Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Blame it on the Book Fair

I'm so sorry - I have been derelict in my blogging duties. I have lots of excuses why I've been absent lately, but today I'll choose just one to take the blame (because taking responsibility myself would be just too grown up of a thing to do, and it's always easier to blame it on something else).

I've been volunteering at Little K's school helping to decorate and set up for our Bi-annual Book Fair with my friend Marni. We were just talking the other day about how we got roped into this...errr I mean how we ended up volunteering for this job? The truth is, it's fun to do, we love working with the Media Staff (Hi Stacey) and it's a creative outlet. But it is a lot of work, and I'm happy to say, we are on track for a fantastic Grand Opening on Friday.

This years theme is "Destination: Book Fair. Read Around the World".

This is a close up of the main bulletin board inside the Media Center where the Book Fair is set up. Those red balls are Giant Push Pins marking the cities on our World Tour.

We can't take credit for all the clever decorations. Scholastic puts out a fantastic "How To" kit and even includes on-line templates and patterns for many of the ideas. Although, I have to admit, we often don't use them...because being the perfectionists that Marni and I both are...we think we can do better on our own, and so we sometimes try.

We made invitations for the Staff that looked like Passports. We try to keep the materials as low cost as possible, so the invites were made simply from construction paper and a few scrapbooking tools (punches and corner rounder). The "visa" stamps were created using MS Word.

The main entrance was decorated with images of children from various nations, with their countries flag and native greeting.

The Teachers Wish board is for families to purchase books to donate to the classroom libraries. Teachers fill out "request" of books they would like at the Staff Preview, so for the Book Fair opening, the suitcase pockets will be filled with wish list cards.

Scholastic provided a template for the suitcase pockets, but we chose to use a similar die cut from the scrapbook store. Much faster than cutting them all out by hand.

The tables are decorated with globes already owned by the school.

For several weeks the students have been coming in during free time and coloring Flags from all Nations. They were strung in banners above the book display tables.

Our attempt at a Hot Air Balloon behind the cashier table. Take another look - can you see it now?

Bulletin board borders were added to the cases and embellished with flags (found on a free clip art site and printed on cardstock).

Kids activities include Guessing Jars filled with Italian Pasta, Chinese Fortune Cookies and Mexican Tortilla Chips.

Hopefully you'll understand what I've been keeping busy with lately. My mom has also recently arrived for a visit, and we'll soon be off on a little road trip. But I have lots of projects lined up for Mum and I to do while she's here, so we'll be back to posting with a vengeance soon.


  1. This looks fantastic! You all are so creative, it's all so cute. I worked in a school for several years and our Book Fairs looked nothing like this, what a lucky to school! : )

  2. Hi! I was trying to find ideas for our Book Fair, and came across your blog. You sound just like me - versatile! :) (It's all in the marketing, girl.) Your fair looks fantastic - do you object to me using some of your ideas?

  3. Rhonda - absolutely - feel free to use any ideas here at your Book Fair. Many of there were in the Scholastic idea book. We may have done a slightly different version of what they have instructions for. Let me know if you need any more info - I'll be happy to share.

  4. I love the decorations you created. We are having our book fair in a few weeks and I was wondering if you created the children's faces from a template or free hand??

  5. Hi Ginger,

    I did draw the faces free hand, but they were very easy. I think it was the details (hair, hat, flowers) that made them stand out, and they were also just basic shapes. Good Luck.

  6. I too was looking for ideas for our Book Fair in Carmel, CA and came across your blog. What fabulous ideas you had. I am truly inspired! Thank you so much for sharing your great pictures.

  7. I know this post is from 2009, I'm a little late on commenting :) However, I love this and I'm so inspired. Do you know where I can find similar graphics/templates? I appreciate any direction you can give. You are very talented, Thank you!

  8. Some of the items were from the Scholastic downloads (guessing jar graphics), but most of them I created freehand using clip art images as design inspiration. The flags were clip art enlarged, and the Passport and Book Donation slips were created as a Word document and copied. this was such a fun project to work on.

  9. Would you consider sharing the passport/book donation slip documents? I would love to be able to take a look at it to create something similar to merge my Social Studies lessons with the literature we use in class. Thanks! :) Love your blog!


  10. My classroom theme this year is Around the World. I can't seem to find the How To kit for that fantastic bulletin board. Do you have a direct link I could use. I know this was done in 2009.