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Bentley Lower School Library: Digital Resources

Welcome to the Hiller Library

LS Digital Resources

Contact the librarian if you need help with passwords


  • Scratch - holiday card
    Create an interactive holiday card that you can share with friends and family.
  • Tynker
    A collection of 8 fun activities for children of all ages to try programming.
  • AppInventor
    Entertaining, quick video tutorials walk you through building three simple apps for your Android phone or tablet. (Middle School age and up.)
  • JavaScript - Khan Academy
    Learn the basics of JavaScript programming while creating fun drawings with your code. (Middle School age and up.)
  • JavaScript Quiz Game
    This self-paced tutorial teaches how to create a quiz game using JavaScript, which can be shared with friends. (Middle School age and up.)
  • Hour of Code
    Students in 3rd-5th grade will be completing the self-paced tutorial, "K-8 Intro to Computer Science" as their Hour of Code activity for Computer Science Education week.

More Beginner's Resources to Learn Programming Languages


  • HTML & CSS Reference: This is a compendium of basic articles on the most important HTML and CSS topics for would-be “desktop publishers.”
  • Learning HTML for Kids: Kids can learn HTML, too! These pages offer a kid’s-eye view of the most important tags and other topics in HTML.
  • HTML at Khan Academy: Khan Academy is one of the leading places online to find free educational video content. It includes a number of HTML courses.
  • Learn HTML & CSS at Codecademy: Codecademy provides a large number of interactive, free courses on programming within your browser, including one on HTML.
  • Free HTML & CSS Tutorials: This tutorial, developed by a leading author on computer topics, will walk you through the process of designing your first HTML page.
  • HTML Beginner Tutorial: Here, you’ll find nearly a dozen chapters that serve as a detailed, free introduction to HTML.
  • W3Schools Free Tutorial: W3Schools is the site that programming professionals use to get an introduction to different coding languages. This particular tutorial covers HTML.
  • HTML & CSS Basics: Here, you’ll find concise, but effective tutorials on HTML, CSS, and some of the most sought-after “advanced” design elements.
  • Learn CSS Layout: This interactive, browser-based experience will guide you through the important elements of a CSS file.
  • Learn CSS: This snapshot of CSS basics also links to a number of great resources you can use to take your CSS learning further.


  • Javascript Basics at Mozilla: Mozilla, the developer of the Firefox browser, is one of the biggest proponents of Javascript on the modern Web. This is the company’s Javascript tutorial, including a basic guide, reference, and more.
  • Free Interactive Tutorial: Here, you’ll undertake a learning exploration in Javascript by following a series of exercises directly from your browser and seeing your code work.
  • Introduction to Javascript (PPT): Want to understand why Javascript is important as well as its basic functions? This PowerPoint presentation is the quickest capsule introduction.
  • Javascript Basics: The University of Washington offers two powerful self-study workshops you can find online as well as a number of resources for exploring further.
  • Intro to Javascript: This article takes a computer science-focused approach to Javascript to help students see how it relates to other technologies on the Web.
  • Debugging Javascript (PDF): Debugging your code is one of the most important skills you can develop. This report serves as an introduction to one of the most effective debugging tools.
  • Javascript Learning Resources: This list of top resources helps you to learn Javascript and combine it with HTML, CSS, and other browser-based scripting technologies.
  • Web Wizard’s Guide to Javascript (PPT): Why should you learn Javascript? Where did it come from? What is its future like? Get the answers from this presentation.
  • Simple Javascript: This tutorial discusses the ins and outs of HTML forms that Web visitors can fill out, one of the most popular applications of Javascript.
  • Basic Javascript: To reach its potential, Javascript needs to work hand in hand with HTML. Here’s a page that goes into detail about how that happens.


