Frequently Asked Questions:
What is a Storywalk®?
A StoryWalk® is just what it sounds like: a story you can enjoy while on a walk. Picture book pages are on mounted frames along the trail along with activity prompts. The Public Library Association describes “A StoryWalk® is literally taking apart a picture book, placing each laminated page in a weather-protected frame, and placing these frames in an outdoor space so that children and families can enjoy books in an outdoor setting”. They showcase books that are engaging and colorful. The story panels also include physical activities to complete as well as literacy tips and tools, which focus on the five practices of singing, talking, reading, writing, and playing every day from Every Child Ready to Read (ALSC Liasion).
Where is the Big Woods Lake Storywalk®?
The StoryWalk® begins at the Big Woods Lake Campgrounds and goes clockwise.
Big Woods Lake Campground is located at 1501 East Lake Street, Cedar Falls.
From Highway 218: Take exit 189 for Lone Tree Rd, turn west onto Lone Tree Rd & take the 1st left onto Big Woods Rd, then turn left at E Lake St, the campground will be on the right.
For more information about Big Woods Lake Campground go here.
How long is the StoryWalk®?
The StoryWalk® is about 1/4 mile, and it will take between 10-20 minutes to complete. There are eleven stations with a total of 20 signs. The path is marked on the map above.
Who would enjoy the StoryWalk®?
Everyone, especially families with kids between the ages of 3 and 12 will get the most enjoyment out of the stories and activities, but picture books are enjoyable no matter how old you are.
Will we be adding any accessibility features for the blind/low vision/print disabled community?
We are currently working the Iowa Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped to help us add accessibility to our StoryWalk. We appreciate everyone’s patience as we work to improve this project.
How often will the StoryWalk® change?
We plan on changing the book seasonally, so, roughly:
- Summer-Late May/Early June
The current book is Over and Under the Pond by Kate Messner. The Fall book will be Creepy Carrots by Aaron Reynolds.
What are the StoryWalk® rules?
- Be kind and respectful of the StoryWalk®.
- Do not litter.
- Have fun!
What was the inspiration/motivation for installing a StoryWalk®?
- Books are doorways to discovery—they help children develop their imagination and critical thinking skills and to gain access to a wealth of knowledge. However, not everyone likes to sit down and quietly read, or they only associate reading with school work. The Cedar Falls Public library wanted to create an opportunity for children to have fun, meaningful interactions with literature outside of the library and school and have reading be active.
- Cedar Falls prides itself on being a community that supports a healthy lifestyle. We have miles of trails in which citizens and visitors can hike, bike, or cross country ski. A StoryWalk seemed like the perfect marriage between the concepts of reading and health literacy
- Other libraries across the country and Iowa have had success with their StoryWalks, which helped drive our motivation to create one for our community.
What are the outcomes expected from this project?
- To build children’s interest in reading while encouraging healthy outdoor activity for both children and their grown-ups.
- To improve overall family health through the combination of Early Literacy, Family Engagement, and Physical Activity.
- To convey that reading is for everybody and can be done anywhere.