Youth Department

Youth Services for Educators

Educator Account

Educator Accounts are issued to educators who live or work in Black Hawk County. The Educator Library Cards are kept at the youth department service desk and allow for a six-week checkout (with no renewals) of books for your classroom.  If you need an extra day or two because a unit runs long, please call the youth desk at 319-859-3282 to ask for an extension of your due date. Holiday books, which have a one-week checkout period, do not have an extended loan period on a teacher card, so please be sure to examine your due date sheets carefully. Also, videos may not be checkout out on an Educator Library Card; they must be checked out on a personal patron card

While we understand that many school libraries do not have due dates or replacement charges for materials checked out to educators, at the public library, we are not able to do that, as we serve educators from all of the area schools who often want the same materials at the same time. Please be aware that our library software automatically generates overdue notices, assesses overdue fines, and adds replacement fees for long-overdue materials. Upon the return of the materials, overdue fines will be voided. In order to keep your Educator Account in good standing, please observe due dates, and in the event that an item on your educator account is lost, please contact the youth librarian as soon as possible to make arrangements for either an extension period to look for the item or to pay the replacement cost. Educators, like all other library patrons, are responsible for all items checked out on their cards and for fees resulting for overdue or lost items.

Education Units

Educators in Black Hawk County have the opportunity to request books as “education units” from the Cedar Falls Public Library.  The Youth Department accepts topical requests and selects appropriate books from the collection.  Educators also may also request specific titles from our collection.

Requests for seasonal and/or holiday subjects — e.g., back-to-school, fall, leaves, snow, Thanksgiving, St. Valentine’s Day, spring, etc. — may be limited in size, due to high levels of demand for such items.  We want to make books available to as many patrons as possible!

Educators outside of the Cedar Falls Community School District will need to pick up and return their units at the library.  For Cedar Falls Community Schools teachers, units may be sent and returned on the school van. The van makes daily deliveries to the schools during the school year.

Education Units in progress are often on the youth department’s counter near the desk. If there is no due date sheet tucked into the top book, the books are not yet checked out to you. Please ask for your card and check them out before taking them.

For more information about Education Units, contact the Youth Department by phone at (319) 859-3282 or by emailing us at

Click here to submit your Youth or Teen Education Unit request online

Please allow at least 5 working days from date of request to date of delivery. If you are submitting a large request (50+ books), please give us 8-12 working days to fulfill the request. 

Book Discussion Kits

Book discussion kits are available for checkout to educators on their Education Account Cards. Please request kits at least one week in advance. If a kit is returned with a missing book(s), the cost of the book will be added to the teacher card. If the book is later found, please return it as soon as possible so that the charge can be removed from the card and the kit can go back into circulation. For more information contact us at or call the Youth Department at (319) 859-3282.

For teachers in the Cedar Falls Community Schools, kits may be sent and returned on the school van.  For other Black Hawk County educators, kits must be picked up and returned to the library.

CFPL Youth Book Discussion Kits Rev. August 2021. Updates currently in process. 


Field Trips 

Come visit us! Browse our collection, signup for library cards, enjoy storytime and a craft, receive a tour of the library, and more! Contact us today to schedule a visit and craft a field trip that your students won’t stop talking about.

School Visits

Not everyone has the opportunity to visit the library, so let us come to you! Cedar Falls Public Library offers the following outreach opportunities for classrooms or youth groups:

Book Talks: Geared toward elementary-aged children. Invite us to your classroom or lunchroom to talk about books! We’ll bring a selection of books to booktalk (think of them as verbal book trailers) to help capture students’ interest.


Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine

Imagine having to do everything ordered of you to do. If someone told you to hop on one foot for a day and a half, you’d have to do it.  Or if someone commanded you to hurt yourself, you’d have to. This is what Ella in Ella Enchanted has to live with every day—ever since the fairy Lucinda bestowed upon her the “gift” of obedience. Despite the dangers to herself, Ella lives a relatively happy life. Everything changes when her mother dies and meets the prince at her funeral. Because now it’s not just her life on the line, but the kingdom’s. Follow spirited, independent Ella as she paves her own way in life and becomes the hero of her own story.

After the Fall by Dan Santat

You all know the story of Humpty Dumpty, right? Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall…Well, this is the story after the Great Fall of Humpty Dumpty. Before falling, Humpty loved heights—he loved watching the birds up close and seeing the world around him. But after the fall, he couldn’t even get on a ladder to reach the top shelf at the grocery store. Find out how Humpty finds his courage in After the Fall by Dan Santat.

