A Guide to Building an Effective Classroom Library for Independent Reading

  • If the lifeblood of the literate environment is student access to text, its heartbeat is the classroom library. Readers need to engage in considerable amounts of choice, independent reading. It is important to support students by offering a rich, well-organized collection of books from which to choose. Home or classroom libraries offer engaging texts of varying genres and levels of difficulty that are developmentally appropriate and culturally diverse. All students need to be able to find something that they can read and want to read with ample opportunities to share their thinking about books with other students in the class and through writing.

    An Effective Classroom Library has:

    • 50% Fiction books and 50% Non-Fiction books
    • A wide range of reading levels (2 to 3 years above and below grade level)
    • A wide range of culturally responsive books
    • Multiple copies of popular titles and text sets
    • A rich variety of genres
    • Digital Texts, eBooks, Multi-Media

Designing and Managing a Home or Classroom Library

Pages Navigation

Genres of Written Texts

    • Realistic Fiction
    • Historical Fiction
    • Science Fiction
    • Biography/Autobiography
    • Mysteries
    • Poetry
    • Myths
    • Fantasy
    • Content Areas
      (Science/Social Studies/Math)
    • Reference Materials