I don’t know how many times I’ve asked the question “what to do with kids’ books?” I’d probably have my curriculum bought for the year if I got paid a dollar every time I asked it.
The way I see it there are three separate things we deal with as homeschool moms when it comes to kids’ books: their reading level books, their school books, teacher manuals, and then books they will be reading. Okay, that is four categories.
I’ve tried several different methods for our books, and they didn’t work at all. About two months ago, I finally found what works.
First for books on their level:
I discovered it works for us to put them in magazine boxes. I put stickers on the boxes, and put the same sticker on the book that corresponds to the box. It’s been working great. I’ve got a full tutorial on my site with tips for reinforcing boxes, where I got them, etc. That’s been working very well for us now.
But, the downside is they don’t tend to think about the books in the boxes, and forget they’re there, that’s where the second step in the process comes in.
Our reading box:
In there I put books they can read on their own, books they are interested in, and books I want them to try and read in there to look through during reading time. I change out the books about once a week, and it’s easy to put them back when the time comes.
There’s two different parts to this, there’s the ones you’re using this year, and the ones you have used in the past, but will use again. The ones we are currently using go in our school room. They have their own shelf, and it’s at an easy level to pull them out and use them. The ones we’ve already used and will use again, or the ones we will use someday are in a bookcase in another room on the top shelf. I will need to be getting our history down from there soon. I keep teacher manuals on the same shelf with their school books, we don’t tend to have many teacher manuals, but it helps me to have everything together. The one year I didn’t do that, I lost the teacher manual for math (thankfully that was their kindergarten year, and it didn’t matter).
Books they will be reading
I don’t know about you, but I’m a bibliophile. I have books from when I was a kid I saved for my kids to read “someday.” I also saved books from my teaching days. My kids aren’t ready for some of these, so for the sanity of my family, and the sake of our bookshelves, those are stored in giant plastic tubs in our garage (no picture, but I figure that’s fairly self-explanatory). My husband and I each have about 2 tubs saved to share with our kids. Someday the poor kids will be forced to read all of the great children’s classics, like Nancy Drew, and Black Stallion.