Resources to Enjoy at Home

Here are some helpful resources to help you through the pandemic. We are here for your questions – call 203-488-1441 ext. 318 or email us.

Check out some of the library’s Virtual Programs.

Here are local and national COVID-19 links.

If you live in Branford and don’t have a library card, you can fill out our online registration form and we will mail you a Blackstone Library card, which will give you access to our digital resources.

Visit our Digital Resources Page for links to OverDrive, Hoopla, Kanopy, Digital Magazines, language learning and more.

Thanks to ProQuest, we are now able to provide Blackstone patrons with access to Ancestry Library Edition from home, on a temporary basis, during the pandemic. Simply enter your barcode on this page to proceed. For additional suggestions on your family history search, visit our genealogy links web page.

If you need help with your genealogy research, the Family History Library Experts are offering free one-on-one consultations. Visit this page for additional information.

Here is a comprehensive booklet from Canoe Brook Senior Center on resources for seniors.

CT Visit has a great list of Virtual Activities for at-home experiences.

This article from CNN lists seven digital libraries you can visit from home.

Qualified households can get 60 days of free Internet from Comcast. Visit https://corporate.comcast.com/press/releases/internet-essentials-low-income-broadband-coronavirus-pandemic or call 1-855-846-8376 for English and 1-855-765-6995 for Spanish. Comcast is also making all of their WiFi hotspots available to everyone. For an article on other companies providing free Internet, visit this article from the Stamford Advocate.

Classes and Online Learning

Visit our Blackstone Library Learning Commons page for links to a variety of tech tutorials. Now is a great time to get better at navigating your iPhone, iPad, or other device!

Here are some resources for homeschooling and having fun with your children.

Take a free online course.

Access to Booklist Online is now free until further notice.

Here is a list of resources from EBSCO, including study packets, lesson plans, and test prep resources.

MOMA is offering free courses through Coursera.

The New England Historic Genealogical Society has a range of lectures, webinars and how-to videos on Family History Research available for free.

eBooks and Audiobooks

Easy Access to RBDigital now available- No Library Card Required! Students and patrons can visit RBDigital and select the register option on the right side of the page and follow these simple steps. Create a user name and password and use ctstatelib20 for the access code. Provide first name, last name, e-mail, and postal code.  Check the box to accept the terms of service and privacy policy and click on the register button. That’s all there is to it. They can now access the Connecticut State Library’s eAudio and eBook collection from RBDigital!

Check out these free audiobooks for children from Audible.

45 websites to download free books.

Entertainment

The following paid streaming services are offering free trials. (Remember to cancel after the free period to avoid any charges.)

Fitness

Check out this Good Housekeeping list of free online fitness classes.

Music and Dance

Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater is offering free streaming performances.

Listen to the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s BeethovenFest.

Listen to concerts from the Berlin Philharmonic (requires registration by March 31).

Check out Citizen DJ from the Library of Congress. (Full release is this summer, but you can use the beta site here.) Here’s an article describing what you can do with this online open-source music-mixing app. Read about some other Library of Congress digital collections as well.

Visit NYC Feinstein’s/54 Below YouTube channel for some great shows.

Watch live streams from New York’s Metropolitan Opera.

Enjoy ballets and operas from London’s Royal Opera House.s

Theater

Every week, Andrew Lloyd Webber will release a hit musical on The Shows Must Go On! YouTube channel.

London’s National Theatre will release a new play every Thursday on their YouTube channel.

Check the Royal Shakespeare Company’s website for six upcoming performances.

Social Distance Theatre from Legacy Theatre

Travel and Virtual Tours

Visit Google’s Arts & Culture website or Travel & Leisure’s website for virtual museum tours.

Check out the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History Virtual Tour.

Tour the Great Wall of China.

Visit the Vatican Museums, including the Sistine Chapel.

Go on a virtual tour of Yellowstone or Yosemite.

Visit the San Diego Zoo or the Monterey Bay Aquarium and check out the live animal cams.