What To Do With All Those Excess Children’s Books

The end of the yard sale season is winding down here in the U.S., and there is barely a sale I attend where at least one children’s book is not being sold. There’s usually more, much, much more. Some cheaply priced, some not so much. This is only a First World problem, though; there are children in this world who own not even one of their own and have no access to a library.

Extra Childrens Books

What do YOU do with your extra children’s books—the ones your children have outgrown, forgotten? Gulp, I dare say, you may have some children’s books that were never fully appreciated and went  unread. I understand, but certainly someone else might want your extra children’s books…

  1. Give away. My friend from my high school days had her two children pick out about three or four of books from their personal collection to give to my daughter at her baptism. We love them! The books were obviously pre-loved, gently worn from many multiple readings—an absolute guarantee that M and I would love them too!

    "You Are My I Love You" by Maryann Cusimano Love; "Babies" by Susan Canizares and Pamela Chanko; and "Sushi" by Amy Wilson Sanger

    “You Are My I Love You” by Maryann Cusimano Love; “Babies” by Susan Canizares and Pamela Chanko; and “Sushi” by Amy Wilson Sanger

  2. Donate your extra children’s books to the library. My hands are almost shaking in excited anticipation of our local library’s semi-annual book sale next month. For donating 120 minutes in sorting and organizing time, a volunteer receives admission to the pre-sale—a chance to buy any available books before the crowds arrive! Ooh lala. Last year, our Bismarck Veterans Memorial Public Library raised around $15,000 from selling donated and discarded books for a $1/pound. That’s 15,000 pounds of unwanted books! What a great fundraiser! Donate your extra children’s books today!
  3. CRAFTS–Eek!, *gasp*, Noooo! Yes. Warning: This isn’t for the faint of heart children’s book lover. Any damaged children’s books you have—ones with torn or missing pages, maybe a scribbled page or more that couldn’t be cleaned (see my previous blog entry on cleaning children’s books here)—these children’s books can become fodder for crafts. Go ahead, cut and rip, creating a personalized greeting card or even this larger canvas of design I found on Pinterest:

    http://aubreycrawford.blogspot.com/2012/09/williams-room-diy-quote-on-canvas.html

    Children’s books can be used for art, if you DARE to use them that way. This artist chose to enlarge the art of a favorite Dr. Suess book: http://aubreycrawford.blogspot.com/2012/09/williams-room-diy-quote-on-canvas.html

  4. Keep your favorite children’s books, of course, maybe in that box that you will give your child when she turns 18—the one you might have to store for them until they have storage of their own. (See my previous post: What to Do with Kids’ Artwork–Besides Trash It When They’re Not Watching.)

    I want to invest stock in Mess-Free Markers! From a young age, M has scribbled on anything she can--toilet seats, books, paper, screen doors, sofa cushions...the list goes on...I love it, kinda. What an artist, what a mess.

    I want to invest stock in Mess-Free Markers! From a young age, M has scribbled on anything she can–toilet seats, books, paper, screen doors, sofa cushions…the list goes on…I love it, kinda. What an artist, what a mess.

  5. Have your own yard sale, garage sale or rummage sale. Group children’s books together by theme (Example: I bought ten mini board books in a plastic baggie for fifty cents) or by author, and sell them cheaply. Remember, you are trying to get rid of these extra tomes, not necessarily get back your financial investment. [Side note: I’m still rolling my eyes at how much I spent at a bookstore on only THREE new board books for my friend’s newborn daughter. Imagining her growing up with these stories though, THAT warms my heart.)

So what have I left off this list? Do you have an idea or experience in shedding those extra children’s books from your bookshelves? I so wanna hear what others do with their excess children’s books.

5 thoughts on “What To Do With All Those Excess Children’s Books

  1. Great ideas…one more date box/container with books to look at later. It’s so hard to let go but time sometimes help. Once the day arrives, take another look, may have more ideas what to do or to whom to give them 🙂

    • So great to hear from you, Catherine! You are such a positive person and I love getting feedback from you. According to Google, the Australian kilo is worth $1.06 to the American dollar, just a little bit less. Or is it a little bit more? I can never keep that straight. Lol. In December, I will be posting a blog entry about my favorite finds of 2013–so many of them came from my library sales! Looking forward to keeping in touch. 🙂

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