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Old 07-18-2012, 04:57 AM
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Default Book Storage In Multi-Age Setting

I have big kids (4.5, 4, and 3) who treat books fairly nicely (we do have issues with two of them wanting to stick the books between their toes or try to turn pages with their feet...). And of course, putting books on the shelf correctly is a huge issue. They end up in a stacked slippy-slidey pile, or stuck inside each other, etc.

And then, we have two babies--one 13 months and one 11 months. And they of course, in an age-appropriate way, are exceedingly rough on the books. They are at a perfect level for babies to go pull them off the shelf and it's extremely satisfying to make such a giant pile of mess, so they do it often. They then end up ripping pages and tearing covers off, partly on purpose and partly from standing on their pile, or they happily eat the books. It's a mess and it's annoying and it's positively destroying my precious book collection.

So WHAT do I do?! I don't have any spaces where babies NEVER go, I can't put the books any higher or the big kids won't be able to get them, and my best idea so far is to velcro plexiglass to the front of the book shelf and make the big kids ask for books...but I don't know if that would satisfy licensing as being "available" for the big kids.

Rain gutter book shelves are not an option at this juncture. And yes, I have a nice collection of baby books too, and they get most of the same treatment (minus the ripping and tearing).
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Old 07-18-2012, 05:48 AM
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I have mine on low shelves inside of a walk-in closet. The older kids can open the door and go in there get books whenever they want to, but the infants and toddlers can not open the door yet. Plus the closet is located in a room that mainly is used by the older kids. The littles only go in there with supervision. But of course this would only work if you have a closet available.
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:15 AM
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This is an issue for me also and while I have taken measures to improve the situation it still could be better.

I have a shelf like this http://compare.ebay.com/like/1306087...Types&var=sbar that I put board books on for the babies and then I have dishpans that I labeled for with categories and photos of the different styles of books that are placed on the bottom bookshelves for the older toddlers with regular books stacked on the upper shelves for the school agers.

This does help tremendously and I have an area that is semi secluded in a comfy corner that I find the babies really don't go to often.
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:34 AM
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I have book rails that are in reach of older kids but out of reach of the littles. I have another lower rail for board books for them. I rotate the books on the big kid rail from a bookcase in another room.
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Old 07-18-2012, 07:50 AM
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I forgot to mention that I keep a few board books (just a few out at a time) for the littles and I just keep them in a basket on a low table in the playroom. I am looking for a better idea for them because they do tend to dump the basket a lot instead of just taking out one at a time as is to be expected with that age group.
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Old 07-18-2012, 08:05 AM
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You could also put the books in some organizational bins that are easy to open for your big kids but the infants/toddlers wouldn't see as a mess in the making so they wouldn't go near it. That's what I do with my play kitchen food or anything that I don't want my toddlers/infants to get at. Yes, you wouldn't be able to teach the big kids how to properly put the books away on a shelf, but at least you wouldn't have to worry about your books being destroyed.
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