Buddy Reading Center update

Hi friends!

I’ve had some interesting conversations about the buddy reading tent (read that post here if you missed it), and I want to share those with you. I’m thankful for our blog readers who leave comments and share their great ideas with us!

1) Brent says that instead of backjack chairs, he uses the brightly colored plastic Adirondack chairs from Lowe’s. They look like this.

These chairs sell for $17.98 here in San Antonio, and they’re available in several bright colors. I noticed that they have 5-star reviews on the Lowe’s website. But how do they stand up to elementary school students? Brent says they’ve lasted a year so far.

Important tip: As you do with everything else, teach your students the procedures and expectations for sitting in these chairs before you turn them loose. No fingers in between the slats. No leaning the chair back. Don’t sit on the arms; put your rear in the seat.

OK, now I’m wanting some Adirondack chairs for my library, too! Those will add color and enhance our campground theme!

As they say in the infomercial, BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE!

2) An anonymous commenter said that she not only has a tent in her library, but a canoe, too! Students can read in the tent or the canoe during their library visits AND can come read in the library as a special treat from their classroom teacher.

I know that my students would love to sit in a canoe and read. Wouldn’t yours? Now, where will I find a cheap canoe?

Do you have a great reading area in YOUR library? Please share it with us!

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    1. I just saw those chairs on Saturday. At Lowes trying to pick up the rain gutters the school told me I was in charge of installing to control the cable clutter in the computer lab (seriously me and drills … we don’t get along). And Lowes couldn’t find any record of anything. 7 10 footers. Had my Dad and his truck on Saturday. Won’t the rest of this week. #needlesstosayimnothappywithlowesortheschool

      1. Ms. O, I like the colorful chairs, but it seems crazy that you are responsible for picking up and installing gutters in the computer lab. You are an awesome librarian, but are you really trained in computer cabling and school remodeling? #justcrazy

    2. My theme this year is The Secret Garden and I have a bisto set where reding buddies may come and read:). Love your blog!

    3. I love reading your blog, I always get such wonderful ideas! My library has a cast iron clawfoot bath tub for a reading center!! I’m not sure where it came from, but when I came to the school it was in the assistant principal’s office and she wanted it out. We painted it some bright colors, put a couple of small bean bags in it and placed it by the windows. The kids love it!!

      1. A bath tub…hmmm…I bet that’s a real treat for your students, especially with the bright colors and bean bag chairs! You could start a lifetime habit of reading in the tub! Thanks for sharing.

    4. Cari, I love your site and your book! I’ve wanted to do centers for several yrs, just wasn’t sure how to get started, etc. This is my 14th yr. as elem. school librarian. I had a small boat (my hubby built) as a reading center for about 5 yrs. I also had a tent for a couple of yr. Still have it, planning to put back out this yr. I took the boat home last yr. when some boys started tipping it. Will probably bring back later on. I started doing themes in the late 90’s when I was at two schools and trying to keep up with seasons, etc. was too much. I’ve done a garden theme, 3 regions of NC, quilts, ocean & beach to name a few. Most recently I did a lodge theme to try to really capture my boys attention. I even had a mounted young deer and Tundra Swan donated by a teacher, many decoys, trees, etc. Everyone loved it and I carried it over into the next yr. This yr I’m going for COLOR! My theme is High Flying Adventures in Reading! I purchased kites of different shapes and bright colors, one is a parrot. Also using balloons, and hot air balloons. It’s really a bright happy place this yr. I just set up the book care center this morning and a puzzle center. My first class is in just a few minutes, excited to see how things go. Thanks so much for all your help and suggestions. Two other elem. librarians & I are using your book this yr as a book study for our PLC and implementing centers.

      1. Sue, I think the boat idea is great! I think a beach theme would be fun, too, and we could have a boat and tent at the beach, right? I would love to see a photo of your high flying adventures in reading decorations. Maybe you could post a photo on our Library Centers Facebook page.
        Please keep me posted on your library centers this year! I think you’ll love them!

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