Category Archives: Language

Language learning @ your library

Try Pronunciator – a language learning app!
Learn a new language - Live classes online!You can log in anytime – or – to track your progress, create an “account” with your library card.
Or Download the app of your choice to use you mobile phone or tablet.
New! There are now live online conversation practice classes for Spanish (Latin America), French, English as a Second Language, Tagalog, Greek, and Mandarin Chinese.
Log in and look for Prolive for schedule!

Pronunciator para las personas que hablan Espanol

To get to Pronunciator from the website, hover over Research and homework tab and click on Language Learning tab.


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Filed under Language, Research & Homework, Travel

Learning at the Library in 2015


Each January the Burlington Public Library renews subscriptions to over 20 different online resources for research. These databases (we call them) complement our book collections on popular information topics. The resources are usually special websites that are accessible in the library or at home with your library card. The sites provide non-commercial (no pop-ups) private access to back issues of magazines, scholarly journals and newspapers. They also include online access to well written and edited special interest encyclopedias and information resources.

Examples include:
• Telephone and business directory type information – AtoZdatabases
• Practice tests for career and educational training – Testing & Education Reference Center
• Language learning – Pronunciator
• Consumer and product information – Ebsco and Proquest
• Legal self-help books and articles – Legal Information Reference Center

These are designed to provide the most reliable and factual information from a variety of points of views for students and the general public.

So the next time you get frustrated with your Google search or want an alternative to Wikipedia, try the Burlington Public Library.

Ask Us!
or 360-755-0760


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Filed under Business, Databases, Internet, Language

Learn a New Language

Learn a new language at your library with PronunciatorThe library has lots of ways to practice and learn a new language.  Our newest program allows you to use your mobile device of choice!

Try our new language learning course – create an account with your Burlington Public Library card number, remember the password and account info, download the app if you want to use a mobile device and take advantage of the fun and interactive courses on Pronunciator!



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Filed under Databases, Language, Travel

Do you speak Dewey Decimal?

We just re-organized our Language Learning collection to make it a little easier to browse.  We used to shelve these books in order by their Dewey Decimal numbers — long numbers that go something like 468.3421, and made little sense to anybody other than us librarians.

Our new system is much simpler; the books just go alphabetically by the name of the language, starting with Arabic and ending with Yiddish.  We’ve also re-labeled all the books in that collection, and added some new signage that should help you find your way as you embark on a voyage of discovering another language.

Shelves of books and CDs for language learners.  Materials shown are for German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Latin, Mixteco, and Norwegian languages.Language learners and travellers, be sure to let us know what you think of the new set-up!  And if you aren’t currently learning another language, try browsing through the section anyway; we’re pretty sure that something there will catch your eye!



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Filed under Dewey-free, Language, Travel

Wordnik for wordnerds

If you’re reading this blog, chances are you like books.  Does it follow that if you like books, you probably like words? 

 Here is a website for the word-lovers amongst us.  Or even for the word-challenged amongst us.  It’s everything you need, all on one simple screen.  It’s also, like Wikipedia, enriched by user contribution.  As they say, “Wordnik is billions of words, 984,433,066 example sentences, 6,978,980 unique words, 232,313 comments, 179,206 tags, 121,453 pronunciations, 78,324 favorites and 1,040,401 words in 33,271 lists created by 83,917 Wordniks.” has one simple search box on its screen.  Type in some lovely or questionable word… say, efficacy, one of my favorite words for reasons beyond my own understanding. You’ll get:

  • definitions from five credible sources
  • a long list of examples in which the word is used, hyperlinked to the source in case it looks interesting to you
  • columns of “Related Words:” synonyms (same meaning);, hypernyms(more generic or abstract words); words found in similar contexts; words that contain this word in their definition; and tags (user-generated)
  • and finally, a list of user lists which contain your word.

 You can join the community, just browse, or sign up for an email “Word of the Day.”  However you play with the site, you’re bound to find your inner wordnik, as well as a great (dare I say efficacious?) resource for writing, Scrabble, education, and mind-honing in general.  Enjoy!

                           –Mary Beth



Filed under Books, Internet, Language