Leaders promote a love of reading. For example, pupils read in tutor time and meet visiting authors. Many are actively engaged in working in the library or attend reading clubs. - Ofsted


Arden Library is a warm, welcoming and well-used resource accessible to all students and staff. It is used for individual study and leisure reading. The library aims to develop a community of passionate readers and instil a life-long love of reading.

Arden offers a broad range of reading material and students are encouraged to be actively involved in their Library.



Library Aims

Miss O’Brien and the student librarians have agreed a manifesto - the library aims to:

  • Build Independence
  • Cultivate Curiosity
  • Connect with Community
Library Achievements
  • In 2020-21, two Arden teams competed in the National Literacy Trust’s National Reading Champions Quiz against 32 schools across the West Midlands region. Our Year 8 team achieved 4th place and our Year 7 team achieved 7th place.
  • Arden Library’s Creative Writing group has achieved a plethora of success over the years. Most recently we have had winners in the Portico Sadie Massey Book Review competition, and the Screen Your Story competition.
  • In 2019, Arden Library was shortlisted as The Bookseller’s Library of the Year. This is a fantastic achievement as we competed against all libraries across the country. You can read our shortlist spotlight here.
  • Arden Library were the West Midlands Regional Champions of the Kidlit Quiz 2019. You can read an article about our experience at Nationals here and you can read our 2021 experience at regionals here



1. Who manages the library?

The library is managed by the librarian, Miss O’Brien.

2. When is the library open?

The library is open every weekday at break and lunch and after school Mon – Thurs until 4:15pm.

3. What sort of material does the library stock?

The library has a wonderful range of resources. Readers of all levels are catered for, from reluctant to passionate. Stock is updated regularly and features a wide range of popular authors, debut novelists and prize winning texts, both contemporary and classic. Advice is on hand to direct, encourage and motivate - the aim being to foster a love of reading that will last a lifetime.

Alongside the physical resources on the shelves, Arden Library also has a digital offering. Arden students can ask the librarian for the Arden Library Google Classroom link to participate in virtual library events and activities.

To assist with Home Learning, Arden Library also released an electronic mini magazine (e-zine) of co-curricular library activities. See the e-zine here 

Miss O’Brien has collated some Recommended Reading lists which you can find here 

4. Do I need a library card?

No, books are issued without using a library card. Students automatically become members of the Library when they start at Arden

5. How many books may I take out at one time?

Students are allowed to borrow up to two resources at a time.

6. How long is the loan period?

The loan period is two weeks.

7. What happens if I forget to take a book back on time?

Students will not be charged fines but they will not be able to borrow other titles until the overdue item is returned.

8. I've lost a library book, what should I do?

Don't panic! Speak to Miss O’Brien as soon as possible. Most books are not lost, they are merely mislaid! The responsibility for the book belongs to the person to whom it was issued. This is also relevant to books that are badly damaged. If a book is truly lost or damaged, then students are charged for a replacement copy.

9. What are the library rules?

  • The Library is a designated 'Quiet Zone' - students are expected to work or read quietly.
  • Students should respect other users.
  • Students should behave in line with Arden's Student Behaviour Policy
  • No food or drink 

10. What activities and clubs are available to join in the library?

  • In Year 7 & 8 fortnightly library lessons are included as part of English lessons. In these lessons, students participate in the Accelerated Reader programme where they read books and take quizzes. High achieving students are rewarded in end of term assemblies with prizes and positive recognition. These prizes are reported in the Arden newsletter. At the end of the year, the top 2 students in each class are invited to an educational activity. In the past this has included an author workshop and a visit to the Oxford Story Museum. The Excellence in Reading Prize is awarded to the overall winner of each year group and awarded in the Achievement Assembly at the end of the year.
  • Years 7-9 have the opportunity to try-out for the National Reading Champions quiz team.
  • Arden Library is a proud and active member of the Federation of Children’s Book Groups which you can read more about here. Year 9-11 students can opt in to join the Children’s Book Award where students can read new releases and vote on them to win a national award.
  • Creative Writing – Y7 & 8 led by Miss O’Brien, Y9 & 10 led by Mr Kirby, see the co-curricular timetable for details.
  • Reading Club – led by Miss Cheatle, see the co-curricular timetable for details.
  • Arden participates in World Book Day each year. In 2019, our theme was Detective Fiction and you can read all about it in the newsletter here, in 2020 Miss O’Brien organised a whole school cross-curricular festival with three authors in attendance: Matt Oldfield, Lauren James & Bali Rai. You can read an article about the day in the School Library Association journal here
  • There is a thriving Student Librarian programme in the library for Years 7 - 13. Student librarians shelve books, suggest book recommendations to library users, create vibrant displays and assist with events like World Book Day and Open Evening. The Student Librarians also select books for the library including a visit to a bookshop. Read about our 2018 trip here

11. How can I support my child with their reading?

Please see this page for tips on how parents and carers can support their children with reading.

12. How can I find out more?

All students receive a library induction when they join Arden in Year 7. There is also a Literacy Consultation Evening Year 7 parents can attend. Arden Library also has a Twitter account where we regularly post updates @ArdenLibrary 



Subject reading lists

If you would like to read books related to school subjects, each Department has nominated several titles that may be of interest.

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Websites for teenage readers

If you'd like to visit websites that give you book reviews, author interviews and recommendations - here's a list of sites you may find of interest.

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Kidlit Quiz Nationals


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Library E-Zine

To assist with Home Learning, Arden Library is releasing an electronic mini magazine (e-zine) of co-curricular library activities students can get involved with. 

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Recommended Reads

On this page, librarian Miss O’Brien will be adding Recommended Reading lists.

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Parent and Carer Reading Tips

 Parents/Carers can:

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