This spring, we learned that our littles were rejoining our middle and high school students. I work in a specialized program in OPS for our students on IEPs who are not ready to be mainstreamed. I wanted the library to become a space of inclusion where everyone is invited and seen. I initially panicked because being a K-12 librarian is entirely new. I did know there needed to be some heavy rearranging to make our books more accessible for all our students. I turned to the library Twitter PLN and found Kelsey’s Bogan’s tweet about her blog post - “Embracing Dynamic Shelving.”
Librarians, I was sold, and I went for it!
On a workday my library supervisor, Amy Soma, was gracious enough to come and reorganize our library as we “embraced dynamic shelving.”
It was life changing.
Our students instantly noticed and thought we received brand new books. This made me reflect that sometimes the traditional way of shelving is not what our students need. Dynamic shelving highlighted books they normally would not have checked out. Working with students on the autism spectrum, I have students that routinely checkout that same two books. I had one student who checked out a new book and was so excited he sat at the table and read aloud to himself.
Our manga and other sections were no longer constantly disorganized. Keeping a library organized is difficult but keeping popular sections looking appealing is hard. Dynamic shelving facilitated organization because books were better spaced and offered better browsing for students.
The only cons I found in dynamic shelving was learning a new shelving system and reorganizing when we received new books.
Do not be scared to try something new. Have fun reorganizing!
By Jess Winter
This blog is a joint effort by members of the NSLA Executive Board. We hope to provide relevant information, tips and tools to help you in your journey.