Wichita on the Cheap

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FREE “Library of Things” at Wichita Public Library

The Wichita Public Library has many, many books on thousands of topics, but did you know they also have a Library of Things for checkout?  Anatomy models and telescopes, laptops and hotspots, and even radon detectors can be checked out!

Models of Human Anatomy

Need a model of the ear? Yep, the library has that! FREE to checkout!

Several anatomical models are available for checkout, whether you are studying for college or a new career, or even if you have kids that flourish with hands-on learning! 

Anatomical Models include:

 — Classic Eye Model: Three times real-life size, this model of the eye can be dissected into 6 parts! 

— Ear Model: This one-piece model allows the studious observer a cutaway view of the ear’s structure and function.

— Eight-part Human Brain Model: This full-size human brain model is fully rotatable on its harness and stand and dissectible into 8 anatomically correct parts.  A full-color, fold-out laminated guide can be used for study or student assessment.

— Heart Model: Breaking into two parts, this model of the heart shows the inner chambers, valves and more.

— Kidney Model: Twice the life-size of a kidney, this model sections the kidney and adrenal gland long-ways.

Anatomical Models can be checked out for 14 days, one or two models at a time, with up to 2 renewals as long as there are no other requests for the model from other library patrons.  See what’s available at the library’s website.

Chromebooks and Laptops (Advanced Learning Library only)

Minors and Adults can check out a laptop or Chromebook for up to 3 hours to be used anywhere inside the Advanced Learning Library, including the second floor or terrace.  As long as you stay in the library, this free computer is available to you!


Finch Robots

A Finch Robot 2.0 on a tableNeed a robot?  Of course you do!  Meet Finch Robot 2.0, a programmable robot that any one from kindergarteners to adults can use for hands-on learning about coding.  What you program (within reasonable limits, of course), Finch Robot will do!

According to the library’s website, “these robots work with many different programming languages and come with extensive features.”  

Finch Robot can be checked out for 14 days, and renewed up to 2 times.  If someone is on the waiting list, Finch Robot is not renewable.


Do you need internet at home?  Thanks to a gift to the Wichita Public Library Foundation in memory of Forrest C. & Frances H. Lattner, you can take a hotspot home for two weeks FOR FREE.  Adequate for checking email, applying for jobs, paying bills online, or conducting research, you can do all sorts of activities online from home for free.  Check out this short video from the library to learn more:

Hotspots are available to checkout for 14 days, renewable up to two times unless someone else has a request in the system.  If requested by another patron, hotspots are not renewable.

Internet Bundles

Internet Bundles are available to check out for free to qualified library cardholders.

Do you need more than just a hotspot?  What about a Chromebook or laptop AND a mobile hotspot?  The library has grouped these two items together for checkout under the name “Internet Bundle.”  Funded by the Emergency Connectivity Fund Program (ECF), internet bundles can be checked out by adult library cardholders who qualify. (You must attest to not having access to equipment or services sufficient to access the internet.)  For more information about Internet Bundles, checkout this page from the library’s website.  It’s important to note that these devices automatically delete your files after they are powered off or a session ends...so it is strongly recommended that the user store all files on a flash drive or other such removeable storage device.

Internet Bundles can be checked out for up to 28 days at a time.  If not returned on time, the library will assess fees.  Bundles can be renewed up to two times if no other cardholder has reserved it, and bundles can be put on hold.

Kits: Early Learning Backpacks

Early Learning Backpacks each focus on a different theme and include books, toys, and activities.

These themed backpacks are chocked full of books, toys, and an activity guide for use with little ones.  These kits cover a multitude of topics and different age ranges, so check out our complete post on Early Learning Backpacks for all the details!

For grades 4+, these STEAM kits are complete with all your student will need for each educational activity.

Kits: STEAM to GO!

Similar in purpose to the Early Learning Backpacks, STEAM to GO! kits are appropriate for grades 4 and above.  Check out our complete post on FREE STEAM KITS from the Library.


Radon Detectors

Do you need to check for radon?  Sponsored by Pure State Services, LLC, it is available to test your home or business for radon for free.  Check out the library’s page for all you need to know, including how to set up an accurate radon test.  Or, watch this video from the sponsor: 


Last but not least, it is available to check out telescopes!  Telescopes provide a lens to the universe, and you can use one for free in your own backyard courtesy of the Georgia Eakins family! The Orion Starblast Astronomical Telescope is outfitted with a large optical tube, allowing you to view the stars in great detail.  Each telescope is mounted on a wooden base.  Highly reviewed by multiple publications, this telescope is a treasure to check out.  For more information, watch this short video:

Telescopes can be borrowed for up to 14 days and renewed up to two times.  Unless, of course, another stargazer is waiting.  If so, the telescope is not renewable.


The Library of Things at Wichita Public Library provides an extensive range of resources for library cardholders, and it’s all FOR FREE!  Checkout the library’s website for current availability of any of these items.  

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