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We have our barcodes on the student ID cards( with picture)- and the student
must present it for any library materials. I have instructed my staff to
NEVER give anything to a student without the ID. Knowing a student's name
only helps those students who have made themselves known - for good or for
ill. The shy or quiet student often remains nameless. We also want to teach
the student the responsibility of carrying an ID at all times. Our students
must always carry their agenda books at all times - another source of ID.

If it was up to me ( and thank God it isn't) I would have all students wear
photo IDs - which would aid in hall problems or for emergencies. As it is,
all staff must wear ID badges at all times -- and one is spoken to by the
administration if the ID is not worn.

I fail to see how we differ from the employers who require everyone to wear
a photo ID.

For emergencies we will use other ID - public library card, driver's
license, etc. but I am relucant to do so.

This policy has totally eliminated any cries of "I never took that book


Dr. Allan O'Grady Cuseo, Librarian
Bishop Kearney High School Library
125 Kings Highway South
Rochester, New York 14617

Education in the tradition of the Christian Brothers
585-342-4000 x231
585-342-4694  (FAX)

-----Original Message-----
From: School Library Media & Network Communications
[mailto:LM_NET@LISTSERV.SYR.EDU]On Behalf Of Kremyar
Sent: Monday, May 05, 2003 8:44 AM
Subject: HIT: PRIMARY: Patron bar codes - cards or notebooks? PT. 1

Thanks SO MUCH to everyone who responded - you have really given me a lot =
to think about! I'm leaning toward the barcode on a shelf marker idea, but =
I'm still not sure. To those who requested a hit, this input should really =

Evelyn Kremyar=20
Library Media Specialist
Woodridge Primary School=20
Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio=20

We have 600 high school students and we keep the barcode with name, grade, =
locker # and graduation date on a roladex by the circulation computer. =
Usually we just ask for the student's last name and don't even use the =
roladex to scan. It's very easy and only requires a bit of maintenance at =
the start of each year - adding and deleting patrons.
Jenni Elliott
Episcopal High School
Bellaire, TX

I am in a K-5 school and all kids have library cards
(even the kninders), works out great! They are
responsible for their own cards and bring them with
each time they visit the library (just like the public
Diane Whitney
Greenbrook School
Hanover Park, IL

I use the card system.  I am in a K-5 school of about 950 kids.  I keep
each class' cards filed in an old card file box (single sleeve) behind
an index card with the teachers name at the top.  Before each class
comes to the library, I pull the cards and scan them to see which
students still have books checked out.  I place the students cards that
can check out on the counter.  After the lesson or story I call the
names of the students that cannot check out and send them to the tables.
 If a student thinks he/she returned a book we check their card again.=20
Usually when we read out the title they suddenly remember that one was
left at home, in the classroom, etc.  We also give the teachers tote
trays to return their class books in after morning announcements.  It
works well for us.  Good luck with your new system.

Mary Sneed
Jenkins Elementary

One of the factors here is if the children always come
to the library with the same teacher.  We do not have
self-contained classrooms here at my school (grades
1-8).  Sometimes the children come with their reading
teacher; sometimes they come during science; sometimes
they come by themselves.  I don't even use cards.  We
just type in the first few letters of their last name.

Jill Brown, LMS
Nardin Academy
Buffalo, NY

We use the one page per class system.  It is fast and efficient for our=20
K-1 school.
Bonnie Harrison
Director of Media Services
Douglas School District
Box Elder, SD 57719

We have barcode IDs for our high school kids that they use for both lunch =
and the library. But I (personally) never want to turn away a student from =
the library just because he can't remember his card (AS IF I didn't have a =
similar memory problem! tsk.tsk.) I keep a notebook handy for those =
helpers of mine who don't want to look up the students number on the OPAC =
and then move to the CIRC module to check him out. Just my 2 =A2 worth!=20

Joan Silvers
Savannah H.S.=20
Savannah, MO 64485


I was in a high school library for 14 years.  I was at that school when
came in....I used an address book with the barcodes on the right hand
side of the page leaving the left hand page for the student name and
grade level, etc.  With this format, I just "recycled" the numbers each
year as students enrolled and departed.  It really saved on money for
"new" barcodes.  I covered the departing student's information with an
address label and began again.  With the use of hot keys, I rarely used
the book for anything except the initial setup of the student's
barcode.  I used their last name to locate their record. =20

This year, I moved to an elementary library and was fortunate to have
the retiring librarian with me for about 6 weeks.  She used "sentence
strips" that had been cut in half.  She handwrote the student's name,
grade, teacher's name and Homeroom Code number on the card and placed
the barcode on the right hand side of the card.  Once the student's
information had been verified, the card was then laminated.  In theory
it works fairly well and in practice it's not bad.  The cards are placed
on the table before the class arrives.  As the class comes in, they find
their card and sit at that spot.  Even the Sure Start children are able
to come in and find their spot at the table because we have their
picture on the card, too.   I find that nearer the end of the year,
these "sentence strips" are mangled a bit, but still usable.  At
present, I'm looking for some "card stock" or some kind of paper that is
thicker and that can still be laminated--hoping for a longer life.

