Friday, November 16, 2012

The "What We're Reading" Wall

When I recapped the 2012 YALSA YA Literature Symposium last week, one of the conference ideas I mentioned liking was the "What We're Reading"board. I'm excited to say that, with just a small amount of supplies and staff time, we have a version of the board up in our children's area.

I have a relatively open wall above a table that will (in the next few months) feature my branch's early literacy computers. Until then, the table houses a rotation of things. Previously it was where you could find some play dishes and food. Now it is home to a bin containing markers and colorful Post-It notes. These are the only supplies necessary for the "What We're Reading" Wall.

I made a title for the wall using those same Post-Its and markers (use washable!), and I also put up a few demo Post-Its to give customers the idea of how to add to the board. In just a few days, the number of What We're Reading notes multiplied significantly. I love the reader response; not only are they reading socially, something I always think libraries can seek to facilitate more, but they are also showing me, the librarian, what they like to read--at least in the branch. I knew Dora and Dr. Seuss were popular, but I appreciate seeing that other less-obvious titles, like some of our horse books and past years' state award nominees, are still being enthusiastically enjoyed.

A "What We're Reading" wall has already proved to be a simple, engaging reading activity in the branch. It's beneficial for readers and library staff. Grab some markers and sticky notes and give it a try!

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