Library News Podcast: September 2021

Join library staff for September’s Library News podcast which features information about the library’s upcoming youth library programs, the ten most challenged books of 2020 for this month’s Banned Books Week, information about Library Card Sign Up Month, news about STEM activity kits, and information about ongoing library events and programs.

Check Out These Great Podcasts From The Library

The Library currently has three podcasts available to listeners.  They cover various topics featuring library staff and special guests.  Try out our podcasts and please feel free to share with anyone who you think would enjoy them.  You can find links to episodes on our Library Podcasts Page or by using the links below.

Braille Bits is a program conducted by the Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled, providing braille lessons online or by mail. This podcast corresponds with each Braille Bits lesson. It features each Braille Bits Lesson and an interview with a special guest to discuss all things braille. Check out the library’s Instructional Materials Center blog for more information about Braille Bits.

Library Chat Each month, during the Library Chat podcast, library staff discusses books and other podcasts around different topics.

Library News A monthly podcast highlighting library events, programs, services, books, and more from the Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled.

Library News Podcast: August 2021

Join library staff for August’s Library News podcast which features information about the library’s youth summer reading programs, the top ten non-fiction books downloaded from BARD last month, information about the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled’s music section and information about ongoing library events and programs.

Our Library Receives Regional Library of the Year Award

Picture of Library Staff
The staff of the Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled

The Iowa Department for the Blind is incredibly pleased to share that the Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled, a division of the Iowa Department for the Blind, has been named 2020-2021 Regional Library of the Year by the National Library Service for the Blind and Print Disabled at the Library of Congress. Our library provides reading materials in braille, audio, large print, and other alternative formats to Iowans of all ages who cannot read standard print. We also provide instructional materials in all alternative formats to pre-K12 students in Iowa schools through a grant from the Iowa Department of Education.

Once again, during a time of great challenge and uncertainty, our library embraced the challenges, kept services going, and even created new programs. Our library did not miss a day of sending out books, even during the early days of the pandemic. Our Instructional Materials Center ensured that all orders from schools for materials were filled in as timely a manner as possible to make sure that students struggling with online learning were not further set back by lack of textbooks and worksheets. We held online trainings for para-educators on braille, access technology, and library ordering that served over 30 para educators and provided a stipend to defer the cost of participation.  We created a new program called IDB Reads where narrators read and discussed books with patrons over the phone to help reduce isolation and create community. We took Maker Space Mondays and STEM and Stories Saturdays online. We have sent out materials and presented the programs live and via YouTube to the youth and families monthly.

As IDB Director, Emily Wharton, stated: “I’ve been telling our legislature, the Governor, and everyone who would listen how fantastic our library is and about all the wonderful things they are doing to empower blind Iowans of all ages.—especially the youth It is truly gratifying to see their hard work and dedication recognized by NLS.” Library Director, Sarah Willeford, shared: “I want to thank our entire team for their creativity and teamwork. Your passion for braille literacy, providing timely and abundant reading material for all patrons,, willingness to fight to make  sure students get high-quality educational materials, and ability to adapt to change continue to give me joy and energy.”

This Saturday! STEM & Stories Saturday and Braille Babies

Join us this Saturday, March 20th at 10:00am for our virtual STEM and Stories Saturday, it is Story Time with Dan Chibnall, astronomer, as we experience space sounds in space.  Also, this Saturday join us for virtual Braille Babies at 11:00am for fun learning about Braille, singing songs, and more! We didn’t want to leave anyone out, grown-ups will also learn about a great parenting tip.

STEM and Stories Saturday Virtual Program
Date and Time: March 20th 10:00 a.m.
Activity: Featuring special guest, Dan Chibnall Story Time in Space!
Register Here

Braille Babies Virtual Program
Date and Time: March 20th 11:00 a.m.
Activity: Braille, learning and Parenting Tip
Ages: 0 to 4 years old
Register Here


Did you miss this month’s virtual Makerspace Monday Virtual Event?  Don’t worry, check out the recording. This month you can touch the moon and create textures and make scientific discoveries when you learn about the different Moon Phases.

Makerspace Mondays are held on the 2nd Monday of each month at 6:30pm.
Register Here
Upon sign up, you will receive a “free” material kit!

STEM & Stories Saturdays are held on the 3rd Saturday of the month at 10:00am.
Register Here

To view past programs and for more information about Makerspace Mondays and STEM & Stories Saturdays visit our Mondays and Saturdays Page.

This Saturday! STEM & Stories Saturday @ The Playground

Join us this Saturday as our special guest from AHeniz57 Pet Rescue and be ready for a tail-wagging surprise!

STEM & Stories Saturday
Date: January 16, 2021 at 10:00am
Setting: ZOOM
Register Here
Upon sign up, you will receive a “free” material kit!


Did you miss Monday’s Makerspace Monday Virtual Event?  Don’t worry, check out the recording. Denise escapes to a topical oasis and makes Coconut Sugar Scrub and Body Soufflé.

Makerspace Mondays are held on the 2nd Monday of each month at 6:30pm.
Register Here
Upon sign up, you will receive a “free” material kit!

To view past programs and for more information about Makerspace Mondays and STEM & Stories Saturdays visit our Mondays and Saturdays Page.