KDL Blog ‘Research & Computer Tips’ Category

Updates to LearningExpress Library

Sunday, February 23rd, 2014

LearningExpress LibraryLearningExpress Library, a popular database that provides access to over 1,000 online practice tests and skill-building tutorials, has recently been updated with a new & improved site design, easier to use navigation, new interactive tutorials and more!

 

LearningExpress Library

 

The new site is divided into 9 “learning centers”:

  • Adult Learning Center – math, reading and writing skills, U.S. Citizenship exam prep
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  • Career Center – career exploration, occupation certification and military exam prep
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  • High School Equivalency Center – exam prep for the new GED
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  • College Preparation Center – college admission test prep, including ACT, SAT, AP Exams, PSAT & TOEFL
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  • Recursos para Hispanohablantes – Spanish-language resources, including math, reading and writing skills and U.S. Citizenship exam prep
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  • College Center – academic skills review in math, reading, writing and science, exam prep for graduate school admission tests (including GRE, GMAT, LSAT & MCAT), college placement exams and CLEP exams
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  • School Center – resources for elementary, middle and high school students for skills improvement in math, reading, science, social studies, vocabulary and writing
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  • Computer Skills Center – interactive video tutorials for computer & Internet basics, popular Microsoft & Adobe software programs and Windows & Mac operating systems
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  • Job & Career Accelerator – explore careers, search for jobs, create resume and cover letters and prep for interviews
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Please note that previous logins do not carry over to the new version – if you’ve already set up an account in the old version, you will need to register fresh for the new LearningExpress Library. However, the old site will still be available until June 30 if you need to finish up any previously accessed tests or tutorials. Right now our link goes to a special introductory page where you can either register for the new version or go back (temporarily) to the old version.

You can watch a guided tour video of the new & improved LearningExpress Library or try it out yourself!

 


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New Language Learning Resource for Kids

Wednesday, February 19th, 2014

Little PimMany of you may be familiar with our popular Mango Languages resource that offers KDL cardholders free language learning courses for 61 foreign and 18 ESL languages. Thanks to generous donations to KDL, we’ve now also added Little Pim, which is powered by Mango but designed specifically for children. Little Pim is a fun and convenient way to introduce a child to a foreign language in a way they can understand and enjoy. Courses are available in nine foreign languages (Arabic, Chinese, French, German, Hebrew, Italian, Japanese, Russian and Spanish) as well as English/ESL. 

Each language is taught via a series of videos led by an adorable panda teacher (“Little Pim”) and features native speakers, excellent pacing, activities and concept groupings to make the language learning process fun and easy:

Little Pim

 

Try it out now: (At the Mango launch screen, just scroll down and click Quick Start if you just want to take a look and don’t want to set up a login to save your progress.)

 


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The eBook Everyone is Reading

Tuesday, February 18th, 2014

libraryReadeBookJoin millions of readers around the world reading one eBook. As part of Overdrive’s Big Library Read program, we are pleased to offer our patrons unlimited access to the eBook Keys to the Kitchen: The Essential Reference for Becoming a More Accomplished, Adventurous Cook by Aida Mollenkamp now through March 5. No matter how many KDL patrons are reading this eBook, we will have a copy available for you to download — no holds, no waitlists!

Food Network and Cooking Channel star Aida Mollenkamp lays an invaluable foundation for cooks in Keys to the Kitchen. This comprehensive manual collects more than 300 innovative, contemporary recipes as well as color photographs, plenty of informative illustrations, a substantial technique primer, and helpful how-to information on subjects as wide-ranging as rust removal, throwing a cocktail party, and knife skills. For members of the tech-savvy new generation who can’t cook but want to, this essential reference guide makes an ideal starting place and for those already at ease in the kitchen it’s full of “who knew” moments for expanding their repertoire of great recipes.

We encourage you to join this global “library book club!”

 


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Take FREE Online Courses Through KDL

Monday, February 10th, 2014

Learn4Life

 

We have another awesome new resource now available to KDL patrons

Learn4LifeLearn4Life features over 300 instructor-led online courses focused on professional development, technology skills and personal enrichment. New sessions start every month, and each 6-week course offers well-crafted lessons, expert online instruction and interaction with fellow students in a lively discussion area.

These are the types of classes that may cost hundreds of dollars to take from a for-profit company, but they are available for free with your KDL library card! Here are just some of the wide range of courses available:

See a complete list of courses here!

2 lessons are released each week during the 6-week class session, and each lesson is estimated to take 2 hours to complete. A certificate of completion is available at the end of each course, which may be accepted as proof of continuing education by some workplaces or institutions. There is no penalty for not finishing a course, and there are no limits on how many you can sign up to take.

You can watch a guided tour video of this new product or try it out yourself. If you see a course that interests you, there’s still time to enroll for the February session, which starts on February 19.

 

 


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New TrueFlix Learning Resource for Kids

Wednesday, February 5th, 2014

TrueFlixWe are pleased to offer a new online resource just for kids — TrueFlix from children’s publisher Scholastic!

