While I think eBooks are a terrific development in literature, there’s nothing quite like the feel of a book in your hands. And there’s nothing quite like collecting those fantastic boxes of wonder and opportunity in your very own home library. And why shouldn’t our kids get in on the fun?
A children’s home library doesn’t have to be fancy, nor does it need be over-stocked. But when you show interest in helping your child set up his own library, you’re also communicating the importance you and your family place on books. Here are some ideas to make your children’s home library more organized, inviting, attractive and useful.
Setting up Your Children’s Library
For starters, your child’s home library doesn’t even need to be a bookshelf. It can be a crate or a basket or one of those cubicle cubes.
First, let’s consider if there is a place close to our library to curl up with a great book. Ensure there’s good lighting for those little reading eyes. Try furnishing this little nook with a beanbag or maybe a big pillow with a blanket. Make it inviting.
Organize Those Books
Get your child involved by encouraging her to organize the library with you. Certainly, if he’s passionate about it, he can even do it by himself. Feed her suggestions, as needed. Your child’s participation in the process will mean she’s more likely to keep that library organized and to use it.
Here are some ways you and your child may choose to organize the books, but I’m sure you can think of more:
- Organize by color. If you have a lot of differently colored spines, this can be an enchanting way to beautify that space.
- Organize by type of book (non-fiction, fiction, science-fiction, sports, science, history, etc.) Perhaps include a “to-be-read” section too.
- Organize alphabetically by title or author.
If you want, you can even create section markers from poster board. Use several different colors of poster board, cut to appropriate size and write a vertical label along one side. Consider laminating the marker for great durability.
Maybe you have room for a display area where the child can prop up their favorite books.
You’ll also want to consider rotating out books that your children have outgrown. These can be donated or shared with friends with age appropriate children. And for those special books with which you don’t wish to part, save them in a storage area for the next generation (hoarders unite!)
Here are some great ideas for children’s home libraries that other people who are not me have dreamt up: