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Organizing children's books...

These book bins were purchased from Lakeshore Learning Materials

I have a secret love for children's books. Even before I had kids, I was purchasing them by the dozen! Isn't that what all Elementary Education majors do? ;) I also shamelessly purchased gobs of paperbacks from the Scholastic book orders... can you relate?? So what can you do to keep this growing collection from taking over the entire house?

Keep in mind... your kiddos don't have to have access to all of the books, all of the time. Consider designating certain book bins or [bottom] shelves to rotate your books. Determine how you would like to organize them. Is it by categories or alphabetically by title or author? Maybe your kids are starting to read, or are avid readers. You may want to partner up with your child's teacher and sort them by reading level. Don't forget to make a pile of "retired" books to donate! You can also bring you books to Half Price Books and get some cash.

Whatever you choose, be prepared to put some work in on the front end. Rest assured, though, that once a system is in place, adding new books to your collection will be a breeze! Once you have an idea of how you want to categorize them, gather every book you own and begin the sorting process.

{If you have a lot of books, this might be overwhelming. There may be piles upon piles of books that will make you want to give up and throw them back on the shelves as they were. Take heart! All organizing projects look messy before they get better. The work will be so gratifying when you're done - the local library will be calling YOU for tips!}

If you choose to sort by category, some suggestions for primary aged children might be:





beginner reader


colors & shapes




life lessons

TAG books

If you have elementary aged kiddos, try using these categories:



fairy tale

realistic fiction

historical fiction


non-fiction (history, science, etc)


by series

Don't feel you have to choose one method over the other, either. For instance, you may sort some books by series, and others alphabetically. There is no one-size fits all for organizing, so it may take some trial and error to determine which system works best for your family.

Once you have sorted them into the categories of your choice, you'll have to find a place for them. I recommend a "central" location for the majority of the books. Then, you can have a basket or bookshelves in each of the kids' rooms for some of their favorites and/or bedtime reading. In my home, we have an organizer next to the front door as well that holds library books (a bin for the public library, one for the elementary school, and one for the preschool). This keeps them from getting lost in the shuffle, as they are often due in a week's time.

That should be enough information to get your started! If you're stuck, I might know a gal who is able to help ;)

Happy Organizing, friends!

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