Libraries, both in schools and in neighborhoods, are important institutions for English Language Learners to learn about. I work both with our school librarian and with city library staff to organize regular orientations and visits for our students, and our school librarian is great about making sure there are accessible and engaging books for all levels of ELL’s available to read and to check-out.
I thought I’d create a short “The Best…” list sharing some of the websites our students also visit to become familiar with libraries. All these sites can also be accessed under the Government section on my website.
You might also be interested in my article “School Librarians and English Language Learners.”
Here are my picks for The Best Sites To Teach ELL’s About Libraries (and are accessible to English Language Learners):
Why Libraries Matter is an excellent “talking story” from Tumble Books.
The Department of Housing and Urban Development hosts an Animated Trip to The Library.
TV411 has a guide on How To Use A Library.
Here’s another audio and animated story — this one from Reading is Fundamental– and it’s called Gwendolyn The Library Fairy.
ESL Civics has a very good ESL Library Lesson.
The St. Joseph School Library has many online games related to libraries. Many, but not all, are probably accessible to ELL’s.
Here is an accessible Dewey Decimal Guide from the Denver Public Library.
Carnegie Mellon University has created a library-related game called I’ll Get It. It’s probably most appropriate for Advanced English Language Learners. Basically, you’re given a research question and then a choice of several books to search for the answer. You get points if you choose the correct book.
Order In The Library is a fun little game about…putting library books in order.
Listen A Minute, one of several great websites for English Language Learners maintained by Sean Banville, has an extensive feature on libraries. It includes listening, reading, quizzes, and hand-outs.
Photo Essay: Amazing Libraries Around the World is a great slideshow.
As always, feedback is welcome. Feel free to offer additional suggestions for this list.