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Guide for Foreign-Trained Engineers in Ontario

November 16, 2015 | Carolyn | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Are you an engineer hoping to practice your profession in Ontario?

This guide describes Toronto Public Library resources that can help you prepare for licensing exams and job searching. There are also links to websites with information about becoming a licensed engineer in Canada if you were trained elsewhere.

Here are some examples of library resources for engineers:


Canadian Professional Engineering and Geoscience: practice and ethics


Calling All Reggae Music Fans!

November 9, 2015 | Rachelle | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Two major things happened in the Toronto reggae scene in 2015. In August, the Toronto Reggae Hall of Fame was launched at the CNE Bandshell, in between sets by reggae legends. What a momentous occasion! The first inductees were vocalist/bandleader Jay Douglas, drummer Everton 'Pablo' Paul, musician Leroy Sibbles and keyboardist/producer Bernie Pitters. Douglas emotionally stated that, "this is something I am deeply honoured about." 

Jay Douglas' Music is featured at Toronto Public Library.

You Are My Lady Touch of Magic Lovers Paradise

As if this wasn't enough, a laneway at Eglinton and Oakwood was renamed Reggae Lane, in honour of the neighbourhood's rich musical heritage. This area is widely acknowledged as the birthplace of Toronto reggae music. Still known as "Little Jamaica," the neighbourhood was a hub for reggae in the 1970s and 1980s. The street was a popular destination to visit record shops, recording studios and buy delicious Jamaican cuisine. It was not uncommon to see prominent local and international reggae artists out and about. 

Reggae Lane Sign

Toronto Reggae Roots Plaque


The official naming ceremony, hosted by Councillor Josh Cole, took place on September 19th. Many dignitaries, musicians and local residents were present. The unveiling also showcased the exquisite mural created by local artists and featured a new Toronto Heritage plaque. The plaque highlights legendary performers who have contributed greatly to the culture of Toronto. 

Jay Douglas


Jay Douglas was also at the unveiling. When I interviewed him about the festivities he said, "It was an unbelievable atmosphere, beautiful turnout that shows the diversity of this great city and lovely country of ours. Friends and family were there and we had live performances from various artists, including myself."

Much of this local history has been memorialized in Toronto Public Library's Research Guide to Reggae Lane: Toronto's Jamaican Music Scene, 1960's to the Present. The guide includes amazing details and first-hand accounts about the reggae music scene back then as well as links to online materials, print resources, and recommended CDs. Capturing such incredible heritage and making it accessible to all, the research guide is a bounty of information. Maria A. Shchuka Branch, conveniently located just minutes from Reggae Lane, is home to one of four Rita Cox Black and Caribbean Heritage Collections across the city. This collection contains many resources on a variety of topics pertaining to black and Caribbean culture in Canada. With over 3000 thousand items to choose from, there is enough material for every reggae music lover and budding fans.

Hindi at Your Library | अपने पुस्तकालय में हिंदी

November 6, 2015 | Suzanne | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Hello! नमस्ते! Did you know that there are over 40 branches with Hindi collections at the Toronto Public Library? With close to 2000 Hindi DVDs and 4500 Hindi books to choose from, make the Toronto Public Library the first place you visit if you read in Hindi, want to learn Hindi, or would like to catch the latest Bollywood film. Welcome!  आपका स्वागत है!

A quick search of Hindi DVDs from 2014 shows me that there are 49 titles to choose from. So...I could watch a new Bollywood movie every night until Christmas! night, anyone?

Here are some examples of top rated 2015 Bollywood films that are available in the Toronto Public Library collection:

Baby    Bajrangi Bhaijaan    Gabbar is Back    Tanu Weds Manu Returns

The library also has a great collection of resources to help you learn Hindi. Have you used Mango Languages? Mango Languages is a language learning tool that has many languages to choose from, including Hindi. It is helpful for learning English, too. Why not give it a try? क्यों न इसे एक प्रयास दें?  There are other ways the library can help you learn English. Browse the New to Canada section of our website for more information. 

Don't have a library card yet? Don’t worry, it’s easy! Simply bring a piece of valid and current name and address identification to your local branch and we can help you get a card. Here is how to get a library card in Hindi

You can also watch this helpful video for an introduction to library services in Hindi.

  Your Library in Hindi

Don't forget to try Hoopla to find music and movies in Hindi.

Here are some music titles to try:

Bollywood Master Hindi Film Songs    Hindi Gold Classics    Hindi Songs the Classics

We also have over 600 Hindi books for children. Why not try a Hindi book with your child?

