Opinion

Digital convenience at your library | At Your Library

By SHARON S. LEE

Have you made your way over to the digital side? It is a fascinating parallel universe. Let’s boldly go and explore it.

Kitsap Regional Library’s website, www.krl.org, offers 11,798 e-books for you to read on a range of devices and 4,531 e-audiobooks for your listening pleasure through our main downloadable collection. You can check out up to 10 titles. All you need is a KRL card.

Let’s say you haven’t had a library card since high school. In KRL’s digital world, you can sign up for an e-Card online. Yes, this means you can register online in order to access and download ebooks, e-audiobooks, music, and more.

One of the great things about checking out digital materials is that they can’t get lost under the couch. Another great thing is they automatically “return” to the digital collection at the appointed hour and are never late. This means no overdue fines for you.

Feeling brave enough to explore more digital collections for your kids? I advise you to begin with “For Kids” on our website and select “Birth to 6.” A sweet screen with optional paths to “Learn, Read, Play and Explore” appears. “Read” takes you to a list of 100 books every child should hear before starting kindergarten. The digital covers appear and all you have to do is click on them to begin the process of checking them out. Remember, you can have up to 10 digital items checked out at a time.

Now download. When you’re ready, read aloud to your child right in your home office, or on the bus with your smart phone, or anywhere in the universe that works for you.

Interested in another adventure? I dare you to click “Play” on the “For Kids” site. You’ll find film clips of KRL’s youth services librarians singing songs with motions for you and your child to learn and share. Don’t be shy; sing along. Songs that tell stories with actions or have words that rhyme can help your child begin to develop literacy skills.

Do you need resources for kids age 6 and up? Click “For Kids.” A screen comes up with, “Have you read a good movie lately?” and lists a number of written works that have been made into films. You’ll find a number of other digital lists with titles of great books  — digital and print — for girls, boys, fourth-graders, fifth-graders, and more.

For Kids’ “Homework Help” is a useful resource. I recommend BrainFuse, an online service offering live tutor assistance with math, science and English assignments. BrainFuse is open for live assistance Monday through Saturday, 4-9 p.m.

Teens have a place here too. “Great Reads” offers up a range of title recommendations, including Adventure and Survival, Books for Guys, Christian Fiction, SteamPunk, Humor, Horror, and more. Explore the link to the Teen Short Story Contest that takes place every summer. The current winners are listed and links to their works provide a window to the writing talent emerging in our county.

What about print? We are working hard to provide vibrant print collections in each of our branch libraries throughout the county in addition to the digital collection. I, myself, am a fan of the printed word. I also appreciate being able to locate, checkout and download an ebook onto my smart phone whenever I want.

I have one foot in the print world and the other in the digital world. I continue to explore and enjoy both. Join me.

— Sharon S. Lee is manager of the Poulsbo branch of Kitsap Regional Library. Contact her at sslee@krl.org

 

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