THANK YOU! Thanks to you, it was a record-breaking year for Carolina Friends School and our Friends of Friends School campaign! For all you do—your time, talents, and financial support—we want to share something with you to show our appreciation. And since this year will go down as one for the books, what better way to say “thank you” than with a good book? So, we asked some of our staff to share their favorite books with you. As you flip through these pages and read their recommendations, we hope you’ll find titles that entertain you, transport you, inspire you, or remind you of forgotten old favorites. Whether you read the list for fun (and get to know our staff and their interests through it) or choose to read one or more of the suggested titles, we hope you enjoy our “thank you” for all you do for us. Now go enjoy the rest of your summer with a good read! With gratitude, The students, staff, and trustees of CFS
All I Really Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten by Robert Fulghum The Glass Castle: A Memoir by Jeannette Walls The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark Haddon I refer to All I Really Needed to Know I Learned in Kindergarten as â€œa guide for global leadership.â€? All I really need to know about how to live and what to do and how to be I learned in kindergarten. Wisdom was not at the top of the graduate school mountain, but there in the sand pile at elementary school. The Glass Castle: A Memoir chronicles the life of writer Jeannette Walls. At the book's beginning, she is three years old and living in a trailer in Arizona where she severely burns herself while making hot dogs. She is hospitalized, but her father, Rex, grabs her and takes her from the hospital before she is released.
PHILIP GARY Upper School Staff and Director of Cultural Mindfulness
The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time won the 2003 Whitbread Book of the Year and the 2004 Commonwealth Writers' Prize for Best First Book. Its title is a quotation of a remark made by the fictional detective Sherlock Holmes in Arthur Conan Doyle's 1892 short story "Silver Blaze." The story is written in the first-person perspective of Christopher John Francis Boone, a 15-year-old boy who describes himself as a mathematician with some behavioral difficulties living in Swindon, Wiltshire.
Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown I've not read much fiction of late, but my first recommendation is the first novel that has seized and sustained my attention and interest in many years, Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese. The author is a doctor, a teacher, and a writer, and his story, set primarily in Ethiopia and then a New York City hospital, includes remarkable medical details, rich historical and cultural context, and a cast of characters, including two brothers in a complicated relationship, about whom we learn so much I found it impossible not to care about their lives and fates.
MIKE HANAS Principal
At or near the top of my pile of summer reading is Unbroken, Laura Hillenbrand's inspiring true story of Louie Zamperini, a 1930 Olympic track star turned war-hero who endures a series of catastrophes almost too hard to believe, and A New Culture of Learning: Cultivating the Imagination for a World of Constant Change by Douglas Thomas and John Seely Brown, who dedicate their book "to the parents of children who are growing up in the digital age."
Let Your Life Speak â€“ Listening for the Voice of Vocation by Parker J. Palmer My current favorite is by Quaker author, Parker J. Palmer. Let Your Life Speak - Listening for the Voice of Vocation invites the reader to live in the tension of a profound question: "Is the life I am living the same as the life that wants to live in me?" This is an "insightful and moving meditation on finding one's true calling ... an openhearted gift to anyone who seeks to live authentically."
MARY HARWOOD Lower School Librarian and Staff (Mountain Class)
Blindness by Jose Saramago
ELISE LONDON Upper School Staff, Advisor, and College Counselor
My favorite book right now is Blindness by Jose Saramago. Saramago's writing style is beautiful and unique (there is very little formal punctuation and the paragraphs blend conversation and description) and his parable about a world where humanity (save one individual) is struck by a disease of "white blindness" is a wonderful commentary on society and perseverance. This is the one novel that often finds its way onto the Senior Seminar summer reading lists (though not this year).
Bel Canto by Ann Patchett This book has it allâ€”suspense, love, intrigue, the drama of human relationshipsâ€”all in the smoothly paced, beautifully written story of a group of hostages in an unnamed South American country. The story begins at the birthday party for a Japanese guest of the government, whose favorite opera singer is performing for him in the home of one of the country's diplomats. Terrorists invade the party, take the group hostage (few of whom speak the same language), and the drama unfolds over the course of their captivity.
NANCY MCGILVARY Center Staff
Race Matters by Cornell West The Fire Next Time by James Baldwin
JONATHAN MCGOVERN Physical Education Staff, Upper School Staff (Rotation for 3rd-Years and Social Studies), and Tennis Coach
Both of these books are short examinations of the way race impacts our society. Though each was published decades ago, Race Matters in 1993 and The Fire Next Time in 1963, their passionate arguments continue to resonate. The concept of race, privilege for some, repression for others, has been an area of interest for me, which was recently given renewed impetus after attending the White Privilege Conference in April 2011. I hope to use these two books in a class I'm currently working on that will examine the way race is lived in our society. If you're interested, you can check out my website/blog (constantly under construction, feedback welcomed!) that includes a class description, blog, and bibliography of all the resources from which I'm planning to draw.
