"Subject cataloging, in principle, is the same in all types of libraries. Variations and adaptions are developed as these principles are applied to special collections or general collections for limited or specific patrons. This list of subject headings is intended for use wherever material for use by children from the elementary through the junior high school level is brought together in the public or school library. Children's interests are universal but their vocabulary is still growing along with their learning processes so subject headings which anticipate their approach to a wide variety of material and which employ terminology with which they are familiar are needed to facilitate their use of the library catalog. However, the language and approach of the children must be captured without completely losing touch with standard cataloging practice so that the mastery of the children's catalog will be a step on the road to the understanding and use of the adult catalog in future years.
In compiling this list in accordance with these principles our personal experiences in school and public libraries were an important factor, but personal opinions have been substantiated by considerable study and research including a master's thesis by Eloise Rue, 'Preferences of Elementary Children for Subject Heading Form'; scrutiny of outstanding courses of study for grades one through nine issued
since 1944 and an examination of standard tools in use; the results of a questionnaire to school library supervisors, children's departments in public libraries, curriculum specialists, children's catalogers and library school faculties. These formed the basis for original decisions. When the preliminary draft had been completed, consultants throughout the United States and Canada were called upon to examine and comment on it. The present list incorporates many of their suggestions and comments."