The library is a great place to go to connect with the community. Libraries are an ideal location to grow your English language skills outside a formal classroom. Library staff are also important links to information and resources about the community you are living in. Most municipalities have a library, and many have more than one location, making it easier to visit.
Library services are generally free; however, you will need to become a member by applying for a library card. To get a library card, often you need to show current identification with your name and address, identifying you live in the area. You will want to get a library card for every member of your family!
As a member of the library, you have access to many resources and services.
Information and Referral
Library staff are able to share information about local community resources. Many libraries are able to connect you with specific programs and services in the community. Some settlement agencies may visit libraries regularly and you may be able to connect with relevant support systems in your local library. Some libraries host conversation circles that may help you practice English speaking skills. Most libraries also host Mango, a software application that can help you learn English.
Library and Reference Collections
Most people think about books when they think about libraries. There are multiple collections, including fiction, non-fiction, magazines, newspapers, and reference materials like dictionaries and atlases. Depending on the library, there may be books available in languages in other languages. Libraries are a great place to access books that keep you and your family connected to your mother tongue. Collections also include DVDs, and CDs, and music.
Every library has a menu of programs specifically designed for children and youth. Each library designs programs that are most relevant to the community they serve, but often include storytelling groups, toy libraries, craft and play programs with a goal of stretching young minds, encouraging reading skills, and connecting with our children living nearby.
Libraries are a great place for immigrants to make connections with other people living in their community. Libraries offer many programs for adults including book clubs (are a great place to practice English reading and speaking skills). Other programming is community specific and offers creative ways for adults to connect along many interest levels. Check out the library closest to you to find out groups that you may wish to connect with.
Every library has a number of computers with free public internet access, including the ability to print documents (there may be a cost to printing). Some libraries have e-readers for loan purposes.
Here is a list of the local libraries throughout Simcoe County:
The information listed below was provided by 211 Community Connection.
Libraries in Simcoe County
The specific services and resources available will vary at each library.
Visit InMyLanguage.org to learn more about library services.