Wednesday, May 23, 2018

ACT Prep at Your Library! Part I: Homework Louisiana

Summer is just around the corner! Tomorrow is officially the last day of school in Terrebonne Parish. Your student is going to be ready to sleep late, relax, and decompress from their busy schedule. That's great! Studies from the CDC have shown that teens need more sleep than the rest of us. But when your teen isn't busy getting ten hours of much needed rest, you might want to nudge them a bit to think about their future. 

The "summer slide" is real. Your student can easily fall behind in her studies without continuous practice. And, as many students head into the latter part of high school, ACT testing begins in earnest. The ACT can determine not only your child's eligibility for entrance into a certain school, but also her eligibility for scholarships, grants, and other financial aid. 

Luckily, your Terrebonne Parish Library has a multitude of high quality resources to give your child an advantage when it comes to ACT testing. 

This summer, we are conducting a pilot program of our very own, completely free, six week ACT prep course. The course will be taught by library staff and tutors, and is sponsored by the Friends of the Terrebonne Parish Library. The program is currently full, but, if it proves successful this summer, we intend to continue these sessions next summer.

The class may be full, but most of the resources we are using to prepare students for the ACT are available for free through the library's website. Two databases in particular are excellent for preparing students for the ACT: Learning Express and HomeworkLouisiana.org

From our home page, select the "Research" tab on the top right of the screen. Choose "databases by name" and scroll down to either Learning Express or Homework Louisiana. 







When  you enter Homework Louisiana, you will see a screen offering a variety of options for free tutoring and test prep. For ACT prep, click on "Prep for the SAT/ACT." You will be prompted to log in or create an account. Don't worry, your account registration and use of this site is completely free! 

After sign in, select "other tools," then "Prep for the SAT/ACT." There, you will find multiple tools for your student's success. 

There are multiple practice tests, a module to help track success and goals, and a "coursework" section for reviewing core concepts. All of your progress is saved with your user name and password, so you can take your time reviewing.







In the next blog entry, I will be showcasing LearningExpress Library's fantastic ACT/SAT prep resources. In the meantime, go create an account on Homework Louisiana and check out all it has to offer! 


Tuesday, April 17, 2018

Family Time with TumbleBooks

Do you have little ones at home? Are they stuck to their screens? Do you wish there was a way to spend more time learning and less time playing mindless games? 

Then you should know about TumbleBooks Library!


TumbleBooks is an e book service for children. As with all library resources, it's free: all you need is an active library card. 

TumbleBooks has a massive story book collection, as well as a "read along" feature for children in grades 2 to 6. The book highlights the text as it reads aloud to the child. Fun animations make the book engaging for visual learners. This feature may be turned off for silent or family reading. Many books are award winners by popular authors. 

In addition to picture books, TumbleBooks offers a selection of chapter books, including such classics as The One And Only IvanElla Enchanted, and Fortunately, the Milk!

Graphic novels, math stories, and language learning round out the collection to make TumbleBooks Library an invaluable resource for families with young children. Get your child started reading on TumbleBooks today!







Monday, April 2, 2018

April is National Poetry Month

Get some poetry in your life this April with resources from your Terrebonne Parish Library! 

Listen to poetry read aloud on Freegal. You can stream entire albums, or download three tracks per week. 
Overdrive also offers audio books of poetry read aloud. The following titles are available for download.
And don't skip the 43 books in the ebook poetry collection, available on Overdrive as well! This collection features some of the titles shown below, as well as many others. 


 Do you want to find out more about the lives of your favorite poets? Visit Gale Virtual Reference Library and browse through the seventh edition of Contemporary Poets

Three of our databases, Scribner Writers Series, Twayne's Authors Series, and Salem Literature, specifically focus on the lives and works of famous authors. 

And, of course, our print collection of poetry books is a great place to start a new poet or reacquaint yourself with an old one. 


Wednesday, February 28, 2018

Jambalaya Writers Conference 2018

As you may have heard, our Jambalaya Writers Conference is coming up on Saturday, March 3. We will have a host of authors here talking about their craft, and tons of information session to assist up and coming local writers to hone their skills. Authors in attendance include R.L. Stine, Joshilyn Jackson, Melissa Marr, Jack Bedell, and a long list of other talented writers of poetry and prose for a variety of audiences (a complete list of presenters may be found here).


If you’d like familiarize yourself with these authors before the conference, check out our card catalog. Do a quick search by author’s name to find some of their work in our collection. Below are just a handful of the books that we have available in our collection. Search the card catalog at www.mytpl.org for more!



 





























Friday, February 2, 2018

Tax Help at the Library

Recently, we at the library have been receiving an influx of calls from curious patrons regarding tax forms and tax filing assistance. Here is an update on the situation with tax forms at Terrebonne Parish Library.



Free tax filing assistance through VITA:


VITA is the only organization that Terrebonne Parish Library is partnering with this year for free tax preparation services. Assistance is available if you earned less than $60,000 overall.


