Saturday, January 27, 2024

Valentines Banner and Cards, 100th Day and More!

 Who doesn't love having a few snow days in January to get something accomplished that equates to sharing some freebie 💗love💗 with other librarian friends? 

I needed a little something to go over a book display for Valentine's Day, so I created this 'Love to Read' banner

valentine's day, thematic banner, library decor

Lots of schools are gearing up for their 100th Day of School Celebrations, so I thought this book number writing activity would be fun for kindergarten and first grade to complete in the library or for sharing with classroom teachers. 

number writing, writing to 100, 100th day of school, library freebies

I previously created some Christmas cards that lots of people used for centers/stations, gifts for nursing home residents, and for students' families, so I thought a set of Valentine's Day cards would be fun, too. 

Valentine's Day, library freebies, library centers, library stations

I'm a second-year member of the Missouri Association of School Librarians  (MASL) Curriculum Committee (formerly Lesson Plan Database Task Force) which allows me to curate and create free lesson plans for librarians for the MASL Lesson Plan Database. Be sure to check out some of my latest additions for The Library Fish by Alyssa Satin Capucilli and Dot. Unplugged by Randi Zuckerberg. You could use these for regular library lessons or they would also be great as substitute plans. 

Missouri Association of School Librarians, MASL, Lesson Plan Database, free librarian lesson plans, free library lesson plans


Friday, September 15, 2023

Free Apples and Pumpkins Banners for Classroom and Library Decor!

Are you looking to add some fun fall or autumn vibes into your classroom or library decor? Apples and pumpkins are the perfect symbols for this beautiful season! I'm excited to offer you two FREE downloadable thematic banners featuring apples and pumpkins with a variety of traditional background patterns and colors. Brighten up your learning space with these adorable decorations that will get your students or readers excited about the season! These are perfect for your fall reading displays!

(Click the picture to download my Apples Thematic Banner for FREE)

(Click the picture to download my Pumpkins Thematic Banner for FREE)

While you're in my TPT Store, be sure to check out my Scarecrows Thematic Banner, as well! 

Be sure to follow my TPT Store to get updates when I post new products and freebies! I hope you enjoy these thematic banners!

Friday, July 29, 2022

25% off my Entire TpT Store for Back to School 2022 & Giveaway!!!

Just in time for Back to School, my entire Teachers Pay Teachers store is on sale for 25% off August 2-3, 2022! 

My products will be listed at 20% off and when you use the code BTS22, you'll get an additional 5% off! 

Now is a great time to move the items from your Wish List to your cart for amazing savings!  

Be sure to visit my store and follow me on TpT for updates when I add new products or hold additional sales! 

Enter to win my giveaway below! 

Tuesday, July 26, 2022

How I Get Students to Return Their Library Books

I know you probably experience the same week-to-week struggle of trying to get students to return their library books on their check-out day. The struggle is real! 

Here's a super simple idea I use that might be beneficial to you for the upcoming school year. 

I keep a sticker chart in which classes earn a sticker for having two or fewer lost, overdue or damaged books on their check-out day.

How does a class earn an On-Time Returned Books Reward Party? 

  • K-2 must earn 10 stickers (I see them twice/week.)
  • 3rd-6th must earn 5 stickers (I seem them once/week.)
Once a class has earned all their stickers, they get to celebrate with a reward party during check-out the next time they come to library. I only have the party during check-out because I can't afford to sacrifice an entire class time for the party due to still needing to stay on track with lessons since Library is in the Specials rotation.

I print half-sheet copies of our reward party letter and send it to the teacher to send home to families at their earliest convenience. This is an example of my letter for this year that I created in Canva. (I like to coordinate as much as I can with my theme for the year. It just makes me happy!)

Since it's too hard to predict the weather a week or more in advance of a party, I quit using extra recess as a reward party option. Missouri weather is just too unpredictable! However, extra recess may be an ideal option for you.

Additional Inexpensive Library Party Ideas:

  • Movie and Popcorn  
  • Teddy Bear Picnic
  • Glow Party
  • Crafts
  • Water Day
  • Extra Recess 
  • Picnic on the Playground
  • Dance Party
  • Yoga  
  • Freeze Dance 
  • Musical Chairs
  • Escape Room
The sky's the limit! It's all about whatever works for you, your time frame, your budget, and your sanity! ;) 

The free time party just works for us because of the novelty of students getting to bring in their own things that we can easily do in the time frame classes have for check-out/free time. 

How it works: 

  • Allow students to bring in a game of their choice to play during check-out, along with an optional snack. If they don't bring a game, we have plenty of STEM resources for them to use.
  • Water only (due to carpet and potential damage to books.)
  • Students are only allowed to eat at a table to keep the snack mess to a minimum. 
  • I let students know the games they bring are their responsibility and they are allowed to choose whether or not they want to share their games with others. 

In addition to our on-time returned books chart, I send weekly email reminders to families with students that have lost/overdue/damaged books. When our overdue books become excessive, I sometimes make a post on our library Facebook page to encourage families to look for their child's book or pay to replace lost/damaged books. 

I also do an end-of-year reward for students that have all their books returned or their fines paid, but I'll talk more about that at the end of the year. 

What do you do to try to get students to return their books? What kind of parties do you have in your library?