The Great Books Foundation provides outstanding classroom materials and inspiring professional development. We help students get the most out of reading and interacting with their teachers and classmates, while providing instruction and support in Shared Inquiry™, a method of teaching and learning that gives teachers the approach they need to help their students succeed.

Discover the Power of Shared Inquiry

Strong inquiry-based instruction has been proven to engage all students at higher levels of reading and thinking. Our research-based approach to learning through questioning and collaboration is what we call Shared Inquiry.

In Shared Inquiry, the teacher serves as a model learner and coach, showing how to explore complex texts and rich content while shifting to a student-centered process. The goal is creating a community of learners where every student is supported and challenged to find his or her own voice, develop deep understanding, and engage in respectful, civil discourse to learn from one another.

Shared Inquiry enhances all the basic language arts skills­—reading comprehension, critical thinking, writing, speaking, and listening—and enables students to learn more across the curriculum.

Teachers who learn Shared Inquiry:

  • Improve their questioning strategies to lead productive, text-based discussions
  • Introduce students to rich and diverse literature from around the world
  • Help build students’ critical thinking skills
  • Challenge students to go further with their ideas and opinions
  • Help students improve performance across the curriculum
  • Change the culture of their classrooms
  • Use a nationally recognized method of learning, proven to improve student performance

Contact Kelly Emanuel, your Great Books educational consultant, to learn more:


The Junior Great Books program teaches teachers and students to dig deeper, create an opinion using textual evidence, collaborate, talk about their reading, and invest in the story. The exciting part of the process is watching the students change their minds and opinions based on text evidence shared by their peers. I absolutely recommend Junior Great Books to fellow educators!

Kristen Holm
Richman Elementary School
Fullerton, CA


“I think Junior Great Books is an important component of a balanced literacy program because it really incorporates the reading, writing, speaking, and listening components that are at the heart of balanced literacy. Kids are really driving the process. They’re driving the discussions. . . . Their thinking is at the heart of it.”

Angela Brito

Blaine Elementary School
Chicago, IL