Edible Wild Plants: Wild Foods from Dirt to Plate by John Kallas I just picked up a fascinating book by John Kallas called Edible Wild Plants. It's an amazing book that lets us know about certain plants that grow wild in all parts of our country and how delicious and nutritious they are. An extremely common example is wild spinach, which is sure to grow in any readerâ€™s backyard or city block. What amazed me about this book is the author's assertion that we, as humans, can live healthier by eating plants that grow naturally all around us.
ALEJANDRO MOREIRAS-VILAROS Middle School Staff and Advisor (Spanish, Arabic, and Social Studies)
The Scientist in the Crib: What Early Learning Tells Us about the Mind by Alison Gopnik, Andrew N. Meltzoff, and Patricia K. Kuhl The Last Town on Earth: A Novel by Thomas Mullen The Scientist in the Crib discusses the deep cognitive understandings that babies construct in their first years of life. From realizing that these "skin bags" they see each day are people with wants and needs to deciphering the constant series of grunts and mumbles as discernible language, this book explores the whys and hows of humanity's amazing journey from the womb to becoming citizens of the world. The book is backed with rich scientific data but shared in a conversational tone by the good-humored authors (who are also parents of young children). As an educator, I found this book inspiring for what it taught me about the strength of the child's mind. This book has given me, as a new parent of 10-month-old Leo, so much insight into the incredible learning and growing he does each day.
SARA ORPHANIDES Durham Early School Staff
Sometimes I want my "beach read" to be light and breezy, like a day spent lazing in the sun. But sometimes, I want to be transported to a different time and place where I forget the sweltering August heat and lose myself in someone else's story. The Last Town on Earth: A Novel is a perfect example of the latter type of summer read! This is a dark, chilly story set in the Pacific Northwest during the First World War. As the devastating flu epidemic of 1918 makes its way to a small logging town, the residents grapple with whether to close their borders to keep everyone inside safe, or keep the borders open to offer refuge and service to those in need. This is an absolutely captivating read! You will want to convince a book buddy to read along with you so that you'll have someone to meet up with over iced coffee to discuss the many rich moral questions that are raised by this compelling story.
The Philosophical Baby: What Children’s Minds Tell Us about Truth, Love, and the Meaning of Life by Alison Gopnik Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh It’s a Book by Lane Smith While engaging in one of my favorite pastimes, which is strolling through my local bookstore, I spotted The Philosophical Baby and was captured immediately just by the title itself! I have not been able to put this book down. Gopnik is a leading philosopher, psychologist, and mom. She takes all the recent groundbreaking developments in the fields of psychology, neuroscience, and philosophy and uses it to help us better understand the minds of very young children. This book will leave you with a profound respect for the youngest members of our human family.
LIBBY PITTMAN PENDERGRAST Campus Early School Staff Head Teacher
Gift from the Sea was first published in 1955 and was re-released in 1975. I discovered it as a new mother and wife. At that time, I was searching for guidance and found it in the pages of this book from a woman who had already walked that path. After spending a summer in solitude, the author uses the analogy of a variety of seashells to represent the stages in one’s family life. I returned to the knowledge in this book during every summer beach vacation for many years. Upon my most recent trip to the beach, I re-discovered it—the owners of the cottage we stayed in had the 50th Anniversary edition displayed on the coffee table. As I read it again, I saw that its wisdom was as timeless as ever! During the beach trip recounted above, my daughter and I visited the local bookstore (I told you this is my favorite pastime!) looking for recent children’s books releases. We picked up It’s a Book, at first thinking it was a children’s book, and we soon realized it was a laugh out loud book for grown-ups. This book is a humorous comment on the times we live in. I take it with me everywhere I go and hand it to anybody willing to stop and read. It always brings forth laughter!
NurtureShock: New Thinking about Children by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman One of the most influential books I've read in the past year is NurtureShock by Po Bronson and Ashley Merryman. From the vastly underestimated importance of sleep, to the relationship between bullying and compassion, to good intentions that lead to racism, the authors discuss the most current, peer-reviewed research in child development in an entertaining and truly helpful way. I've found the take-away lessons of this book useful in my teaching as well as in parenting my two young children, and information from this book inspired a Middle School student in my "Your Brain: The User's Manual" class to start a sleep revolution among his peers and teachers. The authors regularly update their companion website with new articles and videos.
JOANNA SISK-PURVIS Lower and Middle School Music Teacher
2010-2011 was truly one for the books. YOU helped write the story of our success! You, along with 475 families, donated over $360,000 in support of the Friends of Friends School campaign last fiscal year. With your gift, you helped us meet our largest goal ever. THANK YOU! Your gift had an immediate impact on students by providing a variety of classroom tools and learning opportunities, such as: iPads for student research Projectors in every classroom for multimedia teaching Digital whiteboards for interactive learning Adobe Design Creative Suite (design tools for print and web) campus-wide Field trips for first-hand learning Cordless microphones for performances and events A digital piano, books for the library, and art and science supplies for everyone’s benefit Support for the Middle School Exploratorium and Upper School End-of-Year experiences And even a new bus (paid for in part with your gift)! Thank you for making a difference with your donation and for all the ways you contribute to our School, making it a special place for our children to learn and grow. Comments, questions, suggestions? Please contact Rebecca Swartz at 919.383.6602 x228 or email@example.com.