Do Book Fairs Still Happen?


Photo Credit

I know I’ve mentioned on here a few times how much I looked to forward to book fairs when I was younger. I mean, how could you not? It was like bringing a mini bookstore to your own school. But I left my elementary school back in 2003 for the more grown up version of public school known as junior high. The building had two gyms and a HUGE cafeteria and even a second floor. How bad could it be, right? But now I’m off topic.

One of the major differences between elementary and middle school was the time spent in the library. If I remember correctly, from third to fifth grade half of my school time was in ELA and the other half was in Math/Science/Social Studies. So it makes sense that we would frequent the library as a class quite often. But with middle school came lockers and tardies and SEVEN classes! So each teacher had a very limited amount of time with students, which left time for maybe one or two trips to the library each year with your class. And definitely no book fairs happening in middle school.

Now I’m wondering if they still happen at all. I think Scholastic used to run the ones at my school, and considering that they have the US publishing rights to HP and THG I don’t see how they would be struggling mightily as a publisher, but I really have no idea. All I can say is that book fairs were one of my favorite parts of elementary school. I believe we had two each year and I’d always make my parents spend money on books or posters or bookmarks or just ANYTHING I found interesting.

Two easy questions. How did you feel about book fairs when you were younger? And do you have any idea if they still happen?

39 thoughts on “Do Book Fairs Still Happen?

  1. Mine had hers but she attends private! But theirs starts as young as 2 with picture books! How cute is that?

    To be fair though, how can you not be taking your kid to book stores regularly? Or at least introducing them to the library often! (not to you but to people in general)


  2. I loved book fairs! And I remember my last one when I was in 8th grade – I also went to a K-8 school at that time though so that could have something to do with it. I’m not sure about schools, but my co-worder volunteers at a local library and she works their book fairs (bi-annualy I think?) so maybe they aren’t happening in schools as much, but at least the library is carrying it on – probably a good way to bring more people in too.


    • Yeah I don’t think I’ve ever seen any of the libraries over here ever have a sale or book fair or anything outside of their regular schedule. Hmm. Maybe I’ll have to look.


  3. Oh…my gosh!!! I was in LOVE with book fairs when I was in elementary school! It was pretty much the highlight of my school year. And my parents always encouraged reading so they always bought me books. 🙂


  4. I loved book fairs when I was a kid. But my parents were never able to afford to send me to school with money for books. It was a sad time for me. lol I do know that they still have them, my best friend’s kids bring home the little pamphlets with all available books. I browse through them when I see them on her coffee table. It brings back memories.

    There is a huge book sale every August where I live. I don’t know if it happens anywhere else. It’s used books, but it’s almost as awesome as a book fair.


  5. As everyone else commenting above also loves book fairs, I don’t think there’s much I can add to the awesomeness they were in my childhood. My parents didn’t have money to give me for books, so I used whatever I made through babysitting and other odd jobs I’d do for neighbors. I’d also save any birthday/Christmas money to spend on books at a book fair or anywhere else I could get my hands on them.
    Long live book fairs!!! (If they still exist).


      • Haha! Suuuurrrrreee….. Because I’m totally the person who’d know how to research and contact the black market.
        And I’m sure the black market’s hottest commodity is books. Absolutely.

        Btw, where were you yesterday? Needed a day off?


      • I bet there’s someone somewhere who makes money off stolen books. Has to be.

        Yeah. I’m on the verge of posting just a couple times a week. I never feel like reading other blogs and I never feel like writing my posts. I used to always write them the night before and schedule them so I wouldn’t have to wake up and do it. Now I wake up and just have to drag myself to the computer to write something. I’m just over it. It’s nice having people read my stuff, but insure I’ve lost plenty of regular readers cause of the fact that I NEVER read theirs. Eh. It’s all just whatever.


      • I understand. I’m going through something similar, myself. Which is why my posts aren’t as frequent. I’m hoping to get back into it, but I’m not going to do it if my heart’s not in it. Life is crazy and I just don’t have much time.
        And if you lose readers because you don’t read people’s posts, then they’re way too sensitive, especially if they’re writers. Grow some thick skin, people!!!


  6. Book fairs was the one thing I looked forward to when I was a child and they were one of the highlights of being in elementary school. I know once I entered middle school, book fairs disappeared. I hope they still have them in schools, but I wouldn’t be surprised if they don’t 😦


  7. I love bookfairs! What better place to stock up on books cheaply? And they do still happen, where I live I could think of two or three community ones quite easily.

    My intermediate school used to do a similar thing: exhibit loads of books to buy – only problem is I could never restrict myself to just a few books 🙂


  8. Things like book fairs were always a very embarrassing time for me growing up as I never had money to spend in them (unless I dug in the couch to get a cheap eraser or something). Kids were always getting the weekly orders from the book catalogs, prizes from raising a lot of money from various fundraisers, etc. Even worse, field trips. I had to get assistance in order to attend. Sometimes I would just fake sick and stay home to thwart the humiliation of having to ask school for money or hear mom say we can’t afford it or 900th time. Even worse, I would not ask and forget about them until the field trip day arrived, and I had to spend my day in the office doing busy work (after my classmates had already seen me…horrifying to have to answer why are staying behind). While I understand the need for these fundraisers and their successful outcomes, I feel they can be alienating to those in my same position. I am a mother of two now, and I do not struggle financially so my kids always shop til they drop at the book fairs (which makes me very happy), but I can’t help but remember how awful it was for me at that time and feel sorry for their classmates who cannot participate apart from “wish-list day”. The reason I stumbled upon your blog today is because I volunteered at the book fair today as a cashier, and I ran into this very problem time and time again with children who were devastated when they either realized their 2 quarters would not pay for what they wanted, watched as their classmates left with bags full of goodies, or they had to keep going back to select other items within their tiny budgets. It broke my heart. One little boy’s eyes kept welling up. It left me a bit angry and very, very sad. I’m not sure what can be done,but something needs to be done to lessen this type of humiliation and disappointment when it comes to these young children who couldn’t possibly understand why I keep telling them no (or worse, they do and are just being reminded by yet another person). I found myself sneaking money out of my pocket to make up the difference for those who were short, and out right paying for a couple of them to get at least a little something (a big no-no by the way). But, how I am expected to watch their tender little hearts break, and do it voluntarily at that!?? Anyway, I know most of the comments were a little happier than mine, but I feel it is an important issue, and I hope someone else stumbles across my post who might have some ideas. Thanks for the forum to vent my frustrations. P.S., I am in no way bashing the book fair as I know these schools need every penny they can get.


  9. I teach at the elementary level and we do book fairs 2x a year and are the only supplement to our very shallow budget. I am applying to be the Media Specialist at our Middle school (yes we only have 1) and will be asking about book fair. As far as I can tell it hasn’t happened, but I’d love to bring it back! Scholastic has middle school fair kits, so I hope it happens.


      • Exactly! My thought is, “Why not?” At he middle school he joy of reading begins to deteriorate, so why not add a little book fair fun, plus the $$ is great to supplement a tiny budget


      • You’re right. But I have a fun fact to share with you. I think it was in either sixth or seventh grade that I remember really starting to enjoy reading. And then in high school I read more and more and once I reached college I was reading significantly more than ever before. So I guess I was kind of the exception to the norm.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s