Tuesday, March 26, 2013

Post for the week of March 25, 2013

Post for the week of March 25, 2013

The DESE recently launched its new series on Curriculum Alignment and Mapping (see lots of info below).  If you missed the opening Webinars, please visit the Webinar Recordings page of this Google Site to watch them.  They include a PowerPoint with excellent and diverse examples.

The new emphasis on curriculum mapping has made me think about its purpose.  Let's think about it like we're planning an assignment for students. 

What is the purpose of the assignment?  Is it to have something on the school's Web page or in a binder?  Is it to document what you already do, or what curriculum you'd like to do?  Is it an organic document that will change over time, or will it be the same for a few years?  If it will change, who is responsible for changing it? 
Who is the audience for this work?  Teachers, administrators, parents, or all of the above?  Do the new teachers have it?  Will they know how to read it or what the school's expectations are?
Who will write it?  Teachers or administrators?  When will we read it? 
When is it due?  Is there are deadline?
How long should it be (frequent student question!)?  What are the essential components? 
What are the criteria for success?  How will we know if we have a successful curriculum map?

This series will offer lots of examples.  The idea is that there is no "right" way to make a curriculum map; every school will have to decide for itself what it needs.  Next week, I'll highlight what I need in a curriculum map to make it work for me. 

New Series on Curriculum Alignment & Mapping:
ESE, in partnership with the Governor's Readiness Centers, has developed a new series on curriculum mapping as a core tool for communicating about and aligning curriculum and instruction across grades, subject areas, and schools. During the series, which includes two webinars, a two-day summer institute, and follow-up activities, participants will discuss the status of curriculum mapping in their districts, gain access to exemplary models and other support resources, and use guided planning time to take their curriculum planning to the next level.

The complete series, which is funded by a Race to the Top grant, will include:
- Webinar 1: Introduction (March 7 and 8)
- Webinar 2: Mapping Common Core Shifts in ELA, Math, or History (May/June)
- Summer Institute: Guided Team Time (2-day regional institutes, June/July)
- Webinar 3: Sharing Examples (Fall 2013)
- Session at 6th Annual ESE Curriculum & Instruction Summit (Nov. 6 or 7, 2013)
- Wiki with examples and other resources
- Coaching Support

Curriculum mapping, webinars, institutes, and resources will be made available to all MA public school districts.

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