Friday, March 13, 2009

Front Facing Covers and Shelf Space

Earlier in the year, I weeded a ton of old reference books (preAIDS Merck Manual, anyone?) and stretched out the fiction to 3 whole rows. This included one empty section in each line of shelving. My brilliant idea was to put thematically linked books and an accompanying pathfinder so that students who were browsing would see covers. There were spy books next to Horowitz, fantasy next to Jacques, vampire books next to Shan, etc.

The down side? After the first day, there were never any books left, so I'd have a shelf with just The Vampire in the Bathtub and book 4 of Vampire Kisses. Sad looking. The only section that worked is right behind the circulation desk and is filled with prebind Simon Pulse Romantic Comedies. The only reason this works is that girls read and return one of these a day.

With some donations and every cent of the board money in my budget, I purchased books, so I've added about 700 new books this year. These are mostly fiction and *sigh* a lot of Perma-Bound. Because of this, I've had to do away with the empty shelves, but it works. Soon, there will be nothing on the dreaded fourth shelf down, where no one looks.

So far this school year, my library has checked out 22,064 books. That's for 600 students. (This is up from 21,604 from last year at the end of March.)


  1. Sweet!

    How does that 22K number stack up to previous years?

  2. Impressive numbers!

    To celebrate reading month I've issued a word count challenge to my 8th graders. (We use Accelerated Reader so word counts are easy to find out.) They've been averaging 8,500,000 words a month this school year and agreed to a challenge of 11,000,000 for the month of March.

    Total so far from March 2 to March 13 is 5,300,000 so I think it's possible they'll make it.