Recap: Wilderness Camp – Summer Reading Program Week 6

Image of a blue dragon sniffing a flower.Ready, Set, Adventure!

This week our Summer Reading Program took us into the wilderness!

Who doesn’t like a good old fashion scavenger hunt, especially when it is outside! On Monday, we took a dive into nature and found out the real true story behind arrowheads and a bit of their mystery of how they came to be. Plus, arrowheads just like your fingerprints not one arrowhead is the same.  Of course, we love to make cool crafts during the week. On this day, we made the Arrow Activity and Tic Tac Toe Wilderness Style Activity that becomes a “game” and “bag” all in one!

Wednesday, we had a another very special author and illustrator in the house, named Bruce Arant. He read from both of his books titled, Simpson’s Sheep Won’t Go to Sleep and Simpson’s Sheep Just Want to Sleep. Bruce with his warm touch of imagination allowed us to envision as if we were right on the farm with Mr. Simpson himself. As we wrapped up our hour of fun Bruce provided our friends with a Story Prompt of the week. Drumroll please; “What do Sheep Dream About?”

Friday was all about edible foods in the wilderness, such as the edible Bird Nest Activity. So delicious indeed! Since we enjoy the sounds of birds chirping happily in the trees, we mixed glitter glue with dish soap and ended up with Window Decals for Migrating Birds.

Coming up next week with Ellie and Taryn
Tropical Beach Week!

July 18th Fun at the Beach!

  • Beach Terrarium
  • Ocean Sounds in a Bottle

July 20th What is your summer vacation story?

  • Pom-Pom Sea Turtle
  • Whatever Floats your Boat

July 22nd Time for a vacation, but where would that be?

  • Beach Butterfly
  • Jelly Fish Fruit Look Activity

Big Library Read

Image of The Girl in His Shadow book cover. Text An unforgettable historical fiction novel about one woman who believed in scientific medicine before the world believed her.Join the #BigLibraryRead digital book club! Borrow the ebook or audiobook of The Girl in His Shadow by Audrey Blake from our digital collection with no waitlists or holds.

Our patrons can dive into a suspenseful USA Today bestselling novel during Big Library Read, the world’s largest digital book club. From July 13-27, readers will join over a hundred thousand others around the globe in enjoying Audrey Blake’s historical fiction The Girl in His Shadow from their public library. The Iowa Library for the Blind and Print Disabled library card holders can borrow the ebook and audiobook for free without waiting on the Libby app or visiting Bridges:

Readers can then discuss online at

This Big Library Read novel is available in more than 21,000 libraries around the world including and approximately 90 percent of public libraries in North America. During the program, readers participate in engaging online discussions about the title. The program is facilitated by OverDrive, digital reading platform for popular ebooks, audiobooks and magazines and creator of the Libby app.

The Girl in His Shadow takes place in London in 1845. Raised by surgeon Dr. Horace Croft after losing her parents, Nora Beady knows little about conventional life and much about suturing and anatomical illustrations of dissections. Women face dire consequences if caught practicing medicine, but in Croft’s private clinic Nora is his most trusted—and secret—assistant… until the new surgical resident Dr. Daniel Gibson arrives. To protect Dr. Croft and his practice Nora must learn to play a new and uncomfortable role—that of a proper young lady. When she makes a discovery that could change the field forever, Nora faces an impossible choice. Remain invisible and let the men around her take credit for her work, or step into the light—even if it means being destroyed by her own legacy.

Big Library Read is an international reading program that connects millions of readers around the world with an ebook through public libraries. The Girl in His Shadow is the 28th selection of this program which began in 2013 and takes place three times per year. Readers can join an online discussion about the book at

The Girl in His Shadow was published as an ebook by Sourcebooks and as an audiobook by Recorded Books. The title can be read on all major computers and devices through Libby or, including iPhone®, iPad®, Android™ phones and tablets and Chromebook™ without waitlists or holds. Through Libby, readers can also “send to Kindle®” [U.S. libraries only]. The title will automatically expire at the end of the lending period, and there are no late fees.

To join the discussion, learn about past Big Library Read titles and download Libby, visit

All Iowa Reads Virtual Author Visits

Image with text 2022 All Iowa ReadsThe three authors of the 2022 All Iowa Reads titles will appear in virtual visits starting this week. The State Library of Iowa is sponsoring these conversations to give Iowans a chance to hear from the All Iowa Reads authors. The author presentations are free and open to the public, but note that registration is required.

