
Physical Collection: Photos and historic documents pertaining to Indianapolis history.
Digital Collection: 1,000 artifacts from the museum. Selected objects range from Social Studies to Science to Geography with a particular emphasis on Indiana.

Indiana Medical History Museum
Physical Collection: The foremost institution in the region for medical history interpretation and preservation.

Indianapolis Firefighters’ Museum
Physical Collection: Indianapolis fire service history through exhibits, photographs, artifacts, log books, and more.
Digital Collection: Materials include photographs, logbooks, yearbooks, scrapbooks and other items the Museum has collected over the years.

Indianapolis Museum of Art at Newsfields
Stout Reference Library and Archives
Physical Collection: Indiana Artist Files, history of Oldfields estate, Art Association of Indianapolis to Newfields history, various arts-related manuscript collections.
discovernewfields.org/research/libraries | discovernewfields.org/archives
Digital Collection: Selections from online manuscript collections.

Indianapolis Resources

Benjamin Harrison Presidential Site
Physical Collection: Physical collection detailing the life of the 23rd President of the United States.
Digital Collection

Historic Indianapolis
Online Blog: A blog about historic events in Indianapolis.

Indianapolis Long Ago
Facebook Group: Photos and history from fans of Indianapolis history.

Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department
Digital Collection: All things Indianapolis police history in photographs, video, and artifacts including arrest logs from the early 1900s, information about some of the very first policewomen, mug shots from the turn of the century, IPD personnel records, and video footage of Indianapolis policing from the 1980s and 1990s.

Indy Nostalgia
Facebook Group: Photos and history from fans of Indianapolis history.

Invisible Indianapolis
Online Blog: Research blog detailing race, heritage, and community memory in Indianapolis.

Irvington Historical Society
Physical Collection: Property, school and family records related to Greater Irvington.

State Resources

Indiana Album
Digital Collection: Images from private collections across the state; based in Indianapolis.

Hoosier State Chronicles
Digital Collection: Newspaper from across Indiana. Indianapolis papers include: Recorder, Sentinel, News, Daily Herald, Journal, Leader.

Indiana Historical Society
Physical Collection: Physical collections of print materials, photographs, Digital Collection: Bass Photograph Collection, Civil War, correspondence, clubs.

Indiana Landmarks
Physical Collection: Preserving the built environment of Indiana.

Indiana Memory Digital Collection: Aggregator of statewide digital collections.

Indiana State Archives
Physical Collection: City records, land records, neighborhood records, meeting minutes, etc.

Indiana State Library
Physical Collection: Genealogy and Rare Books and Manuscripts Finding Aids | Manuscript Catalog.
Digital Collection: Photographs, maps, manuscripts, broadsides, pamphlets, periodicals, government documents, genealogy materials.
Digital Collection: Indiana State Library Historical Bureau; Indiana State Historical Markers on a variety of Marion County topics.

Indiana Department of Natural Resources
Online Database: Database of historic properties and cemeteries within Indianapolis.

Colleges & Universities

Butler University
Digital Collection: Materials from Butler University Special Collections and Archives.

Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis (IUPUI)
Digital Collections: Speedway, Benjamin Harrison presidential site, LGBTQ+, City Directories, Sanborn Maps, Crispus Attucks Museum.

Other Community Resources

National Historic Geographic Information System (NHGIS)
Digital Collection: Historic census tract-level census data available in GIS formats.

The Polis Center
Online Databases: Data visualization, aggregation, statistics and informational databases.

UIndy Mayoral Archives
Digital Collection: Includes archives for L. Keith Bulen, Richard G. Lugar, William H. Hudnutt, Stephen Goldsmith.

If you love airplanes, try out some of these paper creations in Building Vehicles That Fly. These paper engineering projects will help you learn the science behind how planes are designed and built. If you understand how the forces of aerodynamics work, you can make a paper airplane that flies really far! In several of the books listed below the directions are really clear with color photographs to help you make the folds correctly. Start out with a couple easy ones and then try something more challenging.