  • Official jQuery Site: This is the official site of jQuery. It has news and information related to the latest version, as well as resources you can use to learn.
  • The jQuery Foundation: The jQuery Foundation is the nonprofit organization that champions jQuery development. It sponsors annual conferences that can help jQuery users enhance their skills.
  • The jQuery Cheat Sheet: This site expresses the syntax of virtually all jQuery tools in an easy-to-read format. It’s cross-linked with official documentation to explain each concept.
  • jQuery Fundamentals: This is an online tutorial that combines explanations and exercises to help you get used to jQuery fast.
  • Free jQuery Tutorial: In just a single page, you’ll learn all kinds of information about jQuery by developing a simple script and seeing it in action.
  • jQuery Selectors (PPT): Selectors are among the most important jQuery topics you need to understand to succeed. This presentation focuses on their use and value.
  • Intro to jQuery Mobile: The mobile implementation of jQuery makes it an ideal solution for smartphone and tablet applications. On this page, you’ll learn more about it.
  • The jQuery Mobile Tutorial: Want to bring jQuery mobile? This site will help you do it through learning resources that incorporate the programming needs of mobile technology.
  • Do More With jQuery (PPT): The jQuery library is intended to help you save time while you code. This presentation explores the ways in which it does so.
  • Scripting Pages in jQuery Mobile: Ready to dive deep into the secrets of using jQuery on mobile? This is a detailed tutorial that tackles some of the most complex topics involved.


  • Learning PHP: Get acquainted with the basic functions of PHP on this site and you’ll also find a number of useful “cheat sheets” to get your learning started.
  • Getting Started With PHP: Here, you’ll uncover the official documentation for PHP. Everything there is to know about developing your first interactive PHP page starts here.
  • Interactive PHP Tutorial: As you work through this interactive tutorial in your browser, you’ll progress from the simplest PHP scripts to much more complex ones.
  • Intro to Basic PHP: This single-page guide serves as a basic reference to all of the most fundamental PHP topics, going from the simplest to the most advanced as you scroll.
  • PHP Code Reference Library: Here, you can learn about important concepts such as variables, operators, data types, and conditional logic as they function in PHP.
  • PHP the Right Way: This is the home of a free online book that has been translated into dozens of languages and provides a comprehensive introduction to PHP.
  • Code Course: Code Course serves a repository of free educational videos on coding. In addition to PHP, some videos cover HTML, CSS, and even Javascript from the perspective of making them work together with PHP.
  • PHP Buddy: This thorough learning resource includes a “Quick Start Guide” as well as detailed articles on installing PHP and using helpful scripts.
  • Why Learn PHP?: Why should you learn PHP? This site will help you understand just how versatile PHP is and where it fits in on the World Wide Web.
  • Index of PHP Classes: PHP “classes” can fundamentally alter the behavior of your program. This site is a directory of free classes you can integrate within your own code.


  • Learn Python the Hard Way: This is the free, HTML version of a leading book that focuses on learning the Python language. It’s packed with information, tips, and exercises.
  • Free Interactive Python Tutorial: This tutorial will take you step-by-step through a series of exercises using Python code that you type directly into your Web browser of choice.
  • Getting Started With Python: The official Python website offers free learning resources for programmers who are new to Python as well as for people who have never coded before.
  • PythonLearn Free Materials: These learning materials, including code examples and videos, allow you to learn Python alone, with or without the textbook they’re based on.
  • Python for Everybody: With this massive online course, you have the opportunity to get the complete experience of learning Python through a university-level introduction.
  • Learn Python, Break Python: This free, online book provides a comprehensive bird’s-eye view of the Python programming language, replete with plenty of examples.
  • Crash Into Python: Want to learn Python in a weekend? This is an accessible introduction to all the basic functions you need to know to get started.
  • Best Python Resources: Full Stack Python is a well-established Python site that offers dozens of tutorials divided into “new to programming” and “new to Python” flavors.
  • Dive into Python: This free book focuses particularly on the challenges that programmers familiar with other languages might face when migrating to Python.
  • Interactive Python Textbook: This online book not only provides a solid grounding in the fundamentals of Python, but also helps new coders to think in computer science terms.


