Jump to content

Menu

Book Organization Techniques


Recommended Posts

we can't be the only ones who have a lot of books and need some concrete help on organizing and keeping track of them all.

We have about 8 shelves (kinda like these) that we are going to consolidate into 1 area  this summer but I still would like some tips on organizing them most effectively.

Also, do you store board games with your books?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We tend to organize........organically, almost?  It's like they organize themselves. 😄

Adult books all go together

YA books are sorted into "his room, his room, and we only have one copy so it's going on this common shelf"

"Pretty" books, which are my leather bound copies of family favorites, are in the main room, behind glass so I don't have to dust so often.

School books are organized by topic.

Greek myths, Norse myths, and more Greek myths have a devoted bookshelf in the 11yo's room, though their real home is stacked next to him in bed, with a few that have fallen down the side and will spend the next two nights in the dusty underneath before he panics and can't find the ONE story he wanted to read that night.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

The kids have some misc books in their rooms, but most everything is in this room except curriculum. That gets a whole different shelving unit in a separate room. The tall shelves (it's actually 3 freestanding units) are organized by high school/adult books across the top. Then fiction chapter books arranged by title because I never remember author names and wouldn't be able to find anything. Then the shorter shelves are 2 separate units - science organized loosely by topic and history organized chronologically on one side, and picture books on the other side which are not organized at all. Math manipulatives and sheet music are in the baskets across the top and a few random big books are tucked behind the shelves.

Baby board books are in a basket in the living room.

16242145849026942923142220929352.jpg

  • Like 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've started exploring book apps to make and have found Libib.

I want to be able to keep track of which books I own, so I'm going to be giving this book app a shot--it supposed to let me track up to 5,000 books--does anyone actually own that many?

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I tried to scan all my books into LIbib, but that project lasted like 1 week, then I gave up 🙂

I organize books broadly by 1) type of book, 2) size of book -literature books on the same shelves, by size; history books on the same shelves by size, science books together, etc…. 

I don’t store games with books because it throws off the visual organization. My DH is a stickler for things “looking neat.”

Link to comment
Share on other sites

By genre: fiction/nonfiction/poetry/guidebooks. By origin of author (American,  British,  German are my main ones). By language ( may not apply).

By size (large hardcover illustrated coffee table type books vs paperback) , depends a bit on the available shelf heights.

Each of my kids had their own wall of floor to ceiling bookshelves in their rooms.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I have 3 three shelf bookshelves in the hallway of unorganized childrens literature. On top is instruments and on the wall is assorted paintings by all, so it's kinda their hallway.

I have 1 five shelf bookshelf in the hallway around the corner of homeschool materials. Bottom to top is mom stuff not used this year, mom stuff used this year, kid 3, kid 2, kid 1.

I have this in the living room with books by genre. I want another.

Photo albums are in a box in a closet because we have too many books.

We face our books weekly.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

We skew heavily towards humanities, so I have separate shelfs for Greeks/Romans/Norse, Medieval/Americas, Religion (grown-ups), Religion (kids), Folktales/Poetry, French kid books, German kid books, Foreign Language Textbooks & Reference.  Then kid fiction, divided into Picture Books, Read-Alouds and Mass Market Paperbacks I Don’t Care About.  (Hello, Harry Potter!) That leaves one lonely shelf for what I’ve labeled “STEAM”:  All of our science, art and math books.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

To the left behind the couch: School books and large history non-fiction picture books organized by subject.

Far wall: Unit to the left is mysteries. The rest is mostly fiction organized by author's last name. Several shelves have series. Two shelves have easy readers.

To the right: It's complicated. Lol Biographies on the far unit. Next unit has biographies but also a couple shelves of pretty books. Under the tv are children's books. The next unit has children's books. It also has a holiday shelf. The next unit has science books. The next has more school books - ones for the current year. Also a Tolkien shelf and a foreign language shelf. The last unit is mostly for my books - teaching, health, and non-fiction books that I particularly want to read.

