Friday, July 22, 2016

Organizing Your Classroom Library

I am loving my new classroom library!  I spent a bunch of time reorganizing my books at the end of the school year and giving my library a much-needed makeover! The best part is that this makeover didn't break the bank. I found these awesome clear tubs at the Dollar Tree. They are long and perfect for holding both chapter and picture books. I had to buy 26 tubs for my library, so I only spent $26! Woo hoo! I love a great deal!

Then I organized my books by genre. I know that there are many different ways to organize your library, but this seems to be the way that works best for me in my classroom. When I conference with my students I find out what genres they like to read. Organizing by genre helps me easily recommend new books for them to try.

I have a bunch of bright colors in my classroom, so I made these bright chalkboard labels for my book baskets. All of the fiction genres are marked in green and the nonfiction genres are marked in blue. I printed the labels out and used clear packing tape to attach them to each basket. For extra organization, I placed color coding dot stickers on each book to help students remember where they need to return their books. For example, fiction books have green color coding labels and nonfiction books have blue color coding labels. On each label, I wrote a short abbreviation for each genre and placed the same color coding sticker on my book basket. Here is the list of codes I used for each genre:

Fiction Labels (green) 
- Historical Fiction- HF  
- Family & Friends- FF
- Realistic Fiction- RF  
- Graphic Novels- GN
- Poetry- P  
- Animal & Human Relationships- AH
- Fairy Tales- FT 
- Legends- L  
- Tall Tales- TT 
- Mystery- M 
- Fantasy- F 
- Myths- My 
- Holiday Books- HB 
- Sports- S
- Scary Stories- SS
- Humorous- H
- Action & Adventure- A
- Animal Characters- AC

Nonfiction Labels (blue)  
- Social Studies- SS
- Science- S 
- Biographies- B 
- Math- M     
- Holiday Books- HB

You can find these dot stickers at any office supply store.  I found mine at Staples.
We spend a bunch of time learning about genres at the beginning of the school year. I have a bulletin board right next to my library so I created genre anchor charts to help my students remember each genre. The anchor charts have the same bright chalkboard theme to match the book basket labels. You can get these labels and anchor charts from my TpT store here.

What tips and tricks do you have for organizing your classroom library?

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