Have you ever gone to the library with a well-researched book list, only to discover that they don’t have 75 percent of the books on your list? I’ll still do this on occasion, but today I’d like to share another method I’ve been using to find books at the library in a non-conventional but semi-organized way. Think highly flexible, fun, and rewarding!
Here it is, very simple, though not scientific in any way:
- Go to the kids’ picture book or easy reader section of the library.
- Choose one small section, say two or three short shelves.
- Find a step-stool to sit on.
- Browse through this section thoroughly, choosing books that meet your criteria for good literature for kids. I don’t ask my kids which books they want. Sometimes they wander by and chime in.
- Check them out and enjoy reading together.
- When you find a gem, turn it into a project.
- Repeat on the next visit, moving to the next section. Our library organizes children’s picture books alphabetically by author. We started with the A’s and are working through. Sometimes I go to the Z’s and work backwards.
With this simple method we find some wonderful books, and I’m never disappointed because a book isn’t available.
Here are two sample projects we loved:
Book: What’s Alive? (Let’s-Read-and-Find-Out Science 1) by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld.
Subject: The difference between living and non-living things.
Project: Cut out pictures of living and non-living things in magazines and paste on categorized paper.
Book: If You Lived Here: Houses of the World by Giles Laroche.
Subject: Different kinds of houses people in various places live in.
Project: Choose one of the houses in the book and make a collage home.
I love “school” ideas that are simple, flexible, fun, and educational. Do you have any tips for utilizing the library in a fun and simple way? Share in the comments below.