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Thank you all so much for responding!!!  

I, too, am using a rolodex(hate it), but I noticed our
high school librarian had moved hers to card boxes
like our old inventory card boxes.  I think that must
work so much better; I think we'll switch this year. 

I always kept my cards in boxes (I was lucky, I
inherited them and they were purchased many years
before to fit the size of the cards). There were
dividers for each class, all third grades together,
second etc.

 I bought a looseleaf binder at my local office
supplies store (Staples) that was designed to hold
business cards.  I sorted all of my kids library cards
into homerooms, as that was how they visited the
library.  Labeled the pages and then just had to open
the binder to the proper class when they came in and
were ready to check out books.  The library cards I
purchased were the size of business cards and had the
barcode and name printed on the same side.  I also
ordered green cards for the girls and blue cards for
the boys, just to make it a little easier to find the
right child.  I did not have an aide and we had 600
students so anything I could do to make life easier, I
tried !!!

Several of the elementary teachers in my district
print out patron 
barcode labels and stick the labels on a sheet by
class. That way they can add labels if new students
come to class.

We tried the Roladex method and didn't like that
either.  Then we tried putting the cards in a large
book by class--got too unwieldy.  I finally thought of
copying the barcode number and pasting it on a shelf
marker, then laminating the shelf marker.  

We use paint sticks donated by Home Depot for students
to use as shelf markers and then check out.  We put
them in a tupperware-like container (from the dollar
store) for each class and the markers come to the
library with the class.  If a student wants to check
out during open library, they bring their shelf marker
as a pass.  This takes some time to make the initial
markers, but the next year you only make markers for K
and new students.

1-I printed out the students' bar code numbers in
Follett and put them on the thick, multi-colored craft
sticks in a K-8 school.  Each grade level had a
different color--they stayed in baskets in the library
to be pulled out when the kids came for check out and
the sticks moved up grade levels with the kids so I
only had to make the new students 'cards' each year. 
I had nearly no budget and it was an easy way to do
it.  (Probably where I am headed this year).

2-I had a K-5 school with a large budget and I
designated a color for each grade level, printed out
the bar codes on the specific colored paper and
laminated them with a small laminator in the luggage
tag type plastic holders.  Again, they were collected
at the end of the school year and moved up with the
kids.  All of the teachers got a kick out of seeing
the students begin to wear their library cards on
lanyards like the teachers wore their IDs.  The
principal even began passing out lanyards as special
rewards for the students.

Instead of a rolodex card, I use a blank catalog card
and print the 
barcode on an address label for each student.  I can
customize the barcodes by homeroom.  I place the
barcodes on a notebook ring and give them to the
teacher.  The library code serves as a pass from the
teacher for the student to come to the library.  It is
the student's responsibility to keep up with the
barcode.  Yes, some will lose them.  The kinder and
first grade teachers keep them on the ring.  Older
grade teachers have a place in the classroom to place
their cards.  It is so easy to replace the card if it
is lost. 

I keep the library cards in a file tray,
alphabetically by the teacher's name.  When a class
comes, I spread all the cards on a table near the
checkout desk.  Students retrieve their card (even PK
& K!) and present it to me at the checkout desk.  
When the class leaves, I gather up the unused cards
from the table and the stack of used cards and just
drop them back in the file tray.
Several of the librarians in my district use
transparent business card pages in a 3-ring binder,
with all of one class on a page or two.
Also, our automation system can print a single page
with all students in a class and their barcode  and
those can be laminated and/or kept in a binder by

We have no physical cards at all. We just type in the
first few letters of the  students last name and then
select the correct one. We have 1100+ patrson -
students, faculty and staff.

bought plastic sheets at Staples that hold business
cards (10 to each 
and business card stock (an Avery product although I'm
sure other 
make it).  I put the sheets in a loose-leaf binder,
separate each grade 
a divider, and alphabetize the teachers, and each
class.  When a class 
in, I just put a sheet of paper before and after their
section to make 
easier to find.  The students help by pointing to
their names since 
they can 
see the bar codes from their side of the counter.  The
card stock isn't 
cheap but I reuse, covering bar codes for a year or
two then using the 
side.  When there are too many layers, I'll start
anew.  Hope this 

Mari Ferguson, K-8 Librarian
Theodore Jamerson Elementary 
Bismarck, ND

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