Are you feeling overrun by books in your program? You've come to the right spot! It's so important to have an assortment of quality reading materials available for young children, however, it's not necessary for your children to have complete access to your whole book collection at all times. For this process, we are going to take a look at setting up and organizing your teacher library. Once this in place, you can easily rotate your book collection into and out of a smaller student library/reading space without hassle!
Divide and Conquer!
The first step is to let go of any books that are no longer appropriate for your program, or pose a safety threat. Local libraries, or other childcare providers in your area are usually more than happy to take them off your hands.
Now that you know what you are keeping it's time to categorize your books. When grouping your books together think about how you plan to rotate books in and out of your space.
You should organize your materials by the method that makes the most sense to you, with the goal of finding your items as easy as possible. Some suggested ways to categorize are:
You'll want a method to keep you keep your books categorized.
Some of my favorite options include:
Find a home
Now that you know how you are going to organize the books in your teacher library it's time to find a home for them.
For my Teacher Library book storage I went with inexpensive Billy bookshelves from IKEA. One thing I really like about these bookshelves is that they they are adjustable. Since Children's Books come in a variety of sizes, many cube type units don't accommodate the varying sizes. Another nice thing about these IKEA units is that you can purchase additional shelves for them.
Be sure to scout out other areas of your home for storage! Do you have an extra closet? Another idea for storing your excess books is to use adjustable wall shelving, and storage Bins. These allow you to take advantage of vertical space.
Don't overlook existing pieces of furniture that can be re-used for book storage! Kathleen was able to organize her books into bins, and use this hutch to store her excess books-I think it looks great!
Check out the Ideas for storing books over at The Clutter-Free Classroom
(including this clever idea of using a filing cabinet)
Do you have some unused space under your stairs? How about a custom shelf to take advantage of this unused space?
No room inside? How about a utility shelf in your basement or garage?
You are ready to rotate!
Now that your teacher library is set up and organized you'll be able to easily find the books you want to rotate in and out of your student library. Be sure to swing by and check out some ideas on how to set up your student reading space here.
What can I help you find?
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