The Elementary School Library Makerspace
A Start-Up Guide
by Marge Cox
December 2017, 135pp, 8 1/2 x 11
1 volume, Libraries Unlimited

Paperback: 978-1-4408-5338-8
$45, £35, 40€, A62
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-5339-5
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

How do you start an elementary school library makerspace while still balancing all of the current school library tasks in place AND staying within your budget? This book will show you.

A must-read for elementary school librarians interested in starting a makerspace at their school, but who are concerned about the cost and are looking for curriculum links for getting started.

Makerspaces are a powerful way to expand a school library’s influence as an educational partner in the school community. However, many elementary school librarians and educators are hesitant to consider adding a makerspace to their programming due to concerns about costs. This book focuses on effective ways to start a makerspace in your school on a shoestring budget while simultaneously supporting curriculum standards and inviting the collaboration of other members of your school community.

Today’s school librarians have many responsibilities and often face a shrinking budget. The Elementary School Library Makerspace: A Start-Up Guide is a one-stop shop for learning the specific steps to successfully starting an elementary school library makerspace, without getting behind on managing your current school library tasks and responsibilities or blowing your budget. You’ll learn how and where the makerspace movement started, and why; understand why today’s young students crave hands-on experiences; and receive dozens of makerspace examples for each grade level by content area, including ones for language arts, math, science, engineering, arts, social studies, and technology. The book also covers how and why to track particular numbers regarding program performance, explains how to use creativity to start your makerspace with minimal dollars, and outlines how to make your PR efforts in letting others know about your school library makerspace effective in engaging many possible audiences.


  • Features ready-to-use, reproducible curricular lessons to use in a makerspace environment
  • Provides specific ideas on how to create and fund a makerspace with very little money
  • Presents specific advice on how to staff and run an elementary school makerspace while maintaining all other library services
  • Includes helpful ideas to encourage community involvement
  • Helps advance the teaching of curriculum standards from theory to actual understanding
Marge Cox is currently the library media specialist at Veterans Memorial Elementary School in Naples, FL. She began her educational career as a middle school home economics teacher. She received a Masters of Library Science from Indiana University in 1985. Since that time, she has served as an elementary media services coordinator, media services director, weekly newspaper book review columnist, adjunct instructor, and coauthor of Libraries Unlimited's The Media Specialist in the Writing Process. While residing in Indiana, she was active in the Indiana Reading Association, served as president of the Association of Indiana Media Educators, and won two awards from AIME: the Peggy L. Pfeiffer Service Award and the Danny Gunnells Intellectual Freedom Award. In 2015, while she was the library media specialist at Veterans Memorial Elementary School, the school won the Florida Power Library Award. In 2016, the VME program was named School Library Program of the Year by AASL.


"This book is a well-designed, timely professional resource. . . . it is not only a good book for getting started, but also a good book for those in search of ideas related to what is being taught in the classroom for existing library makerspaces. This is the book’s strength. All activities are ready to use, simple, and follow a step-by-step design that can be copied (copyright information is included on each page). If elementary librarians are thinking of starting up a makerspace or just looking for some quick ideas for different subject areas, this is a book they will want to read. Recommended."—School Library Connection, May 1, 2018

"[A] good option for those seeking ready-made lessons that require little preparation."—School Library Journal, June 4, 2018

"[A] lot of helpful, practical ideas for library instruction and faculty collaboration."—Booklist Online, September 6, 2018
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