February Friendship Fun!

Hi friends!

Are you feeling like you’ve got too much stuff and not enough time? I most definitely am! I feel like I’m knee deep in research projects with one grade, then another grade comes in, ready for a read-aloud. I scramble for a good picture book to share.

When we did a lockdown drill and I had to take a first grade class into my library closet, they were wide-eyed at the assortment of STUFF in there. I might use it someday! (Right.)

I’ve been thinking through a new approach to my library planning, and of course I want to share it with YOU!

Here’s my plan…

I’m gonna come up with a theme for each month, and then organize my bulletin board, library centers, and read-alouds around that theme. I can put all of the materials for that theme into a tub, label it and store it until the next year.

I’m really excited about the possibilities of having an organized closet, and a brain that isn’t overwhelmed.

I’ve spent about 70 hours in the month of January creating the Friendship Fun bundle for us.

This 45-page product includes book hooks from chapter books, picture book suggestions with discussion questions, friendship songs and finger plays, a bulletin board center, and five more library centers related to the friendship theme. You can use these friendship centers along with your regular centers related to library lessons or other projects.

Here’s a preview with sample pages.

For a sneak peek at part of this packet, you can download the printable friendship bookmarks for free! You can print these out for your students to color, especially during the Valentine month of February!

I’m really looking forward to executing this organizational plan. I do NOT like the feeling of being overwhelmed and never getting caught up! It really wears me out.

I’ve already used this strategy with December and our library sweet shop. And I like the way that I’m able to build on the theme by using it year after year. I can add new things if I want to, but I already have a strong base of decorations and centers. I have a plan.

And this will also help me to clean out that library closet. I like the idea of organized, labeled tubs, instead of random stuff on the shelves.

How about you? Are you feeling overwhelmed right about now? Have you come up with any good strategies to make it better?

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    1. I do want to say you have been a great inspiration to me with your centers. It is my second year as librarian at my school and you have made my second year WAY better and more organized than my first. 🙂

      I haven’t pulled all my resources by month into a box but I did buy magazine boxes to put all the books I use together and I labeled them. And while I don’t use whole month themes I do like to have a theme for 2 weeks at a minimum. I think that having a larger box for all the center stuff together for a month might be great. Right now my stuff is stored by type. So every month I have to look through all the puzzles for the right one, and all the games, etc.
      Thanks for your blog!

      1. Thanks for your kind words, librarian4. I’m starting to buy my own read-aloud books and set them aside more and more. My stuff is stored by type right now too, and I have the same issues of trying to find things when I need them.
        I think I will stick with whole month themes because my bulletin board is gi-normous and I can only handle changing it once a month!

    2. I LOVE LOVE LOVE your Read-aloud Hooks in this package!!! This is my first year as a librarian and I have realized that it’s not practical for me to read an entire chapter book aloud. It would take us all year! But I would love more suggestions about great books and which pages/chapters would really hook kids and make them want to read the book.

      1. Thanks, Mrs. Senter! It took me a long time to choose those, and I’m glad they are useful to you! I wish we still had time to read whole books aloud, but at least we can try to hook them so they’ll read the rest on their own! I will definitely keep including those in products I create. I appreciate your feedback.

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