How to Social Distance & Still Use Your Library

March 16, 2020 | Cynthia Velasco
Photo of stack of books with glasses on top at a table top with light pouring through windows. Next to book stack are scone and beverage.

Amid ongoing concerns about COVID-19 and directives from public officials to implement social distancing practices, Orange County Library System has decided to cancel all events and classes. The library takes the safety and wellness of our customers and staff very seriously and will do its part in mitigating the current health crisis. 

Despite these well-intentioned efforts, we know unplanned time at home can mean resources to keep yourself (or your children, if you’re a caregiver) entertained and away from stressful news coverage during this time can be a challenge to find or afford. You might be wondering how to find entertainment without taking on unexpected expense or where to find learning resources for your children when you've suddenly been thrust into homeschooling. 

Here is a list of resources you can take advantage of remotely: 

Reading 

The library offers access to a number of digital lending platforms that offer e-books, digital magazines and audiobooks. If you find yourself stressed, this may be a good time to practice some self-care—a light-hearted memoir by your favorite comedian or a compelling suspense thriller may be exactly what you need at this time. 

 

TV & Movie Streaming 

If you discover that you’ve exhausted your Netflix queue or that you want to find movies you can’t see anywhere else, we also have a comprehensive collection of TV series and films available through several lending platforms. 

Kanopy is offering a collection of credit-free movies and documentaries for 30 days thanks to its partners.

 

Music 

Music is a healthy tool to quiet the mind and raise your spirits. If you have children at home, an impromptu dance party can be a great way for them to burn off extra energy.

 

Learning Resources for Students 

Experts recommend trying your best to stick to routines when caring for children during crises. This means that even though schools are closed that it’s helpful to encourage regular wake-up times and to provide structured activities throughout the day. While our digital lending services all offer something for kids, we also have free subscriptions to numerous online learning resources. 

(Introduces young children (ages 6 months to 6 years) to learning a foreign language. Using short videos and flash cards, this award-winning program immerses children into a new language) 

(An award-winning, online curriculum for children preschool through kindergarten. The curriculum lays the foundation for a lifetime of learning success, providing strength in core subject areas: math, science and social studies, language and literacy, art, and music. The curriculum is theme based and fully interactive with sound cues) 

(Students can connect with a qualified tutor for expert help in Math, Science, Social Studies, English, English as a Second Language, Computer Literacy, Test Preparation (such as GED, SAT and ACT) and Writing Assistance) 

(Science online has experiments, essays, definitions, diagrams and more) 

(Offers Quick links to live online tutoring, school subject research guides, research paper writing tips, test preparation and other schoolwork assistance) 

(TumbleBook Library is an online collection of e-Books that have animation, sound, music, and narration added to picture books in order to produce an electronic picture book which you can read or have read to you). 

World Book Online is a comprehensive online resource to research a variety of academic topics.  Parents can utilize Curriculum Correlations to see how topics relate to their children's school curriculum.

 

Learning Resources for Adults 

If you are someone who works in a service-based industry that's gone dark or you’ve been directed to work from home, you may find yourself getting through your regular tasks much faster, leaving you with more free time. Additionally, if you are practicing social distancing and just want to use your time constructively, here are some services that can help. 

(Mango prepares learners for realistic conversations and strengthens everyday communication skills in over 70 world languages) 

(Lynda.com is a leading online learning platform that helps anyone learn business, software, technology and creative skills to achieve personal and professional goals through a video library of engaging, top-quality courses taught by recognized industry experts) 

(This resource offers step-by-step instructions, photos, diagrams, and much more for automobile repair and maintenance) 

(Starting a business and need a plan? Here is a collection of successful business plans compiled by entrepreneurs seeking funds for small businesses throughout North America) 

(Gale General OneFile is a one-stop source for information on a wide range of general interest topics. Whether you are looking for information on current events, health care, sports, technology or almost any other inclusive topic, Gale General OneFile has articles you can use) 

(Find comprehensive financial information on thousands of mutual funds, including the Morningstar star rating, exchange-traded funds, information on various investment indexes, types, sectors, and styles) 

(NoveList has information on over 200,000 fiction and non-fiction titles, including popular author Read-a-likes, book discussion guides, award lists and much more) 

(Through our live online classes, you can learn invaluable tech and business skills through the guidance of one of our trained instructors from the comfort of your own home)

 

*Bonus*

At-home exercise is a good way to get your body moving (especially if you're working at home right now). It's also an effective way to distract the mind and focus on your overall well-being. The library offers a few ways for you to access free at-home workouts:

 

There are literally dozens more online databases and resources available to you for free as a library cardholder. Browse the Learning & Research area of our website to see more. And if you’re not sure what to read next or need ideas on what’s worth borrowing, check out the Staff Picks section of our website to see personal recomemndations from library staff. 

As always, you can follow the library on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram to stay up-to-date with the latest regarding any changes to services. 

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