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At-Home Learning Resources

A list of free resources for parents (and others!) who need ideas for engaging activities. Some require a Palos Park Library card, but many are available for anyone.  This list will be updated periodically.

Staff Picks

Get Crafty: Make Blackout Poetry

April is National Poetry month. All month long you can make Black Out Poetry! Use a discarded page (book, newspaper, etc.)  and a marker to try and create a poem by blacking out all unnecessary words. It's harder than you think! Hang your finished poems up so others can see! Click the link to see some references:


Watch Now: “The Secret of Kells”

A personal staff favorite- This animated movie boasts dazzling illustrations and explores the creation of The Book of Kells. Emily, our Adult Programmer, watched it in college and recommends it for children and adults alike. Watch the trailer here: Stream this movie for free (and many more!) on Kanopy with your library card:


Virtual Tour: 360 Island of Iona

Take a virtual tour of a Scottish Abbey on the Island of Iona. It is believed that the Book of Kells was taken from this island in 806 following a Viking raid. From there it was transported to a monastery in Kells, County Meath, Ireland. Explore more churches, cities, and countries by using the search bar!


Story Time (in Space!) 
Join astronaut Serena Auñón-Chancellor as she reads the book “If I were an astronaut”  from the International Space Station.


Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden’s Home Safari Events

Each weekday, starting at 2 p.m. Central time, the Cincinnati Zoo will introduce one of their animals, and include an activity to do at home. Go to Cincinnati Zoo’s Facebook page for the Facebook Live event.

Animal Webcams

Aquarium of the Pacific Webcams

The Aquarium of the Pacific has live images of sharks, sea jellies, fish, and penguins.

Monterey Bay Aquarium Webcams

Check in on sea otters, moon jellies, open sea creatures, or a kelp forest.

Houston Zoo Webcams

Watch giraffes, gorillas, elephants, and more.

San Diego Zoo Webcams

Live and recorded webcams of pandas, penguins, koalas, and other animals.

Virtual Farm Tours

Take a tour of real farms and see what they’re like.


Arts and Crafts

Lunch Doodles with Mo Willems

Daily drawing session with author Mo Willems every weekday at 12pm Central time.


Educational Resources

Scholastic Learn at Home

Daily projects to keep kids reading, thinking, and growing.  Pre-k and up.

Khan Academy

Free resources for ages 4-18, or a free app for ages 2-7.  Requires signing up for a free account.

Learn-to Code with Prenda (requires a Palos Park Public Library card) NEW RESOURCE
A web-based educational software where kids can learn to make websites, video games, apps, animations, programs and more!



Digital Public Library of America

DPLA connects people to the riches held within America’s libraries, archives, museums, and other cultural heritage institutions. All of the materials found through DPLA—photographs, books, maps, news footage, oral histories, personal letters, museum objects, artwork, government documents, and so much more—are free and immediately available in digital format. The cultural institutions participating in DPLA represent the richness and diversity of America itself, from the smallest local history museum to our nation’s largest cultural institutions.

Illinois Digital Archives

The Illinois Digital Archives is a repository for the digital collections of the Illinois State Library as well as other libraries and cultural institutions in the State of Illinois. It contains historical photographs, slides, glass negatives, oral histories, manuscripts, letters, federal government documents, postcards, posters, videos, newspapers, and maps.

Language Learning


A free language learning platform that includes a language learning website and an app. Users can also take a digital language proficiency exam. The languages are taught through drills that require a mix of reading, writing, listening and speaking. There is also an ‘immersion’ section with authentic reading materials for those who want to go beyond the lessons. Learners can translate webpages, sentence by sentence, or correct and improve other people’s translations. Courses can teach upwards of 2,000 words. Languages: At the time of writing, 20 language courses were available for English speakers: Spanish, French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Dutch, Swedish, Russian, Irish, Turkish, Danish, Norwegian, Polish, Esperanto, Ukrainian, Welsh, Hebrew, Vietnamese, Hungarian and Greek. And 7 courses for English speakers are currently in development.



Weekday Live Streams with Mr. Jon & Friends

Mr. Jon & Friends will be hosting weekday live streams of music and movement for kids at 9:30 a.m. Central time each day. Watch live, and then come back to re-watch alter as often as you’d like.  The live stream events run from Monday, March 16th to Friday, March 27th.  You can find all the info on their Facebook page.

The Kennedy Center Digital Stage

Archive of the nation’s busiest performing arts center.

Metropolitan Opera Nightly Met Opera Streams

Daily series of free streaming opera presentations, available to stream from 6:30 p.m. until 2:30 p.m. the next day.


Reading and Storytimes

The Lucky Trikes Storytimes From a Short Distance 

Nightly live-streamed storytimes on Facebook Live at 8 p.m. Central Time.

Storytime with author Mac Barnett

Children’s author Mac Barnett will be reading one of his books out loud, on Instagram Live, every weekday at 2 p.m. Central time until he runs out of books to read.

Stories with author Oliver Jeffers

Artist Oliver Jeffers will be reading one of his books and talking about being a writer every weekday, at 1 p.m. Central time.

Over 1100 titles for grades K-6, and includes our unique animated, talking picture books, read-along chapter books, national geographic videos, non-fiction books, playlists, as well as books in Spanish and French. Plus, the collection features Graphic Novels – a student favorite! As well as Math Stories! Requires PPPL card.

Teen Book Cloud

TBC is a collection of videos and chapter books in categories which include: Ebooks (Shakespeare, poetry, non-fiction, science, history, geography, etc.), Read-Alongs, Graphic Novels, Videos (from National Geographic!), and Audio Books. Our books feature adjustable text sizes, full narration, and a read-along function which highlights text as it is read. As a subscriber, you have access to lesson plans, quizzes and our Common Core Portal! These features make TBC a great tool for reluctant readers and ESL students. Plus, all these options can be switched to manual so readers can read at their own pace. Requires PPPL card.


Virtual Field Trips

Access Mars

Check out a 360 degree tour of Mars from the Mars Rover.

Air Pano

Air Pano is a group of Russian photographers that takes 360 degree photos and videos of important places around the world.  Many beautiful places are available to explore.

Discovery Education Virtual Field Trips

STEM field trips to the Johnson Space Center, arctic tundra, and more.

The Louvre–Paris

Virtual tours of some of the historic museum’s most famous collections.

National Museum of Anthropology–Mexico City

Collections related to the archaeology and history of Mexico’s pre-Hispanic civilizations.

National Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art–South Korea

Modern Korean art and design.

The Vatican–Rome

Tour one of the world’s most beautiful buildings.

Yellowstone National Park

Watch live footage of the Mud Volcano, Fountain Paint Pot, and more.


World Events


Over 1,700 full-text resources covering a wide range of subjects. 11,000+ Topics. Over 7 million photos, graphics, maps, websites. Requires a PPPL card.

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