I have always had a fascination for books so naturally libraries feel like a second home to me. I couldn’t think of a better way to roll out of this spring break than to jump into prepping for National Library Week!!
There a million and one ways we could celebrate National Library Week. However, we are only working with five days here! So, I have narrowed many, many options down to very general and malleable top three ways to celebrate libraries at home or in the classroom! (Each of the three avenues should be easy to differentiate to any age or grade level!)
1. Celebrate National Library Week Through the Arts
Music: explore music through the library or about the library with your children/students. In our PreK classroom we will be singing songs such as “If You’d Like to Read a book” and others found at The Library Adventure. These songs not only talk about libraries but they are great ways to work on listening, language, and pre-reading skills.
- For older students it may be fun to utilize resources in the school/community library to research musicians, music genres and other music history.
Crafts: The students will enjoy making their own book marks and there are SO many ideas online for all ages. Help them build pride and motivation for reading by creating their own masterpiece to hold their place in a favorite book!
- Print free bookmark templates online for students to color and decorate.
- Make fun reading pointers to follow along with while reading! (We will be sharing our tutorial for this fun craft soon!)
- Make bookmarks and other crafts to give as gifts to the librarians who support the love of learning and reading all year long! (National Library Workers Day is Tuesday April 10th! Help our Liberians feel the love!)
- Create visual art pieces of/about libraries and hang them around the classroom or donate them to the school or local library.
- Teach the children how to make their own books and have an “authors corner” or “book signing” during the week to showcase and share their work with their peers!
Dramatic Play: preschoolers love it when we change up their dramatic play area. They will explore a variety of skills by running their own library in the dramatic play center! Provide props, teach them the roles of reader, check out clerk, book return clerk, and story teller and watch their imaginations grow!
- For older students: Turn your classroom library into a full functioning library with a new checkout system, exhibit schedule and coordination (display art/science/history projects), and research lab (computer and technology area).
Literature: Read books about the library or the profession of a librarian. Also, a child of any age can author and illustrate their own books! They can even create and bind their own books. Guide them in theme and topic or let their imaginations run wild and build on the classroom library with their own writing!
2. Celebrate National Library Week Through Involvement & Research
Explore/Visit: visit your local library to see all of the possible activities and services available. Older students may be interested genealogy resources, database accessibilities, and book clubs. The youngsters will enjoy the story times, art activities, puppet theaters and other various activities available.
Learn: Students may enjoy learning about the history of libraries! How did libraries get started? Did you know that the largest library in the world is our very own Library of Congress?! Last week, I had the opportunity to visit this inspirational library! I will share more about that adventure later this week.
3. Celebrate National Library Week by Focusing on Your Personal or Classroom Libraries!
Host a Book Club: Hear the students thoughts and feelings about a story time book or a book the whole class is reading independently. Organize comprehension/plot questions and map progress throughout the story.
Become Book Critics: As a class create a rubric to conduct book reviews as books are read through the year. Add a rating system like “rotten tomatoes” rates movies.
Make DIY book stamps: A personalized sticker that reads “This book belongs to the library of_________” will encourage feelings of pride in building their own personal libraries! Some of the greatest minds in history made it a lifetime goal to obtain, read, organize and display their libraries! (Watch for our tutorial later this week.)