Monday, March 10, 2003-photo by Jerilee Bennett-It's not a game of Twister, it's castle building 101 during an After School Kids program of the Pikes Peak Library District. Adrienne Theune, Julienne Ablay, and Carolyn Lobban (left to right) make a castle from packing materials and detergent boxes. They were studying midieval times. After School Kids programs continue through spring break for Fountain, Monument and East branches of the library. After Spring Break, all programs will be at the East Library on Thursdays at 4 p.m. These will continue until the end of the school year.

The Pikes Peak Library District is encouraging people to check out all of its online resources while kids are home from school because of the coronavirus outbreak.

To prevent people from getting sick from COVID-19, library buildings are closed, but PPLD is making it easier for people to get access to resources online, reports Gazette news partner KKTV.

"The library is an information resource, and we’re here to serve the community, so even though our physical locations might not be open, we want to make sure we still have of providing information to people," said John Spears, PPLD's chief librarian and CEO.

People can apply for a library card online and get temporary access to digital materials for four weeks instead of the usual 12-day limit. PPLD also reinstated about 26,000 accounts that expired in the last two years, and no one’s card will expire while libraries are still closed.

“We want to make sure that we serve everyone in this community ... really try to find a way to offer as many of the services that people have come to expect from Pikes Peak Library District in a virtual environment instead of a physical one," Spears said.

PPLD is also looking at doing a virtual story time for kids.

“Several of the publishers have been really wonderful," Spears said. "They’ve waived the copyright restrictions and that would allow us to actually do that."

Right now, there are many resources to keep the brain busy including audio books, ebooks, and games.

Here is a link to PPLD’s CyberShelf where you can find online music, magazines, books, comics, videos, and more.

There’s also a great section on the library’s website just for kids that includes games, projects like coding, reading, fun homework, and resources for parents and educators. Here’s a link to that.

For adults looking to spruce up their resume, PPLD also offers free access to LinkedIn Learning, and Mango Languages.

There are many other free online learning resources across the web for both adults and kids. Click here for an article explaining those.

There's no estimated time for when the libraries might reopen. During the closure, Spears said all 15 locations are being deep cleaned.

In the meantime, PPLD asks people to hang on to any material they already have checked out. The library no longer charges late fees.

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