Online Education Resources for Children and Families

While some schools, public libraries, tutoring facilities, and other community learning centers have temporarily closed, smcl.orgopens a new window is always open with free online resourcesopens a new window available to access from home 24/7. 

We have resources to help you with homework, live online tutoring, early literacy tools, and more. We also offer resources for teens and middle schoolers as well as fun resources for kids of all ages.

Live Tutoring and Virtual Study Rooms

Can’t meet up with your study buddies in person? Meet up virtually with Brainfuse HelpNow’sopens a new window MEET private virtual study rooms. Rooms come with a digital whiteboard so you can jot down ideas and all sessions can be recorded.

HelpNow also provides online live tutoring in both English and Spanish as well as an online writing lab where you can get real-time feedback on assignments. There is also a library of video lessons, flashcards, educational games, practice tests and more.

Need help getting started? Watch this tutorial on Brainfuse in Englishopens a new window and en Españolopens a new window.

Early Childhood Literacy and Learning

Children ages 2 to 8  will enjoy exploring ABCMouseopens a new window, an interactive resource with curriculum covering reading, phonics, sight words, math, art geography, music, and much more. Lessons and activities are available in Spanish as well. Lessons are tailored to specific ages and feature an adorable mouse and his friends.

With our ABCMouse at home program, you can check out an ABCMouse license for four weeks and during this time, you can measure and track your child’s progress. Find out more about the ABCMouse home program hereopens a new window.

Bring story time to life and read-a-long with TumbleBook Libraryopens a new window, a collection of picture books, graphic novels, and nonfiction books with added narration, animation, and sound. There are no holds on TumbleBooks so you can start reading together instantly! TumbleBook Library also has a collection of National Geographic Videos, language learning videos, as well as interactive word and memory games. This tutorialopens a new window on Tumblebooks can help you get started.

Support for Book and Research Reports

Whether you’re looking for resources for a book report or just something really good to read, we have the tools to help you! is suite of databases, generously made available by the California State Library, that provides multimedia content to complement children’s and young adult books.

Students and parents can access six TeachingBooks databasesopens a new window through San Mateo County Libraries:

Got a reluctant reader? TeachingBooks can help make reading fun and engaging! You can simply search for a book by title, author, subject, or list and find supplemental material to enhance the experience. Parents also have access to lesson plans incorporating the book as well as discussion guides for study groups.

Novelist K-8opens a new window is a reading discovery tool that can help you find books for school or for pleasure! Find books and reading lists based on age, mood, theme, genre, and more. You can even use the “appeal mixer tool” to combine categories and adjectives to find the perfect book. Witty world-building books with a strong female lead, anyone? (Novelist suggests Nimonaopens a new window). Check out the tutorial if you need help using Novelistopens a new window.

Our reference databasesopens a new window are tailored especially to elementary school students. You can easily search for information by topic, such as animals, biographies, geography and more. The full-text databases incorporate children’s magazines, encyclopedic entries and images.

Make sure to check out all of the online resourcesopens a new window we offer. From streaming media to informative databases to virtual learning, we’ve got something for everyone. Stay tuned for future blog posts on these wonderful, free library resources. 

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