20210516_155852.jpg

  • Like 12
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Kids have their own books in their rooms. My nicest books are in the living room upstairs.  Bibles and some devotional books are in a small bookcase in the dining room. I have a small bookcase in my closet, because I have more books than clothes. Lol

 

Yes, I have more than 5,000 books. I also have games, but they are stored separately.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

1 minute ago, Meriwether said:

Kids have their own books in their rooms. My nicest books are in the living room upstairs.  Bibles and some devotional books are in a small bookcase in the dining room. I have a small bookcase in my closet, because I have more books than clothes. Lol

 

Yes, I have more than 5,000 books. I also have games, but they are stored separately.

That is quite impressive! 

We used to have a similar amount, but they are largely in our storage unit back in Austin. Right now, we only have 4 bookshelves' worth, plus I've started reading solely on my Kindle, so my books don't take up space. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I donated a third or more of my books in the last year (we moved twice). But now that we are settled (hopefully), I’m rapidly reaccumulating… abebooks is not good for me…

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

9 hours ago, Meriwether said:

To the left behind the couch: School books and large history non-fiction picture books organized by subject.

Far wall: Unit to the left is mysteries. The rest is mostly fiction organized by author's last name. Several shelves have series. Two shelves have easy readers.

To the right: It's complicated. Lol Biographies on the far unit. Next unit has biographies but also a couple shelves of pretty books. Under the tv are children's books. The next unit has children's books. It also has a holiday shelf. The next unit has science books. The next has more school books - ones for the current year. Also a Tolkien shelf and a foreign language shelf. The last unit is mostly for my books - teaching, health, and non-fiction books that I particularly want to read.

20210516_155852.jpg

Still swooning! This is my dream 🥰

  • Like 3
  • Haha 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

10 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

That is quite impressive! 

We used to have a similar amount, but they are largely in our storage unit back in Austin. Right now, we only have 4 bookshelves' worth, plus I've started reading solely on my Kindle, so my books don't take up space. 

You'd have to be extra committed to have that many books in NYC.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/21/2021 at 12:36 PM, mathmarm said:

I've started exploring book apps to make and have found Libib.

I want to be able to keep track of which books I own, so I'm going to be giving this book app a shot--it supposed to let me track up to 5,000 books--does anyone actually own that many?

 

I use and like Libib.  It helps me keep track of what I have and lets me sort books into very helpful categories.  Even though my books are organized, Libib lets me do a quick scan of our home library and alerts me to where a book might be shelved if it could have multiple locations.  

In our house, I have my children's books (picture books) sorted into bins by subject, with labels on the bins and colored stickers on the books to help my children re-shelve them (kids are ages 3-8).  I have about 25 different bins, all with books sorted in ways that make sense based on my children's ages and interests.  We have shelves devoted to early chapter books, middle grade novels, and young adult novels.  I keep books I would rather my children not read yet on the higher shelves.  Outside of my picture books, all of our books are shelved by genre and then by author, with the exception of the adult history books, which are shelved by country and then time frame.

Libib shows me having around 4,800 books at the moment.  Between three reading-heavy degrees and ten years teaching in elementary and middle school classrooms, we have an extensive library.   Homeschooling has not help reduce that.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/22/2021 at 9:28 PM, Meriwether said:

 

 

Yes, I have more than 5,000 books. I also have games, but they are stored separately.

I should show this to dh! 🤣 We have around 400. He thinks it is way too many, but I feel it isn't enough! 

We only have one so I have gotten rid of a lot that we are done with. There are a few picture books I can't part with though. And in dh's defense we do move internationally about every two years so he doesn't want to have to move tons of books. But I love a house full of books! 

 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

I typed up a list of what books we own in Word. I group series together. Then before I purchase new books I check there first. 

