# Doing DEWEY

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```					 “Doing DEWEY”
The Dewey Decimal
System
Library Skills
Mrs. Geist
Do you have a lot of books? What if you had
100 more? What if you had 10,000 more?
Where would you PUT them? How would
you keep track of them?
   Now imagine that
this whole building
is a library, with
books filling each
classrooms. If you
need a dictionary,
which room would
you go to?
   Libraries have many,
many books. Our very
small library has almost
5,000 books.
   Large public libraries
can have several
hundred thousand
books.
   Large university libraries
can have several
MILLION books!
WHERE IS THAT ONE BOOK
THAT YOU NEED???
Librarians need to
know what books are in
the library and where
they are located. So do
you.
Most school and public
libraries use a
numerical system to
arrange books on the
library shelves…
The Dewey
Decimal
Classification
System!
(or DDC
for short)
What have we learned about how
books are arranged in this
library?
Fiction = Books that are not true
(Novels, stories, picture books, scary
books, chapter books, mysteries, fantasy
books, books in series, etc.)
Arranged on shelves ALPHABETICALLY by
the AUTHOR’S LAST NAME.
Call number is “F” followed by first letters of
Author’s last name.
For example, F CAB is the call
number for The Princess Diaries
by Meg Cabot.

F ROW is the call number for
Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s
Stone by J. K. Rowling.
NONFICTION = Books that are TRUE,
factual, or real.
   Arranged on shelves using Dewey
Decimal Classification System
   Includes biographies, reference books,
textbooks
   Call number is a series of at least 3
numbers, followed by a “cutter” of the
first letters of author’s last name.
For example:

031 Gui -- Guinness Book of World
Records
636.7 Bar -- The Big Book of Dogs
973.75 Dou -- The Civil War in
Virginia
*To confuse matters, SOME
“nonfiction” books are actually
fiction!

Fairy tales are shelved in 398’s.
Poetry and plays are shelved in
800’s
guy anyway?
Melvil Dewey
   Melville Louis
Kossuth Dewey was
born in New York in
1851 and died in 1831.
   He was a professional
librarian and
educator.
   As a child, Dewey was fascinated with
books. In 1868, when his school caught
fire, he rescued as many books as he
could from the school library.

   While attending Amherst College,
Dewey worked in the library, where he
was frustrated by the disarray of the
book collection. There was no uniform
system for organizing books.
Back in Melvil’s day,
different way to arrange
their books.
Plus, no two libraries
used the same
system, making it
difficult for people to
use different libraries.
   Frustrated with these problems,
Dewey searched for a way to classify
books by subject.

   Dewey invented his system of decimal
numbers to arrange books according
to their subject. He published it in a
book in 1876, when he was 25 years
old.
With his book Dewey established the
Dewey Decimal Classification System.
His work created a revolution in libraries.
system for arranging books.
It was a library revolution!

His system was so important, Melvil
Dewey has been called the “Father of
Modern Libraries.”
   Dewey’s new system classified ALL
KNOWLEDGE (we would say
categories.

 Could you fit everything
you know into TEN
Here are the TEN categories:

   000- 099 General Works
 Books that have a lot of subjects,
like encyclopedias, world record
books.
   100-199 Philosophy and
Psychology
 Includes “self-help” books, and
   200-299 Religion and Mythology
 The Bible, books about other

religions, and myths.

   300-399 Social Science
 A big category, includes

patriotism, banks and money, law,
customs, holidays and fairy tales.
   400-499 Languages
 Includes dictionaries and other

books in English and foreign
languages.

   500-599 Pure Science and
Mathematics
 Books about all kinds of math,
plus planets, weather, animals
   600-699 Applied Science,
Technology
   Medicine and health, cars,
airplanes, space travel, farming,
pets, cookbooks.

   700-799 Arts and Recreation
   Painting, drawing, tv and movies,
music, sports of all kinds, hunting
and fishing.
   800-899 Literature
 Poetry, plays, jokes

   900-999 Geography & History
 Travel in the US and foreign

countries, US history and history
of other countries.

So how do the books get their numbers?
   A library book is assigned a Dewey call
number of between 001 and 999 based on its
subject.
   Numbers to the right of the decimal point are
for more specific subjects.
   So books about US history have the call number
973.
   Books about the history of the US Civil War are
973.7
   Books about the US Civil War in Virginia are
973.755
   Here’s another one:

   Books in the 630s are Agriculture
 Animal Husbandry (raising animals) is 636

 Dogs are 636.7

 German Shepherds are 636.737
Each main category has 10
subdivisions:
   700 Arts & Recreation
710 Civic & landscape art
720 Architecture
730 Sculpture
740 Drawings & decorative arts
750 Paintings & painters
760 Graphic arts (Printmaking & prints)
770 Photography
780 Music
790 Recreational & performing arts
Each subdivision has 10 sub-
subdivisions:
   790 Recreational & performing arts
   791 Public performances
792 Stage presentations
793 Indoor games & amusements
794 Indoor games of skill
795 Games of chance
796 Athletic & outdoor sports & games
797 Aquatic & air sports
798 Equestrian sports & animal racing
799 Fishing, hunting & shooting
   That’s 1000 different places
where library books can be on
the shelf. How do you know
where to go??
How do you find a book using
Dewey?
 Use the signs on the bookshelves

 Use the library catalog

 Use the Librarian

```
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