Tag Archive: site

Best on the Web – Learn a New Language

Has learning a new language been on your to do list for ages? You already know the advantages of being multilingual, but the difficulties associated with learning a new language are holding you back. Perhaps you don’t have the time or money for formal classes, and online tutorials advance too quickly or don’t meet your unique needs. Fortunately, now there are online resources that reduce or eliminate these obstacles. The following free and low-cost online language instruction systems are self-paced and allow students to decide how much or how little time and effort they devote to learning.

BBC Languages provides free audio, video and print lessons in more than 40 different languages. Beginner courses contain 12 weeks worth of material and optional email tips.

Livemocha is the world’s largest online language learning community, offering free and paid online language courses in 35 languages.

Check out foreign language books at your local ARLS branch!

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/10/best-on-the-web-learn-a-new-language/

Best on the Web – Do More with Your Money

MyMoney.gov is the U.S. government’s website dedicated to teaching Americans the basics of financial education. Whether you are buying a home, balancing your checkbook, or investing in your 401(k), the resources on MyMoney.gov can help you maximize your financial decisions. This site features financial education help from more than 20 different Federal websites, aggregated and organized so that users can learn and start benefiting from it quickly and easily. Content is organized by where you are in life, who you are, and by specific hands-on tools. Popular topics emerging in the news and based on user feedback are also highlighted.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/09/best-on-the-web-do-more-with-your-money/

Best on the Web – Free How-To Help

Don’t let the name scare you away—The Beehive is a website worth visiting. Since 2001, when The Beehive was launched by the D.C.-based non-profit, One Economy, it has helped more than 18 million people worldwide connect to educational tools and services to inform and empower people to improve their lives. This site is buzzing with free how-to help related to money, health, jobs, school and housing. Some of the current articles include a back-to-school guide, food stamp eligibility tool, and a gestational diabetes factsheet. A brief exploration reveals in-depth financial and savings advice, health tips and assistance, employment coaching, computer training, college preparation guides, and homebuyer help. Registered users enjoy additional perks, such as printable coupons and the ability to set their location and view local services and resources. Content is updated regularly to reflect seasonal needs and current trends.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/09/best-on-the-web-free-how-to-help/

Best on the Web – Read Books Online for Free

Woodcraft, or, How a Patrol Leader Made Good by Alan Douglas. Courtesy of Project Gutenberg.

Books are made to be handled, shared, and enjoyed for many years. But constant handling wears books out, and eventually years of readers’ enjoyment begins to show. For this reason, thousands of books are being digitized and made available on the Internet. These online books include ancient texts, beloved classics, current popular titles, and a variety of fiction and non-fiction works now in the public domain.

Project Gutenberg offers more than 36,000 free ebooks to download to your PC, Kindle, Android, or other portable device. Choose between ePub, Kindle, HTML and simple text formats.

The British Library’s Turning the Pages features a true-to-life reading experience of some of history’s greatest written works, including the first Atlas of Europe, William Blake’s notebook, Jane Austen’s manuscripts, and sketches by Leonardo da Vinci.

Google Books is a searchable index of millions of contemporary titles you can preview or read for free. This is a great resource for students writing school papers!

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/09/best-on-the-web-read-books-online-for-free/

Best on the Web – Aprender Inglés Hoy

U.S.A. Learns es un recurso gratuito en línea para hablantes nativos de español que buscan mejorar sus habilidades básicas de lectura Inglés, escritura, expresión oral y habilidades para la vida. Los visitantes de este sitio web pueden registrarse y comenzar los cursos en línea en cuestión de minutos. La instrucción es a su propio ritmo y está disponible en Inglés y Español. U.S.A. Learns es un programa del U.S. Departamento de Educación y pretende dotar a los adultos estadounidenses con las habilidades básicas que necesitan para ser trabajadores productivos, miembros de la familia, y los ciudadanos.

U.S.A. Learns is a free online resource for native Spanish speakers seeking to improve their basic English reading, writing, speaking and life skills. Visitors to this site can register and start online courses in minutes. Instruction is at your own pace and is available in English and Spanish. U.S.A. Learns is a program of the U.S. Department of Education and aims to provide U.S. adults with basic skills they need to be productive workers, family members, and citizens.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/09/best-on-the-web-aprender-ingles-hoy/

Best on the Web – A Bit of Everything Local

From scuba gear to sleeper sofas. Find local deals on Craigslist.

