Learning Alert!

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The economy is not doing great (that is maybe a crazy understatement) and a lot of people have lost their jobs but let’s not lose hope because LinkedIn Learning (formerly Lynda.com) has made some of its very helpful courses free right now! So, if you need to keep busy, learn something new, need a refresher on a topic you swear you knew, or maybe your resume could use some TLC then look no further.

Let’s take look at some of the free courses that are being offered right now on LinkedIn Learning (Lynda.com).


First up is a collection of classes on finding a new job while there is ongoing hardship (like now): Finding a Job during Challenging Economic Times.


These classes focus on several different areas of finding a new job – the job search itself, resume work, and when you need to nail your job interview just to name a few. If you need your own personal job coach right now these classes are for you!

Maybe the above classes do not apply to you right now, but you are working from home for the first time. Worry not there are classes to help you as well under the umbrella of classes called: Remote Working: Setting Yourself and Your Teams Up for Success.


This set of classes will work on your time management skills, productivity tips, and how to work with a good number of the leading virtual meeting tools (Skype, Zoom, and BlueJeans to name a few). So if you are new to the home office situation then these classes might right up your alley.


Maybe you just need something to help you combat stress and build endurance for these trying times than these 8 free classes on mindfulness, stress management, and resilience are for you:

Mindfulness Practices

The Mindful Workday

Mindful Meditations for Work and Life

Managing Stress for Positive Change

How to Manage Feeling Overwhelmed

Balancing Work and Life

Building Resilience

Grit: How Teams Persevere to Accomplish Great Goals


Are you a teacher who has suddenly been given the tall task of teaching online with no frame of reference for what that should look like? These free classes are for you!

Learning to Teach Online

Teaching with Technology

Teaching Technical Skills Through Video

Teaching Online: Synchronous Classes

Teaching Techniques: Creating Multimedia Learning

Teaching Techniques: Classroom Cloud Strategy


Maybe you are an educator who needs a rundown on different collaboration tools for both you and your coworkers? Here are the best classes for you.

Office 365 for Educators

Microsoft Teams for Education

Google Hangouts Essential Training

WordPress Essential Training

WordPress for Education

And this is just a sample of the classes that LinkedIn Learning is offering for free during this time of crisis so go ahead and browse their site to see what else is being offered free to the public – no library card required! A friendly reminder that just because the site asks you to start a free trial does not mean you should feel obligated to sign up for a trial.

We here in the libraries of Allegheny County continue to wish everyone well and encourage you to keep learning and keep growing!


Northland Public Library

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Dig Deeper into the News of the Day with The Economist. Now available on OverDrive!

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the economist

The Economist is an international weekly newspaper printed in magazine-format and published digitally that focuses on current affairs, international business, politics, and technology. Download the latest edition from OverDrive or OverDrive’s app, Libby.

From politics to business and finance, from science and technology to the arts. The Economist offers fact-checked, authoritative insight into the news of the world.

~ Hilary Lewis, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Continue ReadingDig Deeper into the News of the Day with The Economist. Now available on OverDrive!

LearningExpress Has You Covered

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Do you need job resources or something to keep your edge during this quarantine? Don’t worry EBSCO’s Learning Express has you covered, and it has something for practically every age!


It doesn’t matter if you are looking for something for your elementary student, you are prepping for your GED, or you are an older student just looking to stay fresh on your core job skills. Learning Express knows you have learning goals and they don’t disappear during a pandemic.

We at the libraries also know it has been really hard without someone around to help your brush up on your computer skills but worry no more as Learning Express has an entire section devoted entirely to the conundrum that is computer skills!


Only interested in career skills and how to get that perfect job? There is a Job & Career Accelerator section just for you. This area of Learning Express can help your find the job that is just right for you, search for internships and jobs, and get access to tools to help you get that dream job.


