Libraries

There are three libraries here at Dulwich College:

  • The Junior School Library (Junior School Years 3 to 6)
  • The Raymond Chandler Library (Lower School Years 7 & 8)
  • The Wodehouse Library (Middle and Upper Schools Years 9 to 13)

Their principle objective is to contribute to all levels of academic attainment by giving all pupils equal access to appropriate and relevant information to support their studies.

We aim to:

  • increase pupils’ confidence and competence in using information technologies to find and evaluate information from a range of sources;
  • extend and develop pupils’ reading for pleasure by providing a wide range of both fiction and non-fiction;
  • nurture independent learning skills and foster a desire for life-long learning;
  • contribute to pupils’ social development by involving them in running the libraries and through participation in book related activities.

The Junior School Library

Reading for pleasure is fundamental to Dulwich College Junior School and we offer a vast range of fiction for all ages plus graphic novels, audiobooks, newspapers, comics and magazines. We also house a wide range of non-fiction to support learning and encourage boys’ interests.

There are four well subscribed book clubs run for each year group from ‘Storytelling and Myths’ for Year 3 boys to the popular Year 6 book club run after school. Each class has a weekly library session – sharing and encouraging reading – with their class teacher and the librarian, Mrs. Forbes. A constantly updated stock of over 8,200 books ensures boys are constantly curious about new titles and authors; as well as encouraged to savour classic texts.

An array of reading initiatives encourages all boys to try new genres and authors – from the Roald Dahl Jumpsquiffing Journey, a 10 Book Journey for Year 3 boys, to the 20 Book Reading Challenge for Year 6 boys. Participation in these initiatives is voluntary but those who complete the challenges are celebrated in the weekly whole school Celebration Assembly.

Themed fun book displays keep the library vibrant – and encourage the boys to see “what’s new”. Peer to peer recommendations are always welcomed and author visits are always a highlight with recent visitors including Piers Torday, Simon Mayo, Chris Bradford, Michelle Paver and MG Leonard. The annual themed Book Week is another highlight in the Junior School Year with treasure hunts, author visits, creative writing competitions and crafts aimed at all year groups.

The non-fiction section has up to date books which tie in with the ever-evolving curriculum; from science, to geography, to history or RS and teachers bring their classes to the library to allow boys to “think outside the box” and find information to enhance their studies. The library itself is comfortable and welcoming and open every break-time and lunchtime.

The Raymond Chandler Library

The Raymond Chandler Library stocks almost 10,000 items including books, DVDs, spoken word CDs and magazines and all subjects use the teaching space and facilities during timetabled lessons.

Our book clubs provide a variety of activities, including quizzes and shadowing of book awards such as the Trinity Schools Book Award and the Carnegie Medal and weekly reading lessons offer English teachers and librarians the opportunity to engage with and develop a life-long love of reading in each child. As well as reading for pleasure, boys follow our two stimulating reading schemes: Year 7 follow the Reading Wheel - an individual challenge rewarded with a completion certificate; whilst Year 8 embark on Around the World in 80 Reads - a competitive reading journey for each form.

As part of the Wellbeing curriculum, boys follow a half-term-long study skills programme with the librarians, which will help them with all their research and exams. Skills include: mind-mapping, highlighting, bullet points, notetaking, writing up in their own words and proofreading. They learn to cite their work and create a simple bibliography.

Boys eagerly contribute to their biannual school newspaper, the Dulwich Despatch, which is edited by the library staff. It is a popular platform for everything from pages of jokes to cutting edge political commentary. The ever popular ‘Books to Enjoy’ is regularly amended with further recommendations from Book Club members, and without ‘Prequels, Sequels, Trilogies and Sagas’ we could never get to read all our series fiction in the correct order. We regularly host visiting authors and boy-led charity events strengthening our place at the heart of learning in the Lower School.

The Wodehouse Library

The Wodehouse Library provides a multimedia collection and a service that is as responsive as it is comprehensive. There are more than 20,000 books and DVDs plus an impressive range of periodicals and online resources collection.

Reading for pleasure is no less encouraged in the Wodehouse Library than in our Junior and Lower School libraries. In collaboration with the English Department the Wodehouse offers the ‘42’ and ‘66’ reading lists, aimed at developing the reading habit through diverse and often challenging authors.

As the boys move through their GCSE years to A-level, the Wodehouse Library aims to nurture their independent learning skills. Having been introduced to our extensive range of online resources as part of project-based whole class library sessions in the Middle School, Upper School boys in the Remove receive subject-specific induction sessions in preparation for their extended essays and study at a higher level.

Many boys take the chance to be involved in the running of the Wodehouse Library as pupil librarians and the tasks they undertake give them some insight into how our library operates: participation is rewarded with the coveted Library Tie. The weekly Word of Mouth Book Group is a forum to swap peer to peer recommendations and more broadly talk about books with Mr Paul Fletcher, the Head of Libraries.

Discover More

The Junior School Library

Librarian
Mrs Hazel Forbes
Open Monday to Friday
08:30 - 17:00

The Raymond Chandler Library

Librarians
Mrs Liz Rowing

Mrs Gail Bottomley
Open Monday to Friday
08:00 - 16:00

The Wodehouse Library

Librarians
Mr Paul Fletcher (Head of Libraries)
Mrs Helen Stein
Library Assistants
Ms Katherine McGuinness
Mrs Charlotte Judet
Open Monday to Friday
08:00 - 17:15