So I have series listed together first, then the rest is alphabetically listed 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/22/2021 at 9:18 PM, Meriwether said:

To the left behind the couch: School books and large history non-fiction picture books organized by subject.

Far wall: Unit to the left is mysteries. The rest is mostly fiction organized by author's last name. Several shelves have series. Two shelves have easy readers.

To the right: It's complicated. Lol Biographies on the far unit. Next unit has biographies but also a couple shelves of pretty books. Under the tv are children's books. The next unit has children's books. It also has a holiday shelf. The next unit has science books. The next has more school books - ones for the current year. Also a Tolkien shelf and a foreign language shelf. The last unit is mostly for my books - teaching, health, and non-fiction books that I particularly want to read.

20210516_155852.jpg

I love this! I’m going to show it to my husband and tell him to get busy. 😆

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/21/2021 at 12:36 PM, mathmarm said:

I've started exploring book apps to make and have found Libib.

I want to be able to keep track of which books I own, so I'm going to be giving this book app a shot--it supposed to let me track up to 5,000 books--does anyone actually own that many?

 

I had about 7,000 books entered (in a different program) before I stopped. Dd was an avid reader, so books happen, lol.

-elementary fiction by author

-history by time period

-science together

-series together

-high school by course (special topics, modern history, etc.)

Now I'm getting rid of books because ds is not going to use them, not his reality. So I guess my hindsight is enjoy the stage but don't overbuy. See if you can get a teacher card with no fines through the library. Even my friends irl with lots of kids end up getting rid of most of the books at the end. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/20/2021 at 11:41 AM, mathmarm said:

Also, do you store board games with your books?

I divide games between light recreational (things people will choose to play for themselves) and overtly educational/therapeutic (things he would not choose for himself but for which I have a reason). Before I had them jumbled and couldn't keep anything straight meaning I always felt guilty about doing a recreational game and passing over educational, etc. Now I admit it, lol.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Following this.  I did a foolish thing late this winter and put all our books into the outdoor sauna (water- and critter-proof, lined with cedar so they're happy) to wait while we build them a new home.  Now the house feels so spacious!  We have a small house and no closets. We want to rebuild a wall of shelves we used to have but the piano is hogging all the room.  Musician dd and I believe the piano stays where it is, dh and two of the dc are for getting rid of it.  Non-negotiable, we're blocking consensus.

The pics here are helpful!

Edited by Harpymom
Link to comment
Share on other sites

On 6/22/2021 at 10:18 PM, Meriwether said:

To the left behind the couch: School books and large history non-fiction picture books organized by subject.

Far wall: Unit to the left is mysteries. The rest is mostly fiction organized by author's last name. Several shelves have series. Two shelves have easy readers.

To the right: It's complicated. Lol Biographies on the far unit. Next unit has biographies but also a couple shelves of pretty books. Under the tv are children's books. The next unit has children's books. It also has a holiday shelf. The next unit has science books. The next has more school books - ones for the current year. Also a Tolkien shelf and a foreign language shelf. The last unit is mostly for my books - teaching, health, and non-fiction books that I particularly want to read.

20210516_155852.jpg

I want it!  That is my dream room.   But that room is probably more than half the size of my entire house.  

We have a very small house (750 sq ft), no closets and very few walls that don't have doors, windows, a fireplace, or a heat vent that can't be blocked.  

Right now there are two narrow Billy bookcases with a set of cubes hanging on the wall between them behind the couch, two more sets of cubes under two windows on either side of our fireplace, a shelf over the top of doorways on one wall, another shelf over the top of doors in our bedroom, kids both have bookshelf or cubes in their rooms. 

Mine are basically sorted by school books, general reading for the kids, my general reading, non-fiction, curriculum and lab books for my classes.   These days there's starting to be more overlap between my general reading and the kids general reading. 

Many of our literature books (especially ones they've already read or ones that we won't be using for a couple years) and the vast majority of my science books are at the science center I run.  

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

 Share

×
×
  • Create New...