What You Need

  • Paper
  • Pencil
  • Ruler
  • Paper Clips

Do an experiment with three paper airplanes folding the exact same way with the exact same size of paper. Fly all three planes and measure how far they go. What happens if you add one paperclip to each? What happens of you add 2? Or 3? Record your results.

Websites, Printables & Activities

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about paper airplanes at any of our locations, or check out paper airplane e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Paper Airplanes – Draw or Fold These Aerodynamic Marvels

If you love airplanes, try out some of these paper creations and engineering projects to learn the science behind how planes are designed and built.

Title - Paper PlanesTitle - Making Paper AirplanesTitle - 5 Steps to Drawing AircraftTitle - Out of This World Paper Airplanes EbookTitle - Building Vehicles That FlyTitle - Amazing Paper AirplanesTitle - Making A Paper Airplane and Other Paper ToysTitle - The Flying Machine BookTitle - How to Build A PlaneTitle - The KidsTitle - The Science of FlightTitle - Draw 50 Airplanes, Aircraft and Spacecraft

Sometimes when atoms come together to form a molecule, one end of the molecule has a positive charge and one end of the molecule has a negative charge. When this happens the molecule is called a polar moleculeMolecules that do not have two different electrical poles are called non-polar molecules. For today’s demonstration you will make a lava bottle to observe polar and non-polar molecules.

This experiment will show you how polar molecules and non-polar molecules behave when added together. If two kinds of molecules are added together that are both polar molecules, they will mix. They are miscibleMiscible means that the two things can mix together. If two non-polar molecules are added together they will also mix and are miscible. However, if a non-polar molecule and a polar molecule are added together, they will NOT mix together. This is called imiscibleImiscible means that the two kinds of molecules CANNOT mix together.

What You Need

  • Plastic Bottle
  • Water
  • Vegetable Oil
  • Food coloring
  • Measuring Cups
  • Alka Seltzer

Instructions to Make a Lava Bottle

Fill the bottle about 3/4 of the way up with vegetable oil. Fill the bottle the rest of the way up with water. Now add some drops of food coloring. Close the cap on the bottle and shake it up. What happens?

Break the alka seltzer tablet in half. Open the bottle and drop in one half. What happens? Once the bubbles settle down drop in the other half. What happens again?

Water is a polar molecule. Vegetable oil is a non-polar molecule. These two substances do not mix together, they are imiscible (they will not mix together). That’s why you see the blobs of water bobbing around in the oil. Food coloring is a polar molecule so it WILL mix with the water. The water and the food coloring are both polar molecules and will mix together. That’s why the water blobs turn the color of the food coloring and the oil does not.

The alka seltzer just makes the lava bottle more fun because it makes the colorful water blobs move without shaking the bottle. The alka seltzer tablets dissolve in the the water and make carbon dioxide gas (like we saw vinegar and baking soda do in the Exploding Ziploc experiment). The carbon dioxide gas bubbles attach to the colorful water blobs and make them float to the top of the bottle. When the gas bubbles pop there is no gas bubble to hold up the water blob, so it slowly floats back down to the bottom of the bottle.

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books and Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Science Experiments at any of our locations, or check out science experiment e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Atoms, Molecules and the Elements in the Periodic Table for Kids

The photographs, diagrams and creative storytelling in these books make the building blocks of the universe understandable…and fun! Find out about the scientists and discoveries which helped us find out what makes up all the stuff of the universe.

Title - The Illustrated Encyclopedia of the ElementsTitle - LetTitle - How Do Molecules Stay Together?Title - Astonishing Atoms and Matter MayhemTitle - Queen of PhysicsTitle - MoleculesTitle - Periodic TableTitle - Explore Atoms and Molecules!Title - Atoms and MoleculesTitle - Mixtures and SolutionsTitle - The Disappearing SpoonTitle - Elements

Sir Isaac Newton, an English scientist born in 1642, discovered three important principles of physics that describe how things move. Consequently, the principles bear his name, Newton’s First, Second, and Third Laws of Motion. Today’s experiment demonstrates Newton’s Third Law of Motion. It says that for every action there is an equal and opposite re-action. Basically, if an object is pushed, that object will push back in the opposite direction, equally hard.

