Tried it Tuesday! C.L.A.S. Classroom Library Accounting Software
As part of my independent reading program that I’ve blogged about here, I’ve got a huge classroom library. I now have at least 800 books and it’s still growing! Last year, I used the old school library card system and boy was it a NIGHTMARE! So over the summer I researched to find some type of software to automate this process that I could afford myself since my class account was long gone. I’m so glad I found C.L.A.S (Classroom Library Accounting Software)!
This software is DEFINITELY several notches above those Apple programs that are free or very cheap that let you scan the original barcode of the book with the webcam of the computer. And I’m a huge believer in the whole “You get what you pay for” thing. For $135 you get 1 classroom license of their software (on CD, mailed to you) and a USB bar code scanner.
I cataloged all of my books over the summer (it took about eight full days!). In the software, you print bar code labels for all of your books and affix them to the front (or wherever) on the book.
Each student also has a “library card” that you are supposed to print on business cards, but I can’t even fathom the management involved with not constantly losing those! So, I printed them all out on regular paper, cut them out, and taped them to the front of their red folders that they’re required to have with them everyday for my class so they’ll always have them.
Now I’m ready so that when the kids want to check out books, I just scan their folder and then scan the book they’re checking out. But the absolute BEST part is that when students return the books I collect them in one spot, then just scan, scan, scan and they’re all checked in. No hunting for cards anymore!
The one major difference (I think) between a classroom library and school library is that I’m often teaching or engaged with students while others are checking out books. Since I’m not comfortable with having them use my teacher computer where the software is, I just write a chart on my board and if I’m not at my computer checking out books, the students simply write the information in the chart and I can go back later and enter all of the information into the software.
It’s also *so* nice to search for a book to see who has it checked out, or print a report of all outstanding or overdue books so I can harass students to return them!
I love my C.L.A.S. software!