I make a ton of books with my preschool students throughout the year. They’re fun to make, and they get kiddos interested in writing and reading. Needless to say, my students like to read their books over and over (and over and over). This is great for teaching them how to read, so I don’t mind the rereading one bit! A variety of people have asked me about storing children’s books during the year. To which I answer . . . BOOK BOXES! Book boxes hold student-made books, as well as books used during guided reading and literacy groups. Each child in my class has his own book box, labeled with his name and stored near our literacy center.
The advantages of using book boxes in the classroom (and at home):
- Book boxes keep the books a child is reading (or learning to read) in one place! Anything that helps keep the classroom organized is a good thing. 🙂
- Having her own book box gives the child ownership over the reading process. This makes the child more interested in learning how to read.
- Book boxes make it easier to keep multiple books organized for each kiddo. More books = more reading fun!
- The teacher has an easier time keeping track of each child’s books when using book boxes.
- The boxes are all in one convenient location (usually near the literacy/reading center). This makes it easier for the teacher to use them during reading groups. This also makes it easier for the students to access them at any point during the school day.
The children’s name kits are generally the first items to be placed in their book boxes. From there, we add books as children make them. If/when a child is ready for guided reading books, those books are placed in the book box as well. Student-made books are sent home as needed to make room for new books. Book boxes are an easy way to hold individual students’ materials for literacy groups and guided reading. Keeping the same books in the boxes allows the children to reread familiar stories.
Book boxes can really be made out of anything that works for the teacher and her classroom — old cereal boxes, old bits of cardboard, etc. For the last few years, I have used these cheap magazine files from IKEA. I simply change the name label each year. These boxes (as well as their homemade counterparts) work great storing children’s books in the home.
affiliate links included for your convenience
After 3 years of use in the classroom, though, the cardboard files were getting ratty! So I switched over to these more durable bins from Really Good Stuff. They’re sturdier, and the different shape fits the classroom shelves better.
Most of the items held in the book boxes are student-made books. I absolutely adore making books with students! The books we make include repetitive, predictable text. The illustrations vary. Sometimes they’re just clip-art the children color in, and sometimes artwork created by the students act as illustrations. Having the children so actively involved in making books makes the experience meaningful for them. Some examples of student-made books are listed below.
Some kid-made books my students have loved (and there will be more to come):