Learning Express Library an excellent free online resource


By Carole Howard  | PREVIEW Columnist, and the library staff 

Here’s a reminder about our free Learning Express Library online resource: It is a great tool for learning a wide range of subjects or preparing for a variety of exams like the GED. 

The Learning Express Library helps you prepare for job and career opportunities, GED, and military and college entrance exams. Elementary, middle school and high school diagnostic testing is also available. Test preparation, instant scoring and self-paced courses are available.

Its offerings include dedicated sections on student learning centers, GED preparation, job search and workplace skills, jobs and careers, skill building for adults, U.S. citizenship and recursos para Hispanohablantes. 

To access this valuable resource, go to your library’s website at https://pagosalibrary.org. Click on the Online Resources Box on the top banner. Scroll down to Learning Express Library (the various online resources are listed alphabetically).

 First-time users should then click on the “Register” button to establish a user name (your library barcode) and password of your choice (not your library PIN). Returning users can log in using their barcode and established password.

Please feel free to ask anyone on the library staff if you need help.

Special fundraising
event this Saturday

A reminder that true crime and fiction author Ron Franscell will join us to raise funds for your library’s building and expansion campaign this Saturday, May 13.

From 9 to 11 a.m., he’ll lead a writer’s workshop at your library. The cost is $25 and it is limited to 20 seats. 

From 12:30 to 1:15 p.m., he’ll host a free gathering for book clubs and other readers at the library to discuss his psychological thriller “Deaf Row.” 

From 6 to 8:30 p.m., he’ll be at the Tennyson Building Event Center at 197 Navajo Trail Drive for a special fireside chat interview with hors d’oeuvres and a cash bar. Tickets are $40 in advance and $45 at the door. Seating is limited.

If you attend both the writer’s workshop and fireside chat interview, you are eligible for a discounted price of $55 per person. Tickets are available at your library or at pagosalibrary.org.

Knowledge Bowl

Our free middle school Knowledge Bowl takes place today, Thursday, May 11, from 4 to 5 p.m. for tweens and teens. Participants form teams of up to six people to compete against each other by answering questions that cover a range of topics from math to spelling to pop culture. 

Knowledge Bowl runs every second and fourth Thursday for the remainder of the school year. It is open to students in grades four to eight, or ages 11-14. No registration is required.

New writers
support group 

On Thursdays including today, May 11, from 9 to 11 a.m., Ruby’s Writer’s Guild will welcome writers who are looking for opportunities and camaraderie with other writers. Members will provide support, resources and guidance for each other.

Lifelong Learning today

Our free spring Lifelong Learning lectures from 6 to 7:15 p.m. on Thursdays continue with two more in May. 

Today, May 11, will highlight Dr. Janice McIntyre with an introductory yoga class, so you should wear comfortable clothing and bring a bottle of water. 

May 18 will feature Arleen Prochazka from the Pagosa Weather team describing the services they offer to our community and telling us about North American monsoon formation and its impact on our local mountains. 

Online author talk 

There will be one more talk this month in our free online virtual series featuring New York Times bestselling authors. You will have an opportunity to ask questions. 

Saturday, May 20, at noon will feature Courtney Summers, Canadian award-winning author of “Sadie” and other novels for young adults. 

Art for kids tomorrow

Mini Monets (renamed from Little Picassos) from 10 to 11 a.m. tomorrow, Friday, May 12, for artists aged 1 to 4 uses art to teach literacy skills. Participants should come ready to get messy. All materials are safe and nontoxic. 

Legal clinic tomorrow 

This month’s legal clinic on civil issues is by appointment tomorrow, Friday, May 12, from 2 to 3 p.m. 

Come to the library to meet privately via Zoom with our volunteer attorney. To schedule an appointment, at the beginning of the month, send an email titled “Sign-up for Free Legal Clinic” with your first name and phone number to ruby@pagosalibrary.org, or phone (970) 264-2209 or stop by the library. 

PAWS to Read tomorrow

Friday, May 12, from 2 to 3 p.m., youngsters from kindergarten through fifth grade are invited to share their favorite books with Muppet, a therapy dog who loves stories, at a free PAWS to Read session. 

Powerhouse fun tomorrow

Students in the fourth through eighth grade will enjoy hands-on STEAM projects tomorrow, Friday, May 12, from 3 to 4 p.m. examining animal adaptations and structures through dissection.

All-ages chess Saturday

Learn how to play chess with free quick lessons and game time Saturday, May 13, from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. 

LEGO Club Saturday

Kids aged 6 and up are invited to bring your imaginations on Saturday, May 13, from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. for the free LEGO Club. Bring your own LEGOs or use ours.

Adult knitting Saturday

Join other new and experienced knitters this Saturday, May 13, for our free Knitters Circle from 1 to 3 p.m. It is aimed at anyone over the age of 18 who would like to knit together or get some help if you are stuck on your project. 

