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Media Beat

Time to Learn Something New in Media Services

Summers in Bloomington are magical. The parking lots are empty, seating times at restaurants are under fifteen minutes, and the tailgate field grass is green again. With the busy street noise turned down to a low hum and the workload reduced to operational, it’s the perfect time to learn a new skill. The library is the perfect place to turn to! Coming into the library and interacting with staff who are knowledgeable about the skill you’re trying to learn is the cherry on top. This blog post only highlights a few of the many services we, Media Services, offer, with a few honorable mentions within Wells Library. All you need is your Crimson (or Borrower’s) Card! 

Learn a new language!  

With a wide range of language sets, Media Services is the perfect place to learn a new language. With some of the more popular languages, like French and Spanish, our collection ranges from beginner to expert with several different brand choices. Rosetta Stone, Pimsleur, or Linguaphone, the choice is yours! Rosetta Stone is also available online with your IU credentials. Our language sets, while audio focused, also include several guides to aid in your comprehension. The primary format is CDs, with the occasional cassette. If you lack access to CD compatible machines, that’s no problem! Media Services is able to provide you with space in either our carrels or Media Viewing Rooms. Don’t be shy to ask a desk associate to assist you! If you wish to take the set home, they are available for checkout for up to two weeks. If you wish to browse, the language sets are available behind the desk. 

Listen to a book!  

Media Services has a limited audiobook selection, however, some of the greatest works of all time are available for checkout. “The Grapes of Wrath”, “Odyssey”, “Homer”, “Sense and Sensibility”, “Harry Potter” series, and more are all available for checkout in Media Services. Audiobooks have become increasingly popular, especially for those who like to multitask. Listening to a book and learning another skill on this list is the ultimate way to practice mental juggling! These items are also available for checkout for up to two weeks, or in house use. If you wish to browse, the audiobooks are to the left of the language sets.  

Learn to play chess…or other board games!  

For hands on and visual learners, chess might be difficult to learn online. In Media Services, we have two boards for in-house use. Having a book on chess or a computer going with a board in front of you might be helpful! Because chess can be indigestible for long periods of time, make it more soluble by learning other games like Mahjong, Settlers of Catan, Scrabble, and more! Give your brain a break, or decompress with friends with games like Operation, Jenga, Uno, and other card games. Card decks and Uno are stored behind the desk due to recent thefts. Ask a staff member for assistance!

Become a video game aficionado!  

For the summer days when the weather is less than ideal, staying inside can be just the ticket. Your own video game collection can become quite tired, but it’s not in your budget to buy a new game. What to do? Media Services has you covered. From Nintendo Switch to Xbox to PlayStations 1-4, we have a decent selection of video games for checkout and their corresponding consoles for in-house use. Advance through the levels of the same game, or different games, build worlds, and set high scores! The video game selection is located to the right of the desk, past the board games.

Build with Legos!  

Media Services recently sorted and took apart existing projects leftover from the school year. The Lego Bins and tables were disinfected. Now, the Legos and tables are ready for construction! Legos are useful tools for imagining the logistics of larger projects (like carpentry or engineering), or for freestyle sculptors! Regardless, Legos can be a fun way to get out of the heat and decompress. While Legos are not available for checkout, in-house use allows for an accessible and affordable option. Totally free! All you have to do is walk (or roll) in!

Beyond the Media Services Scope 

Image courtesy of Twitter

Learn to crochet, knit, or sew!  

The Makerspace has a limited selection of crochet hooks, knitting needles, yarn, embroidery supplies, and thread. Pick up a new hobby, just as this author is learning to crochet. Her first project is almost finished…Makerspace was able to provide a skein of yarn to help move it along. While not all staff members are crochet literate, they will be able to help point you in the right direction and have the supplies to get you started.  

3D printing!  

The Makerspace, as well as UITS (University Information Technology Services) located on the fourth floor of the West Tower, have 3D printers. Simply reserve time, upload your design to their software in the proper format, and a few hours later…viola! There is a time limit, so be sure that your design fits within their set parameters.  

Image courtesy of We Are IU


While you have access to IUware equipped with Creative Cloud with your IU credentials, your computer storage might be full. UITS has desktop Macintosh computers equipped with all your editing needs. There are several free tutorials via photoshop or on YouTube. Get creative…digitally! 


If the weather is beautiful, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t get some fresh air. A new hobby that is versatile is photography. The Makerspace has cameras available for checkout! Get outside (or inside) and experiment with the camera settings. The library also has several photography books for checkout. 

Poster printing!  

If you’ve photographed and edited an image you just have to display, feel free to come to the library. On the fourth floor of the west tower, in UITS, you can poster print your creation for a small fee. Be proud of your new creation and show it off for all to see! 

Abby Welch is a recent alumnae of Indiana University Bloomington’s Media School, as she has earned her Bachelor of Arts in Media and Cinema Arts with minors in Spanish and History. She is staying in Bloomington to finish up a Masters of Library Sciences and has recently accepted the Jay Fellowship. With recent and unprecedented oodles of downtime, she has learned to crochet. She is currently working on a tote bag. Her next project? A granny square shawl.

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