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17 Columbus Based Virtual Story Times for Kids

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When you can’t go to the library for a traditional story time, watch one of these virtual story times for kids provided by Columbus area businesses and libraries!

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With library programs on pause, we miss our local story times! If your voice is getting hoarse from reading the same book over and over to your kids, let one of these local businesses and libraries take over for a little bit! This list includes options for babies, toddlers, preschoolers and elementary aged kids!

So many local organizations (and of course Columbus area libraries) have been providing online story times for kids over the past few months! I’ve compiled an example for each and also a link to where you can find more stories from each organization! 

Virtual Story Times for Kids from Columbus Libraries and Other Local Organizations: 

I’m going to start out this list with our traditional library story times and then end it with story times that are being offered by other local organizations that are not libraries!

1. Columbus Metropolitan Library

Virtual story times from Columbus Metropolitan Library can be found on their YouTube Channel and the story featured below is The Widemouthed Frog, a cute pop up book!

2. Grandview Heights Public Library

Online story times from Grandview Library can be found on their YouTube page! The Story below features the book Go Away, Big Green Monster!

 

3. Worthington Libraries

Worthington Libraries has a whole list of online story times available on their YouTube Page. The story below is one of the beloved Elephant and Piggie Books: Should I Share My Ice Cream?

 

4. Bexley Library

Bexley Library has rhymes, stories and other activities on their YouTube page. The story below is for elementary ages: I am Jane Goodall.

 

5. Southwest Public Libraries

Southwest Public Libraries is offering stories and songs on their YouTube Channel. The story below is the colorful book Elmer.

 

6. Upper Arlington Public Library

The UA Public Library has a collection of videos for kids including story times songs and crafts. The video below features Have You Seen Elephant? by David Barrow.

Visit their YouTube page for more story times!

7. Delaware County District Library

The Delaware County District Library has family friendly videos on their Facebook page including craft time, story times, a kids cookbook club and crafts. The video below features the book Not Quite Snow White.

 

8. Westerville Public Library

Westerville Public Library has family storytimes, baby story times, toddler story times, and more on their YouTube page! There are stories, songs, activities and more!

 

9. The Underground Railroad Museum

The Underground Railroad Museum in Flushing, Ohio is doing a weekly story time. This one features the book Frederick Douglass.

 

10. Paulette’s Princess Parties

Paulette’s Princess Parties has done several online story times featuring various princesses and super heroes! On their Facebook page, you can view the story times, dances, songs and more!

 

11. CATCO is Kids

CATCO is Kids offers CATCO is Storytime, Playwriting lessons and artist spotlights! The video below features the classic Dr. Seuss book, Green Eggs and Ham!

 

12. Spanish for Niños

Spanish for Ninos has an online story time available in Spanish! They are also offering online Spanish classes! This story time video features the book Hormigas En Mis Pantalones / Ants in My Pants!

Visit their Facebook page for more videos!

 

13. Columbus Police Department

The Columbus Police Department offers Books and Badges via Facebook video! In the video below, the officer reads from Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein and has a visit from his dog!

 

14. Little Bottoms Free Store

Little Bottoms Free Store has been providing story times via Facebook Live. This video features the book How Do Dinosaurs Eat Their Food?.

 

15. The Shazzbots!

Captain Captain from The Shazzbots! has been doing daily songs and stories via Facebook Live! If you visit their Facebook page, there are months worth of videos to watch! 

 

16. Piccadilly Play Cafe

Piccadilly Play Cafe has a YouTube channel with stories and online art camp classes. Below, a staff member reads the book The Big Hungry Bear!

17. Storytime at Grange Insurance Audubon Center

Grange Insurance Audubon Center has several online videos that feature story times, singalongs, science experiments and more! The video below features the book Say Hello Like This!.

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4 Nature-Themed Story Times Around Columbus

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These four nature-themed story times around Columbus combine stories with great educational, hands on experiences!

I’ve mentioned probably more than a few times that my kids are really into bugs right now. So, when I saw that Ohio Wildlife Center had a story time about insects, we were there! It prompted the idea to put together a list of story times with a nature theme.

