Tuesday, December 9, 2014

December: Library Scrabble Display

I came up with an idea to turn the game of Scrabble into an interactive library display. I wasn't sure if the display would be popular with my students but it turned out to be a total hit! Here is all the details so you can create a display of your own!

Before I explain each step, let me give you an overview of the scrabble "game" display. Each book was wrapped in a paper bag and had a scrabble tile taped to the front of the bag. Because the books were completely covered I wanted to give a couple of clues as to what the book was in the bag, in case a student wanted to check one out. I chose to use the first letter of the book title as the scrabble tile letter. For the point value of the scrabble letter I color coded it to represent one of 10 genres. I then created the different genres out of scrabble tiles, in their "color" and used those as decor. Any student could come up to the display, rearrange the scrabble tiles (books) into a word and then they would write that word on a clipboard that I provided next to the display. If the word had not already been used that day they got a cookie. The highest scoring word each day won a book. You could checkout one of the scrabble books, I provided numbers on the back of each scrabble book and a sign out sheet to allow students to check out the books. If you checked out a book you got to choose the next scrabble book that went on the display, and you got first dibs at spelling a new word, thus having an advantage and the best chance of getting the highest score that day.

How To:

Step 1: I complied a list of letters that could be used to spell the most amount of words. I repeated some letters, I tried to get a list of at least 34 books to begin my display and to have a back up of books (this will come in handy later). I then went through the stacks (I chose to only use fiction books) and found books that began with each letter.

Step 2: Using a guide I found online, that gave me the point value for each letter, I made up "Scrabble tiles" for each letter. Here are the ones I used, please feel free to use them:
You will notice the point value is color coded to match our 10 genres.

Step 3: I made up decor to allow students to easily identify the genres:
Step 4: I cut out the scrabble tiles and taped them to brown paper bags. I wrote a number on the back of each bag.

Step 5: I wrote the barcode of the book and the number on the bag that matched the book, on a spreadsheet, I then put the book in the bag.I put a signout sheet on the reference desk for students to write the number on the bag when checking out the book.

Step 6: I made up signs explaining how to play the game and how you would get a cookie for playing.

Step 7: I hung a sheet next to the display for students to write their words on:
Step 8: For the top of the display I made a Library Scrabble sign:

That's it! The display was a lot of fun, try it at your library!

Friday, December 5, 2014

December: Read, Read As Much As You Can Display

It's Christmas time and the library has a new "Gingerbread Man" display. I called the display "Read, Read as Much as You Can. This was the perfect display for using our new Silhouette Cameo. Everything you see on the display besides the brown "gingerbread" border was made using the Silhouette. It took a while to create all the files and have the machine cut them, but the end result was amazing! For the books on the display I pulled all our books with candy, cakes, sweets... in the title.

Here are some of the files I used to make the candy, they are all pngs and will need to be brought into the Silhouette Studio and be traced, with high pass filter unchecked.
The Wrapped Candy

The lollipop, back, swirl and stick


Monday, December 1, 2014

December: Star of Wonder, Star of Night Display

This year for one of our winter themed display I chose to do a star theme. I called the display "Star of Wonder, Star of Night." This display was one of my first attempts at using our new Silhouette Cameo machine that was recently donated by a library parent volunteer. The Silhouette is amazing and I can create all kinds of projects. For this display I drew up two designs in Illustrator and then brought them into Photoshop where I saved them as .pngs. We did not do the software upgrade to the Designer software on the Silhouette, but I have learned some easy work arounds to create basically any design I want in the Silhouette Studio.

For those of you who have a Silhouette or other paper cutting machine, here are the two png images, please feel free to use them:

If you bring them into the Silhouette Studio you can use the select trace area and then uncheck high pass filter to make this a cut file.

For the books on display I chose every book that we had with star, shine, night.... in the title.

For the rest of the decor I found star images on Pinterest and made them into cut files. I also made some 3D stars from old book pages using a tutorial I found on House Revivals

That's about all there is to it!