Brown bear brown bear what do you see    Candani mem garam khira    Ruru Raga    Tom and Sofia start school

In addition to these great print and electronic resources, the library also has programs for Hindi speakers. On Thurs. Dec. 17th, the Humberwood Branch will be holding a Parenting Skills Workshop in Urdu, Hindi & Panjabi. This program is presented in partnership with the Rexdale Women’s Centre.  

From programs, to books, movies and more, the Toronto Public Library's Hindi Collection is here waiting for you. Come and check it out!  आइए और इसे देखिए!

You Are Invited to Celebrate Library Settlement Partnerships Week!

October 20, 2015 | Patty | Comments (2) Facebook Twitter More...

  LSP Logo
It's October and you are invited to celebrate the seventh anniversary of Library Settlement Partnerships (LSP) at Toronto Public Library

The library, along with eight local settlement agencies, is celebrating Library Settlement Partnerships Week with a variety of events at LSP locations.  Running from October 13th to 24th and coinciding with Canadian Citizenship Week (October 12th-18th) and Ontario Public Library Week (October 18th-24th), this year’s LSP Week theme of “Music from Around the World” celebrates newcomers’ contributions to the Canadian music scene and introduces Canadian music to newcomer communities.

LSP Week Event at Agincourt Library

This year’s LSP Week celebrations include multicultural musical performances, visits by citizenship judges, a newcomer art exhibit, open houses, community information fairs and much more. 

NYCH Newcomer Youth Arts Exhibit: Celebrating LSP Week 2015  

In 2014, more than 1,200 people attended LSP Week special events.

Funded by Citizenship and Immigration Canada, LSP enables community agencies to work year-round within Toronto Public Library to provide information, referrals, and group activities for newcomers.

Toronto Public Library offers LSP programs and services at 14 branches. Participating Settlement agencies include:

•         Catholic Crosscultural Services (CCS)

•         Centre for Immigrant and Community Services (CICS)

•         CultureLink

•         Kababayan Community Service Centre Inc.

•         North York Community House (NYCH)

•         Rexdale Women’s Centre

•         Thorncliffe Neighbourhood Office (TNO)

•         YMCA Newcomer Information Centre (YMCA-NIC)


CIC Logo


For more music from around the world, the Toronto Public Library has much to offer online.  



Naxos Music Library, which is available from your home computer, offers a large selection of world music. All you need is a library card!  Below is a small sample of the music you can find in Naxos.

Folk Songs and Soundscapes from NepalAcoustic Africa   Impressions of Corsica 100 Beats Asian

Hoopla also offers a wide range of digital international music that you can borrow with your library card. The titles below give you an idea of the variety of music that is available.

Music Without Frontiers
Bhagavad Gita
Didgeridoo Magic
As Melhores do Marco Brasil


Happy LSP Week and hope to see you at one of our LSP Week events!



German at your Library!

October 3, 2015 | Chantel | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Deutsch anyone? If you read or speak German, then this is the place for you!  There are four branches with German collections for you to find your next great read! Visit Toronto Reference Library, North York Central Library, Don Mills and Runnymede for a selection of adult and children's materials. Take a moment to explore some of the magazines, music CDs and feature DVDs listed on our website.

If you can’t visit one of these four locations, you can also order your books, DVDs or CDs from the four branches and have it delivered to your home branch by placing a hold from our website. You can do this by using the global search function to search  for your favourite title on our homepage or browse through the collection by using the Advanced Search (remember to check off "German" in the language category!). In the meantime, check out this list of titles suitable for both children and adults! I've also highlighted a few books below that may be of interest!

Adult fiction and non-fiction books

Aufbruch - Ulla Hahn Ein Morderischer Sommer - Joy Fielding Ware ich du wurde ich mich lieben - Horst Evers
Adolf Krischanitz Vegan for Fit - Attila Hildmann Wir Erben - Julia Friedrichs

Children's Books

Mrs Marlowes Mause - Frank Asch Rosi in der geisterbahn - Philip Waechter Simpel - Marie-Aude Murail

Online Materials

OverDrive logoIf you don't want to leave the comfort of your home to borrow a book or movie, why not try an eBook or watch a movie online? With your library card, Hoopla logoyou can access a variety of free materials online straight from the library’s website! Try out Hoopla to stream movies and eAudiobooks and OverDrive for eBooks!