The bonus is that these story times also come with so much more than just a story! Maybe there’s a craft, animals to meet or a woods to explore – whatever the case may be, these story times make a for a great way learn AND have an up-close, hands-on experience with nature!

1. Ohio Wildlife Center

Times: Second Wednesday of the month
Location: 6131 Cook Rd. Powell, OH 43065
Phone: 614-734-9453
Cost: $5 for anyone over 5, including adults.

Ohio Wildlife Center hosts a Wild Story Time on the first Wednesday of each month. Check the calendar here. We went in July and the theme was Insects. As I said, my boys are REALLY into bugs right now so they were completely enthralled! There were a couple of stories with an insect theme and then a visit from a resident opossum!

After the story time, we all got to take a tour of the grounds, check out the animals that live there, and then do an insect-themed craft!

When the program part was over, we were allowed to explore the grounds on our own so we borrowed some binoculars and went on a hike through the woods and looped back around to visit the animals again! Ohio Wildlife Center cares for wild animals that have been hurt or abandoned and then releases them as they are able. Some of the animals housed on the grounds included raccoons, coyotes, owls, turkeys and more.

The Ohio Wildlife Center is not open to the public on a daily basis so in order to visit, you need to attend a story time or one of their “Open to the Public” events which takes place on the second Sunday of each month.

2. Grange Insurance Audubon Center

Times: Thursdays and Saturdays at 10:00 AM
Location: 505 W. Whittier St. Columbus, OH 43215
Phone: 614-545-5475
Cost: Free

Twice a week the Pre-K Storytime is held at the Grange Insurance Audubon Center in partnership with Columbus and Franklin County Metro Parks. See the calendar of events here (search for Scioto Audubon program). The story time takes place in the beautiful library at the Audubon Center with a stunning view of downtown Columbus.

Afterwards you can visit the aquatic animals and play in the indoor play area. Outside the Audubon Center is a sandbox, playground and rock climbing wall. See 9 Things to do with Your Kids at Scioto Audubon.

3. Franklin Park Conservatory

Times: Thursdays at 10:30 AM
Location: 1777 E. Broad St., Columbus, OH 43203
Phone: 614-715-8000
Cost: Included with admission or membership

Franklin Park Conservatory is currently hosting a Nature Storytime on Mondays and Thursdays at 10:30 AM in the Scotts Miracle Grow Foundation Children’s Garden. This is appropriate for kids ages 3-8 and features stories that celebrate gardens, plants and nature. Of course afterwards you can enjoy the amazing Children’s Garden which is full of hands on activities!

Franklin Park Conservatory hosts several new events and programs in the garden. See the upcoming schedule of events here.

We attended the Little Adventurers Program last summer, which took place indoors. The book was The Very Lonely Firefly by Eric Carle and the craft was making a firefly with a glittery (“glowing”) body. Ok, let’s be honest, due to a rain storm and circumstances beyond my control, we were about 10 minutes late and missed the story, but you get the point! 😉 The boys had just spent the previous weekend catching fireflies at their grandparents’ house so this craft was extra appealing to them! The Little Adventurers program is free with admission or membership!

 

Afterwards, check out the Enchanted Forest, a children’s play area on the lower level and take a walk through Blooms and Butterflies (open March – September) to see butterflies up close and personal. Newly emerged butterflies are released every day at 1:00 PM and 3:00 PM.

4. Stratford Ecological Center

Times: Second Tuesday of the month from 10:00 AM – 11:00 AM
Location: 3083 Liberty Rd., Delaware, OH 43015
Phone: 740-363-2548
Cost: $5 per family

Stratford Ecological Center hosts Story Time on the Farm on the second Tuesday of each month at 10:00 AM starting in March and running through November. See the Calendar of Events. We haven’t actually been to the story time here yet, but we have been to the farm and I have heard that the story time is very popular! The story time lasts an hour and is based on what is going on at the farm during the current season! After the story time, you can explore the farm, dig in the dirt and visit the animals! See A Day on the Farm: 5 Things to do at Stratford Ecological Center.

 

Where is your favorite local story time?

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ICYMI: Summer Nights in Columbus: Something to do Every Night of the Week

Need more ideas? Check out Over 100 Fun Things to do in Columbus, Ohio

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