Scholastic book fairs can be fun! How far are you willing to go to make them a grand affair?
Take me for example, I go pretty wild to make book fairs fun for my students, teachers and the community!
Here are some ideas you can try:
Decorations - be sure to order the Book Fair Decoration Kit for your upcoming fair. I usually order two of them to make sure I have enough decorations to make the school feel like a book fair! The themes are always so playful and immediately invite fun right into your fair!
Always read through the Ideas Guidebook that comes in your Book Fair Planning Kit. It is loaded with ideas well beyond the decoration kit. You have to remember to look at these ideas a few weeks before your fair begins, otherwise you won’t have the time to go big!
Decorations also include decorating yourself! Dress up, be the pirate in the Bookaneer theme. Be the court jester in the Sir Readalot’s Castle theme. Be the camper in the Happy Camper Book Fair! Be the Book-Fair-Oh in the Reading Oasis theme. Be the adorable monster in the Monster theme. Dressing the part each day will truly endear your students to you. They’ll probably think you’re a little nuts… oh well, in my case, they’d be correct! You can have so much fun with the Fall 2017 theme: Wild West Book Fair, Saddle Up and Read!
For your teachers - schedule a book talk with your local Scholastic representative. They are often very willing to come in before school, after school, even during school to book talk items in the fair.
If this isn’t a possibility, use the tools provided by Scholastic to invite them to their own private preview of the fair. Serve some theme-related snacks and coffee or tea. By the way, have you ever reached out to your local bakeries or coffee shops for some donated breakfast items? You’d be surprised what they are willing to offer for free!
Starbucks has given us coffee and supplies for free! When teachers visit their preview, be sure to have plenty of the teacher wish list sheets so students can purchase a book for their favorite teacher. One important resource that is worth the investment is the Classroom Wish List Display Kit available in the Scholastic Dollar Catalog (#644430).
Another idea is to use your Scholastic Dollars and offer to your teachers $5.00 off or a free book under $5.00. It’s a small hit on your Scholastic Dollars earned, but it is a valuable token to show teachers you care about the building of their classroom libraries.
For your students - There are so many ideas that are presented in the Ideas Guidebook that can get students involved in the fun!
I remember fondly the Monster Theme. Students created a monster out of recycled materials. I displayed them in the library and students voted for their favorite monster. It was so much fun!
For the Bookaneer Pirate theme, Scholastic provided a pirate naming convention sheet. I was Jolly Roger Kid. I sent notes to my teachers with their pirate name inviting them to their preview. Students also used it to get their names. They loved it!
In your online Chairperson's Toolkit, be sure to look under Fair Files. Once there, choose the menu tab for Books, Activities & Contests to see all the goodies that have already been prepared for you. There you are sure to find something to get your students involved.
For your Community - Another worthwhile investment from the Scholastic Dollar Catalog is the Advertising Package (#563861). It has an 8’x42” banner and three lawn signs that can advertise, advertise, advertise your fair to the community.
Send out a personalized mail-merged letter to your families inviting them to the fair as well as to provide dates and times. Choose one night of your fair to be an evening event. A fun idea is to have a Date Night - where parents go on a date and grandparents or the babysitter brings students to the fair. How about planning something in conjunction with your Parent Teacher Organization? Dads and Donuts can truly be a hit!
As you can see, the ideas to go all the way to make a book fair fun are endless! The question is, “How far are you willing to go?”
Please share with us how far you have gone to make book fairs fun! We’d love to hear you ideas!