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books and Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Sir Isaac Newton at any of our locations, or check out Sir Isaac Newton e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Newton’s Laws of Motion: The Science Behind How Things Move

Newton’s Laws of Motion explain force and motion, or why things move the way they do. They are great concepts to explore by doing a science experiment. These are especially good science project ideas for kids who like to move! The concepts can often be explained using sports equipment or by understanding how amusement park rides work. These books offer ideas for physics experiments that demonstrate force and motion and the laws that govern them. Some of them provide the background information needed for the report that is often required to go with projects for the science fair.

Title - Isaac Newton and the Laws of MotionTitle - Physics for Curious KidsTitle - The Gravity TreeTitle - Janice VanCleaveTitle - The Secret Science of SportsTitle - Fairground PhysicsTitle - Gravity ExplainedTitle - Awesome Physics Experiments for KidsTitle - Sir Isaac NewtonTitle - NewtonTitle - How to Design the WorldTitle - Thud!

Crystals are made when a substance has atoms or molecules that form in a very organized, repeating, 3D pattern. When we think of crystals we often think of some well-known gemstones like diamonds or rubies. But there are some very common crystals too like sugar, ice, snowflakes, and salt.

Learn more about the naturally occurring crystal formation of snow and ice by reading Curious About Snow. Find out the science behind how snow crystals form, the stories of record setting snowstorms, and an introduction to the life and work of photographer Wilson Bentley. Bentley made it his life’s work to study and photograph snowflakes. It is because of Wilson Bentley that we know no two snowflakes are alike!

Enjoy Bentley’s fascinating biography, Snowflake Bentley. You know what is really amazing about him? He made his discoveries in the 1890s! He invented and used a special device that combined a microscope with a camera to capture his microscopic pictures. The book includes some of Bentley’s actual snow crystal photographs.

You can make a scientific observation yourself or do a crystal experiment at home by growing borax crystals. Borax is a laundry detergent booster. You can find borax in the laundry room at home or in the laundry detergent section at the grocery store.

What You Need to Grow Borax Crystals at Home

Try this experiment at home! You will need:

  • Glass Jar
  • Pencil or Pen
  • String
  • Pipe Cleaner
  • Borax
  • Pitcher
  • Measuring Cup
  • Tablespoon
  • Hot Tap Water
  • Piece of Yarn or Cotton String, about 6 inches long

Instructions for Growing Borax Crystals

Fill a pitcher with 3 cups hot tap water. (Not so hot that you can’t touch it!) Add 3 tablespoons of Borax for each cup of water. We used 3 cups of hot tap water and 9 tablespoons of Borax. A mason jar was a great container for this. Stir the mixture.

If all of the Borax dissolves, add a little more Borax and stir. Add Borax until the water can’t dissolve it anymore – the mixture is saturated. That means the water is holding as much of the Borax as it can. In fact, this solution is supersaturated, that means the water is holding even more Borax than it normally would because the water has been heated. Now pour this supersaturated solution in the glass jar.

Make a shape out of the pipe cleaners and tie one end of the string to it. We made a snowflake shape out of pipe cleaners to see if we could make a snowflake crystal. Tie the other end of the string to the middle of the pen. Hang the pipe cleaner shape down in the jar with the pen across the top of the jar to keep it from touching the bottom of the jar. Watch what happens in the jar over the next few weeks.

srpboraxgrowth

Here is what our crystals looked like after growing on the pipe cleaner snowflake for about 2 weeks. The secret to growing borax crystals is having a supersaturated solution.

Science Experiment Idea

Grow three different borax crystal snowflakes. You need three glass jars that are exactly alike. Fill one with cold tap water and one with hot tap water. Get an adult to help you fill the last jar with boiling water. Now add Borax a little a time to each jar until the Borax will not dissolve anymore. The warmer the water, the more Borax will dissolve in the water. That’s because heating the water helps it become supersaturated. Now add a pipe cleaner snowflake to each jar and compare the crystals that grow over the next couple of weeks. Which jar has the most crystals? Which jar has the largest crystals?

