Your Library Vs. Open Web

This tutorial highlights the benefits of using library resources like Kids InfoBits for learning and research.

Here's a simple question.

Why use Gale resources, available from your library,

instead of the open web?

The best way to answer this question

is to think about what kind of results you get

using library resources,

versus what you get on the open web.

We all know that when you do a web search,

what you get back are links to websites.

For example, let's Google octopus.

Here's a typical search result.

Now, let's take a closer look at one of the results.

This website discusses the physical characteristics

of the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus.

And what can be done to remove it

from the Endangered Species list.

However, there's no such thing as a tree octopus.

A fact that might not be widely known to younger students.

This reminds us that,

while there's a lot of good information on the open web,

it's still true that anything goes.

Now, let's take a look at a search on octopus

in a Gale resource.

Which may be available from your library.

We will use PowerSearch, a cross search

of multiple Gale resources.

You can see that the results here are coming

from reputable print sources.

Every document is cited, so you know who wrote it,

when it was written, and where it's coming from.

Let's check out this entry, from the book results.

This article contains all we need to know about the octopus

including detailed descriptions, and behavior patterns.

We even have the citation already prepared

to include in the bibliography.

Now let's do a search on octopuses in Kids InfoBits.

a resource for kindergarteners through fifth graders.

This article contains all we need to know

about the octopus as well,

but it's written for a much younger user.

While most open web resources only offer one reading level,

Gale resources are built

to suit a particular user's age range.

We can even have the article read to us

by using the listen tool.


An Octopus is a sea animal with eight arms.

Visit your library or library's website

to research topics you're interested in,

complete homework assignments, and much more.