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OSLIS Dewey Tutorial ALL the dirt on Dewey !. Dewey Decimal System In 1876, a librarian named Melvil Dewey (1851-1931) attempted to arrange all knowledge.

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Presentation on theme: "OSLIS Dewey Tutorial ALL the dirt on Dewey !. Dewey Decimal System In 1876, a librarian named Melvil Dewey (1851-1931) attempted to arrange all knowledge."— Presentation transcript:

1 OSLIS Dewey Tutorial ALL the dirt on Dewey !

2 Dewey Decimal System In 1876, a librarian named Melvil Dewey ( ) attempted to arrange all knowledge into ten very general categories which he then continued divide into smaller and smaller topics. His plan was to find a way to put all books on the same subject together on the library shelves. This section will show you how to use the alphabet and counting to find books.

3 The Call Number of a book is its address in the library. Usually the Call Number is located on the spine of a book and has at least two lines. The Call Number is sometimes letters and not numbers at all. Upcoming slides show examples of some typical Call Numbers. Your library may use others. Ask the librarian if there are any special sections in the library when you visit. # Call Number

4 Non-Fiction 734 tells me that this is in the Non-Fiction 700 / Fine Arts section AND tells me that the author's name begins with "And" as in "Anderson.” How do I know that? Well, if the first line of the Call Number is numbers, the book is in the Non- Fiction section of the library. Non-fiction books contain information that is real. This information is considered “true” or factual.

5 More Non-fiction… Here are 3 helpful hints:  Think N is for Numbers, N is for Non-fiction! *  Think F for Fiction, F for Fake. Because Fiction is fake!  Think N for Non-Fiction, N for not fake. Non-fiction is not fake; it’s real! * There are exceptions to the “numbers for non-fiction” rule is for cultural stories: Folklore and Fairy Tales. Also, 811 is for poetry.

6 More Non-fiction… The second line of the Call Number will be the beginning letters of the author's last name. Books in the non-fiction section are in Numerical Order using the Dewey Decimal system. Then if the Dewey numbers are exactly the same for more than one book, those books will be in alphabetical order by the second line of the Call Number.

7 Fiction FIC stands for Fiction. LOW stands for the author's last name If the first line of the Call Number of the book is FIC, the book is a Fiction book. Fiction books are stories that are imaginary. (Fiction is fake, but fun fake!).

8 More Fiction… The second line of the Call Number will be the beginning letters of the author's last name. These beginning letters are only a clue, however. Many books may be written by different authors with names that start with the same letters (LOWRY and LOWMAN) so it is important that you know the complete last name of an author to quickly and accurately locate the book. Since all fiction book Call Numbers have the exact same first line, they are put in Alphabetical Order by the second line, the author's last name.

9 Reference REF stands for Reference. 912 tells me that this is a 900 /History & Geography book. HAM stands for the author's last name. If the first line of the Call Number is REF it goes in the Reference section of the library. Encyclopedias, atlases, dictionaries and almanacs are the kinds of book in this section. Some books are in the Reference section because they do not circulate like other library books and may not circulate at all. We never let them leave the library! They are always here for you to “reference” when you need to look something up.

10 More Reference… The second line of a Reference Call Number will be the Dewey Number that indicates the subject of the book. It is just the same as books in the Non-Fiction section. The third line of the Call Number will be the beginning letters of the author's last name. Books in the reference section are in Numerical Order using the Dewey Decimal system. Then books with the same Dewey Number are shelved in alphabetical order by the third line.

11 Story Collections SC stands for story collection. POE stands for the author's last name. The first line of this Call Number stands for Story Collection. This is the section of the library where short stories are shelved.

12 Story Collections The second line of this Call Number will be the beginning letters of the author's last name. Sometimes short story collections have stories by many different authors. In this case, we use the name of the editor, the one who put together the collection. Since all Short Story books have the exact same first line, they are put in Alphabetical Order by the author or editor's last name

13 Biography B or 921 stands for biography. A biography tells about the life of one person. (For example: Pablo Picasso) Collections of biographies tell about the lives of more than one person (For example: “Famous Artists”) Dewey put collections of biographies in 920 and individual biographies in 921. (Do you recall that the 900s are for history?) But many libraries keep a separate section just for individual biographies. In those libraries, the first line of the Call Number is often B. B

14 More Biography… With individual biographies, the second line is not for the author! The second line is the name of the person the book is about. Think about it. When you want a book about Benjamin Franklin, you don’t want to have to look in several different places, by author, for all the books about him. You also want books about him to be separated from books about Anne Frank. So with biographies, we spell out the WHOLE last name on the second line of the call number. FORD is the last name of the subject of this book, Henry Ford in this case. Remember, books in this section are in Alphabetical Order by the last name of the person the book is about. B

15 Dewey Decimal Order 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9… 398.2, , Books using the Dewey Decimal system are in numerical order. If you can count, you already have a good idea about which book comes first. If you already understand decimal order from your math class, you already understand the trickiest part of locating books using the Dewey decimal system. It is exactly the same. Why do you suppose you need to understand this to find books in the library?

16 Locating a Book These books are in correct Dewey decimal order. It is just like counting. Notice that the only time we worry about the alphabetical order in the second line is when the Dewey number is exactly the same. You can see this in the two 567 books below. But hold on… it gets trickier!

17 These books are also in correct order. Take a look. If you think they are not in order it is probably because you think that.413 is a bigger number than.51 or you think that.51 is a bigger number than.7 but that is not true. Although.413 is longer, it is not more. In the library, you can't put zeros on the books so it is best to think about the point where the numbers become different. Compare and The 3, 6, and 5 are all the same. The 4 and the 5 are different and The 4 is smaller so it would come first. It doesn't matter how many other numbers come after it. See what I mean! Don’t worry if you don’t get it. Re-read it. Keep it in mind & keep trying to understand.

18 In conclusion… Okay, you’re right, that’s not really ALL the dirt on Dewey! Source: Eugene School District 4J, Eugene, O,. "Dewey Decimal System. “Oregon School Library Information System. Oregon State Library, 2002, Web. 25 Sept Adapted by Ms. Tini Maier, Media Specialist, Portland Public Schools, Portland, Oregon, This citation created using MLA Citation Maker on To learn even more, go to: Enjoy these “Projects by Students for Students.” I especially recommend the story “Dewey and the Alien!” Click “home” – the books icon – to get to it.

19 What to do next: Raise your hand and ask for your quiz! Once you finish, you may do any of the “what to do when you are through” choices for the media lab. ACCESS Academy students


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