North Face film Breathing film Facebook - marketing fur einstelger - Jonny Jelinek

Learn German!

Mango logoFor those of you who would like to learn German, it has never been easier! You can even learn on the go with Mango, a free online language learning tool where you can track your progress. Alternatively, you can also watch instructional DVDs or listen to eAudiobooks online.

Happy Reading!

Book Launch for First Multilingual Book for Children in Canada

September 25, 2015 | Suzanne | Comments (8) Facebook Twitter More...

The library’s multilingual collections for children are a wonderful resource for educators, parents and families seeking to read books from their culture or from cultures around the world. 

Looking for a book from your home language? Dual language books in English and another language are a great way to celebrate your home language or learn a new language. Here are a few from our catalogue:

   Grandmas Saturday Soup    The Little Red Hen and the grains of wheat    My Daddy Is a Giant    The Wibbly Wobbly Tooth

Next Saturday, October 4th, At One Press will launch the first ever multilingual book for children in Canada; The Best of All Worlds: Seven Multilingual Stories for Kids.  

The Best of All Worlds is a collection of seven multilingual stories written by Canadians for Canadians.  The stories in this collection are written in Arabic, Farsi, Italian, Japanese, Portuguese, Russian and Spanish. Each one was then translated into English and French, accompanied by wonderful illustrations.

Join us for the book launch of The Best of All Worlds, the first multilingual book for children in Canada on Sunday October 4th, 2015 at the Agincourt Branch. There will be a multilingual storytime, author signings, and more!

Still want more?  KidsSpace has a great selection of stories to read or listen to in many different languages. Hear-a-Story has stories you can listen to in English and ten other languages.  Read-a-Story gives you access to the International Children’s Digital Library which has over 4,600 children's eBooks in 61 different languages!  We even have a collection of Multicultural Rhymes from many different cultures.

You can also search the library catalogue to find materials in your language or visit past blog posts on collections in other languages:  Arabic at Your library; Italian Collections; Korean Collections; Your Library in Russian; Our Top Spanish Resources; Tagalog at Your Library and Tamil at Your Library. 

Happy Birthday, TIFF! A Film Watcher's Guide to Multicultural Films at Your Library

September 16, 2015 | Iana | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

The Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) is turning 40 years this month! It has been the major cultural event every fall in Toronto in recent decades and one of the most prestigious film festivals in the world. There is a feeling of glamour and fashion during the ten days of the festival while so many famous actors, directors and film industry professionals are in town to promote their movies.


TIFF logoYesterday I took a stroll downtown in order to feel the excitement of the film festival and found this beautiful TIFF logo just next to Metro Hall. What a great spot to pose for a picture this week!

In 2010, TIFF opened the spectacular TIFF Bell Lightbox - its new headquarters at the corner of King St. and John St. in the heart of the "Entertainment District" in downtown Toronto. Since then most of the buzz of activities, film screenings, galas and celebrity watching have moved to this part of King St.


TIFF red carpet Metro HallI snapped this picture of one of the red carpets, right next to Metro Hall yesterday, where actors and filmmakers were walking and being cheered before presenting their film. Some Toronto film fans are known to take a week off every year in mid-September in order to attend the film festival full-time and enjoy great cinema. There is a whole festival subculture of "doing TIFF" the right way - strategies for selecting films and buying tickets, hanging out in rush lines for tickets, volunteering, blogging, catching sights of celebrities, how to eat, party, and make the best of TIFF.


But TIFF isn't just about  the glamour of celebrities. It is about the magic of watching world class feature films and documentaries from more than 70 countries!

For those film-loving Torontonians who are not able to attend the famous festival or for those who can't get enough of great films - Toronto Public Library offers a diverse and free collection of thousands of international films across the world, in many languages. Many of the TIFF festival screenings through the years have been purchased by the library on DVD. 

Below you can download (in PDF) a recommended three-part Film Watcher's Guide to Multicultural Films, compiled by my library colleague Sam who has a great passion for cinema:

  • TPL NEW MULTICULTURAL FILMS LIST III (edition 2015) - about 150 title suggestions, the majority of which have been screened at TIFF from 2010-2014. In addition there are other world cinema titles that the library owns.


DVDs can be placed on hold and borrowed for one week with your library card (and renewed up to two times if there are no holds). Please note that some of the titles, if they are newly added to the library system, cannot be placed on hold for the first six months in the library collection, but can still be borrowed in person from the library.


Here is a selection from the 2015 list. Download the full lists for more titles!

