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Library Corner: Exploring engaging entertainment and educational resources

Tallie Gray
Director of Library Resources
Grand County Library District has a wealth of resources for young ones, including streaming educational programming through Kanopy.
Courtesy GCLD

Grand County Library District is lucky to have many former teachers on staff. Collaborating with Grand Beginnings and other educational organizations to train librarians, especially with a focus on early literacy, keeps us current on what resources to purchase and recommend for patrons’ entertainment and educational needs.

Of course, GCLD has amazing books and DVDs for all ages, reading levels, and interests. But are you aware that we also have online resources to engage, entertain, and educate our youth?Kanopy is a popular video-streaming platform enjoyed by many GCLD patrons. Kanopy has taken its well-established “thoughtful entertainment” model to a whole new level for children ages 2 and up. Time and money have been spent to grow their newest division, Kanopy Kids.

While adults can watch up to eight Kanopy classes, documentaries, and films per month, children have access to unlimited top-notch children’s programming, including PBS series and curated books that are read aloud. Monthly themes, funny stories, science, math, and learning languages programs are some of the other categories found under Kanopy Kids.



Kanopy Kids also offers parental controls. These controls allow adults to watch a film, class, or documentary on one device, while giving kids freedom to explore enriching, educational and entertaining content on another device.

While you enjoy “The Farewell,” “The 100-Year-Old Man,” or “The Great Courses Yoga,” you can feel confident that your little one is learning about bears hibernating, being read a classic children’s book, singing with Elmo, giggling at “The Little Rascals,” or is learning basic Spanish, Japanese, French or a number of other languages. No commercials. No getting lost down internet tunnels.



Another online resource that has expanded profoundly this past year is OverDrive (OD). OD, GCLD and our Marmot consortium have all added children’s titles to our eBook, eAudiobook, and eMagazine collections.

Whether you access OD titles from GCLD’s catalog page, OD’s Libby app, or eBooks and Learning Tools page on GCLD’s website, have fun with the filters. Click on “Collections”, then” Kids,” and the treasure chest of e-titles opens!

Top of the list? Kids & Teens Magazines like “National Geographic for Kids,” “Highlights,” or “Minecraft World Magazine.”

Studying civil rights, biographies, or history? OverDrive has a plethora of titles to check out, and can be sorted using “Interest Levels,” “Lexile Measures,” “Text Difficulty” and other filters.

Just looking for something to pique your child’s interest? OD has categories like “Friendship,” “Inventions,” “A Fresh View,” “Read-Alongs for Kids,” “Graphic Novels,” “Get Swept Away,” and more to entice your youngster to read or listen to a book.

Other great educational online resources to check out are Britannica Online, offering three reading levels of trustworthy information; Creativebug, which has 130 “Kids” creative lessons; and A to Z Databases, perfect for classes and families who are wanting to explore world cultures, geography, history, local and international recipes, and royalty-free downloadable maps.

For educators, GCLD has Teacher Subject Request Forms. These are available on gcld.org. Want to learn more about Italy, cheetahs, robotics or another subject? Fill out the form and you will be notified when materials are ready for pick up.

Please let us know how we can further help your entertainment and educational needs by visiting your local library or emailing tgray@gcld.org.

 


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