College life has been drastically changed by the current state of the world and that goes for how things may change for college admissions and test as well – taking time now to begin preparing for those tests could be a huge help in the months to come. You will want to check out Learning Express’ College Admissions and Test Preparations section to stay on top of tests like the ACT and SAT.


Things can definitely feel out of control right now and that can add to our stress but with Learning Express you can take back a bit of control. Begin using Learning Express to get ahead of your goals whether they are helping your child with school, planning for your dream job, or just brushing up on your Excel skills.

Let Learning Express help you – you have got this!


Northland Public Library

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Auto Repair Source to Replace Chilton

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The State Library of Pennsylvania now offers to all public libraries Auto Repair Source and Small Engine Repair Reference Center (SERRC). Because of these offerings, the countywide Digital Resources Committee (DRC) considered whether we need to continue to offer Chilton.

The DRC members did an evaluation of all three resources. While we found value in Chilton name recognition, the committee decided to cancel our Chilton subscription because of the overlap in content with Auto Repair Source.

Our current Chilton subscription ends on April 30. After that time, please direct customers who are looking for auto and engine repair resources to Auto Repair Center or Small Engine Repair Center.

~ Hilary Lewis, Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

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World Book Online

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It’s been awhile since libraries have been able to have physical sets of the voluminous World Book Encyclopedia. Price and room come into play, but there’s also the fact that encyclopedia-style information gathering truly works so well in the online arena.

During this quarantine, homeschool-ready resources are more in need than ever. In that vein, it is truly exciting that World Book has opened up access to their World Book Online platform—for free! They ask for some basic information and a log-in link is sent to your e-mail right away.


There are many options from the initial landing page, divided by audience (Kids, Student, Advanced) as well as World Book imprints (Activity Corner, Discover, and Dramatic Learning).


Each section is graphically rich and easy to navigate. The Kids section, for instance, includes crafts & activities, world of animals, science projects, and more. A page that I think is especially fun is under the Activities link: Crack the Code. These are perfect for kids that love a puzzle.


The Dramatic Learning section is also a unique way to make a learning project more interactive. There are many plays & monologues divided by age and each play includes links to more information on the topic—from the Wright Brothers to the Cherokee Trail of Tears. A script is included—act it out or just read through it!


World Book Online is perfect to allow kids of all ages to explore on their own or in conjunction with a specific lesson plan in mind.


Jeff, South Park

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Expanded Access to Tumble eBook Collections

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TumbleBooksIf you haven’t already checked out the TumbleBook Library collection through the eLibrary page, now is a great time to become familiar with this children’s ebook resource.

The robust collection is great for beginning through elementary school readers. Resources include picture/story books, early readers, chapter books, and even graphic novels. Many of the stories in the collection have read-along features for listeners and emerging readers.

Additionally, story books in the collection have fun video animation which can grasp the attention of the youngest readers, with follow-along guides for the words in the stories.

On top of this useful ebook resource, users now have access to more collections!

TumbleMath is a comprehensive collection of math-related picture books, presented in TumbleBooks format with narration and animation. Help reluctant mathematics learners by using stories and literature to spark interest.

From subtractions and fractions to place value and finance, users will find resources for almost every variation of elementary math. The books are accompanied by supplementary materials such as lesson plans and quizzes, which are organized by grade level K-5.


Working with older children? The Teen Book Cloud is an ebook collection perfect for middle school and high school users!

From classic novels to graphic novels, the collection is curated for specifically for young adult readers (& the young at heart). Users can take notes as they read, add bookmarks so they don’t lose their place, or change the text size and background colors for a customized reading experience.

Teen Book Cloud

The non-fiction collection is also a good resource of primary source materials in history, science and civics.

Teen Book Cloud 2

Supplement your student’s learning experiences with the Tumble Collections!

-Richelle @ Sewickley Public Library

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Miss Humblebee’s Academy

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An exciting new resource from Gale is now available on the library eResources page! Miss Humblebee’s Academy is a learning aid for children aged 3 to 6. There are lessons available in Art, Math, Music, Language & Literacy, and Science & Social Studies.

