Literacy Treasure Tip: What EVERY Classroom Library Needs

Updated: Oct 24, 2019


It's time for a Literacy Nugget straight from the Literacy Treasure Chest where you will find tips, strategies, products or anything that will make your literacy teaching life easier, more organized and more productive.

Today's Treasure tip is....

What EVERY Classroom Library Needs


The classroom library is the life force of

Reading Workshop!

(and Writing Workshop

and Social Studies,

and Science

and Math)!

Yes, I said it! THE. LIFE. FORCE. of the Reading Workshop. But really for your entire school day and grade-level curriculum.

REFLECT on your existing classroom library and determine the 'holes' that need to be filled (see the checklist below).

Classroom instruction revolves around the literature choices students can find in the classroom library. The classroom library should have labeled baskets created by the teacher AND the students.

Labeled baskets of books should be organized by author, genre, theme or whatever clever and reasonable idea your students decide on. You want to have the baskets labeled in the beginning, BUT your library will evolve as students (and the teacher) notice how books should be organized to better suit the interests and needs of the group.

The classroom library is the place in which students can search for answers to questions,

develop their own reading identity, browse their interests or stretch their own reading interests into another slightly uncomfortable direction just to try it out.

This is a place where students can find books on content area topics they are studying.

This is the place where students can begin to build their reading lives which will drive all other learning in the classroom.

Decide on baskets, boxes and shelves to use.

Decide on how to label those boxes, baskets and shelves.

Have a plan for expansion as new books are added throughout the year.

This could be permanent (I have a book problem and bought books ALL. THE. TIME.) This could be temporary after visits to the school library and the public library.

Classroom libraries that are well organized are essential!

Use this checklist as you reflect on your existing classroom library.

Until next time...


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