As I mentioned earlier, I have been pondering a Dewey Alternative system since attending AASL. The more I thought about it, the more sense it seemed to make, but where to start? I didn't want to abandon Dewey wholesale, but Metis didn't satisfy me, and so I kept pondering.
And then, one of my fabulous fellow Massachusetts librarians, Halley at Dartmouth High, gave a presentation to MSLA, the state library association, about her new, hybrid Dewey system. Halley had worked to develop real-language descriptors that fit her library, but kept the numerical organization of Dewey intact.
That's when I knew I had my solution. Halley has been extremely gracious in answering questions and sharing her classification guide with me, and today, I began taking the first baby steps into the brave new world of Dewey hybridization. I'm starting small, and in pieces (trying to minimize disruption to active areas of the collection and confusing my volunteers even more), and it's definitely time consuming, but the more I think about how this is going to translate into reality, the more excited I get.
My first section is HIST - WORLD WAR II - HOLOCAUST. I elected to not do a WAR modifier in front of WWII because I want to keep it to three descriptors, and we have a large Colonial America project that happens, so I wanted those labels to read HIST - COLONIAL AMERICA - SUBCAT. And it's great, because just this morning I wound up pulling together books not just from the 940s, but also from the 800s. Eventually, I'll also pull in fiction and even picture books, as well as biographies, that relate. And then they'll all be in one place, to allow for easy topic correlation. It's a take on Metis' "Imagination" and "Ideas" interfiling, but with my own twist.
If you're curious to see my thought process, you can follow along on my Trello board. I think this is going to be really, really great.
My name is Ms. Bery. I am a PK-8 library media specialist in the Boston area. In addition to being a certified school librarian, I am also certified in instructional technology, and have a strong interest in exploring and integrating technology in new and exciting ways in the classroom.
I am also a 2016 PBS LearningMedia Local Digital Innovator, and a 2015 recipient of the Massachusetts School Library Association's President's Award.
Check out the Sandbox for apps and websites I've found useful in supporting student learning and creativity. I also (very occasionally) review children's and young adult literature on my book reviews page.
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