Woman gun noodle soup Waltz with Bashir Manuscripts don't burn Polytechnique


Living is easy with eyes closed LunchboxPussy Riot A Punk PrayerBarbara


How to search the library for multicultural movies in your language:

  1. Go to
  2. Click on "Advanced" (located right beside the Search button on the top right hand of your screen)
  3. In the "Type" field on the left hand side of your screen, click on "Movies and Videos"
  4. In the "Language" field on the bottom left hand side of your screen, click on your language of choice .
  5. Click "Search".

TIFF Logo 2015
[Photo credit: Elaisha Jade]


Happy 40th birthday to Toronto International Film Festival and enjoy the great multicultural films that are available at your local library! While the festival only goes for ten days every year in September, Toronto Public Library offers free access to the best of the world cinema, including films in many languages, all year around, and in the comfort of your home! 


More library blog posts related to TIFF:

Back to School at Any Age

September 4, 2015 | Suzanne | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Back to school already
With permission from Melissa Machan at First Grade Smiles

It's getting darker earlier, the calendar says September, and the dreaded – err, I mean, very welcome first day of school is near. Children, teens and adults everywhere are getting ready for the return to the classroom. Adults may be going back to school, kindergartners are starting school for the first time, and teens may be preparing for their first day of high school. Usually this day brings about a familiar mix of nervousness and excitement. For newcomers to Canada, starting school for the first time may also mean familiarizing yourself with a new city, brushing up on your English skills, and finding ways to ease the transition into school, no matter what your age. Visit your local library for some helpful ways to ease the transition!

Library staff prepare for going back to school


We hope our children will have a love of reading right from the start, but if they need a little nudge in the right direction, the library is here to help. Why not try some of these suggested reads for the reluctant reader from a recent post on the Growing a Reader blog? Or how about this great selection of picture books about going back to school? A great story about the experience of going back to school can be the boost a child needs to feel ready for his or her first day. 

For the school age child, a number of branches have After School Clubs, catering to a variety of interests from Lego to science to animationAfter School Clubs offer children the chance to explore their interests outside of the classroom, and enhance their learning with creative exploration. Visit your local branch to find out about an After School Club near you! Finally, don’t forget to explore KidsSpace, the library’s website for kids. Get help with research, find your next book, play games, and much more!

 Children using library computer    Science Afterschool Club at Fort York Library
Kids using a library computer; Kids at the Fort York Library having fun with science


The library has a number of free programs and services for teens.  Need a place to unwind and meet other teens? Why not join a Youth Advisory Group?  Youth Advisory Group members earn volunteer hours, meet other teens and contribute to library services and programs. Help improve library services for teens while having fun at the same time! There are also Youth Hubs and Homework Help for Teens available at select branches. Keep up to date on what we have to offer teens on the TPL Teens blog.

Read some of our other blog posts for teens: Afterschool Youth Hubs; Newcomer Youth – Welcome to the library!

Teens at the library
Teens doing homework at the library


For the adult learner going back to school, the library subscribes to a wide range of online services, including article databases, business directories, and practice tests. You can explore our databases and research tools by topic or check out this list of the most popular research tools. The Book a Librarian service is another helpful tool. Make a free 30-60 minute appointment with a librarian at select branches. The librarian can help you with research, library information, career information, homework help and more.

Are you are a newcomer looking for ESL Classes or Newcomer services? The library provides these services for free at a number of branches throughout the city. Another great resource for adults is the Adult Literacy Program. This program offers free, one-on-one tutoring in basic reading, writing and math for English-speaking adults 16 years or older. Volunteer tutors work with learners to help them reach their literacy goals. There are ten literacy offices in libraries across Toronto.

Check out some other blog posts for adult learners: Featured Library Databases for Newcomers to CanadaGet Tech-Savvy this Summer! 

Studying at the Library

Whether you are 5 or 75, going back to school is a time for new beginnings and the chance to grow. Learn, grow, and let the Toronto Public Library help you make the transition back to any age!

Let's Eat at the Ex!

August 21, 2015 | Elsa | Comments (4) Facebook Twitter More...

Many Canadians look forward to the opening of the Canadian National Exhibit (CNE or the Ex) near the end of August. Many families visit the CNE every year as a tradition, marking the end of summer and the upcoming new school year. If you are new to Toronto, the CNE is the place to visit! This year, the CNE starts today and runs until September 7th.

