professornana (professornana) wrote,

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Floating Away

When we donate books or give them away, we often call it "floating." I think I stole this term from Donalyn Miller (thanks, Donalyn). At the office, books end up in one of 4 places:

1. My shelves. These are books I will keep after reading because I want to do some PD with them or reread them. I have 3 bookcases, all double shelved plus a book cart of books that need shelf space. So little shelves, so many books should be a mantra for me.

2. On the chalk ledge in our conference room. I place books there for other faculty members to take. Any orphans go to Location #3 below.

3. The give away shelves. This is a place in the hallway where I place books I have read and think would be great for our preservice teachers. They know to come late Tuesday or early Wednesday because Tuesday is my office day and a semi-weeding day.

4. Into a cabinet for our SHSU charter schools for next fall. I am building the basis for some classroom libraries as the budget will be tight for the schools.

But Tuesday, I learned about some other factors when it comes to the books floating on. Our custodian pulled a children's book from the give away shelf that morning. I asked her is she had young children, but she told me she has been taking some of the picture books so she could learn to read English (insert Kleenex moment here).

We had guest for our faculty meeting Tuesday. Each took some books for their kids. I had arranged some books on our conference table so Karin Perry and my colleagues could look them over. They graciously let them float on.

I love having a job where floating is an actual practice, where we can contribute to the literacy of a larger world than we even envisioned.
Tags: books float on
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