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books and Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about crystals at any of our locations, or check out e-books and audiobooks about crystals from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Explore the Science of Crystals from Minerals to Gems to Snowflakes

Learn about the qualities and identifying characteristics of crystals, the amazing naturally occurring patterns that happen in both minerals and snowflakes. No two are exactly alike, and yet each one has a uniform and repeating pattern. You can study how crystals form by growing some of your own!

Title - All About Crystals and GemsTitle - Read All About Rocks and GemsTitle - Investigate GemsTitle - CrystalsTitle - Kitchen ChemistryTitle - Rocks and Minerals : Get the Dirt on GeologyTitle - Rocks and MineralsTitle - Growing CrystalsTitle - Cave Crystals Kitchen ExperimentTitle - Geology for KidsTitle - Geology Lab for KidsTitle - The Rock & Gem Book

A molecule is a group of atoms bonded together. Density is how close together the molecules of a substance are or how much mass a substance has in a given space. Buoyancy and density are related. Density affects how much an object might float, or be buoyant, or sink.

For example, if you have one cup of jelly beans and one cup of marshmallows, the jelly beans have more mass because there is more “stuff” compacted into the cup. The marshmallows have less mass because the molecules of marshmallows are NOT close together. Marshmallows are mostly air.

If you put each of those cups in a microwave to melt the jelly beans and the marshmallows, the sugar and water molecules that make up the jelly beans would almost fill the cup to the top. The sugar and water molecules that makes up the marshmallows would only fill the cup a little bit because marshmallows have less mass, they are mostly made of air. Materials with more density weigh more. A cup of jelly beans weighs more than a cup of marshmallows.

For an object to be buoyant, or float, it must have less density that what it is floating in, or, it has to have something attached to it that helps it float – like you with a life jacket on. You can make some interesting observations about density and buoyancy.

What You Need

  • Drinking Glass
  • Clear Soda
  • Water
  • Ten Raisins

Instructions

Fill one clear glass up with water and drop in five raisins. Fill another clear glass up with clear soda like sprite or 7up. Drop in five raisins. What happens when you drop the raisins in? What a few minutes – now what is happening to the raisins in each glass? Can you guess why the raisins are behaving differently?

Raisins are heavier than the water in the drinking glass. The raisins are also heavier than the soda in the drinking glass. At first, both sets of raisins sink to the bottom of the glass, they don’t float.

But the soda has little air bubbles in it – the carbonation. When there are enough of these little carbonated balloons (the bubbles) stuck to the raisins the bubbles lift the raisins to the surface making the raisin float. The bubbles are like little temporary life jackets! When the bubbles pop and the gas inside them escapes into the air…the raisins don’t have anything to help them float anymore and they sink to the bottom of the glass again.

Science Experiment Idea

Try putting other small objects in soda to see if the bubbles will attach to them and help them float to the surface of the soda. Try a penny, a toothpick, a peanut, or a skittle. Can you find something that the bubbles will float to the surface like the raisin?

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Science Experiments at any of our locations, or check out science experiment e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

The Science Magic of Floating – Buoyancy Explained

Books to help kids understand the science concept of density and how we see it at play when things float – both in the air and in water. Get ideas for science projects and information for the reports that are often required to go with them.

Title - Flying and FloatingTitle - Building Boats That FloatTitle - The Science of SeafaringTitle - Build It! Things That FloatTitle - What Floats in A Moat?Title - Hot Air BalloonsTitle - What Is Density?Title - Does It Sink or Float?Title - How Do Hot Air Balloons Work?Title - What Floats? What Sinks?Title - Scholastic

Matter can be a solid, a liquid, or a gas. Matter changes when it is heated or cooled. When a substance is heated its molecules move faster. As the water in a pot on the stove gets hotter, its molecules begin to move until the water is boiling. When gases are heated the same thing happens. You can do a dramatic experiment with a bar of ivory soap to observe how heat can change matter.

