Our Library provides all of our gems with access to an independent learning space, an area to access both physical and digital learning resources to support their educational journey – as well as offer an environment in which to relax and socialise, to play and engage the imagination, where countless stories exist and knowledge resides.
The Library provides a range of contemporary and classic literature (including our CORE Canon) – there is something for everyone!
Our new Library first opened in April 2022 in the Equiano Centre, offering students access to an all-new ‘fiction’ inventory. In March 2023, we completed expansion work, doubling our library space to include a new ‘Subject-Specific’ section (to support curriculum learning) as well as six ‘pod-bays’ proving room for ICT access and revision, and a new soft-seating and beanbag ‘calm zone’ for games and reading.
The Library is open daily at break times and lunch, as well as after-school. We also enrol all students into the Birmingham Libraries scheme, giving them access to local libraries such as Spring Hill (see opening times here) and the Library of Birmingham.
Year 7 / 9 / 11 break times = 10am to 10:25am
Year 8 / 10 break times = 11am to 11:25am
Year 7 / 9 / 11 lunch times = 12:25pm to 1:10pm
Year 8 / 10 lunch times = 1:25pm to 2:10pm
After-school = 3:10pm to 4pm.
The Library is open to everyone after-school, but to access the space at break and lunch time, students must apply for a pass. Application forms can be collected from the Library and need to be completed by both student and parent / carer. We ask that this document is read completely before it is signed and returned (passes will be available for collection 24 hours after submitting this form).
All students receive a library account when they enrol at Jewellery Quarter Academy. This account allows all students to take out up to four books at a time, for a loan period of three-weeks – with ‘return’ dates stamped inside the books, to allow students to know when a book is due for return. If the student has not finished the book by the due date, they are welcome to bring it to the library, where we can renew the book a further two times (for a total loan period of nine weeks).
All students are welcome to access our Library and are expected to follow the school expectations for conduct and behaviour. If a student is in breach of these expectations, they will receive a warning. A total of three warnings will be issued over the course of the academic year. If a student exceeds this, their Library pass will be withdrawn for the remainder of the academic year (students will be able to re-apply in September).
Regarding the borrowing of resources, all students are required to be responsible for an items loaned from the Library – including the safe return of these items on, or before, the agreed return date. In the event of loss or serious damage to any loaned item, we kindly request that is the responsibility of the parent / carer to either provide a replacement copy of the item or assist the school by covering the cost of any replacements.
CLUBS & EVENTS:
As part of our daily running, the Library offers our students many opportunities for support and participation – with ‘Games Clubs’ taking place during lunch times and ‘Homework Club’ after-school on Monday and Thursday (3:10pm to 4:10pm) – this club is open to all students.
To encourage student engagement with independent reading, we run various promotions throughout the year, linking to areas of our diverse ‘Fiction’ section:
October: ‘Halloween Promotion’ – linked to our ‘Supernatural’ genre section.
December: ‘Festive Reads’ – linking to our ‘Fantasy’ genre section.
February: ‘Valentines’ – linking to our ‘Romance’ genre section.
July: ‘Summer Adventures’ – linked to our ‘Action’ genre section.
All promotions are supported with prizes and rewards and are open to all students to take part in. We also run competitions, such as our link with ‘Young Writers UK’ – with successful student work appearing in print at a national level.
The Library also works closely with the National Literacy Trust, as part of World Book Day in March. As well as giving away ‘World Book Day’ vouchers to all students, the Library also provides library visitors with free books from the NLT. In March 2023, we gave away 53 free books to our students – with further free books being awarded as part of our regular competitions and student submission of book reviews.
Book reviews are an important part of our students’ library experience – as student opinion can help advise other students on books worth exploring, as well as influence the future book choices the Library offers to our students. All book reviews are voluntary and all completed reviews will receive a free book (kindly provided by the National Literacy Trust) as a reward for their hard work.
We are keen to promote reading to all of our students – outside of the key texts that make up the curriculum content. To this end, the Trust staff have created the ‘CORE Canon’, a list of 31 book titles we recommend to students as important and enjoyable reads:
1. Anne Frank – The Diary of Anne Frank
2. Oscar Wilde – The Picture of Dorian Gray
3. Roald Dahl – Complete Collection
4. Markus Zuzak – The Book Thief
5. Harper Lee – To Kill a Mockingbird
6. J.R.R. Tolkien – The Lord of the Rings Series
7. Yuval Noah Harari – Sapiens
8. Meera Syal – Anita and Me
9. John Green – The Fault in Our Stars
10. Khaled Hosseini – A Thousand Splendid Suns
11. Phillip Pullman – His Dark Materials Series
12. John Agard – Collected Works
13. George Orwell – 1984
14. Simon Armitage – Collected Works
15. J.K. Rowling – The Harry Potter Series
16. Patrick Ness – A Monster Calls
17. Emily Bronte – Wuthering Heights
18. Malorie Blackman – Noughts and Crosses Series
19. Angie Thomas – The Hate You Give
20. Willy Russell – Our Day Out
21. Kathryn Stockett – The Help
22. Robert Louis Stevenson – The Strange Case of Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde
23. Benjamin Zephaniah – Collected Works
24. F.Scott Fitzgerald – The Great Gatsby
25. Mary Shelley – Frankenstein
26. Suzanne Collins – The Hunger Games Series
27. Margaret Atwood – The Handmaid’s Tale
28. Jane Austen – Pride and Prejudice
29. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle – Sherlock Holmes Series
30. Charles Dickens – Oliver Twist
31. William Shakespeare – Romeo and Juliet
All titles are available are available from the Library and promoted throughout the school – why not loan one and write a review? Why not read them all and claim a prize?
As part of our school ethos, we are also committed to student involvement and participation – encouraging shared ownership of the Library space through our involvement of student librarians – or ‘Library Ambassadors’. These students not only play a key role in the daily running of the Library space, but also helping to shape it and influence how it runs to support students – such as providing book reviews and recommendations, helping to select book titles to appeal to their peers.
If you are in Year 8-to-10 and would like to apply for this role, please visit the Library and pick up an application form (new members are asked to submit applications in September, with selection and training taking place in October).
The following are useful links to encourage reading outside of school:
Birmingham Library Association: https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/libraries
Online Books: www.gutenberg.org
National Literacy Trust: https://literacytrust.org.uk
BookTrust (World Book Day): www.booktrust.org.uk
The Yoto Carnegies ‘Shadowing’ Reading Competition: https://yotocarnegies.co.uk
The Reader (Reading Support Organisation): https://www.thereader.org.uk