Life in middle school: Our library paradise

Life in middle school: Our library paradise

“I have always imagined paradise will be a library." — Renowned Argentine writer Jorge Luis Borges.

In eighth grade this year, we are doing a “40 book challenge” to see how many of us can read 40 books of varying genres by the end of the school year.

“Good readers make good writers. Good writers have a lot of interesting perspectives to share," says our English teacher Emily Paton.

One of the best resources helping us meet this challenge is the Cayman International School library. At Cayman International School, the library is a readily accessible place of information and resources made available to every student. I am an avid reader, so personally, having the access to such an extensive school library is a great asset.

Middle school librarian Christine Syzerk also believes in the power of reading.

"I think it's important for students to read because the research suggests that the more you read for fun, the higher you achieve in all other subject areas," she says.

Like many other librarians around the world, the CIS librarians are an enormous resource themselves because of their love of reading and their eagerness to share this with students.

"When students come in, I like to recommend books, or if they don't know what to read next, I like to offer some suggestions," says Miss Christine.

Several changes have been made to the CIS library in the past few years, the biggest of which is the addition of a room just for middle school students where the books are selected to cater to that age group. To dedicate an area of the library for middle schoolers, where we can relax and feel comfortable and find books that are interesting and appropriate, is a move in the right direction by CIS. As a middle school student, I can say that the new space has definitely made a lot of students feel included.

Books have the power to transport us to new places and different times without even moving our feet. This is especially useful now as travel for pleasure and education has been extremely limited due to the pandemic.

Reading about different cultures, experiences and ideas helps us to expand our knowledge and broaden our world view. Having access to a wide variety of books and resources is an enormous advantage.

The CIS library helps teach us how to be good readers and, if Miss Emily is right, good writers as well.

This article was originally featured in the November 2021 print edition of Camana Bay Times.

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About the author

Rhea Swaminathan is an eighth grade student at Cayman International School.

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