Fostering School Values at Home Through Reading
Our school librarians, Ms Elizabeth Winship and Ms Oksana Vertman, recommend some books from our Primary and Secondary libraries to read at home.
We would like to recommend some books that you can read with your children at home to continue talking about such school values as kindness, compassion, respect and integrity.

For pre-primary and primary years students we recommend books that you can read together with your children.

  • “The Smartest Giant in Town” by Julia Donaldson is a story about a giant who turns out to be the kindest person in town, ready to literally give the skirt off his back - and not only the skirt, but all his smart new clothes, to help the animals in need. Beautifully illustrated by Axel Scheffler, this book can teach in a funny and amusing way how to be truly generous and kind to others.

  • “The Storm Whale” and “The Storm Whale in Winter”, two books both written and drawn by Benji Davies, tell a story about friendship between a little lonely boy Noi and a whale. Rescued by Noi in the first book, the whale continues to be his friend long after and comes to help him in return in a critical situation. This story can also be followed by reading Julia Donaldson’s “The Snail and the Whale”.

  • “Bloom” by Anne Booth, illustrated by Robyn Wilson-Owen, is a book about a beautiful flower, a kind little girl and a grumpy and lonely old man. Its main message is about the power of kind words and how important they are for all living creatures - and how the words of love can change not only those who hear them but also those who say them.

The Smartest Giant in Town
Julia Donaldson, Axel Scheffler
We would also like to thank Anna and Iliyas, parents of our students Amina and Aliya Miftakhov, for donating a lot of precious books in Russian to our library!
From our Secondary Library we would like to recommend four books, all of them fiction that is suitable for Middle Year students. Each book touches upon friendships, compassion, and understanding.

“Pig Heart Boy” by Marjorie Blackman (U.K.). A boy's only hope for survival is a heart transplant....a pig's heart ! It's a difficult decision and what follows are many unexpected and challenging situations which the boy and his family must face. This is a book about love, compassion and bravery.

“TIN” by Pagraig Kenny (Ireland). An orphan boy works for an engineer who creates mechanical children. What he discovers about himself, and the world around him, may surprise the reader! This boy, his friends, and his adventures, teach us what it means to be human.

“Wonder” by R. J. Palacio (U.S). A boy with facial disfigurement confronts many difficult truths about what "normal" can mean, and how it feels to be "other". This story teaches us about compassion and acceptance.

“Save Me a Seat” by Sarah Weeks (U.S.) and Gita Varadarajan (India). Two boys face discrimination and bullying in an American school. One has recently moved to the U.S. from India. One, who has lived in the U.S. all his life, has an introverted nature and struggles to cope with noise and commotion. This is a story about differences and discovering commonalities and above all, about friendship and respect .

“The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgson Burnett (U.K.). Mary, the hero of this story, strikes up a friendship in an unexpected place, with a person she might least have wanted to befriend, and this helps her learn how to care about herself and care about others.

“Black Beauty” by Anna Sewell. The narrator of the story is a HORSE! The setting: England. The time: 19th century. This is a famous fictitious story that had an enormous impact...In fact, it helped to start the animal rights movement in the United Kingdom.

We hope you and your children will enjoy reading these stories!

R. J. Palacio