Each lesson includes both a visual and audio component, with songs and graphics helping to keep children’s interests.


Parents can set up an account with Miss Humblee to keep track of lessons, take tests and assessments, and review curriculum progress. With an account, there are also additional resources on top of the lessons available. Under the Resources option at the top of the Homepage, there are printable worksheets, reading charts & lists, and a DIY section that includes crafts, science experiments, cooking projects, and more.


There is also an option to go through lessons as a guest user, where you can get familiar with Miss Humblebee’s Academy and take lessons, but not keep track of your progress.

Beyond the lessons, there are also Library and Music Room sections. In the Library, there are a selection of books divided up between Animals and People, Places, and Things. Each book has “Read to Me” or “Read by Myself” options.


In the Music Room, there are a selection of songs in Animals, Letters, Numbers, &  has, and People, Places, & Things section. Each song is about a minute long and provides a mini-lesson about each topic.


Miss Humblebee’s Academy is a great resource to assist parents in teaching children at home and has been offered to the library for free!


Jeff, South Park

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Need More Music?

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There is a common saying that music soothes the soul – well it seems more than ever that the collective human soul could use something deeply soothing. So, the Allegheny County Libraries are here to help!


Maybe you need more music, but you cannot imagine paying for a Spotify or Pandora account right now well you don’t need to stress. We have you covered with Hoopla!


The libraries also have a way to feed your need for knowledge about all the musicians you love and legends you want to learn about. Just head on over to AllMusic and read up on the biographies and discographies on the musicians you love. They even have genre charts to browse and distract you when your partner, child, or roommate just won’t leave you alone.


Things can be monotonous and bleak right now but if you put on a good jam Hoopla maybe we can help groove or grind your way through to the other side. Stay safe and don’t worry the libraries will continue doing all we can to provide as many services as possible!

Enya anyone?


Northland Public Library

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Classic Games Available Anytime

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You may be familiar with the Internet Archive – a non-profit library of millions of free books, movies, music, and of course the Way Back Machine, which archives websites. But did you know it is also a treasure trove of free gaming software?

That’s right! The archive is home to a gigantic software library which hosts thousands of games. You may remember classics like The Oregon Trail, Pac-Man, and Where In the World Is Carmen Sandiego?

Internet Archive_MSDOS2


There are several collections of games, including MS-DOS computer games, Internet Arcade (featuring arcade-style games), and Console Living Room games (featuring Sega, Playstation, and Atari games).

The games require no software installation; users can play right through their web browser. Since the games are all capable of full-screen mode, playing them feels like a blast right back to 1989!

Advanced users can also download Classic PC games, which require intermediate knowledge to install and run on modern computers.

Enjoy these boredom busters & happy gaming!

– Richelle @ Sewickley Public Library

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Bonus Borrows at Hoopla!

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Given that e-resources are being heavily used right now, Hoopla’s latest announcement is all the more exciting. Hoopla has introduced “Bonus Borrows.” These checkouts do not count toward the monthly limit and is totally FREE for libraries!

Each section of Hoopla (Audiobooks, e-books, Comics, Music, Television, Movies) includes categories labeled “Bonus Borrows.”



There is a category for “All Bonus Borrows,” but each section includes more specific Bonus Borrows categories as well, including categories for children.

I think a great category to highlight is in the Television section. With gyms closed, people are forced to change their workout routines. Check out “Bonus Borrows: At-Home Fitness



Another great category to highlight is “Bonus Borrows: Movies for Kids.” These are not traditional movies, but mostly visual companions to some great picture books.


This would be a great resource for parents trying to mix in education with their kids’ screen times!

Browsing through these sections, it’s plain see many of these Bonus Borrows are ones patrons will be excited to check out.

Jeff, South Park

Continue ReadingBonus Borrows at Hoopla!