Monday, September 10, 2012

Classroom Library: Online Organizer

I know it has been a while, but I have been super busy since the beginning of the school year--haven't we all!

I have so much to share with you including my favorite, classroom pictures! However, it's going to take some time for me to upload them and get things ready so please stick with me!

Today I wanted to show you something that has changed a lot in my classroom. In the years past, my classroom library has been a mess. We organize it as a class within the first week and then I feel like after the first month or so it goes downhill. The mess starts in, no books are where they belong and the kids don't have responsibility for the books they are borrowing.

I do plan on showing you how I am organizing my classroom library but step one helped me start the process.

Another teacher in my school shared with us this amazing FREE website called Classroom Organizer by Book Source.

This great FREE resource allows teachers to organize their books and allows students to check out books. I'm not going to is VERY time consuming! But if you use their excel spread sheet that does make it easier in the long run.

In the end I had almost 200 books of my classroom library entered into a spread sheet. Once that was completed I uploaded it and it all went directly into the classroom organizer program!!

I have 20 pages of books

 As a teacher you have a lot of different options to choose from. First of all, the "teacher page" will always be at the top of the page. At first I was worried that the student could go in and change things but it is password protected!

Once you are in the Teacher Page,  you can control the classroom settings. Right now I have that my student can check out up to two books {they also get to check out two from the school library} and they get them for one week. After that week, Classroom Organizer will email me letting me know that they are overdue. Students can return or check out again. I also chose to track book location so if a student wants to know where a specific book is located, they can look it up and find the exact location on the bookshelves.

This site is also super easy for students to use! I leave up this main page on one of the computers. Students have certain times of the day where they can check out books. 

They would click "Check out"

Then they need to find their name and click on it

Finally they can search for a book title, author, keyword, or ISBN #. After clicking "search" the options will come up. When students find the book they wanted to check out, they simply have to click "check out" and then they're done! The Location on the right side show the students where the book is located. This looks confusing right now because I'm not totally finished. Each book has to have the location, I can't just say all Andrew Clements books are in the F20 basket. I have to go through and put in each location (that has been the most annoying part). So as of now, I have put in the location for one of the books in that set. I also allows our classroom librarian (that is a job) to put the books back if their sticker comes off {more about stickers and organization in another post}.

Returning books are super simple too! Students would just find their name again click "return". 

Again, this program is super easy to use but very time consuming. I looked at it in the way that once I do it this year, I will never have to add in all the books again.

Let me know if you have used this site and what you think. I'd definitely give it a try!

"Pin it" button coming soon!