Sunday, January 5, 2014

To Genre-fy... Part 2

Happy New Year!  Who can believe it is already 2014?

So when I left off in December, I was telling you about my genrefication project. I had gotten to the part where I was labeling all my book spines with the genre.  I have some 5th grade girls that come in the morning for a half an hour so I started making stacks of the books waiting to be labeled. It looked liked this.
Yes, it was a mess for a while.  But each morning the girls would come in, grab a stack of books and the sheet of labels (you can see the post-it-notes on the counter that tell them what genre) and labeled the books.  When the were finished with a stack, they would put them on the cart for my assistant to shelve still according to alphabetical order.

 Once all the labeling was done, the next step was for my 5th grade helpers to pull all the books off the shelves and sort them by genre on the floor.  They just made stacks and stack under signs I had posted.  Now my shelves looked like this.
And it totally freaked the kids out as wehy were walking in the halls.  Luckily, most of this part was happening during my book fair week so the kids were not checking out.

Once I figured out how much shelving each genre was going to need we started reshelving the books alphabetically by author within the genre.  We decided that the genres would be front and back on the shelves and that if a genre required more than one shelf we would push them together to make genre "islands".  I was a little worried because even though I had weeded more than 400 books during this process, we almost ran out of shelving.  Here is a picture of my sci-fi (obviously I need to beef up that genre).
But you csan see how much space there is that before was filled because we were going alphabetically.  Here is my realistic fiction "island".
I made different colored signs for each genre so that we could direct the kids as they were learning where the books were. "Look in the pink, humor section".  

Finally we were done!  We had a week before winter break so I can't really report yet as to how it is working but I do think once we get used to it, it will be GREAT!


  1. I am still thinking about doing this. Every. Single. Day. "Where are the scary books?" "Where are the mystery books?"
    You did it pretty quickly! I worried it would take forever. Just not sure about spacing .. our fiction is shelved on the inside of a big rectangle (same with everybody ... just a separate square). Non-fic on the outside of both. Like a domino, kind of.

  2. We are working on this! I have a few questions:
    1. Did you print all new spine labels and change the call numbers in the card catalog?
    2. How does this work when getting in new books from vendors? We can add the genre stickers, but what about the call numbers?


  3. Diane - I did not print new spine labels because I don;t change the call number. Every book still comes from the vendor with the original spine label. For example, all the Andrew Clements books still have F CLE, but I just added a REALISTIC FICTION sticker to them. As far as the catalog, I am changing the shelf location so that when a child looks up a book, it would say F CLE in the REALISTIC FICTION. Hope that makes sense.