Every year, the CNE showcases Canadian favourites and Toronto’s diversity. Some highlights include performers from around the world, yummy cultural foods as well as best-loved Canadian classics, celebrity chef demonstrations, and the popular air-show during the Labour Day weekend. CNE is for families big or small.

With everyone’s love of good food, it is only natural that food is what attracts many visitors to the CNE. Multicultural cuisines and good old-fashioned Canadian ones bring everyone together for a good time. 

Adventurous foodies (those who have special interest in food) enjoy tasting all the creative dishes at the Ex. In 2014, butter coffee, cocoa infused fried chicken and s’more bao were in demand! I am sure many foodies are just finding out what is in store this year.

For three days, the Food Truck Frenzy takes place at the CNE. Over 20 food trucks will present well-known classics with local ingredients or cultural favourites with a twist (like the pad thai fries I tried last year). Instead of chasing the food trucks across the city, you will find them all in one place!

Food Truck Frenzy at CNE
Food Truck Frenzy at CNE
Pad Thai Fries
Pad Thai Fries

You also get to travel around the world in one afternoon at the Food Building. It features international flavours as well as Canadian gems. There will be something for everyone to try.

After your first visit, you might make a visit to the CNE an annual tradition with your family and friends. Every year, the CNE will offer something new and exciting!  

Once you have tried all the different foods at the CNE and you can explore more, check out Toronto Public Library for the numerous cookbooks (including your favourite celebrity chefs’ books) in our branches or download ebooks via OverDrive and emagazines via Zinio.

More blog posts about food: 

Around the World in 80 Recipes

LSP Week Celebration - Food from Around the World


Tagalog at your Library

August 4, 2015 | Maria | Comments (0) Facebook Twitter More...

Kamusta? This month's featured language on the New to Canada blog is Tagalog! Are you as excited as I am? 

We have new, featured, and popular Tagalog library material, including books, movies, music, and emagazines! Plus, learn how you can get a library card for free and share your favourite Tagalog titles in the 'comments' section below!


New to Canada? Get a library card! It's free.

Baguhan sa Canada? Sumapi sa aklatan. Ito ay libre o walang bayad! 


Library Branches with Tagalog 

The following Toronto Public Library branches have items in Tagalog:

Large: 1500 or more itemsMedium: 750-1500 itemsSmall: Fewer than 750 items

 You can also view our Tagalog locations on a map.

To find Tagalog materials at the library, you can search by typing directly into the search box on the Toronto Public Library homepage. When using advanced search, make sure to select 'Tagalog' from the language menu.

Note: Other related language options include 'Filipino', "Philippine languages', or 'Pilipino', but each one only has a handful of items.

Here are search results showing all Tagalog materials in the catalogue, sorted by date. I've also put together a list of some of the great Tagalog material we have at the library:



  My facebook boyfriend...for real!?. Vol. 1.  Wifely duties. Book 1.  Tagay, kapatid!  Bitter



Non Fiction

Buti pa ang Roma may bagong papa  Connect the dots - o kung paano ko kinulayan ang aking buhay  Boredom, stress and burnout - paano ko iha-handle?  Mga halamang-gamot sa Pilipinas



The amazing praybeyt Benjamin Be careful with my heart. Volume 40.  So it's you  Talk back and you're dead



Did you know that you can watch movies or TV shows and listen to music online, for free, with Hoopla? Here are some titles, either in Tagalog or set in the Philippines, that I thought you might be interested in:

Rakenrol  Santa Mesa   Dive Travel - Anilao Mabini Batangas Philippines

The Philippines The Philippines - 20 Love Songs The Voice Of The Philippines The Final 16



Zinio lets you read current issues of popular magazines online, for free. There are quite a few magazines from the Philippines on Zinio. Here are a few you might be interested in:

Cosmopolitan Philippines FHM Philippines Good Housekeeping Philippines Yes! Philippines


Hear-a-Story lets kids listen to Tagalog stories online for free. Popular stories include: Anggo Became a StoneKapre on the Akasya TreeLegend of MakihiyaLegend of Makopa, and Where Does the Volcano Taal Come From



You can also listen to Tagalog stories any time by calling Dial-a-Story at 416-395-5400. Stories are for children 12 years of age and younger.  


Do you have a favourite Tagalog book, CD, or DVD that you've borrowed from the library? If so, share it with other readers by using the 'comments' section below!


Welcome! This blog is written by librarians and provides information and resources available from the library and around Toronto to new residents of Canada. For more information see the Library's Help for Newcomers website