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The Results Are In: Junior Great Books® Positively Impacts Students

During the 2013–2014 school year, 44 District of Columbia Schools participated in a study to determine the impact of Junior Great Books on both Text Reading/Comprehension and Book Level over the course of the school year. Of the 44 schools in the study, 27 used Junior Great Books materials and our Shared Inquiry™ method of learning, and 17 did not. At the end of the year, proficient, below-proficient, and far-below-proficient students at the 27 Junior Great Books schools showed significantly higher increases in both Text Reading/Comprehension and Book Level than students at the same levels in the 17 schools that did not implement Junior Great Books.

“We were very pleased to see overall growth on two measures of reading achievement—the Text Reading/Comprehension and Book Level,” said Matthew Reif, Director of the Advanced and Enriched Instruction Office of Teaching and Learning, District of Columbia Public Schools. “One of our biggest surprises was what an effect there was on struggling readers who participated in the Junior Great Books groups. I feel that the dynamic interaction of high-quality texts that can lead to multiple interpretations and the energizing student discussions that result from these interactions help not just with critical thinking but with one of our greatest priorities: improving reading comprehension.”

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