What You Need

  • Bar of Soap that Floats (Ivory Soap does!)
  • Bowl of Water
  • Paper Plate
  • Microwave

Instructions

Break or cut the bar of soap into four pieces. Put the pieces on a paper plate and microwave for 1 minute. Watch the ivory soap through the microwave window.

As the soap molecules begin to heat up, the air bubbles move quickly away from each other, or expand. This is called If you roast a marshmallow, the same thing happens.

Science Experiment Idea

Choose different kinds of soap to see what will happen when they are heated up for one minute in the microwave. Heat each bar of soap up on the same kind of plate. Heat each bar for the same amount of time. The variable in this experiment is the soap, everything else has to be the same. Do the bars of soap each react the same way when they are heated up in the microwave? Why do you think so? For one soap, choose a brand that has air bubbles whipped into it, like Ivory soap. To test a bar of soap to see if it has air bubbles in it, float it in a bowl of water. A bar of soap will float if it has air bubble whipped into it.

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books and Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Science Experiments at any of our locations, or check out science experiment e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Solids, Liquids and Gases – When Matter Feels the Heat!

What turns ice cubes into water? What makes the steam rise from a pot of boiling water? What exactly IS matter – and how can something be all three – a solid, liquid, or gas? Here some experiments to try at home to answer these questions and the science that explains what you see.

Title - Solids and LiquidsTitle - Curious Pearl Explains States of MatterTitle - MatterTitle - Experiments With Solids, Liquids, and GasesTitle - The Solid Truth About States of Matter With Max Axiom, Super ScientistTitle - Heating and CoolingTitle - Solids, Liquids, Gases, and PlasmaTitle - Gases and Their PropertiesTitle - Astonishing Atoms and Matter MayhemTitle - Measuring TemperatureTitle - Many Kinds of MatterTitle - Gases

Have you ever put a coin in one of those wishing wells that is shaped like a giant funnel? The coin rolls around and around the sides of the funnel in smaller and smaller circles until it goes down the hole in the middle of the well. That coin is demonstrating centripetal forceCentripetal force is the force that pulls a thing toward the center of rotation….like the little whirlpool that forms when you drain the bathtub or like the Zinga water slide at Holiday World! Why IS that water slide called Zinga? Because in Swahili Zinga means “to move in a circular motion”. Lots of amusement park rides work because of the laws of physics. You can do the activity hex nut balloon to demonstrate centripetal force.

What You Need

  • Balloon
  • Hex Nut

Blow up a large balloon. Before you close the balloon, put a hex nut in it and then tie the end of the balloon closed. Hold the balloon between your hands and move it in a circular motion until the hex nut starts to roll around the inside of the balloon. Now stop moving the balloon and watch what happens to the hex nut. What you are seeing is centripetal force. The hex nut is on a circular path inside the balloon. Things that are moving in a curved or circular motion will slowly move toward the center of the circle, in this case, the bottom of the balloon. What sound does the hex nut make? How about a penny? A marble? Try them all and see how they behave the same or differently.

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books and Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Science Experiments at any of our locations, or check out science experiment e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Move It! How Things Roll, Slide & Fly – the Science of Forces and Motion

Learn about the physics basics that explain how forces move things on earth. Speed, acceleration, push, pull, inertia, and friction are just some of the concepts covered. Find out the basics that explain how your bicycle works as well as the creative use of these same physics principles that result in the thrill of roller coasters.

Title - Why DoesnTitle - LetTitle - Move It!Title - A Crash Course in Forces and Motion With Max Axiom, Super ScientistTitle - Move It!Title - What Is Force?Title - Explore Forces and Motion!Title - ForcesTitle - ForcesTitle - How to Design the WorldTitle - The Science of A BicycleTitle - Forces

If you mix one substance with another substance you get a mixture. Lemonade would be an example. Or cookie dough! Pen ink is also a mixture. It has more than one substance in it. In this experiment you will see that it is possible to UNmix a mixture too. This is called chromatography. Chromatography is separating the parts of a mixture so that you can see each one by itself. Try this activity to observe black ink chromatography.