  • Learn Ruby the Hard Way: With this free online book, readers will learn all the foundational concepts of Ruby by typing up increasingly challenging exercises.
  • RubyMonk: RubyMonk is a leading Ruby learning site where visitors decode Ruby challenges in a straightforward, browser-based interface.
  • Ruby Quickstart: This guide comes from the official site of the Ruby language and is tied into its comprehensive documentation.
  • Try Ruby: Want to see what Ruby can do? This site will walk you through some Ruby basics that you’ll see demonstrated right in your browser.
  • I Want to Learn Ruby: This page lists a number of the most popular Ruby learning resources, including several where you can build entire websites from scratch.
  • Ruby Koans: With Ruby Koans, users are challenged to use a “test-first” approach to uncover the answers to real Ruby programming challenges and learn the basics of the language.
  • Ruby on Rails Tutor: This tutorial reveals the basics of Ruby on Rails and how it relates to Ruby, giving you the background you need to create your first site.
  • Ruby Style Guide: Ruby, like others languages, has certain conventions programmers use to make their code readable. Top members of the Ruby community have come together to document many of these conventions here.
  • The Ruby Game: On this site, people play “The Ruby Game” by competing to complete various Ruby coding tasks the fastest or in the fewest lines of code.
  • TestFirst Teaching: This content delves deeper into the “test first” methodology for developing Ruby code that performs the way you expect it to. Before trying out these exercises, it’s important to have installed Ruby.
  • Learning Ruby: This is a large-scale guide to all of the major concepts found in Ruby. Although it is based on an earlier version of the codebase, it is free and all of the core commands and principles still apply.


Introduction to Databases

What do you do when you need to find information? More than likely, people go online and use Google. Google is a search engine that is good for getting general information. Though, it will take a lot of time to figure out if the information is credible or factual and figure out who created the website that put the information out there. Databases are NOT websites!

Databases are collections information that libraries pay for to provide access for students to use. The information on databases is updated regularly and verified, so you know that the information is accurate. Library databases have information that is written at an appropriate reading level for students.

Databases By Subject

Encyclopedias, General Reference, Dictionaries


Computer Science Resources for Kids


  • Alice
    3D programming environment that makes it easy to create an animation for telling a story, playing an interactive game, or a video to share on the web.
  • Kodu
    Create games on the PC and XBox via a simple visual programming language. Can be used to teach creativity, problem solving, storytelling, as well as programming.
  • Scratch
    Programming language that makes it easy to create your own interactive stories, animations, games, music and art - and share your creations on the web.


iPad Apps

  • Kodable
    Kodable is a self-guided iPad game that introduces kids 5+ to programming basics. (Free)
  • Hopscotch
    Student-guided tutorial on the iPad using the Hopscotch programming language.

E-Books and Other Apps

  • E-books & Kids
    Creates and produces animated ebooks and interactive applications to help children from 3 to 10 years, learn and develop writing and reading skills.
  • Best Apps for Kids
    Reviews and includes apps that they feel are the “best apps for kids”. A lot of that is subjective. As apps, technology and competition changes some apps that were 5 star apps will no longer be the “best of the best”. Always look for the most recent reviews.

Comprehension Apps

  • Bats
    Lets kids aged six to 11 search jungles, deserts, woods and other vivid 3-D environments; flap their “wings” and fly like a bat; “see” how sound waves help bats find food; and much more. . . . A true innovation in children’s publishing. It’s a wonderful original nonfiction book and a new kind of reading adventure for children.
  • Fables
    If you're looking for a fun app to encourage your young one to read more look no further. This app combines reading, comprehension and gaming all in one! Each bundle consist of 10 stories based on the well loved Aesop's Fables. After each story, there is a comprehension quiz for readers to engage in.
  • MeeGenius
    Engages and educates little readers from birth to 8 years old with our “read anywhere” library of e-books. Each of our classic and original titles feature rich illustrations, read-along narration and word highlighting

Writing Apps

  • Puppet Pals
    Create your own unique shows with animation and audio in real time! Simply pick out your actors and backdrops, drag them on to the stage, and tap record.
  • Sock Puppets
    Lets you create your own lip-synched videos and share them on Facebook and YouTube.
  • Story Wheel
    Let your child's imagination run wild as they create their own unique story with Story Wheel!
  • Toontastic
    A storytelling and creative learning tool that enables kids to draw, animate, and share their own cartoons with friends and family around the world through simple and fun imaginative play!
  • Writer's Hat
    An ideas-generator to inspire creative writing, oral literacy and imaginative thinking.