Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Ch-ch-ch-changes! (Part 1)

Our school library is small. We have 1700 students in grades K-12, and we have over 20,000 books in our collection. I wish we had more computers and more study tables for the students, but we don't really have enough room for more of either of those things.

I have been hoping that the funding would come through to expand the library, but with budget times as tough as they are, it seems it will be a while before that happens.  So this summer, I decided to make the best of the space we have.

In order to do this, I knew it was going to take: 1) a major weeding of the collection; and 2) new shelving (which was going to cost me some serious money).  It took me 2 full weeks to weed the non-fiction collection, with the help of my trusty library assistant, her daughters, and 2 awesome high school students. (I still have more weeding to do, but I got a great start this summer.)

Then I met with all the library furniture vendors that I met at the American Library Association Annual Conference (ALA) in the exhibit hall.  There are many great library furniture companies making beautiful shelving at affordable prices.  I decided to purchase 42" mobile shelving in a medium oak finish (to match my existing shelving) from Gaylord. If you need shelving or any library furniture, I highly recommend that you talk to Jon Moretti at Gaylord. He is helpful, nice, and will get you a great price.  What I liked most about Gaylord's mobile shelving is that the casters are attached to a metal frame instead of the wood itself.  They're really well-made.

The best thing about our new shelving is that I can now monitor the entire library from anywhere I am in the library. Our old shelves were over 7' tall; our new shelves are 42".  As one 4th grader said: "The kids can't hide behind the shelves anymore! Now they're going to have to act mature!"

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