At each event, the authors will be joined by a moderator to discuss their books, their creative process, and to address questions from the virtual audience. Attendees will have the option to submit a question ahead of time when registering; otherwise people are encouraged to ask questions in chat during the event. Reading any of the three 2022 All Iowa Reads titles in advance is encouraged, but not required.

July Dates & Registration
Click on the DATE(s)to open the online registration form.
Thursday July 14 @ 4:30PM | Jennifer Longo, author of the 2022 Teen All Iowa Reads title What I Carry
Tuesday July 26 @ 4:30PM | Kate O’Shaughnessy, author of the 2022 Kids All Iowa Reads title The Lonely Heart of Maybelle Lane
Wednesday July 27 @ 7:00PM | Rachel Mans McKenny, author of the 2022 All Iowa Reads adult title The Butterfly Effect

About All Iowa Reads
Established in 2003, the purpose of All Iowa Reads is to foster a sense of unity through reading. Iowans are encouraged to come together in their communities to read and talk about a single book title in the same calendar year. All Iowa Reads consists of three programs, each with one title chosen per year: adults, teens ages 12-18, and kids ages 8-12.
All Iowa Reads is made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act as administered by the State Library of Iowa.

Recap: Summer Reading Program Week 5 and What’s Happening This Week

Ready, Set, Adventure!

Image of a blue dragon sniffing a flower.Last week our Summer Reading Program took us on a journey into nature!  Monday, we enjoyed a day off in celebration of Independence Day, July 4th with a bang, boom, and pop!  On Wednesday, we had a very special guest visitor stop by from New York, Dan Gutman. He is an American writer of children’s fiction books, such as Genius Files and My Weird School. Just naming a few. He brought with him a gigantic banana that sent laughter all throughout the studio. Not only did he make an appearance, but he read out of his new book, which is set to hit the shelves in October. But for now, we will keep this under wraps… SHHhhhhh! It was such a special time with Dan, we cannot thank you enough for stopping by to say hi. Of course, since we were in Nature Week, we used recycled sponges and paint to make Butterfly Sponge Art come to life.   On Friday, we rocked it! Did you know you can take Starburst candy and discover how a rock is formed?  Also, on this same day, we made beautiful, textured one-of-a-kind Wire Rock Art. Our time ended by enjoying our delicious snack, called Eat My Dirt, topped with edible worms. One more fun fact, did you know that a worm can live up to 10 years?

See all the cool stuff we learn at our Summer Reading Program. It never ends!

Coming up this week

Wilderness Camp!

July 11thth Wilderness Scavenger Hunts

  • Arrow Activity – Keep Aiming High!
  • Tic Tac Toe Wilderness Style!

July 13th Special Guest Author Bruce Arant

  • Pinecone Sheep!

July 15th Edible Food in the Wilderness

  • Window Decal for Migrating Birds
  • Edible Bird Nest

Recap: Summer Reading Program Week 4

Image of a blue dragon sniffing a flower.Ready, Set, Adventure!

This week our Summer Reading Program took us on a magical journey during Disney week!

Monday, we enjoyed the sounds of the past, did you realize that the most popular Disney movie of all time is called Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Yep, that is correct, it was created in the year of 1937. There was an apple in the movie, so we decided to mix a few ingredients together and make Cinnamon Scented Apple Pinch Pots, it smelled delicious on the set. In honor of the movie Cars, we made the Clothespin Race Car.

Wednesday was an extra special day, we were joined by a friend from the past Liz Soenen, who hand made each of our puppets that we brought to life. Thank you again for sharing your talents with all of us!

Friday, Ellie, and Taryn had some fun making the Click Clack Musical Maker and we finished up with the sweet smell of cake in the air by making the Orange Cream Cake, YUMMY!!

Join us next week – you do not want to miss next week’s special guest!

Coming up next week

Nature Week!

July 6th Special Guest visitor Dan Gutman

  • Butterfly Sponge Art!
  • Bonus Craft Day!

July 8thth Wilderness Exploration

  • Wire Rock Art
  • Eat my Dirt!