I’ll admit it, I am sick of my kids losing library books! Every week between 10-30 library books and movies enter my house, and it seems like every month or so one book or movie gets lost in the “black hole” never to be seen again.
So this year, I have a solution; not a resolution, but a solution. We are borrowing more electronic library books this year. I found a great deal on tablets for my children and got each of them one as a holiday gift. The very first thing I did before giving them the tablets was download the following library apps, and enter their library card numbers so that they could enjoy the free online resources we offer. You have read my praises about Tumblebooks before, but the library offers so much more. Here are just a few kid friendly databases the library provides. Some even have mobile apps for your phone!
Overdrive/Kids: Overdrive will allow you to download full text books AND audiobooks that we (the librarians) selected. This means the children can enjoy the books without a wifi connection once they are downloaded to the device. Kids can place books on hold if they are all checked out (just like physical books in the branches), and the best part: these are automatically returned so no lost books! You can search for and find Overdrive books in our regular catalog. So if a book your child wants is checked out at your branch, and Overdrive has a copy available, our catalog will tell you.
Tumblebooks for Kids: my oldy but goody. The books are not borrowed but enjoyed via the internet. This is a favorite for my youngest children. And no lost books.
Hoopla: Not only books, Hoopla has comics, graphic novels and movies available. The best part about Hoopla is that EVERYTHING on the site is ALWAYS available. No hold lists, no waiting. You can also download your items to your device for reading later. The catch: you can only borrow 6 items a month. BUT just like Overdrive/Kids the items “return themselves” eliminating those pesky lost books.
Are you sensing a theme here? Sincerely hope so. There is more:
Zinio Magazine Collection: Don’t overlook this database and assume it’s only for adults. Plenty of kid-friendly magazines are readily available for your child’s enjoyment. For example:
World Book Kids: This is not just for homework anymore! For children who are not necessarily “book readers,” but enjoy exploring topics that interest them, World Book Online is an ideal resource. It is interactive with games, puzzles, and videos, designed to encourage children to enjoy researching and exploring any topic. I recommend this database whenever your child asks: “Do you know of any ‘good games’ online?”
Total Boox: This one is crazy. Like straight up bananas. So you go to this database and borrow children’s books. And the books you borrow, you keep. FOREVER! Like WHAT THE WHAT? I am not joking. This is the wildest thing I have ever seen ever. There are no holds, so the books in the Total Boox catalog are always available. The books don’t return themselves, and nobody emails or calls you to remind you to return stuff. So if your kids loves a book and wants to read it over and over again, there is no need to worry about returning it. EVER! And you can download the books to your device for offline enjoyment. What’s the catch? Well the library is offering this on a trial basis. So if the community doesn’t use it or love it, it might go away. PLEASE USE IT BECAUSE I LOVE IT. Trust me on this one, you will love it too.
So goodbye lost books (I hope), and hello to another year of enjoyable reading.