For Parents

Read Right Now! Music

09/02/2021 | Online Storytime, Reading Ready, Music

Music is everywhere! There's music in the rhythm of language, in the sounds of nature, even in the cars driving by. Listed below are musical stories you can read right now. Just click on a book cover to open it and hear the story. Read them together and listen for music all around you. Find materials around the house to make your own music. We have listed some printables and online activities you can do at home, including instructions for making your own instruments. You don't need any formal training . . . just have fun! To get you started, enjoy Monkey's Jungle with current and former member of the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra!

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After listening to the story, talk about some of the things that happened in it.

  • What did the creatures do during the day and during the night, but not together?
  • What did you pretend to do during sloth's music?
  • What instrument did the frog play?
  • What did you pretend to do during the puma's music? Hint: you used your paws!
  • How did cricket help the animals play their music together?

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Click on one of the book covers below and listen to more music stories read aloud.

Tito Puente Mambo KingViolet's MusicWhen Louis Armstrong Taught Me ScatJazz BabyHip & Hop Don't StopThe Jazz ManBefore John was a Jazz GiantBello the CelloBerlioz the BearCreepy Crawly CalypsoThe Hole in the Bottom of the SeaKnick Knack Paddy WhackSenorita MariposaTo Be a DrumZin Zin Zin a Violin

Find more FREE online reading at 100+ Free Video Read Alouds or try storytime at home!

You can use your IndyPL library card to check out e-books, audiobooks, and other streaming content about music from home, right to your device. See our digital music collection from Axis 360 Kids and OverDrive Kids, or come visit us!

Need help? Ask a Library staff member at any of our locations or call, text or email Ask-a-Librarian.

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Enjoy this wonderful video of the legendary Ella Jenkins sharing a storytime song that will be easy for your child to sing along with while doing the hand motions. You are going to be humming "Who Fed the Chickens?" all day!

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Find some crayons or makers to color a picture, practice writing the letters, or see if you can follow your way through a maze without getting stuck.

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Take a walk and read a story as you go! We invite you to visit StoryWalk® in Ruckle Street Park at 3025 Ruckle Street. Stroll through the park and read a book displayed in mounted frames. Or Skip. Or gallop!

  • Online Activity: Egg Music Makers
  • Online Game: Peg and Cat Music Maker
  • Online Game: Sesame Street Monster Music
  • Online Game: Daniel Tiger Feel the Music
  • IndyPL Pinterest Board Musical Instruments - Find printable coloring sheets, activity sheets and directions for how to make your instruments at home!
  • Children's music performer Laurie Berkner hosts a music break most weekdays. See the archive of past shows on her YouTube channel playlist. See Laurie's music to check out with your library card on Hoopla.
  • Lincoln Center at Home lessons and concerts can be enjoyed on demand at #ConcertsForKids on their website.
  • Try the Smithsonian Folkways Children's Music YouTube channel where you'll find José-Luis Orozco, Dan Zanes, Elizabeth Mitchell, Ella Jenkins and more. This channel is dedicated to the living treasures of American music.
  • Try the Dan Zanes Family Band Workshop Music Lessons on Youtube. Join Dan and his wife Claudia each day for their Social Isolation Song Series. They share traditional folk songs, anthems, gospel and more. Their rendition of Lean on Me be Bill Withers is especially enjoyable. Listen to Dan's album Dan Zane and Friends on Hoopla
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Music is Everywhere

Lively e-books and downloadable audiobooks about music and musicians. These make great read-alouds. #indyplkids

One Love

Marley, Cedella

Based on her late father's music, Cedella Marley gives us the story of a girl who brings her community together to improve their neighborhood.

Bats in the Band

Lies, Brian

The bats put on their own show in the empty theater.

Drum Dream Girl

How One Girl's Courage Changed Music

Inspired by the true story of Millo Castro Zaldarriaga, who grew up in 1930s Cuba and broke the taboo against female drummers in her country.