With schools closed, there are now a lot of hours in the day to fill. While library doors also need to be shut right now, there are many online resources that are always available!
Start a family book club with Hoopla. There are plenty of e-book and audiobooks for children & families–all ALWAYS available! Check out the “Road Trip! Audiobooks for the Family” genre. You can sit as a family and listen to classics like “Anne of Green Gables” or more modern-day fare like “The Graveyard Book.” If you prefer the e-book experience, Hoopla has robust Juvenile Fiction & Nonfiction collections as well.
Hoopla, of course, also offers a great selection of movies & music, each with children’s titles!
Take this opportunity to begin (or continue) language learning. Little Pim is product from Mango Languages and is designed especially for children. You can use Little Pim as a guest or create an account to track your progress.
Kids Info Bits
A product from trusted-database resource Gale, Kids Info Bits is highly graphical and easy to browse. This is perfect for elementary-aged children who want to know absolutely everything about a certain topic. And, without access to the children’s stacks at your local library, is a great way to set them up with screen time for a purpose.
OverDrive for Kids
The OverDrive Kids Reading Room will have a ton to choose from, including curated lists to aid in selection.
Audible has a selection of children & teens titles available for free from their Audible Stories site. There are also many classics narrated by celebrity readers (Scarlett Johansen reads “Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland,” Thandie Newton reads “Jane Eyre” and more).
Junior Library Guild Digital
Junior Library Guild has offered access to their online platform for free. They have elementary, middle, and high school sections that include both e-books and audiobooks. JLG is a great resource that many libraries use in developing a strong, diverse youth collection. JLG Digital is also available as an app from the iOs store.
Draw Every Day with JJK
Author & illustrator Jarrett J. Krosoczka (Lunch Lady, Jedi Academy, Hey Kiddo) has created a great YouTube series called “Draw Every Day” where he walks kids (or anyone!) through the process of creating great illustrations. These videos average to be about 20 minutes a piece. This would be a great way to get the A in STEAM in a fun and engaging way.
TED Talks are famously much-shared among adults, but TED-Ed has many instructional videos available for a younger audience. Videos are divided by subject and average about 5 minutes each.
These are just a sampling of the resources available, but will hopefully provide some much needed learning & entertainment during these difficult times.
Jeff, South Park