TrueFlix uses interactive nonfiction books (called “True Books”) to help students hone literacy skills, build knowledge of subject-area content and cultivate 21st-century skills through the inquiry process. All titles are supported with related content and primary sources featuring videos, audio, images and text. This is similar to a related product from Scholastic, BookFlix, but focuses on purely nonfiction content instead of including fictional storybooks.

For example, if you’re a little sick of the local weather, you can watch a video and read a book about Tropical Rain Forests:

Rain Forests

Each book includes a “Read Along” option so the text can be read aloud. Key vocabulary words are also highlighted, and can be clicked on to display definitions:

Climate

TrueFlix supports Common Core standards by featuring multiple text types and a cross-curricular, nonfiction focus. There are also related educational resources available, such as lesson plans, project ideas, quizzes, word matches, primary sources and web resources.

You can watch an overview of this new product, or try it out yourself!

 


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Free Computer Classes and Job Seeker Workshops

Monday, February 3rd, 2014

Spring 2014 Computer Class BrochureWhether you’re a computer novice or looking to update your skills, KDL’s free computer classes and workshops for job seekers can help you learn something new! Registration opens today for our March classes:

  • Computer Basics: Mousing and More
  • Computer Basics: Where’s My Stuff?
  • Computer Basics: Windows 8 — Using It and Loving It! (B.Y.O. Laptop)
  • Gadgets: BYO eReader & Tablet Users Group
    (pre-registration not required)
  • Internet: Getting the Most Out of Ancestry.com
  • Internet: Google — More Than Just a Search Engine
  • Internet: Internet Basics & More
  • Internet: Online Genealogy Research I & II
  • Internet: Online Resources for Book Lovers
  • Internet: Online Security
  • Internet: The Lowell Ledger Online — Explore Your Local History
  • Internet: Wikipedia Editors Meet-Up
  • Internet: Wikipedia, the Encyclopedia for Everyone!
  • Microsoft Excel Basics I & II
  • Microsoft Excel: Data Analysis
  • Microsoft PowerPoint Basics
  • Microsoft Word Basics I, II & III
  • Speak to a Geek (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Developing Your Personal Brand (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Communicating Your Brand (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Networking (pre-registration not required)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: LinkedIn Bookcamp (pre-registration not required if you bring your own laptop)
  • Career Transitions Workshop: Behavioral Interviewing (pre-registration not required)

For class descriptions and schedule, please see our brochure or search our events calendar.

Unless otherwise noted, pre-registration is required and will begin the month before the scheduled classes on the first Monday of each month for KDL cardholders and the second Monday for non-KDL cardholders (if space is still available):

  • March classes: Registration begins Monday, February 3 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, February 10 for non-KDL cardholders)
  • April classes: Registration begins Monday, March 3 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, March 10 for non-KDL cardholders)
  • May classes: Registration begins Monday, April 7 for KDL cardholders
    (Monday, April 14 for non-KDL cardholders)

To register, please call 616-784-2007.


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Early Lit Bits: App Review — Avokiddo Emotions

Saturday, February 1st, 2014

avokiddo-emotions-icon1Have fun with your child as you talk and play when using the app Avokiddo Emotions. In this app, users can choose from three different animal characters whom they dress up, feed, make dance, sing etc. Watch how the animals react to the items when you play. Talk with your child about how they think the animal feels: are they happy, sad, mad, embarrassed? Pull down the “knob” to change the objects for over 100 different interactions. You will be laughing along with your child to this entertaining and simple app. It is available for Apple and Android devices for $2.99.   

– Julie R. at KDL’s Caledonia Township branch

 


 

This article originally appeared in our Early Lit Bits eNewsletter. Read the most recent issue online or sign up to receive this monthly update highlighting early literacy tips and resources for parents and caregivers.

 


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Easy Way to Win Awesome Prizes!

Friday, January 31st, 2014

tell your story

Take a few minutes to share your story… it’s a simple way to earn a chance to win sensational  prizes (including an iPad Mini)!

Record yourself telling a short (five minutes or less) but true story from your life — be it funny, sad or life-changing — and share it on KDL’s website for a chance to win several prizes in a random drawing. Deadline for submissions is February 8. To share your story, just fill out the online form, which also includes prompts to help get ideas flowing.

If you do not have any equipment to record yourself, the Alpine Township, Cascade Township, East Grand Rapids, Grandville, Spencer Township and Wyoming branches can provide a quiet room with a laptop and microphone. Please call ahead at 616-784-2007 to reserve a time.

 

 


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Yes, We’re Open!

Wednesday, January 29th, 2014

snow.gif

It’s another snow day for lots of kids in the area,
but KDL branches remain OPEN!
All programs will take place as scheduled.

Please drive carefully if you choose to visit us today.


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KDL Closing at 5:00 PM Tuesday, Jan. 28

Tuesday, January 28th, 2014

Due to severe weather and travel conditions, KDL branches will close at 5:00 PM today (Tuesday, January 28). All evening programs are cancelled. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

snow.gif

 


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