Beginner computer class 

Join us from 1 to 2 p.m. on May 15 for the fifth session and May 17 for the sixth in a free beginner computer class Mondays and Wednesdays for adults who want to learn practical skills related to PC use, emails, and creating new documents and folders. Registration is required. Note that when you sign up you are committing to all eight sessions.

High school
academic help

A free academic assistance program for high school students happens Monday, May 15, from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. to provide extra support, study time and homework assistance. 

Music fun

Pagosa Unplugged is free from 4 to 6 p.m. on Monday, May 15, for amateur musicians who would like a safe, supportive, non-bar setting to play, sing or both with other people. Anyone under age 18 is welcome with a signed parental permission, available at your library. For program information, contact Susan at (970) 946-3396 (not the library).

Adult DIY 

At the free adult DIY next Tuesday, May 16, from 1 to 3 p.m., you can pinch pot pottery with ceramic artist Miranda. All supplies will be provided.

Spanish conversation

Practice your Spanish in a free group setting on Tuesday, May 16, from 4:30 to 5:30 p.m. No minimum skill level is needed.

Family storytime

Wednesdays from 10 to 11 a.m., join us for a free educational hour of reading, singing and play to build early literacy skills.

Therapy dog visit 

Next Wednesday, May 17, from 11 to 11:45 a.m., you are invited to come to the library for a free visit with a certified therapy dog. Visits are limited to 10-15 minutes — just the right amount of time to pet the dog, read to the dog or just say “Hi.” This is an all-ages activity. 

Game Master Playground 

Teens are invited to a free rebranded online Game Master (GM) Playground Dungeons and Dragons program next Thursday, May 18, from 4 to 6 p.m. GMs can lead a variety of tabletop role-playing games but sometimes are uncertain how to start or may want to test a new idea before running a full campaign. Interested GMs should contact Josie at the library to sign up to run a one-shot game (no more than three sessions). Registration is required.

Homework and
tutoring help

Free homework assistance and elementary tutoring are available for students in kindergarten through fourth grade on Wednesdays from 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. A registration packet for parents and guardians is available by emailing the library or coming in.

ESL classes

Free in-person evening classes take place on Tuesdays and Thursdays, with 4 to 5 p.m. reserved for beginners and 5 to 7 p.m. for both intermediate and advanced students. Please help us spread the word about these classes to others in our community who would be interested, and contact us by phone or email if you have any questions. 

PALS/GED adult

Join Mark for his free PALS sessions on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 5:30 to 8 p.m. to help with high school equivalency, GED, college prep, financial aid, tutoring and more. 

Tech Time 

Free in-person slots are available from 10 a.m. to noon Tuesdays and 2 to 4 p.m. Thursdays. Judy will help you with basic questions relating to computers, smartphones and tablets and also provide assistance in accessing any of the library’s online resources. No appointment is needed for these drop-in sessions. Note there will be no Tech Time May 25. 

Activities calendar

To be sure you don’t miss any of the free library activities available to you and your family, pick up a copy of the events calendar each month. 

Downloadable books 

CloudLibrary has a wide variety of downloadable e-books and audiobooks for all ages. To access this free digital collection, download the cloudLibrary app, answer a few simple questions, select AspenCat Union Catalog for the name of your library, then enter your library card number and four-digit PIN. Library staff are happy to help you set up your device if you need assistance.

DVD documentaries

“Can Psychedelics Cure?” is a PBS Nova program. “World’s Greatest Engineering Icons” features 15 buildings. “Ruthless: Monopoly’s Secret History” reveals this classic game’s infamous history. “Ending HIV in America” is a PBS Nova documentary. “The Letter: A Message for our Earth” tells the story of Pope Francis’ call to care for our planet. “The National Parks: America’s Best Idea” is a six-part series by Ken Burns. 

Large print

“Storm Watch” by C.J. Box is a Joe Pickett adventure. “A Song for the Dark Times” by Ian Rankin is an Inspector Rebus mystery. “So Shall You Reap” by Donna Leon is a Commissario Guido mystery. “Collateral Damage” by J.A. Jance is an Ali Reynolds mystery. “Bozeman Paymaster” by Robert Lee Murphy tells of the Fetterman massacre, the Army’s worst defeat in the hands of Indians until Custer’s Last Stand. “Too Proud to Run” by Brett Cogburn is a Morgan Clyde western. “Hiss & Tell” by Rita Mae is a Mrs. Murphy mystery featuring two feline sidekicks. 


We are grateful to Medora Bass and Joanne Ferko for their materials donations. When we are open, material donations are accepted for the Friends of the Library at the front desk — not through the outside returns slot at the library or the drop box at City Market, please. 

The Friends take fiction published in 2013 or newer and nonfiction from 2018 or newer. Limited workroom space means we can only accept one or two small boxes at a time. 

Quotable quote 

“Don’t count the days. Make the days count.” — Mohammed Ali (1942-2016), often regarded as the greatest heavyweight boxer of all time.


For more information on library books, services and programs — and to reserve books, e-books, books on CD and DVDs from the comfort of your home — please visit our website at https://pagosalibrary.org.