Last week the Primary students began reading Junior Great Books. Junior Great Books is an integral part of the language curriculum at St. Joseph Montessori School. It is a fun way for students to explore classic literature from around the world. Students read stories and share their ideas and opinions about books in small discussion groups. The literature chosen will be challenging to children of all ages, spark their sense of curiosity, and promote thoughtful discourse. The Shared Inquiry Method will be used to make it possible for all children, regardless of their reading level, to contribute with confidence and learn from each other. Shared Inquiry is a collaborative search for answers, by the students, to questions of meaning about the text. They will support their inquiry with evidence from the text. This method develops deeper critical thinking about the themes and characters. Writing skills are developed as they hone careful answers to the focus questions. There will be an opportunity for creative work and dramatizations based on the theme and characters in each story. Penny Shyjka, SJMS's Montessori Classroom Enrichment Specialist, is excited to meet with Primary students in the Junior Great Books room where they will pursue their inquiry and share ideas there. Students will do additional follow-up activities and written work in the Primary classrooms.