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BPL helps parents’ bottom line

With NYC parents working to save in this tightening economy and managing the costs associated with school supplies, after-school activities and tutors, many are feeling a strain on their wallet and looking for ways to cut corners when it comes to back-to-school expenses.

Brooklyn Public Library offers free programs and services at its 60 locations, which are designed to keep kids’ education on the right track while helping parents stretch their dollars further.

Following are just a few of the ways Brooklyn Public Library is providing local students with free educational support this school year:

1. Homework Helpers: Provides support, assistance, and encouragement to children kids and teens who need a little extra help with their homework. This program can be found after school at more than half of BPL’s branches including:

· After-School Homework Help (For Kids): Windsor Terrace Library, 160 East Fifth Street at Fort Hamilton Parkway, Mondays, 4 p.m.; Ulmer Park Library, 2602 Bath Avenue at 26th Avenue, Wednesdays, 2:30 p.m.; Sunset Park Library, 5108 Fourth Avenue at 51st Street, Wednesdays, 3:30 p.m. Up to seventh grade.

· After-School Homework Help with 826NYC Homework Center (For Kids & Teens): BPL is partnering with 826NYC, a highly-acclaimed creative writing center for kids, which has celebrity board members including Jonathan Safran Foer and Zadie Smith, to offer homework help for children and teens aged six thru 18. After-School Homework Help with 826NYC will be held at the Williamsburg Library, 240 Division Avenue at Marcy Avenue, Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays, 3 p.m. Call the branch to check on fall start date.

2. Live Online Homework Help: Through Live Online Homework Help (LOHH), BPL offers free, year-round access to online tutoring to Brooklyn’s young residents in grades K through 12, with college intro and adult learner options also available.

Users have access to one-on-one tutoring in English, essay writing, social studies, elementary math (grades 4 to 6), mid-level math (grades 7 to 8), algebra, geometry, trigonometry, calculus, elementary science (grades 4 to 8), biology, chemistry, earth science, and physics.

LOHH’s Spanish-language service offers tutoring in math, science, and social studies. The service is accessible seven days a week from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m., both onsite through public computers in all sixty BPL locations as well as offsite via the BPL website to PC and Mac users at home and in school.

LOHH is contracted annually through Tutor.com, an award-winning provider of information services for educational institutions and libraries across the nation.

The chat format of LOHH’s Online Classroom enables students to participate in real-time, interactive one-on-one tutorial sessions with expert tutors. A virtual whiteboard with drawing tools allows both students and tutors to create diagrams and drawings, and to write formulas and math symbols.

Students can individualize their sessions to meet their needs most effectively, with options that include saving tutorial sessions for continuation or expansion at a later date, printing transcripts of tutorial sessions, uploading essays for review by tutors, and working again with tutors that have been of assistance in previous sessions.

3. Back-to-School Study Tips: Kensington Library, 410 Ditmas Avenue, September 15, 3:30 p.m. Students learn study tips that will help them start off the school year right.

4. Sign-up for Summer Reading: It’s still not too late to sign-up for BPL’s Summer Reading Program. Designed to encourage learning outside of school with free activities, book-lists and workshops, BPL’s free Summer Reading programs and activities are intended to help kids maintain and improve their reading skills while having fun.

General Information

BPL’s eResources, such as eBooks and eVideos, catalog information and free homework help, are available to customers of all ages 24 hours a day at their Web site, www.brooklynpubliclibrary.org.

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