The books listed below may be available through publishers, distributors such as bookstores or online retailers, or library systems.

Independent Reading

EASY
Joshua's Westward Journal
by Joan Anderson. William Morrow, 1987.
In 1836 Joshua and his family travel as pioneers into Illinois.
Sarah, Plain and Tall
by Patricia MacLachlan. Harper & Row, 1985.
When their father invites a mail-order bride to come to live with them in their prairie home, Caleb and Anna are captivated by her and hope that she will stay.
A Child's History of Indianapolis
by Ann Mallet. Indianapolis Public Schools, 1966.
A very readable history of the city of Indianapolis that includes stories and personalities children will enjoy.
Tornado Alert
by Franklin M. Branley. Thomas Crowell, 1988.
This book explains what a tornado is, how it begins, and what safety measures to take when there is a tornado alert.
AVERAGE
County Fair
by Raymond Bial. Houghton Mifflin, 1992.
This book describes what goes on at a county fair, including photographs of livestock and produce, blue ribbon winners, and the rides on the midway.
Maudie in the Middle
by Phyllis R. Naylor and Lura S. Reynolds. Atheneum, 1988.
Set on an Iowa farm in the early 1900s, this appealing story is about a frustrated middle child who always seems to upset the apple cart.
The King of Prussia and a Peanut Butter Sandwich
by Alice Fleming. Charles Scribner's Sons, 1988.
How Mennonite farmers who migrated from the Crimea changed Kansas farming.
The Sacred Harvest: Ojibway Wild Rice Gathering
by Gordon Regguinti. Lerner Publications, 1992.
This book provides a detailed account of the Ojibway wild rice harvest through the first-time experience of eleven-year-old Glen.
Tornado
by Stephen Kramer. Carolrhoda Books, 1992.
A very clear explanation of tornadoes including diagrams and color photographs.
CHALLENGING
The Bread Winner
by Arvella Whitmore. Houghton Mifflin, 1990.
Sarah and her parents have to sell their midwestern farm and move to a shantytown, but Sarah's optimism finally lifts their dismal prospects.
Dear Dad
by Mary Z. Holmes. Steck-Vaughn, 1992.
This “home front” World War I book follows Max and his friends as they follow the war.
The Dust Bowl
by Tricia Andryszewski. Millbrook Press, 1984.
A fascinating account of the causes and effects of the Dust Bowl, interspersed with diary entries of a young woman living through those painful times.
Night of the Twisters
by Ivy Ruckman. Thomas Crowell, 1984.
Tornadoes batter Dan's Nebraska town.
Wheat
by Sylvia A. Johnson. Lerner Publications, 1990.
Details the growth, harvesting, and processing of wheat.
People of the Sacred Arrows: The Southern Cheyenne Today
by Stan Hoig. Cobblehill Books, 1992.
A look at the Southern Cheyenne today.

Read Aloud and Reference Books

READ ALOUD BOOKS
Roll of Thunder, Hear My Cry
by Mildred D. Taylor. Puffin Books, 1976.
The Logan family struggles to hold on to their farm during the Depression against a background of racial prejudice.
Heartland
by Diane Siebert. Thomas Crowell, Jr., 1989.
This book is a poetic description of the American heartland -- a patchwork quilt of land.
Dakota Dugout
by Ann Turner. Macmillan Publishing, 1985.
Through poetry, a grandmother tells her granddaughter about life on the prairie in the mid-1800s.
REFERENCE BOOKS
Children of the Dust Bowl
by Jerry Stanley. Crown Publishers, 1992.
This is the fascinating true story of the “Okies” who left the desolate Dust Bowl to become migrant workers in California.
Now Is Your Time: The African-American Struggle for Freedom
by Walter Dean Myers. HarperCollins, 1991.
A history of the African-American struggle for freedom and equality beginning in the early 1600s.