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Washington state Library, local libraries offering “Gadget Menagerie” training

The Washington State Library is partnering with local libraries across the state providing “Gadget Menagerie” training on handheld devices for library staff. Library patrons and students will be provided similar training focused on the needs of the device user. About 40 locations and 70 sessions are scheduled for the Gadget Menagerie through July.

“This is another great example of the Washington State Library and our excellent local libraries providing helpful ‘real-world’ training to folks,” said Secretary of State Kim Wyman. “It’s a brave new world of technology, fun and helpful and scary to people who haven’t used all of these devices.”

“We are very excited to be able to provide this training,” said State Librarian Rand Simmons. “These skills will benefit both library staff and those who wish to use the devices to access a whole array of useful library resources.”

Library staff will learn how various eReaders, tablets and other devices work. They will discover what these devices have in common, how they differ, and learn basic operating tips. Staff will learn basic troubleshooting and tips for helping patrons with their devices, including how to download books from the library.

The Gadget Menagerie will familiarize local library staff with the variety of devices available, allowing for staff to be more comfortable and skilled in helping library patrons.

Not all libraries are offering both types of training. The training is funded by the Washington State Library via the Institute for Museum and Library Services (IMLS) through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).

Patrons and students may bring their own device or explore one from the Washington State Library.

The menagerie, which includes (subject to availability) Kindles, Nooks, Galaxy Tablets, iPads, and Microsoft Surface plus a Chromebook, will be available to both library staff, and library patrons and students to explore.

For more information about the training program, contact the State Library’s Jennifer Fenton at jennifer.fenton@sos.wa.gov or (360) 570-5571.

 

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