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Instruction

Initial CLI District Response to 6 Key Elements of the Every Student Succeeds Act

Analysis of relevant elements of the Every Student Succeeds Act (ESSA) suggests topics of discussion for the CLI district’s curriculum coordinating council. Although those who prepared ESSA say the act places most responsibility for establishing provisions to ensure school accountability on states, many stipulations included at the federal level do not allow much leeway for creativity or alternative interpretations. It is therefore suggested that curriculum coordinating councils place the selected relevant topics found in the table below on discussion agendas. Read More

Curriculum is a Roadmap

“Curriculum” is discussed on a daily basis in conversations within schools among administrators, teachers, support staff, and outside stakeholders. Strangely enough, it is a term that carries fundamental misconceptions that make those conversations difficult. Unless everyone involved in the conversation has the same definition for curriculum, what is said and what is heard are often very different.Read More

Book Briefing: The Other Side of the Report Card

In honor of School Library Month, this E-Hint is inspired by a new book: The Other Side of the Report Card: Assessing Students’ Social, Emotional, and Character Development by Maurice Elias, Joseph Ferrito and Dominic Moceri (2016). As curriculum developers, we know that academic learning should be thoughtfully planned, and that instruction and assessment should be carefully aligned to standards. However, we may occasionally ask ourselves, “What about the other aspects of development, for example, self-management and social awareness?Read More

Supporting Student Learning: The “Ins” and “Outs” of the Classroom

Educators are always trying to discover and use new academic strategies to increase student learning. Sometimes the best approaches are not academic, but they are supportive in nature. According to Awaken the Learner, published by Marzano Research, as well as recent articles in NEA Today, attention should be paid to the inside climate of the classroom in addition to the activities that take place outside of the regular classroom setting.Read More

Not All Teaching Practices are Created Equal

Have you and your colleagues ever been told by an administrator that test scores need to be improved because current results aren’t good enough? Afterward, did you find yourself thinking there is nothing that can be done without support from parents, or that today’s kids just aren’t motivated enough? Or perhaps you told yourself that kids seem to have a sense of entitlement; that they believe they shouldn’t need to work so hard to get what they want.Read More

Resource Selection for Common Core Standards

When it comes to implementing the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), one of the first things teachers want to do is order new resources to support those standards.  That seems like a simple thing to do because virtually all publishers will tout their latest products as being aligned to the CCSS.  However, it is important to note there are degrees of alignment.  Some resources may address the standards only in …Read More

Learning Targets

In the Curriculum Leadership Institute (CLI) Model, curriculum is written in terms of outcomes – what the students should know and be able to do at the conclusion of a unit of instruction. Teachers in districts using the CLI Model know that those outcomes should be shared with students at the beginning of instruction. How would students know when they’ve met expectations if they don’t know what those expectations are? Along …Read More

Be Careful With Themed Instruction

THEMES MAKE SENSE IN MANY WAYS Many teachers plan their instruction in terms of “themes” – also referred to as “central ideas” or “big topics.” Numerous outcomes, or – more often – components of different outcomes, can be taught in the same timeframe by using a theme. Sometimes the outcomes/components are from different subject areas, such as combining a math measurement outcome with a science outcome that requires application of …Read More