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February 2010

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Does anyone have or know where to get Free YA books?

Hi F-list,

So if you're a member of either newyorkers or nyc_for_free, this post will be insufferably redundant, and I'm sorry if it's popped up on your F-list for the third time now.

But if you're not, here's my plea:

I'm going to be teaching 6th grade Humanities in a relatively new middle school in Brooklyn. The student population is 98% free/reduced lunch, which affords myself and the other teachers some grant money from the government, but not nearly enough to compile the kind of in-class libraries we want for our students. All of my student resources are Social Studies-centric, but in this position, I will be teaching both English Language Arts and Social Studies. I'd like to bolster my anemic Young Adult book collection with books primarily targeted for grades 4 - 7. (Their reading levels are all over the map, but generally below or approaching 6th grade level.)

So far, I've checked:

  • Discount bins at public libraries in NYC and NJ
  • The Strand
  • Craigslist
  • Donors Choose (I am going to write a formal proposal with my department at the beginning of the school year)
I've had some luck with libraries and The Strand, but not so much with Craigslist. So my questions are:

1. Can you think of other sources in NYC (or even NJ) that I can find free or really discounted age-appropriate books to stock my class library?
2. Do you happen to have any age-appropriate books that you want to donate/want out of your garage or storage space? I'm happy to come pick them up in the coming weeks or even after the school year starts.
3. If you know of anyone who might be interested in donating age-appropriate books they don't need anymore, can you let me know?



I am putting together a bag right as we speak :)

The only thing is that I have a ton of Enid Blyghton books, not the Nottie ones (which were raaaacist) but the Mallory Towers and St. Clares' ones, which I don't remember being bad, but she has a history, so IDK, I'd read them over once. They're quick reads, they are both series about a group of female friends at all girls boarding schools from ages 10 - 16, it follows them as they get older.

Also, I have a full set of these books, which are awesome, but might be a bit young? Again, we'll see, lol.

But yeah, let me know where/when and we'll set up an exchange. Or a drop-off, I guess.
Thank you! Or a, let me buy you coffee and thank you profusely for your generosity and then have an underlying agenda of catching up with you in person-off. Or maybe some combination of the two (pick up + belated beverage).

Are you in Ridgewood right now? I'm in Newark and my sched is kind of crazy, but I may be able to come get it this weekend or possibly later next week but a bit later, like at 9, if my Aunt can drive me from Newark.
Weekends are bad for me because I serve, but after 9 is pretty good. Also, you know, my boyfriend is on the L stop, I don't know what your Brooklyn schedule looks like, but I might be there Tuesday and Wednesday...
I'm in Morningside Heights all next week for, ironically, a Reading Workshop, but I can definitely make the trip down in the late afternoon/early evening. I start doing Professional development at my school, which is off the Grand Ave stop, on the 27th and then every week day until the school year starts in Sept, so if you're in the area then that would be okay too!
Mailing address?
If you're in Boro, I may be able to come pick something up from you if you have something, though my schedule is wacko in the next coming weeks. But if mail works, you can mail it to:

The Young Women's Leadership School, Brooklyn
c/o Janelle Gendrano
223 Graham Ave, First Floor
Brooklyn, NY 11206

Either way you RULE, and I (and my students!) really appreciate it!
Yes! Someone recommended that to me and I totally forgot about it-- when I was first moving into my on-campus house, freecycle saved my life with pots, pans, and random things like 40 tiny wicker baskets that were a mistake but I picked them up anyway. Oh well.

I'll definitely get on this, thanks!
I believe I still own Books 1 through something like 32 of the Babysitter's Club from way back in the day, and they're in perfect condition. I don't if they're considered YA. want?

also, HHS Debate rummage sale!
Def want! I think they are for ages 9 - 12 (in sixth grade they turn 12 for the most part), and there are many lower level readers that are more on par with like 4th grade level, so it's just perfect. Let me know when a good time to get them would be! I'm in NJ on Saturday if you're home.

Thank you!
Have you tried Freecycle.org? Everything listed there MUST be free, and you can join the communities for whatever area you're willing to pickup from. Also, if you know anyone in a wealthier school district, you can try to organize a book drive.

Actually, I am working an a summer camp right now, and I can ask if I can run one in your name. I'll see what I can come up with - my campers are all between 4th and 10th grade. If I can raise $180 for animal shelters, I can probably grab you a few books. :3

Good luck, Janelle!
Remind me when (clearly a when, not if)) we see each other over winter break? I'm not sure how much YA stuff we still have, but I'm more than happy to take a look.
Definitely! Thanks Tiff!

Also something consistently reminds me of you-- OH YES I am doing a new teacher orientation at LaGuardia High School, and every time I walk past Juilliard I think of your senior recital, which was beautiful.
Just so you know, I started a book drive with my campers. I'll have stuff by the end of the week; let me know how you want me to get it to you. :3
Thank you SO MUCH! I'm in Newark now but I can probably have my mom come by if you're still in Hillsborough and she can come get them. Also I have told her your little ones are SO CUTE so she will probably be very willing to drive over at the possible chance of seeing baby cuteness at the door :P