November 21, 2012

Organization of the Middle School Book Room

After countless, sweaty hours this summer spent unpacking boxes of books, organizing them, leveling them, alphabetizing them, and finally getting those books onto the shelves of our book room, we definitely did not want to just leave the books out on the shelves without a plan for how we would maintain the organization of the space.  As you can see from the picture below. the book room is organized alphabetically by levels, each time a level switches, we used a new book box color.  On the front of each book box, there are two strips of velcro, and on the back of each laminated book title label is velcro as well.  On the front of each bag, the title, level, genre, and number of copies contained in the bag is written down.  There is also an electronic database being created that all teachers will have computer access to that will list the title, level, genre, number of copies, and a short summary of each book in the book room.



If a teacher wants to check out a set of books for guided reading, he or she just takes the bag of books, grabs the label off of the book box, and places the label on a check-out chart that is located in the front of the book room.  There are strips of velcro underneath each teacher's name.  Right by the check out system, I also display a laminated sign for directions for book check-out.  




The last step to keeping the book room organized and functioning is to have a system for what will happen once the books are returned.  In the back of the book room, I keep three bins labeled with three different levels of books from the book room.  The teachers return the set of bagged books to the appropriate bin, and a parent volunteer stops in several days a week to return the books to the shelf.  Another great development is teachers put the guided reading plan they created and used while teaching the book during guided reading right in with the bag when they return the books.  This gives the next teacher that uses that set of books a starting point when creating their guided reading lesson.



This system has worked great since the school year started, and I am glad that we took the time and effort to think through how the check-out and organization would work so that we're able to maintain this amazing guided reading resource for our school.

6 comments :

  1. So glad you posted about this! This is sort of how I was thinking we would set ours up too. What levels are you all using to organize them by?

    Miss Klohn
    Adventures of a 6th Grade Teacher
    k.e.klohn@gmail.com

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    1. Thanks! It was definitely a lot of work, but I am glad we initially put in the work because the room is basically running itself because of how it's organized. We use the Fountas and Pinnell leveling system, and we have level I through Z+ in our book room. We only use this system so that all books are leveled the same for guided reading purposes since we use the Fountas and Pinnell benchmark assessment to test students' reading level. Great to hear from you again! Thanks for reading my blog!

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  2. Where did you purchase your colored book boxes?

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    Replies
    1. If I remember right it was from School Specialty.

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  3. how are you creating your electronic database?

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    Replies
    1. We keep it on a drive where all teachers can have access to it through our school's network.

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