Welcome to the World of "Eggxtraordinary"!

By Justin Gadd-Thomson, Lower School Faculty
Ten years ago, I did something that I did not think I was capable of as an aspiring math teacher, and that was to write a children’s book. My inspiration sprang from a desire to weave a narrative that captivated young minds and imparted valuable lessons about individuality, diversity, and the beauty of embracing one's uniqueness. 
Eggxtraordinary tells the tale of four seemingly ordinary ingredients—egg, butter, sugar, and flour—grappling with self-worth. The underlying themes delve into the emotions we all experience at times—feelings of inadequacy, the quest for identity, and the yearning for recognition. As we follow the character's journey, we discover that every ingredient plays a crucial role, and each character has its own special qualities waiting to be celebrated. 

In the story, you meet Lemon, once sour, who has recently undergone a transformative journey. Lemon becomes the voice of optimism and resilience, demonstrating that a positive perspective can change everything, even in challenging times. The story encourages young people to understand that, like the ingredients in a recipe, each person brings something unique and extraordinary to the table.

The idea for this story first came to me while I was at teachers’ college. I found myself surrounded by brilliant individuals against whom I would be competing to find a job upon completing my degree. With each passing day, I felt more and more “ordinary” as I heard their inspirational tales about why they got into teaching. As this was playing out, I had also developed a love for cooking. As a cash-strapped university student, I did not have many elaborate ingredients to work with. It was that moment when I started to imagine the “ordinary” ingredients I was using on a daily basis and the parallels they reflected to the emotions I was experiencing at the time. 

Crescent School is a wonderful, engaging, and inspiring place to attend and work. However, it can occasionally be overwhelming due to the presence of so many incredibly talented individuals. Observing, listening, and drawing insights from the experiences of our boys, I've noticed many similarities to what I was experiencing at teacher’s college. The tendency to compare ourselves to others can easily steer us onto a path that induces feelings of inadequacy. For these reasons, I felt so strongly about sharing my story and the story of “Eggxtraordinary” with the boys. 

Fostering a sense of self-worth and appreciation for diversity is crucial for our well-being and the well-being of the wider community. Eggxtraordinary serves not only as an entertaining tale but also as a source of inspiration and empowerment. I hope that it will spark conversations about embracing our individuality and recognizing the beauty in the differences that surround us.