Watch the video below to see a demonstration of chromatography using some simple items you can find at home. Then try it yourself with paper towels and markers. In this experiment you will find out something surprising about what mixes together to make black ink!

What You Need

What You Need:

  • Paper Towel or Coffee Filter
  • Bowl
  • Water
  • Several different kinds of black markers

Instructions

Cut strips from the paper towel about 1 inch wide – one for each type of marker. Scribble across the bottom of one of the paper towel strips with each kind of marker. Scribble about one inch from one end of the paper towel strip. Tape the OTHER end of the strip to the maker you used to scribble on that strip. That will help you remember which marker goes with each paper towel strip.

Now hang the paper towel strips above the bowl of water so that only a little bit of the scribble end is in the water. Do not submerge the pen scribbles! Check on the paper towels in an hour. What has happened to the pen marks?

What you see happening on the paper towel strips is chromatography. The color of the ink in markers is made by mixing different pigments together. A pigment is a substance that makes color, like ink or dye. To make black, several pigments are mixed together. When the end of the paper towel strip is submerged in water the water soaks up through the paper towel. When the water passes through the black ink it takes the pigment colors with it. Some pigments dissolve in water easier and are pulled with the water farther up the paper. This is called chromatography – separating the parts of a mixture so that you can see them one at a time. Black ink actually looks like a rainbow!

Try a Black Ink Chromatography Science Experiment

Now set up an experiment using different kinds of paper to see what happens. Try a paper towel, a tissue, a square of toilet paper, and a piece of printer paper. Cut them all the same size. How does the ink act the same? What do you see that is different?

Or, set up an experiment with equally sized pieces of paper towels again, but test different colors of markers. Try black, purple, blue, green, and red. Can you predict what colors make up purple ink?

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Science Experiments at any of our locations, or check out science experiment e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Books for Kids for a Stress-less Science Fair

Here are books to help you pick a science fair experiment that (1) follows the scientific method, (2) uses stuff you can find around the house, and (3) is great fun to do! The books will also help you understand what you are seeing by explaining the science concepts behind the dramatic results.

Title - Janice VanCleaveTitle - Experiment With Outdoor ScienceTitle - Excellent EngineeringTitle - The 101 Coolest Simple Science ExperimentsTitle - DadTitle - Maker LabTitle - Brain Lab for KidsTitle - Naked Eggs and Flying PotatoesTitle - Science Experiments You Can EatTitle - Science Is MagicTitle - Ada TwistTitle - STEM Lab

In today’s experiment you will be able to watch a chemical reaction. In this experiment vinegar (a substance) and baking soda (a substance) will mix together. When mixed together the molecules of the two substances will re-arrange, or change, to make new substances. Read on to find out how this chemical reaction results in an exploding ziploc!

Vinegar has acetic acid in it. The chemical name for baking soda is sodium bicarbonate. When you mix the two together you get sodium acetate and water. You also get carbon dioxide, which is a gas. The bag puffs up because carbon dioxide is a gas and takes up a lot of space. Eventually the bag isn’t big enough to hold all that carbon dioxide gas so it becomes an exploding ziploc!

You Will Need

Try it at Home! You Will Need:

  • Measuring Cups and Spoons
  • Baking soda
  • Vinegar
  • Snack size ziploc bag
  • Quart size ziploc bag

Measure one tablespoon of baking soda into a quart size ziploc bag. Measure 1/2 cup of vinegar into the snack size ziploc bag and zip the bag closed. Put the snack size ziploc bag full of vinegar into the quart size ziploc bag with the baking soda in it. Get as much air as possible out of the quart size bag before zipping it closed. Go outside! Stand in the middle of your yard. Grip the snack size ziploc bag from the outside of the quart size bag and pull it open. As soon as the vinegar starts to mix with the baking soda drop the bags into the grass and watch what happens.

