You already know how important your classroom library is when it comes to developing the next generation of strong, independent readers. It’s a simple, yet indispensable, teaching tool to meet the needs of your students and instill upon them a lifelong love of reading. Of course, once you have all your classroom library essentials in place, there are a few upgrades and easy things you can do to ensure your students are get the most out of their classroom library. Here are 5 extra things you can do to take it to improve your library.

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Designate a section for teacher and student picks
Much like the staff picks at your favorite bookstore, having a designated area featuring your own top teacher picks, along with student recommendations, is an easy way to promote literacy and introduce your students to a wide variety of books. Take it a step further by encouraging your students to test their power of persuasion by writing blurbs or reviews of the books they recommend.

Create an inviting reading environment
Create a book nook with bean bags, oversized pillows, and a lamp to make the time your students spend reading independently comfortable and enjoyable.

Create a running wish list of titles
To ensure your classroom library is stocked with books your students can’t wait to get their hands on, create a running wish list for your young readers to add to. You may not be able to fulfill every student request, but if you and your students are part of Scholastic Book Clubs, you’ll receive free books and resources, which can be a big help when it comes to keeping your classroom library freshly stocked with new and popular titles.  

Request feedback
Check in with your students every few weeks to see how they’re enjoying their classroom library and what changes can be made to make it even better. By requesting feedback, you’ll give students a sense of shared ownership and a renewed sense of responsibility for keeping it organized and thriving.

Introduce other forms of multimedia and quiet, hands-on learning
The best classroom libraries aren’t just stocked with books, they’re filled with other forms of media that help your students explore the world around them. Whether you add the school or local newspaper, high-interest magazines, a listening station featuring classical music, jazz, or educational podcasts, or a few quiet, hands-on learning activities, offering diverse multimedia learning experiences is the hallmark of the ultimate classroom library. 

These are just a few ways to take your classroom library to the next level and help your students achieve reading—and learning—success. Wondering if your classroom library books are properly organized to meet the needs of your students? Here are a few tips and strategies to help get you started.