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Stuck at Home? Here’s Free Online Media to Binge from the Library

By Amy Shropshire

 

While the Williamson County Public Library is currently closed to the public, fighting off the spread of COVID-19, several changes have been made to the existing library policy.

  • We are no longer circulating physical materials. Patrons will no longer be able to place or pick up holds. Holds that have already been placed will be held for when we re-open and not expire.
  • No late fees will be assessed for materials currently checked out. Materials are still currently returnable through the book drop, but keeping them will not incur any fees until after we re-open to the public.
  • Patrons with recently expired cards, or cards expiring soon, have all been renewed until June 2020.
  • Fines will no longer be an impediment to accessing online resources. All patrons with an active and renewed library card should be able to access online materials such as Tennessee READS and Hoopla.
  • At present, staff will return calls and emails for patrons having technical difficulty accessing online resources and/or help answer queries.

So many people at home will need resources for both education and entertainment value, and we can still provide these resources through online media.

Here are some important things to remember when creating an account through our online resources.

  • We are part of Buffalo River Regional Library, so that will be the name you search for when creating an account.
  • The default PIN number is the last 4 digits of the library card number.
  • All library card numbers must be entered with no spaces to access online resources.

For example, Tennessee READS is a great online resource that offers over 100,000 e-books and audiobooks available to our patrons. You can download e-books and audiobooks to a computer, mobile device, and/or tablet. You can access Tennessee READS by downloading the apps, Overdrive and Libby, or you can access it through the library website.

 

 

Hoopla is another great resource if you are looking for more audio-visual media such as music, movies, and television shows. Not to mention Hoopla also has a comic book selection as well. Just remember to select carefully, because Hoopla is limited to 3 checkouts per month.

Another perk about Overdrive, Libby, and Hoopla are the accessibility features, which include:

  • dyslexic font
  • adjustable font size
  • adjustable audio speed
  • Hoopla has closed captioning

RBDigital also carries a variety of popular e-books and audiobooks if you can’t find something in Tennessee READS or if you run out of checkouts.

If you are looking for magazines, try Flipster! Flipster is an easy-to-use digital magazine newsstand that has new and back issues. Flipster is accessible via a web browser or the Flipster app which is made specifically for Apple devices, Android devices, and the Kindle Fire tablet. You can also download magazines to read offline, anytime, anywhere.

For something new and different, try the curated lists of the Indie Author Project. Published by Library Journal, the India Author Project pulls together lists by genre of the most talked about independently published work that often escapes notice. You might find your new favorite author there.

Whether you’re keeping up with your educational goals of if you’re wanting to learn something new, EBSCOhost is the online resource for you. EBSCOhost provides a plethora of materials from classics to educational nonfiction. Try our collection of EBSCOhost e-books and audiobooks available for checkout.

Speaking of educational resources, we have computer practice resources and databases full of new learning opportunities you can spend your time on. For example, GCFLearnFree has plenty of tutorials including basic money management, resume writing, computer skills, and technology help to name a few. GCFLearnFree also provides courses on communication skills and the sharing economy too. Feel free to browse their collection of tutorials as well as our other computer training options.

Staying at home is also a great time to finally publish that book you’ve always wanted to write, and we have the resources for that! Create your own independently published book through Pressbooks, and submit your work to the Indie Author Project, both of which make your work shareable.

While some of us may be stuck at home for public safety, this is the perfect opportunity to do the things you’ve never had time to do before. So stay home and read, learn, and create!

 

Additional Links:

Overdrive app for Android devices

Overdrive app for Apple devices

Libby app for Android devices

Libby app for Apple devices

 

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