If your bag inflates, but does not explode, try increasing the amount of baking soda and vinegar. If you do this, be sure to drop the bag quickly and take several steps away after you mix the two substances together – when the bag explodes it splashes vinegar everywhere…which does not feel good in your eyes. See the dog’s nose and eyes? Too close! And…it goes without saying to do this OUTSIDE. To investigate chemical reactions further – try some more experiments at home!

Websites, Activities & Printables

You can also ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books & Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about chemistry at any of our locations, or check out chemistry e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Chemistry for Kids: Projects to Makes Things Sizzle, Pop, and Explode!

Chemistry is nature’s magic. With it you can learn to do amazing things, like make erupting volcanoes and and fizzy exploding ziplocs. These books will show you how to do these things and also explain the science behind why these things are happening. You can explore chemical reactions by experimenting with things you find around the house in your kitchen, bathroom or garage.

Title - Kitchen ChemistryTitle - Mixtures and SolutionsTitle - Kitchen ChemistryTitle - Real Chemistry ExperimentsTitle - Science You Can EatTitle - 30-minute Chemistry ProjectsTitle - ReactionsTitle - Chemistry You Can ChompTitle - Backyard Chemistry ExperimentsTitle - Chemistry Projects to Build onTitle - Exploring Kitchen ScienceTitle - The Kitchen Pantry Scientist

Sir Isaac Newton was an English scientist. He was born in 1642 and died in 1727. This was around the time of the early colonization of North America. He lived just before the American Revolution. Newton is best known for three important principles of physics that describe how things move. Consequently, the principles are referred to today by his name – Newton’s First, Second and Third Law of Motion. Newton’s Second Law of Motion says that acceleration (gaining speed) happens when a force acts on a mass (object).

Riding your bicycle is a good example of this law of motion at work. Your bicycle is the mass. Your leg muscles pushing pushing on the pedals of your bicycle is the force. When you push on the pedals, your bicycle accelerates. You are increasing the speed of the bicycle by applying force to the pedals.

Newton’s Second Law also says that the greater the mass of the object being accelerated, the greater the amount of force needed to accelerate the object. Say you have two identical bicycles that each have a basket. One bicycle has an empty basket. One bicycle has a basket full of bricks. If you try to ride each bicycle and you push on the pedals with the exact same strength, you will be able to accelerate the bike with the empty basket MORE than the bike with the basket full of bricks. The bricks add mass to the second bicycle. With bricks in the basket, you would have to apply more force to the pedals to make the bicycle with bricks in the basket move.


Experiments:

Websites, Activities & Printables:

You can ask a math and science expert for homework help by calling the Ask Rose Homework Hotline. They provide FREE math and science homework help to Indiana students in grades 6-12.

e-Books and Audiobooks

Use your indyPL Library Card to check out books about Sir Isaac Newton at any of our locations, or check out Sir Isaac Newton e-books and audiobooks from OverDrive Kids right to your device! If you have never used OverDrive before, you can learn how to use it for both e-books and audiobooks.

Need more help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian. Additionally, the Tinker Station helpline at (317) 275-4500 is also available. It is staffed by device experts who can answer questions about how to read, watch and listen on a PC, tablet or phone.

Newton’s Laws of Motion: The Science Behind How Things Move

Newton’s Laws of Motion explain force and motion, or why things move the way they do. They are great concepts to explore by doing a science experiment. These are especially good science project ideas for kids who like to move! The concepts can often be explained using sports equipment or by understanding how amusement park rides work. These books offer ideas for physics experiments that demonstrate force and motion and the laws that govern them. Some of them provide the background information needed for the report that is often required to go with projects for the science fair.

Title - Isaac Newton and the Laws of MotionTitle - Physics for Curious KidsTitle - The Gravity TreeTitle - Janice VanCleaveTitle - The Secret Science of SportsTitle - Fairground PhysicsTitle - Gravity ExplainedTitle - Awesome Physics Experiments for KidsTitle - Sir Isaac NewtonTitle - NewtonTitle - How to Design the WorldTitle - Thud!