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 2021, 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 on Google Classroom link for students to participate in virtual library events and activities.

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. At the end of the year, the top two students in each class are invited to a reading rewards day. In the past this has included an author or illustrator workshop and visits to the Oxford Story Museum.
  • National Reading Champions Quiz Team – Key Stage 3 students have the opportunity to try-out for the team to compete against other students regionally for a chance to get to the National Final.
  • FCBG Children’s Book Award - 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 read new release books and vote on them to win a national award. In 2023, four students were invited to the awards ceremony in London where they gave the award to the winning author. You can read more about that here
  • 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.
  • World Book Day – from escape rooms to literary festivals, author visits and dressing up, there are always activities and events. You can read about our 2020 World Book Day 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 award information, book reviews, author interviews and recommendations - here's a list of sites you...

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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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