Since my handwriting is atrocious, I am looking for an alternative
format where I can use the computer to produce a nicely printed card.=20
I'm looking at the "index cards" by Avery as an option to the sentence
strips.  I do like the card method, versus the book method for
elementary, because I don't always remember the names of the children,
and they cannot always tell me their full name.  With a student body of
about 350 Pre-School-6th grade students, I don't want to be in a
guessing game. =20

Good luck on your quest for methods.
Jeanette Hayward
Butzbach ES
CMR 452 Box 356
APO  AE  09045-0356
Department of Defense Schools
Butzbach, Germany

I use the notebook system with the barcodes of one class all one page.  =
used to do the cards and it was awful.  This is quicker more efficient =
definitely less cumbersome.  You can teach the students their numbers if =
think they should think of it like a public library.  I think the =
isn't as important as they fact that they understand they can check books =
from either place.  Good luck in your decision.   Ruie

Ruie Chehak, Library Media Specialist
Sallie Jones Elementary School
1230 Narranja
Punta Gorda, FL 33950

I am in a K-5 school.  With my 1-5 students, I use shelf markers
with bar codes on them.  They leave the shelf markers in the library
in canisters marked with their teacher's name.  They can do their
own check-out when I am not there.  It also helps me learn their
names.  This is great if you don't have a helper.

I use the notebook for kindergarteners, though.  Many of them are
not ready to check out their own books.

Maggi Rohde, Library/Media Specialist
Allen Elementary School, Ann Arbor, MI
Evelyn, I work as a Librarian's Assistant in a library at a  K-5th =
school with 1,010 students for the past 10 years.  We have the Follett =
with the patron and book barcodes.

I am in charge of setting up the patrons and assigning barcodes, etc.  =
know what I do?  ...........  at the beginning of the year, I rearrange =
patrons (students) in their new homeroom batches.  I then scan update =
homeroom and make new cards for the new students.  I then rubberband each =
homeroom batch of patron cards together and file them away in handy =
card trays that I bought at Wal-Mart.  I then store them away in my =
hardly ever touched again during the school year; until the end of the =
when I then alphabetize them as one big group for each new grade ready =
arrange new homerooms from for the next school year.

I got so tired of juggling around a big old fat patron barcodes book on =
work was constantly in the way of my work.  Sooooooo.....I =
started typing in my students' last names to bring up their names for=20
check-outs.   I just flat-out didn't need that gawky book in my way.  =
eventually learn 99% of their names and can ask if you don't remember them =
that big problem.  You get really fast at =
through plastic pages......the students don't have to keep up with=20
cards........the students don't feel like they are just another number =
they are in the cafeteria.  The poor babies have enough on their =
plates without having to keep up with some dumb little library card or =
to remember numbers.  You would be surprised how fast the little=20
Kindergarteners catch on to it.  I usually have to keep the class lists =
for the first couple of weeks until you catch on to little dialects, =
and cute little pronunciations; but you catch on soon enough.

Judy Magee
Madison Sta. El.
Madison, MS    =20


I use a binder with top open clear sleeves to hold each class.  3rd=20
graders have no problem recognizing their name so the accompanying=20
barcode can be scanned.  All of the thirds are capable of scanning =
own books in and out by the end of the year with a buddy watching the=20
screen for computer messages.  I would not use cards, too easy to lose,=20
too difficult when patron cries about not having  a card.  i also print=20
out a list of abc order in the whole school for the student who changes=20
teachers. the sheet is easy for my teachers to use when they come in=20
during open hours.

We have a book that is organized by grade level-- then broken down one =
class per page.  We were kicking the idea of organizing by day of the week =
and which classes came on whatever day, but that didn't allow for the kids =
who come at an alternate time to exchange we just stuck with =
the one class per page in grade order. We've only been doing it for a few =
weeks, but so far, so good :)

Good luck!

