Back To School: Bulletin Boards


You should know, that I started my blog for purely selfish reasons.  I had applied to be a presenter at a MAJOR librarian gathering.  I won’t give you the acronym…but let’s just say it’s really BIG.  Something similar to “March of The Librarians” on You tube. 
The seminar was to be on Bulletin Boards. 
Now you might say “ho-hum” but with budget cuts, students making out in the Fiction section and the occasional computer server crash…it’s nice to have some fun!  I LOVE putting together bulletin boards and sharing my ideas.  Unfortunately, there was not room for a Bulletin Board seminar this time around.  Perhaps in two years.  In the mean time, a blog seemed to be the perfect medium to present my ideas. 
I might reach many more fellow Hot library technicians this way.
First, look around your library. 
Do you have bulletin boards?  I hope you do.  I have 4 bulletin boards and LOTS of wall space. 
You can present information in an exciting ways and break the ice with students who might just trudge in, do their homework and leave with an eye catching BB. 
You don’t have any BB’s?  
Try requesting one.  Was that laughter I heard?  I can relate. 
You can also use a white board/chalk board or use your wall space.  Be careful of putting tape on your chalk boards.  In a later post I will talk about what I’ve done with all my wall space.  Or rather who I share my wall space with. 
Look at the bulletin board as a blank canvas hanging on your library wall…isn’t it inspiring? 
No?  Well, then that’s what I’m here for. 
Do any of you scrapbook?  Look at it as a giant scrapbook page if that will make it easier for your creative impulses to begin to flow. 
I will be posting bulletin board ideas each month.  At least two ideas, sometimes more.  I like to change BB’s frequently.  Believe it or not, I have seen some pretty uninspired bulletin boards  in my day (sorry) and I don’t mind being copied.  I don’t mind sharing creative things. Feel free to abscond with my ideas. If you give me some credit, great!  Muchas gracias. 

As a side note, I feel differently about sharing research and major projects….
So, it’s nearly time to get back to school.  That means it’s time to dust off the cobwebs and get creative….I mean you should get rid of the cobwebs, don’t just dust them. 

Welcome Back bulletin boards are always nice and fun to do. 
I found some fresh, new borders and posters at Michael’s Crafts.  They have the teacher section set up in July/August.  (It’s not called the HotLibraryTechnician section, but I forgive them.)

It’s nice to have one board that the students can refer to, for classroom/library rules, school information, dress code and attendance policies.  
A cute idea for the classroom or library is “What did you READ this summer?” 
The word READ can be cut out of bright colors.  Use a larger font to grab the student’s attention; utiylze your school district’s die cut machine ( if they have one) for a multitude of ideas. 

For a beach motif, I start with light blue paper as the background.  Free hand draw a sun, ocean waves, sand, star fish and sand pails.  Use die cuts if you have them available.  If you have a Cricut, or Cricut Expressions machine, you can have it do all the work.  If you aren’t an artist, (I know one HotLibraryTech who is) look on Google for outline images of of what you want to copy.  Even if you find one that is small, you can blow it up on the copier.  Then, I tuck color copies of  the book jackets, coming out of each sand pail tucked in the sand at the bottom of the board. 
Here are some examples for you:  These all can be found on Google. 

EMB_BeachThings_Emb1206576661733697671rygle_Sun_Outline_svg_med0439502918_bw668_xlgHere’s one of my favorite hints:  You can download book covers from Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Borders or Novelist. 

I like getting book cover images straight from Google.  Beware of school site fire walls though.  You may have to do research at home and print them out, especially if you don’t have a color printer at school.  I am often able to find cover jackets of books not yet  released.  My students are excited to see the titles that will be released in the fall.  They know that Mrs. Hot will purchase these for the library. 

Sometimes for ideas, I check the Highsmith catalog; they have posters and inspirational themes. 
The UPstart catalog is great.  We have ordered so many cute things from them, and I have gotten great ideas for BB’s.  (More about those later.)
Their products are geared more toward elementary school boards, but there’s no reason that Kinder’s -6th graders should have all the fun.   
Check out the ALA Graphics catalog when it comes in the mail. 
The one I saved has Ewan (“You have done well my young Jedi”) Mc Gregor in it.  He is pretty darn cute and the teen age girls think so too.  Of course, there is the Twilight READ poster. 
Don’t even get me started on Twilight yet; there will be many BB and counter ideas for Twilight. 
Remember New Moon comes out Novemember 20, 2009…as if we could forget. 
Do you order books from MACKIN?  We do, when we have funding.  They used to include a READ poster in every catalog, I’m waiting for my copy of Fall/Winter 2009/2010.  I laminate the Mackin READ posters and switch them throughout the year to brighten up a dull corner. 
This should give you enough to start those ideas flowing.  If you’ve gotten some inspiration from this post, please comment. 
Coming soon:  September Board ideas!

Explore posts in the same categories: Books, Bulletin Boards, High School Libraries, HotLibraryTech, Humor, Librarian, Librarians, Libraries, Library, Life, Teenagers, Uncategorized, You Tube

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3 Comments on “Back To School: Bulletin Boards”

  1. alwaysjan Says:

    When I moved into my third grade classroom there were NO bulletin boards as it had been used as a computer lab. My husband bought 6-foot lengths of soundproofing board at Home Depot. It used to be painted white on the outside, but now it’s sold natural and looks sort of like a big graham cracker. He drilled four sections right into the walls (conveniently when the custodians were at lunch – not that they really care). VOILA! I have two long bulletin boards that are covered with fadeless paper. That seemed pricey at first, but after four years of not having to change the paper, I’m a convert.

    Oh, 3rd graders they are so fun. I will have to come over and read your blog.
    Fadeless paper sounds great. I often use scrapbook cardstock (expensive) or construction paper from the warehouse.
    When I usually put up a background I use black….everything goes with black…and that’s the backing for the whole year.
    I save $ on that while I do other outrageous displays with 3D images.

  2. Joelle Says:

    I’m a huge fan of bulletin boards in libraries! I’m the library technician of a junior high (middle) school, but I have ZERO bulletin boards. They were all taken down before I arrived, as the previous library technician was only part-time and didn’t seem to have time to use them. I take advantage of some blank wallspace above my fiction section, and two half-walls of glass above some low shelves which I do displays on instead. Just making due with what I have!

    To me, libraries are exciting places, but to many kids, they can seem cold and intimidating, especially to those who haven’t been bitten by the reading bug. Having colourful displays and bulletin boards is a way of drawing kids in and inviting them to stay. Students who aren’t big library users will often find their eyes caught by a bulletin board or display in the library and be drawn to check it out more closely. It’s like a marketing ploy in a department store – hook them, then reel them in. We want our kids to become book consumers!

    My decision to become a library technician was partially because my local public library worked to create a welcoming atmosphere for kids when I was young. I only wish my school libraries did the same. A little effort and creativity can influence more that we may ever know.

    There are great websites with lots of inspiration for bulletin boards, and I have a few of mine on Flickr

    Hi – Thanks for the link. I try to reel the kids in with flashy bulletin boards and contests. The vampire genre is big at my school and I use it to my advantage. Look for more ideas – soon.

  3. Dawn Fox Says:

    I am loving your enthusiasm. Thanks, too, for the fresh ideas!

    Thanks for commenting.
    Hope you enjoy getting your room or library ready for the new school year.

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