I teach English to new Canadians, and each class is like the assembly of the United Nations. This term, I have students from Hong Kong, Israel, Mexico, South Korea, Pakistan, Iran, Bulgaria and Togo – all learning together, and hoping to one day become "true Canadians”, whatever that term means.
As they introduced themselves on the first day of class, I realized that I know a little bit about each of their countries of origin, except Togo. If I were shown an unlabeled map of Africa, could I identify Togo? What kind of place is it? Who lives there and what do they do? I had no idea, whatsoever.
So, I turned to one of my favourite research tools: Encyclopedia Britannica.
Sure, I could have Googled, but when I want to have information that I know is accurate, I eschew the wikis, and use Calgary Public Library’s e-library, instead.
With your library card, you’ve got the digital equivalent of literally hundreds(!) of dictionaries, encyclopedias and other reference books, all at your disposal, and only a few clicks away.
I love Encyclopedia Britannica because it’s comprehensive, provides links to authoritative websites and media clips, and contains all sorts of interactive tools. Compare countries and have the information exported into an excel file, or shown as a graph or pie chart. Follow the development of music, writing, medicine, religion and more, with interactive timelines. Encyclopedia Britannica is an amazing tool for any topic you might wish to research, and it’s updated daily!
From our homepage, select e-library and then Encyclopedias and Dictionaries. Then, Encyclopedia Britannica. Search or browse! Voila!
The moral of the story: Canada and Togo have a lot more in common than I may have originally guessed. French is an official language in both countries, neither has an official religion, and…
I’m not doing your research for you! Go and check out Encyclopedia Britannica today!