Friday, February 22, 2013

Organizing my Classroom Library

I had had it with my classroom library.  Luckily I inherited gobs and gobs of books when I arrived at school. But they were in terrible condition.  The bookcases nor books had been dusted in ages.  I was overwhelmed with things to do at the beginning of the year and the library was the least of my concerns.  I had no system in place and no order.  The books were thrown everywhere and no care was given to the library by anyone.  It was sad.  But finally it got to me and I needed to fix it.

Here is a brief glimpse of how my bookcases looked after student use (I had already taken some books off but you get the idea)

Originally I thought this process would take me FOREVER! I had no idea how to organize the books or sort them or anything.  After reading countless blogs about it and realizing it does not and probably wont be perfect, I went for it.  Thank you to those who have helped me learn!

I started by sorting my books.  I made piles of biographies (I had a lot more than I realized), non-fiction, award winners, series (I knew I had a couple full series), fantasy books (my kids LOVE fantasy!), books with animal characters, and fairy tales/fables, and then piles of chapter books that I was not ready to deal with yet. And I still haven't!

I then cleaned my bookcases.... whew it was disgusting.  Then, I went home!  I had a rough estimate of the baskets that I could possibly need.  So I went shopping.  Finding large quantities of the same color basket was difficult for me, so I had to settle on less than perfect colors, but it works!  I went back to school to finish sorting and organizing.

Once I got the baskets, I had to decide which colors would hold what and which books where.  I had to try out some books before I decided.  My green baskets were the smallest so they needed to hold chapter books only, thus I decided on series baskets for them.  My white ones held the non-fiction books. And red hold fiction of all kinds!  I could probably use a few more white ones and definitely more red, but I bought the entire selection of both.  I guess I will have to wait until they restock... hopefully that happens soon!

Since I just wanted to get it done before school starts back on Monday, I did not care about cuteness. I can adjust and change later. I want to see how this goes first!  Anyway, I decided to hand make my labels for ease of change and quickness. I cut a plain white paper into 8 pieces and wrote on each label.  I then used masking tape and taped it over top of the label and the basket.  Whalah! Easy free labels!

I love it! I am so pleased.  Eventually it will look better but it is a start.  Hopefully the kids will be on board and we can keep it looking this way!  If you don't have an organized library, I strongly suggest organizing it. It makes the room look so much better and really does not have to take that much time.  I would say it took me about 5 hours from start to finish.  Not too bad!


  1. WOWWWWWWW!!!!!! That is an amazing transformation. You must feel great about it, I know I would.

    My Journey to 5th Grade


Pin It button on image hover