I did the "card" system by putting the barcode on a tagboard shelf marker.
Then I wrote their name in large print down the side of the marker.  Then

I passed them out, and then when they had selected the books they wanted,
they would put their books on top of the counter with book barcode facing =
and their shelf marker barcode on top of the stack.  I was able to do a
whole class of check out in less than 5 min, when I was pressed.

It worked very well.  I did a lesson on how to use shelf markers, how to
check out.  Then tested then to see if they could find all of my "mistakes"=

when I went to do it.  They had to tell me the mistake and then what I
should have done.


I use 4X5 index cards that I buy from Office Depot.
 One side has the barcode, the other has an address
label with student ID, homeroom, and home address.
A coworker and I were discussing this a few days ago
since she is going to a new school.  For the first
few months, the kindergarten assistants give the
cards to the children, but now they find their own.
 Since their last name is first, it is a learning
experience.  One assistant highlighted their first
names.  Also, before we scan their books, we check
nametags and call the child by name.  We alphabetize
the cards for each class before we put them away.=20
Ours is a transient school, lots of new kids moving
in and out, so the cards are easier to add or discard.

With the notebook, if you put the barcodes on paper,
you'd have to change the sheets each year as the
child moved to another teacher.  We use the same
cards for five years, putting a new label on each
year.  If we can take old labels off, we do.  If
not, we haven't had any problems with the labels
falling off. =20

At the end of the year, we put all the cards for one
grade level in alphabetical order.  With the start
of the new year, we put on the new labels and sort
them by teacher, adding new students and discarding
the cards for students who have moved.  Since many
of the children attending the new school will
transfer from our school, I'm passing on the cards
to my coworker.

Hope this helps.

Carol Savage
Library Media Specialist
Hawk Ridge Elementary School
Charlotte, NC

I use the card system with K-5 and it works well at all ages. I put the
cards in a plastic basket and the students locate their card and bring it =
the checkout desk. Especially at the beginning of the year I do not have =
ask students their name, I can call them by name which helps me learn =
name.  I also don't embarrass or disappoint a student by not remembering
their name, getting a sibling's name etc. At the beginning of the year =
kindergarten I call out the names and have them line up in the order of =
cards and then check them all out. This is until they know their printed
name. Once the class can recognize their name I use the same system as the
other grades. Hope this helps.
BTW - I use the backs of card catalog cards for barcode cards.
Diane Mentzer
Library Media Specialist, Technology Coordinator, + Webmaster
County Computer Educator of the Year for 2000
Paramount Elementary School
Hagerstown, MD
The cards are definitely NOT too difficult for Kindergarten - I even use
them with my PreK students.  The names on the printed barcodes are rather
small, so I take a sharpie marker and write their first name in large
letters below the barcode for grades PK-2.  It really helps the PK's & K's
to reinforce the spelling of their own names.  99% of my PK students
recognize their own name before Christmas break, and so do the K's.

And it really speeds up checkout.  I cannot possibly remember over 480
student's names, and asking them their name at the desk takes time.    =
the cards, I simply repeat the name when they hand it to me (that way if
they have picked up the wrong card they realize it) scan the card and lay =
aside, scan their books and they're on their way.   (Note:  for the PK &
K's, I also read the name of the book they are checking out each time,
sometimes pointing out certain letters, etc.  - they really love that!  If =
get in a hurry and forget, they remind me!  Even reading titles,  I can
check out a class of 22 students in less than 5 minutes.

I also use the cards when a student withdraws to make notes about any =
they are missing, the date they withdrew, and which school they transferred=

to.  I make notes on the back of dates contacted about missing books, etc.
and keep them in a card file.  At the end of the year I can quickly
calculate how many books were "lost" due to move-aways.  I include that
statistic on my annual report.

I spread the cards on a table top near the circ desk.  I can see at a =
how many cards are left - and figure about how many students have not yet
checked out their books.  Some of my classroom teachers even use the cards
to make notes of who is reading chapter books, and who is still in the =
readers, or who consistently does not bring their books back on library =

Leah Hawkins, Librarian
West Hurst Elementary
Hurst, TX
  Go with the notebook.  It'll save you lots of headaches.  K-2 kids don't
carry wallets/purses generally so if you do cards they're not only going =
forget them, they're going to mangled and they're going to be fumbling =
them plus the books.  I've used the notebook system for 10 years now and
it's been terrific.   I put the teacher's barcode on the same page too =
I do a separate page for teachers and other staff.
Good luck,
Joanne Proctor, Librarian
Most Pure Heart of Mary School
Topeka, KS

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