Edmonds Kind of Play: Free library resources for families, from online tutoring to books by mail to anti-racism series

Sno-Isle Libraries is providing access to live online tutoring and homework help for free.

I usually ease into the information, but in the land of a million terrifying headlines, it feels right to lead with great news. If you go to sno-isle.org/kids/homework you can access many homework-related resources including Brainfuse HelpNow, which offers “online tutors in every subject, writing help and more” seven days a week from 1 to 11 p.m. This includes math, science, and an option to have your assignment proofread. When I clicked the link, I did need to put in my library card number. If you don’t have one yet, during the pandemic Sno-Isle libraries are offering online applications for a library card, which you can find at sno-isle.org/getacard.

The Homework page of the Sno-Isle site also offers digital reference books, maps and photos, resources for research projects and — for all of the first-grade ESD families who do a culture project, usually anyhow — there are “CulutreGrams,” which is “detailed information on countries and states with photos, videos and more.” They also have facts and photos of over 4,000 species of animals via Grzimek’s Animal Life and a Science Reference Center with in-depth information and science experiments. If you come up short in your search, you can also ask a librarian! You can contact them via email, chat or text with a librarian at askus.sno-isle.org.

Remote printing with contact-free pickup is available at Sno-Isle libraries. Customers receive a weekly print allowance of $7, black & white prints are charged at 10 cents per page and color prints are charged at 50 cents per page. Additional printing beyond the $7 allowance is not currently available. Directions on how to send in your printing job — available in English, Spanish, and Russian — are at sno-isle.org/help/remote-printing or you can call 425-771-1933 with questions.

All of these resources are also located in a one-stop shop at sno-Isle.org/backtoschool

That is so many library resources and we aren’t even done talking about them yet. I saw on Instagram last week that the library can help you pick out books for your kids — a nice post to break up the doomscrolling I get caught up in. The post asks “Are the kiddos tired of the same old books?” and then offers to pick out some new titles from babies to teens with their library picks service at sno-isle.org/library-picks. They are also offering books by mail, now knowing that not everyone is able to get to the library for their contact-free services. This service requires an application and not everyone will qualify; there are also limits on the number of titles. To see if this service is right for you, you can visit sno-isle.org/wheels/books-by-mail.

Along with storytimes, science labs, and the yearly third-grade reading challenge, Sno-Isle Libraries is offering a webinar series “How to be an Anti-Racist Family” by Kenesha Lewin of Lewin Education & Consulting. The series summary: “In this time, when the inequities and violence suffered by people of color have been so clearly revealed, it is imperative that we use an anti-racist lens in all aspects of our lives, relationships, and families.” The series, set for Oct. 3, 10 and 17 from 10 to 11:30 a.m., builds on each episode so it is recommended to attend all three in the series. While it requires registration, there are hundreds of spots left, and you don’t need a library card to participate. You can find registration HERE and a calendar of all the events for kids, organized by age groups, at sno-isle.org/kids/calendar.

Registration is now open for L.E.A.P. (Learning Enhancements and Activities Program), a new distance learning day camp, hosted by the Edmonds Parks, Recreation and Cultural Services Department at the Frances Anderson Center. The program, which is available starting the week of Oct. 19, will provide, according to the city, a supervised “day camp setting that allows children to focus on their academic efforts while engaging in fun camp activities.” Participants will be grouped with similar-age students into small learning pods and students will be assigned their own socially distanced work space for the entire week within their assigned pod, the city said.

The main “pod” time will be from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. with before- and after-care available for no additional fee. The weekly program fee is $300 per student for Edmonds residents and $345 for non-residents. There are fee waivers available for Edmonds resident families who qualify for the Reduced Lunch Program at the Edmonds School District; you can find the application HERE, and spaces may still be available to those who qualify if the program shows as full. You can register for L.E.A.P. at RecZone.org or by calling 425-771-0230.

Workhorse HQ, a co-working space on 2nd Avenue in downtown Edmonds, is now offering Workhorse Academy. Per their website, Workhorse Academy is a chance to take advantage of the free child’s membership with each parent who joins. With the free conference room rental that comes with your membership, Workhorse HQ says this is an opportunity for you to “form your small group, choose your teacher/teachers, and to have a location in downtown Edmonds with lightning-fast WiFi, a large whiteboard, and a monitor that is maintained, cleaned, and is not your home.” For more information, you can visit WorkhorseHQ.com or call them at 425-222-2113.

— By Jennifer Marx

Jen Marx, an Edmonds mom of two boys, is always looking for a fun place to take the kids that makes them tired enough to go to bed on time.



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