Would you believe there is a website where you can search job openings, find an apartment, buy a sofa, discuss crafts and beauty, join a rock band, sell your old bike, and make romantic connections all in one place? Craigslist is a free online marketplace where users can search and post classified advertisements related to jobs, housing, personals, for sale, services, community, gigs, résumés, and discussion forums. The website was started by its namesake, Craig Newmark, in 1995 in San Francisco. Since then, Craigslist has grown into one of the top 10 sites on the Internet with 20 billion views and 50 million new classified ads each month. Now there are Craigslist sites in more than 500 cities worldwide, including our local Greater Richmond site.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/08/best-on-the-web-a-bit-of-everything-local/

Best on the Web – Explore Virginia’s History, Culture & People

A dance group rehearses in one of Richmond's parks. This image is one of 5,675 Virginia scenes contained in the 1939 World's Fair Photograph Collection. Library of Virginia Prints & Photographs Division. LVA C1:1/04/08/024

Encyclopedia Virginia is the first and ultimate online reference work about the Commonwealth. It aggregates in a single resource information on Virginia history, business, politics, and geography, plus the state’s proud heritage in the arts, religion, culture, and folklife. The Encyclopedia is in the early stage of development, but as it grows, it will also explore areas of science, medicine, education, and technology, and interpret the state’s significance to the people of Virginia, the nation, and the world. This website already offers a rich collection of articles, sound and video excerpts, maps, images, and reference—great for Virginia historians and students alike. Users can create personal accounts to track research and cross-reference resources. Teachers can browse entries by state SOLs. And my favorite part of this website is the customizable Google map of Virginia event locations. Simply hover over or click on map markers to view related encyclopedia entries.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/06/best-on-the-web-explore-virginias-history-culture-people/

Best on the Web – Save Money on Tutors this Summer

Summer vacation is finally here; but for struggling students, summer isn’t always a welcome break. Just because classes are out doesn’t mean you can put the brakes on learning, especially if you want to catch up by the fall. If you’re having trouble with college level courses, or if you’re the parent of a middle or high school student struggling to keep up, you should know there are websites offering quality instruction at no cost. Tutoring is a great and effective method to improve your knowledge and skills, but if you don’t have the money to spend, or if you prefer self-paced learning, consider Khan Academy and the OWL at Purdue. Khan Academy features 2,100 videos and 100 exercises and assessments covering everything from arithmetic to physics, finance, and history. While there are a variety of topics covered, this site focuses on Math and Science. If you need to build grammar and writing skills this summer, the OWL, which stands for Online Writing Lab, is a lifesaver. Topics include beginning writing, conducting research, proofreading, and APA and MLA style guides. Depth and detail of instruction set these two sites apart from other instructional content on the web. There are no simplistic overviews, instead users benefit from comprehensive, interactive, and authoritative learning resources.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/06/best-on-the-web-save-money-on-tutors-this-summer/

Best on the Web – What’s Your Next Move?

Unemployment in Virginia is comparatively low at 6.1%, and fortunately, the decline has been steady in recent months. But if you are currently out of work, or have been for some time, this statistic isn’t uplifting. If trends in your field lead to more layoffs than new positions, unemployment could be a long-term certainty for you. It’s time to cast a wider net in your job search and consider career alternatives. My Next Move is a career portal offering introduction, exploration, and transition resources for job seekers. Users can search careers by key word or title for education and technology requirements, skills and abilities, personality suitability, earnings potential, and job outlook. There is also a revealing Interest Profiler to help you identify the right career fit.

Recent high school and college graduates—Not sure what classes to register for this fall? Not sure how you want to use your degree in English? My Next Move is a great resource for you, too! Explore careers to learn which one is right for you.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/06/best-on-the-web-whats-your-next-move/

Best on the Web – Get Your Garden On

“Gardening requires lots of water—most of it in the form of perspiration.”
– Lou Erickson

According to the Farmers’ Almanac, some of the best days for planting are soon approaching. April’s showers dropped lots of water in our area, and now the sunny weather is perfect for heading outside, pulling up your sleeves, and getting to work in the garden. Before you do, be sure to check out the National Gardening Association web site where you’ll find extensive articles, pest and weed control tips, how-to projects, planting guides, horticultural news, online gardening courses, and garden industry research data. While you’re there, follow the link to the  online space dedicated to Kids Gardening where children and teens can learn about gardening and develop their green thumbs with fun and educational activities.

Appomattox Regional Library System has a wide array of gardening books on the shelves and on display at the Hopewell Library. And don’t forget to take advantage of free gardening information and resources available at FindItVA.com.

Permanent link to this article: http://www.arls.org/2011/05/best-on-the-web-get-your-garden-on/

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