Volunteers for VITA will be at the Main Library (no other branches) on Tuesdays from February 6 - April 10. While volunteers will be doing taxes from 9 AM - 3 PM, a wait list will be started at 8:30 AM by a VITA volunteer. Only the VITA volunteer’s list will be used; no “unofficial” lists will be recognized. You are advised to come early and remain in line, as sign ups/assistance are first come, first served, and VITA has fewer volunteers working this year. Information from VITA regarding their services is posted below.















Tax Forms:


The library has requested federal tax forms from the IRS (Louisiana does not send out state tax forms to libraries). However, due to changes in federal legislation and a later filing opening date, the IRS delayed the printing and distribution of tax forms to its distribution partners (including the library). All branches will still be receiving and distributing a selection free 2017 tax forms, but they are coming in piece by piece. If you are looking for a specific form, please call your local branch to see if the form has been received.


The following forms will be available at the Terrebonne Parish Libraries, in limited numbers, while supplies last:


Form 1040
Form 1040 Instructions
Form 1040 A
Form 1040 A Instructions
Form 1040 EZ
Form 1040 EZ Instructions
Publication 4604


Requesting Forms and E-filing


Printing Forms Online:
You can print federal and state tax forms at home for free, or at the library for 10 cents per page.




Requesting Forms by Phone and Online:
You may request to have forms mailed to your home for free.


Federal: Call 1-800-TAX-FORM (800-829-3676) Monday through Friday, 7:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. local time to order current or prior year forms and instructions or IRS publications. Hours of service in Alaska and Hawaii follow Pacific Time. You will receive your order by mail, usually within 7 to 10 days


State: 1-855-307-3893



x

E-Filing


You may file your own federal taxes free online at https://www.irs.gov/uac/free-file-do-your-federal-taxes-for-free


For Louisiana, see  http://revenue.louisiana.gov/EServices/LouisianaFileOnline

Sunday, January 28, 2018

Black History Month at Terrebonne Parish Library

Since 1976, the United States has recognized February as “Black History Month,” a month to highlight the achievements of African Americans to the country’s history. The national theme for Black History Month this year is “African Americans in Times of War,” commemorating the end of World War I and the role that African Americans played in defending the US in times of armed conflict.

Here at Terrebonne Parish Library, we are proud to celebrate the contributions of African Americans to American history. Whether you are working on a school project with your child, or you simply want to know more about African American history and culture, our library system provides a variety of sources to educate and inform.

In addition to print resources, the library has an expansive collection of high quality, always available online reference resources. These encyclopedias and reference books are exact duplicates of the ones that are on the shelves at the library. They can be used by multiple patrons at a time, and don’t need to be “checked out” like a traditional book or ebook. All you need to access these from home is an active Terrebonne Parish Library card.

Salem History, which can be found on our website under the “Databases” tab, has multiple resources useful for researching African Americans in war. Some of the most useful are Great Lives from History: African Americans, Defining Documents in American History, both Civil War and World War I, and the Decades series, which examines the history of the country with a volume highlighting each of the decades of its existence. For a more contemporary look at the African American experience, Current Topics: Civil Disobedience, Social Justice, Nationalism & Populism, Violent Demonstrations and Race Relations offers selected essays from Salem Press exploring the issues affecting American communities today.

Also available through our database subscriptions is the Gale Virtual Reference Library. Gale features titles on biography, history, science, and the arts on a broad range of subjects. Particularly interesting to those studying African American history are the Contemporary Black Biography series Gale Library of Daily Life: Slavery in America, American Social Reform Movements, and Americans at War. All feature extensive information on the African American experience.

In addition to these reference materials, our collection includes popular biographies and autobiographies featuring a range of African American lives, available both digitally and in print, as well as other non-fiction books by and about African Americans. From historical narratives, such as Solomon Northup’s 12 Years a Slave, to powerful modern stories like The Short and Tragic Life of Robert Peace by Jeff Hobbs and Men We Reaped by Jesmyn Ward, these books tell stories of heartbreak and courage in the face of adversity.

During Black History Month and all year round, Terrebonne Parish Library  is here to educate, entertain, and inform by providing quality sources of information and high quality programming for our patrons to enjoy. Stop by your local branch today, and let us help you find your next great read!






Tuesday, January 16, 2018

The Library is Closed! What Should I Do?

All Terrebonne Parish Libraries will be closed tomorrow, January 17, 2018, due to icy conditions on the roads. Since this closure was unexpected, you may have had some library business to attend to which will have to be put off due to this closure. 

However, did you know that much of the library's print collection is duplicated online, and it can be accessed from your home computer 24/7, even when the library is closed? 

Besides Overdrive, Freading, Axis360, and Flipster, which offer the full text and/or audio of current popular books, comics, and magazines, the library's scholarly digital collection can be found in the Salem Online and Gale Virtual Reference Library. These are exactly the same as the print editions in the Reference department at the Main Library. You can access these resources with your active Terrebonne Parish library card from any internet connected computer, via our "databases" page. 

Below is a sampling of some of the useful science and medical resources you may find helpful to study, or just to browse. You don't have to check these books out. They are available to multiple users at a time, any time!