Looking for an app to track books (no, not like that)

Strange little niche kind of problem I wanted to solve; I figured it wouldn’t hurt to ask. This isn’t about tracking what I read–I understand there’s lots of good places to do that.

My situation is that the day care that my daughter attends has asked us to track the books we read to her each day. Ostensibly, this somehow helps them get an idea of how much the children are read to, which in turn helps the day care to ask for support through various programs. Kids get new books for the school, etc.

So, the issue I have is I need a simple way to track “we read these books to her today”, with the understanding that I may read a particular book many times a day, or each day for a few days, or a new one from the library here and there, etc. The idea was that we’d just create a list of all her books (no small task) and then put a check mark next to the dates they are read, and/or how often. But I got to thinking there might be some app somewhere that could simplify this.

Anyone know of anything like that?

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Not necessarily an app but if you defined all of the books as tags in sortable, you could make a form to add entries for each day (or multiple times of day) recording the date, books read, and number of books read. With Airtable providing suggestions for all the books.

This seems like a good place for Shortcuts.

If your daughter is anything like our son was, he wanted to have the same books read over and over again.

So I could imagine making a shortcut that brings up a list of most popular books and let you tap which one was read, with another button at the bottom for “We Read A Different Book” which would then prompt you for the title.

The shortcut could then save to a plain text file (or presumably some kind of spreadsheet, if that’s your jam) and include a time / date stamp of when it was read.

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Not sure I understand this… may be over my head, although the idea of using tags seems like it might be something I overlooked. Thank you for the response!

Thanks for the reply. :slight_smile: Hee hee. This is looking like a poster child for automation and power-user fiddling. :slight_smile: But you’re right. I think that may be a good idea–certainly worthy of exploration. Only thing is my daughter has more than a few favourites. It’s an interesting problem… I’ll see what I come up with. Cheers!

Just took a quick look, but something along these lines might work.
Just scan the UPC code when you read the book, and it’s added to the database.


I use Libib. The standard version is free and is enough for me.

I can never remember what the Shortcuts option is called, but it’s basically “Pick from a list” and you can add as many as you like to it, you’d just have to scroll.

There may be a better way, but that’s all I can think of right now.

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Here’s a very simple version of what I was trying to describe @machel https://airtable.com/shr3f5zv295zJIgdW

Edit: form link https://airtable.com/shr3f5zv295zJIgdW

This is great! I think we have a winner. I’ll give it a shot. Thank you so much for this.

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Huh. This looks really interesting from the perspective of cataloging my own library. I may have to explore this option for myself! Thank you. :slight_smile:

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This looks like what I was looking for as well. Too many options. I was worried this would be too complex to set up. And the other bit is how easy it is to add via iPhone. When we read to her, we’re no where near the house Macs, so apps are better than web apps in this case. Thank you for taking the time to set up an example though… it really does look about right. Hmmm…

It seems I messed the form link https://airtable.com/shrvoWXqnOWSPESyl

While I’m not sure you’re right about her cycling the whole collection (she does have her favourites, and we do see her move beyond some and get new ones along the way) because the event only lasts a month I think. But you’re probably right about over-engineering. My wife was saying the same thing, and has taken to simply using a sheet of paper.

I of course wanted a geekier solution. Sigh.

This looks interesting. Will check it out, although maybe not for this. :slight_smile: Thanks for taking the time to create an example workflow…

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create a goodreads account for your daughter. I think you can set it all to private

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I was thinking of book library apps like BookPedia but then I realized that what i do to track books read us a simple note with the titles, date started, date finished whether it was a borrowed book, a new book or a re-read book and a running total of books read each year. I do also have a paper journal where I note the authors and books and anything interesting or that I liked or didn’t like about them. But basically just a quick paper note would be my choice.

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well, you can always start to over engineer the actual paper/notebook/pen/ink to use :wink:


We could hand write in the Apple Notes app using the pencil and the iPad as a compromise… :slight_smile: