PPL: Highlighted Teen eResources
Free Online Resources for Teens
Compiled by the Teen Services Staff of Portland Public Library.
Updated every Friday.
Sorry, we’re closed: Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, all Portland Public Library locations, including the Teen Library at Monument Square, are closed in compliance with city and state orders. While this situation may be new, overwhelming and scary, your librarians are here for you. It’s our job to provide factual and relevant information… and in times like these, we need that more than ever!
We miss the Teen Library and our teen patrons. Please stay in touch through email or Instagram. Message us if you have questions, need information, recommendations, or just to say hello. Be safe friends! -Ms. Blue, Megan & Sarah
Books & Reading
SYNC Audiobooks for Teens is offering two free audiobook downloads per week from April 30 to July 29. This year SYNC is pairing popular teen fiction with compelling nonfiction narratives. Free downloads = two free books a week for you to keep forever. Don’t miss it!
Webcomics for Tweens & Teens: School Library Journal has compiled a list of free webcomics for middle grade and teen readers, including some of our personal favorites like On a Sunbeam by Tillie Walden.
Teen Book Cloud: an online collection of ebooks, enhanced novels, graphic novels, videos and audio books, which offers teens all reading levels access to an amazing range of content. Just click on the link – no library card needed!
cloudLibrary: download new, popular and bestselling audiobooks and eBooks with your library card! Download the cloudLibrary app to your device for free, enter your library card number and go! PPS students and teachers, here is a guide Ms. Blue put together for how to use cloudLibrary with your SEED #.
Need help finding a good book to read? PPL Teen staff have created and maintained book lists on every teen topic under the sun! Check out our Staff Picks page and look for Teens. Questions? Email us or DM us on Instagram and we’re happy to make personal recommendations based on your interests.
Education & Jobs
NEW: A gift for graduating seniors: MSCC is offering free online community college classes for any Maine student graduating high school in 2020. Visit mccs.me.edu for information on who qualifies, what to expect, and how to apply.
Portland Public SEED Numbers: don’t forget your SEED Number! All Portland Public Middle and High School students have a special Portland Public library number that gives them access to all of our digital online content listed here and more. To make your SEED Number, combine the prefix 21220980 + your unique school lunch number. For more information about this program, visit our SEED Number page.
Digital Maine Library & High School Teen: a curated collection of educational and informational databases for high school students from the Maine State Library. Easy to access via geolocation or, in some cases, your library card or SEED number.
Learning Express School Center: tutorials, homework help and practice tests for Elementary, Middle and High School level mathematics, English language arts, social studies, science and more. Create an account with an email address to keep track of your progress. Maybe you’re interested in Career Exploration, SAT/ACT or TOEFL Test Prep, or even College Level Courses? Learning Express has those options as well! Learning Express also offers a whole series of classes, homework help, and practice exams in Spanish.
Do you need information about qualifying and applying for unemployment benefits? Our Business & Government librarian has created this page to help.
Art & Entertainment
NEW: If you’re really, really missing live sports of any kind right now, may we suggest marble racing? Visit this YouTube channel which features way too many high-octane marble races. Yes, marbles. We bet you just can’t watch one.
317 Main is offering hour-long “open studios” just for teens with professional music-makers in our community! Come listen to music, ask questions about the musical process, and get feedback about your own music – their studios are open to you! Made possible by Zoom, these sessions are free and open to all teens. For more info, visit the 317 Main Facebook page.
Portland Public Health is currently accepting submissions for their Youth Community Zine. Youth from across Cumberland County are encouraged to submit drawings, collages, writing or photos on the theme What Brings Me Joy. For more information, including submission guidelines and instructions, view the official flyer. Deadline is May 20!
Meet some unique animals with daily live videos from Mr. Drew and His Animals Too! Mr. Drew’s rescued reptiles and insects – including an iguana, water dragons, tortoises, and more – come out once a day for introductions! Get an up close look and hear inside knowledge from the reptile expert daily. Videos are live at 11 AM or always available afterwards on Facebook.
Do you miss Dungeons and Dragons at the Library? We do, too! Until we can meet again, try out some of these one page role playing games. There are no handbooks or props required, and each one only has one page of directions – easy to pick up and try for an evening! For a start, check out “Honey Heist“, in which players roleplay some mischievous honey-stealing bears; “Adventure Skeletons“, which flips the adventuring genre on its head as the skeleton players explore the human ‘dungeon’; and “Oh, Dang! Bigfoot Stole My Car With My Friend’s Birthday Present Inside“, which says it all with the title. These are all free to play, with the option to donate money to the creators. Happy gaming!
Or you could teach yourself 13 Levels of Beatboxing: Easy to Complex with 2005 Female World Beatbox Champion Butterscotch. In this Wired YouTube Channel, she explains the art of beatboxing starting with just the bass drum and layering on more and more…!
Check out PPL Health Librarian Becca’s page on COVID-19; updated regularly with news and information you can trust.
NEW: May is Mental Health Awareness month. PPL Teen has updated our Neurodiversity & Mental Health for Teens booklist with fiction and nonfiction titles for teens on a variety of mental health topics. Many of these titles are available for free download on cloudLibrary.
NAMI Maine has established a Teen Text Support Line during this time, providing a peer-to-peer support network for young people. Visit www.namimaine.org/page/teentextline or text (207) 515-8398 to start a conversation (please note that this is not a crisis line; if you or someone you know is in crisis, please call or text (888) 568-1112.
Medline Plus Teen presents high-quality, relevant health and wellness information that is trusted, easy to understand, and free of advertising, in both English and Spanish. A service of the National Library of Medicine.
Teen Health & Wellness provides middle and high school students with up-to-date, nonjudgmental, straightforward curricular, and self-help support. Topics covered include diseases, drugs, alcohol, nutrition, mental health, suicide, bullying, LGBTQ+ issues, and more.
Exercise is going to be important for our physical, mental and emotional health right now. Put on your favorite music and have your own dance party, or delve into the trove of free exercise videos on YouTube, if you dare. Ride your bike, rollerblade or skateboard; shoot some hoops (solo) or go for a run. Just keep a safe distance from others and get that fresh air we all need.
AND DON’T FORGET TO WASH YOUR HANDS FOR 20 SECONDS WITH SOAP AND WATER! You can even turn your favorite song into a hand washing meme over at washyourlyrics.com or watch the now famous Tik Tok hamster (though that is only 15 seconds but you should still watch it).