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This is the "Online Resources for Kids" page of the "Homework Help for Kids" guide.
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Doing a school report? Connect from home to high quality Internet resources on biography, history, current issues, and more. Learn about the library's online catalog. Find out how the books are organized in the library.
Last Updated: Jan 7, 2014 URL: http://berkeleypubliclibrary.libguides.com/homeworkhelp Print Guide RSS Updates

Online Resources for Kids Print Page

The Library Catalog

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Search the library catalog
Enter a title, subject or author's name and click on the orange button to search for items at Berkeley Public Library.


Ask a Librarian!

Don't know how to get started? Need more help? Contact us! We are here to help you.

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NoveList K-8 Database

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This online resource recommends books. Search by categories such as topics, Lexile reading levels, grade levels, genres, ethnicity of authors, and more. If you have read a book that you like, it will even suggest books that are similar.

Connect from the library or from home. To connect from home, you will need your Berkeley Public Library card barcode number.


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BPL Online Resources Especially for Kids

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  • Britannica Online (Elementary Edition)
    Provides full text access to the current editions of the student and elementary editions, with links to images, video clips, and electronic texts of classics. The Britannica Online database will also direct you to additional free websites on particular topics.
  • Calisphere  
    Search for and view more than 200,000 digitized items related to California history, including photographs, documents, newspaper pages, political cartoons, works of art, diaries, transcribed oral histories, advertising, and other unique cultural artifacts. Note: this is a free resource; a library card is not required for access.
  • KidsHealth
    Health information for children. Click on the Kids' section for information written especially for kids. This is a free resource from the non-profit organization, the Nemours Center for Children's Health Media; a library card is not required for access.
  • Kids Search Middle and Elementary School
    An easy-to-use resource that provides kids in grades K-8 with access to books and magazines for school work.
  • Missions of California
    This is an ebook series. There is one book on each of the California missions. Note: this link will take you to the BPL online catalog and directly to links that access these books.
  • Opposing Viewpoints in Context  
    Covers today’s hottest social issues, from climate change to health care to immigration. Helps students research, analyze, and organize a broad variety of data for conducting research, completing writing assignments, preparing for debates, creating presentations, and more.
  • Searchasaurus  
    This easy-to-use resource for elementary school research and reading includes a dictionary, an online encyclopedia, and magazine articles from magazines for kids.
  • Social Studies Fact Cards Online  
    Find all the basic facts you need for reports on California history, including Indian tribes, explorers, California missions, ranchos, governors, counties, and decade-by-decade events.
  • Student Research Center
    High school and middle school students use Student Research Center to access magazine articles, primary sources, biographies, reference books and other research resources.
  • Student Resources in Context
    Information on all core subjects taught in school, from science to literature to history. This database gives you access to newspaper and magazine articles, primary sources, charts, maps, and images. You can browse by topics, including renewable energy, drug abuse, cloning, civil rights, Shakespeare, the Iraq war, and the Bill of Rights, among many others.
  • VerbaLearn
    Study vocabulary for the SAT, ACT, GRE, ESL, and 7th through 12th grade. Create a study list of words you don't know. You can save it, download it, create your own crossword puzzle, or use many other special study tools.

More BPL Online Resources

 Here are a selection of additional online resources that are available to you. See the BPL Online Resources page for many, many more!

  • Biography in Context  
    More than 525,000 people from the past and present can be researched in this database. Images, audio files, excerpts from primary sources such as newpapers and speeches, links to websites, and other resources can be found here.
  • Gale Virtual Reference Library
    Fully searchable reference books provide online access to titles we have in our print Reference collection. Includes Grzimek's Student Animal Life Resource, the Encyclopedia of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered History in America, the Worldmark Encyclopedia of Religious Practices, American Decades (a decade-by-decade encyclopedia of U.S history), and several other encyclopedias.
  • General Reference Center Gold
    General interest articles from magazines, newspapers, and reference books. Many with full text and images.
  • Health and Wellness Resource Center
    Informational journal and reference book articles, definitions, directories, and internet links on a wide range of health and alternative health issues. Access to MEDLINE in English and Spanish.
  • Learn A Test/Learning Express Library
    Online practice tests for students grades 4 and up, college applicants, career explorers, and those learning English. Elementary and Middle School students can work on math, reading, and writing skills. Includes resume writing help,study courses in business English, computer skills tutorials for Microsoft office programs, and related topics. Although registration asks for your name, you may input any words in this field. Please keep track of your user name and password for later access.
  • Mango Languages
    Language learning system that teaches actual conversation skills for 34 different languages and 15 different ESL courses. Mango uses real-life situations and actual conversations to more effectively teach a new language. Free registration for Mango account is not required but will allow you to keep track of your progress and use other tools.
  • Music Online  
    Access music from all of the Alexander Street databases. Listening only, no downloads. You do not need to set up a separate login unless you want your own playlists to be maintained by this site. Browsable from any computer in the library, but music clips can only be played through Internet access.
  • Newsbank
    Full text access to Bay Area Newspapers: the Oakland Tribune, the San Francisco Chronicle, the Berkeley Voice, the San Jose Mercury News, and the West County Times, as well as hundreds of other newspapers throughout the United States, including the New York Times.
  • Oxford Art Online
    Access to art encyclopedias such the Grove Dictionary of Art, the Oxford Companion to Western Art, and the Concise Oxford Dictionary of Art Terms.
  • Oxford Music Online
    Access to music encyclopedias such as the Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, the Dictionary of Jazz, and the Oxford Companion to Music. Learn about musicians, composers, instruments, genres, terms, acoustics, and more.
  • Science in Context
    Topics including overviews, experiments, biographies, pictures and illustrations and the latest scientific developments are covered in articles from over 200 magazines and academic journals and links to quality websites. Includes curriculum-related science topics.
  • U.S. History in Context
    Primary source documents, articles from reference books, and full-text journal articles about themes, events, individuals, and periods in U.S. history from pre-Colonial times to the present.
  • World History in Context
    Reference book and full-text articles from scholarly publications, primary sources, and images, maps, and charts for the study of world history from ancient Europe to Latin America and from the Far East to the Renaissance.

What is an online resource?

Berkeley Public Library subscribes to high-quality web-based resources and makes them available to you for free.

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A Special Note to Teachers and Parents

"But my teacher said I couldn’t use the Internet!"

Are your students saying this? BPL Children's Librarians want you to know that...

Online databases are library approved!

Read more about it...


Connecting to Online Resources

Anyone can access online resources from within the library; anyone with a Berkeley Public Library card can access them from home.

From within the library:

  1. Use a computer in the library, either a library catalog computers or a public access computers.
  2. Click on one of the links in the middle column of this page.

From home:

  1. Click on one of the links in the middle column of this page. You will be taken to a login page.
  2. Enter the 14-digit barcode number found on the back of your card.

Berkeley Schools Libraries

Each Berkeley Unified School District school has a library with people there to help students. BUSD students have access to online resources that can be searched from school or home. These include the following databases:

  • Teen Health and Wellness
  • Gale Virtual Reference Library
  • Opposing Viewpoints Resourcce Center
  • ProQuest New York Times
  • World Book Encyclopedia online in English and Spanish


Return to the BPL home page

Return to the BPL Kids home page

Go/Return to a BPL Kids Guide:


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