Saturday, October 15, 2011

What took me so long?

It's my 5th year as a school librarian, and this fall I planned my 9th book fair at school.  I don't know why it took me so long to figure out that putting all the pens, pencils, pencil sharpeners, erasers, and other "toys" on a display board was the way to go!  Doing this accomplished 2 things: it took the focus off the "toys" and put it on the books (score!); and it kept the "toys" out of little hands who couldn't buy them.  A great side effect of this was that my blood pressure stayed low because I didn't have to watch this stuff like a hawk as I did in the past.

Disclaimer: this took me about 4 hours to put together. I borrowed a piece of peg board from my dad, covered it with white butcher paper, and then poked holes through the paper where I wanted to hang the items. I used kite string to tie the items to the board, because that's what I had on hand (free = good).  For my next book fair, I'm going to buy a piece of peg board, paint it white, and hang the items with clear plastic ties.  Now that I know the idea worked, I don't mind putting a little money into the project, especially since the peg board will last several years.


  1. Why thank you! :) It has worked really well for us. Hope it works for other librarians, too!

  2. I do the same thing. Except I buy foam board from the dollar store and hot glue the items to the board. It takes no time at all to set it up! I like the way you organize yours. I organize mine by price. :)

  3. THIS IS BRILLIANT!!! Oh goodness I need to find peg board before my bookfair in September! It makes so much sense. I noticed you still have the bulk items still on display, or did you have them behind your desk throughout the event?
    - Krys

    1. Yes, we just kept them behind the circ desk then. Now, we keep them in my office (which is RIGHTTHERE) on carts and on a bookshelf. I leave everything in the original containers and just group them by like items so they're easy to grab when the kids want them. If I sell out of something, I'll even sell the one from the peg board. Which is great, because then I know I'm really OUT of that item. I try to restock the popular things if possible. :) You will not regret doing this! It takes a long time to set the peg board up, but it's worth it!

  4. Oh my goodness! We are definitely doing this at our fair this month. Theft of this stuff is a HUGE issue for me, not to mention the stress of watching over everything constantly.Thanks you for posting this great idea!