#CurriculumMatters: Let’s Bring Tangibility and Team to Essential Work via Social Media

We believe we’re witnessing a movement that is beginning to elevate literacy and math instruction. And we’d like to talk about the role of social media, and specifically a hashtag – #CurriculumMatters – in that work. (At first blush, that might seem silly. Please stay with us!)

We use social media in a lot of rewarding ways:

  • Sharing stories of our work with high-quality curriculum – because these positive stories deserve telling.
  • Elevating the work of our teachers, many of whom are having incredible success with their students right now.
  • Connecting with others who are using high-quality curricula – the ones we use, and the ones with similar characteristics. We just saw a fun exchange about equity between Robin and a Baltimore teacher which shows how much learning is happening in this growing community – even when we are using different high-quality curricula.
  • Keeping up with the news and evolutions in the fast-changing curriculum space.
  • Professional learning generally: conversations about curriculum are often connected to conversations about research and evidence-based practice. We can’t get enough of that.

We know we are a part of a growing community of schools and districts across the country who are using curriculum with similar goals… and similar positive stories. If you’re working with “all-green” curriculum, we want to be connecting with you, following you, learning from you! We see a lot of power in a Professional Learning Network around this work, as we’ve shared.

Here’s the challenge: it isn’t always easy to spot each other in the Twitterverse, which is where a lot of K–12 conversation happens.

Why is it hard to spot people who’re sharing about work with curriculum? Because tweets about curriculum can often look like tweets that are simply about engaged students… or great student work… or beloved texts… or productive student discourse… unless the Tweeter is intentional about connecting the tweet to work with curriculum.

We’d like to change that, and it’s where the #CurriculumMatters hashtag comes in.

Exemplars help, so we’ll take a few recent examples from the social airwaves.

Beth Gonzalez, the Chief Academic Officer in Detroit Public Schools, has been leading the implementation of new ELA and math curriculum. Recently, she tweeted this inspiring set of photos:

Heart Eyes.

Now, if you saw only the above Tweet, you might not know that this rich text study and ‘electricity’ was connected to curriculum work. So, Beth’s next tweet gives us that context:

NOW we understand what we are seeing! Beth is helping us see quality curriculum in action, and it’s the EL Education curriculum. (That detail helps… how many times has someone talked about their work with a new resource – whether a curriculum, rubric, or app – and your first question is: “What are you using??”)

Another example was this teacher’s Tweet:

This could be a history lesson we’re glimpsing. Jared Myracle helps connect it to the district’s work with the Core Knowledge curriculum, which is built around history and science topics, by using the hashtag and noting the materials:

One more example illustrates the ambiguity that we’d like to overcome. The teacher in the tweet below is sharing her students’ work with the ARC Core curriculum. We can tell because she tagged American Reading Company, the curriculum author. But… we have a hunch that most educators don’t realize that American Reading Company developed a curriculum in recent years, and it earned all-green reviews on EdReports. If this tweet said “curriculum” in it, or included #CurriculumMatters (or better yet, added the #ARCCore hashtag), we’d know.

Our Twitter Pro Tips

  • If you’re talking about curriculum work in Twitter, help us know it… and find you! Use #CurriculumMatters, please. Our Tweeters are likely to find and retweet you.
  • Help us know which curriculum we’re seeing. We hear that some educators are especially interested in connecting folks using the same materials, so those provider tags/hashtags are great for finding your tribe.

Fast Facebook Facts

We don’t mean to leave out Facebook… in fact, some incredible things are happening in Facebook Groups for the individual curricula! This really deserves its own blog (we’ll try to write more soon), but let us just say… if you are using one of the “all-green” curricula, chances are you can find a community for that curriculum in Facebook, and sometimes at the individual grade level.

You can also join our facebook group. So far, that facebook group has been less quiet than the Twitter community, but we’re looking to change that. So, get in there and help us! #BeTheChange

Be Sweet And Tweet

We hope to connect with many more of you in Twitter as we start raising our voices about how and why #CurriculumMatters.