A library is an important component of the classroom for your students. It takes time to build a classroom library, but once developed, it will be an excellent resource for both you and your students.
- Find books for free or for purchase at some or all of the following sources:
- Friends whose children have outgrown them
- Other teachers
- Yard sales
- Obsolete library books
- Book fair events
- Monthly book order clubs
- Designate an area of the classroom where students can choose a book and read.
- Create a comfortable reading space with bookshelves, a rug, large pillows or a beanbag chair, and even a teddy bear or two.
- Organize books by theme or genre—in plastic tubs for lower grades and on shelves for upper grades.
- Label book covers with your name and room number, using a permanent marker.
- Create book placeholders so that when a student has pulled a book out to read, the book placeholder can hold its spot on the shelf.
- Establish a system for checking out books so that students can sign out books to read at home.
- Assign book reports.
- Students select books to report on.
- Students in lower grades can transport books home in a large plastic zipper bag or a large laminated manila envelope.
- Students keep books for a weekend, a week, or another time period that you establish.
- Students complete the appropriate book report form.
- Students track their reading using a monthly reading log.
- Organize books by theme or genre, using a classification system such as one of the following:
- General—Science, Social Science, Math
- Theme—Plants, Friendship, Courage, Multicultural, Favorite Authors
- Standards—Plate Tectonics, Volcanoes
- For students in lower grades, identify a book’s level with a colored sticker on the book cover, using a system such as the following:
- Green = Easy
- Yellow = Intermediate
- Red = Advanced
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