Let’s Play Librarian

Here is our library area at our house. A few cheap shelves, a throw rug, and bean bags in a small unused area of the house makes a great learning nook.

Since we have our own little library, we decided to “play” library. Just grab some books, double sided tape, small envelopes, index cards, a notepad, pen, and stamps.

Put a piece of double sided tape on the front of the envelope and stick it to the inside cover of the book.

To make it easier for my guys, I tore the flap off of the envelope like this.

Place an index card in the envelope.

When you go to check the book out, be sure to have your librarian take out the index card and stamp it. I made my kids take the card completely out and lay it next to the book. I did not want them getting tempted to stamp their books.

Any good librarian knows that you have to keep track of who has which book. So have your librarian stamp their notepad with the same stamp.

Be sure that they write the name of the person that checked out the book. Sometimes we play track down the overdue book, too. :-)

Even non-writers can do this fun activity. My daughter is two years old and loves to be a part of the library. She stamps and stuffs the index cards like a pro.

Now that I have my kids all trained, please do not tell them that all of the books are really scanned and monitored by a computer system in the library. They have too much fun with this!


Kim is a contributing writer for No Time For Flash Cards, a mom to a toddler, a preschooler, and a foster parent, too. She juggles her day by trying out fun activities and crafts with the kids. After all, she is just a big kid herself. See what she has been up to over at Mom Tried It.


  1. Alison says

    What a fun play idea. My kids would be totally baffled by this though, so ‘old fashioned’ :( Everything in our library is done digitally, it’s even self-serve!

  2. says

    I get so nostalgic when I open a book that has the old check-out envelope! Maybe I’ll take my kids out to my hometown library the next time we visit Grandma and Grandpa-they’re still operating old school.

  3. says

    This idea actually started due to an episode of Backyardigans, “The Masked Retriever”. They use the stamp method. So my kids were familiar with it from that aspect. We usually put on a mask and become The Masked Retriever immediately after playing this. :-)

  4. Pattyska says

    Love this idea ! Our town library the books are really scanned and monitored by a computer system but they do stamp your due date on a sheet of paper on the back of movies and books . So our home library we pretend to scan the books & movies and then stamp them.

  5. Hilary says

    Awww. This is such a good idea! :) I can’t wait till my son is old enough to play stuff like this. (He’s four months.. haha)

  6. Norlin` says

    How cool! My kids were playing librarian the other day. I didn’t think of index card and envelope. Must try it! Our library is still old fashion. So this is something my kids can so relate too!

    Thanks heaps!

  7. says

    I teach preschool and I bought card pockets at the dollar store. They were $1 for 25 and then we have a library time each week where they check out books. My children at home do the same thing and they love it!

  8. Lori says

    When they’re a bit older, you can have them create their own card catalog! What is the title? What is the author? What is the subject? Write it all out on the index card!


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