Literacy Nights: Let us join you for your school’s literacy night! Depending on event details, we would bring library card registration forms, activity sheets, bookmarks, and possibly bagged crafts or books to give away.

Storytime: Geared toward preschool and elementary-aged children. Invite us to your classroom for storytime! We will select age-appropriate books that supplement your current unit and provide an entertaining, educational, and memorable experience for your students. When creating storytimes, we consider not only the theme, but we incorporate 5 simple things that will help children succeed: Singing, Talking, Reading, Writing, and Playing. Learn more about how we use the Every Child Ready to Read Initiative in our storytimes.

Information Literacy and Research Skills: The library can be intimidating, and the vast amount of information on the Internet can also be intimidating. Our Youth Librarian would love to teach your students how to navigate the public library’s website and databases and conduct basic research. Contact Rebekah at or 319-268-5546 to learn more about this service.

For more information about these services contact us at or call the Youth Department at (319) 859-3282.

Traveling Tales

Our Traveling Tales program is essentially storytime in a box. Each box has a theme, such as Owls, and contains ten books and a few simple activities. A team of volunteers helps select which boxes go to the daycares and preschools signed up to participate. Please email either or for more information or call the youth department at 319-859-3282.


Choose from the following and schedule them at your convenience:

  • Monthly Event-explore different topics like STEM, Book Clubs, Math, etc.
  • Annual Homeschool Fair–rotating topics give your kids a chance to create a display and build presentation skills.
  • Library Tour– explore how CFPL operates behind the scenes.
  • Digital Literacy–learn how to get the most from our website including our online databases, ebooks, and more.
  • Topic of Interest– Want to explore the human heart or something else? We can plan a one-time event to support your learning topic.

Other Services & Materials

Other library-specific services to help home school educators throughout the year:

  • Adventure Pass– Build in free exciting field trips
  • Library of Things-Check out non-traditional items, like hot spots, instruments, and more!
  • Magazines (located in youth)
    • Practical Homeschooling
    • Babybug
    • Cobblestone
    • National Geographic Kids
    • National Geographic Little Kids
    • Ranger Rick Jr.
    • Spider
    • Sports Illustrated for Kids
    • Story Box
    • Zoobooks
  • STEM Kits–For kids interested in science, technology, engineering, and math. A whole bin full of resources and activities for engaged learning.
    • Energy Crisis
    • Solar System
    • Snap Circuits
    • Space Lander Activity Lab
    • Code & Go Robot Mouse & Game
    • Code & Go Robot Mouse & Math Pack
    • Folk Tale Problem Solving: Paul Bunyan
    • Folk Tale Problem Solving: John Henry


Learning for Justice

The Social Justice Standards are a road map for anti-bias education at every stage of K–12 instruction. Comprised of anchor standards and age-appropriate learning outcomes, the Standards provide a common language and organizational structure educators can use to guide curriculum development and make schools more just and equitable. Learn more on their website.

Preventing Youth Radicalization: Building Resilient, Inclusive Communities

SPLC and the Polarization and Extremism Research and Innovation Lab (PERIL) are committed to providing resources to the people building community resilience against extremism and for a more just and inclusive society. The following resources are intended to provide community- and victim-centered strategies to address the threat of extremism, through early prevention and non-carceral solutions. The primary resource, A Parents & Caregivers Guide to Online Youth Radicalization, lays a foundation for understanding the nature of extremism, dynamics of radicalization, and steps you can take to prevent them from taking root in your community. Learn more here and check out the Educator’s supplement here

Project Ready

Project Ready is a series of free, online professional development modules for school and public youth services librarians, library administrators, and others interested in improving their knowledge about race and racism, racial equity, and culturally sustaining pedagogy. The primary focus of the Project READY curriculum is on improving relationships with, services to, and resources for youth of color and Native youth. 

Roadmap to Educating for American Democracy

The Roadmap to Educating for American Democracy is an inquiry-based content framework for excellence in history and civics for all learners that is organized by major themes and questions, supported by key concepts. It is vertically spiraled across four grade bands (K–2, 3–5, 6–8, and 9–12), and offers a vision for the integration of history and civic education throughout grades K–12. It was “created by more than 300 experts, including academics, historians, political scientists, K12 educators, administrators, students, and others” (School Library Journal).

Social Justice and Equity in Education Series

The Social Justice and Equity in Education is a professional development series focusing on social justice issues and equity in education. Webinars will be hosted up to twice each month and will be delivered by local and national leaders in equity with a proven background in diversity, multiculturalism and racial consciousness. Learn more about this series when you visit the Iowa Department of Education websiteCurrently unavailable.

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