Thursday, February 5, 2015

Library Rules

One of the first items on my check list for the library this year was to establish a concrete set of rules. I decided on this quickly after the first couple of weeks of school. I no longer have the luxury of playing in the library all day long. My time is limited; I don't have time to mess around. The kids need to help put away books neatly and the older kids help me put new books on the shelves. They write out the cards, adhere the pockets and, in a couple of weeks, I'm going to teach them how to wrap books. Learning to let go some of the control has been huge for me, but I can't do it all this year.

I made the sign above on the computer (my theme in the library is a mix of floral and birds) and I had it printed as a mounted poster at FedEx Office. Last year I had everything in frames, and while it was very pretty, the frames were heavy and were occasionally knocked off tables by gangly teenagers. Mounted posters are the way to go! They're inexpensive, light, and difficult to damage unless you have a ruffian child who likes to stomp on things.

You can see what really presses my buttons by reading the rules. This year started off bad for talking. Library is now in the afternoon--much to everyone's dismay--and by that time the kids are fried. I know I feel fried! It got so bad that I had to implement a strict discipline technique that is similar to what they use in the armed forces and in prison. Hey, it worked.

Kids and books: it's like they don't know that books are sentient beings with feelings. The other day a 6th grader was swinging his brand new library book by the front and back cover (!!!!!) after having warned him when I gave him the book a week prior that is was brand, spanking new. Needless to say, I almost broke his spine when I saw the condition of my new book's spine. He tried to tell me the book came like that. Um, no. No it did not. That's all I have to say about rules 2-4. 

The rest of the rules are fairly procedural, with the exception of #7, which is also huge for me. There are a few boys in 1st grade who love princess books, which the other boys teased them about for the 2 seconds it took me to come down on them like Ares, the god of war. Same thing happened with the kids who read far, far below age level. I'm the first one to tease and joke around, but not about this. Like it states in the rules: no exceptions.

Not my picture, but that is my name plate!

This is funny. I also bought a name plate for my desk. I wanted something cute and approachable for the kids that would also mach my Library Rules sign. (I'm horrible, I know.) I used Blocks of Love and I'm extremely happy with the name plate. I went on etsy as I was writing this post to link up to them and, hey!, what do you know? That's my sign in one of their product pictures! The kids love it, by the way. They think it's just the best thing ever and that I must have spent a million dollars on it because SPARKLES!

Whew. My first library post in a while! I've missed them, but I've been so busy in the library that I haven't had time to write about the library. Hopefully things will quiet down soon and I'll be able to jot down all these memories before I retire!


  1. Ha! Your rules strike the perfect blend of lighthearted & also not messing around. You really know how to relate to the kids--it's taken me 10 years of teaching to get that good! I think my favorite is #2...I've been known to tell my kids to pretend they're using their paintbrushes to comb the heads of tiny baby kittens.

  2. I like your rules. If only we could all make a set of our own rules, and then put them on a board like this one so that we might clearly inform other people about our expectations for them. Might make life simpler for all of us. ;-)

  3. I'm back. I missed so many happenings in the last two weeks! I'm SO sorry about your hand! I burned my with hot tomato soup a week ago, but it certainly didn't warrant a trip to the ER. So sorry. I also missed by a day or two Buddy's post. :( Wow, shocked to read that even though I know he was old. How is Buttercup fairing? Thoughts and prayers for all of your family.

  4. I love these rules! 1 and 2 may have even made me laugh out loud, along with 15. I shelve books while my son's 4th grade class has library time, and it kills me when some of them walk around empty-handed , shrugging because there "aren't any books." Oh, come on!

    And the new sign is very fancy and friendly. :)


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