We actively seeking co-pilots in this work! Below you’ll find information on our philosophies, plans, and what we seek in fellow leaders.
An Overview for Leadership Candidates
Curriculum Matters is an educator-led effort to support K–12 educators in understanding, exploring, and implementing the high-quality curriculum options in ELA and math, many of which are new and unknown.
These curricula are much better than the materials that preceded them, they empower teachers to be successful with the key instructional shifts required by state standards, and districts using these new materials are seeing positive student and teacher outcomes. Those stories need to be told.
Our goal is simple: to equip and empower school and district leaders to make smart curriculum decisions and then to lead successful implementations of high-quality curricula, in support of better outcomes for kids, and in pursuit of greater equity in education.
Our Theory of Action
We believe that most district leaders don’t know about the excellent and often new options in the curriculum space, and may not be aware of EdReports / Louisiana Believes reviews, which make it easier to separate quality options from lesser options.
We believe that educators prefer to hear about new resources and options from their peers, so building community around curriculum work – led by educators with experience implementing high-quality curricula, and leveraging the voices of educators – is the best thing we can do to support the national K–12 community.
Also, the new breed of curricula align thoughtfully with research on how kids learn, but that research is not necessarily widely known. One must understand that research in order to appreciate the alignment of these curricula, so our work should also build awareness for essential research around literacy and math instruction.
Here’s what we hope to accomplish, in collaboration with education leaders from across the country:
Establish a national PLN of educators that supports:
- Evaluation/selection, by sharing info about the use of high-quality curriculum to raise the instructional bar
- Key goals associated with change in curriculum (examples might include. more time teaching from texts; shifting cognitive load to students; increased student discourse; a move away from leveled reading practices)
- Noteworthy outcomes in early years of implementation
- Implementation of high-quality curriculum, by:
- Sharing and collaborating around problems of practice
- Helping curriculum users discover and participate in the existing communities for individual curricula
We’ll use the Curriculum Matters facebook group and the #CurriculumMatters hashtag to connect educators and build community around this work.
Build awareness for key resources that help with curriculum selection, evaluation, and implementation:
- EdReports and Louisiana curriculum reviews
- Educator insights about the specific curricula that are known to be hiqh quality
- Resources that districts may find useful as they approach curriculum evaluation
- Key research and/or research-based practices that districts should know before selecting curriculum (ex. the importance of content knowledge), in partnership with literacy and math thought leaders
We’ll use the curriculummatters.org website to curate and share resources.
Raise educator voices in the process, elevating the teachers and edleaders doing this work.
- Get more educators sharing their experiences, in blogs and in the media
- Share those stories within and across the growing community of educators doing this work
We’ll use our own individual blogs and the curriculummatters.org blog to share educator voices around this work, in addition to submitting pieces to education publications.
Educators Lead This Work
A leadership group, comprised of invested educators, should shape, steer, and elevate this work. A steering committee of ~12 educators will lead that effort.
We’re Seeking Members for Our Leadership Group
What Do We Want In Leaders?
To lead this work, we seek district leaders who fit most or all of these critieria:
Understanding and embracing of key research about reading:
Ex. Importance of content knowledge, foundational skill development, getting all kids reading grade level texts
Willing to set priorities and protocols for work done by the group
- Provide feedback on group priorities and protocols
- Review draft materials that have been created for educators and provide feedback
- Participate in periodic meetings to steer this work
Willing to spread the word about Curriculum Matters
- Would recruit peers in other districts to join the PLN
- Would seek teachers and coaches in own districts to join PLN and to raise their voices
Willing to share own experience(s) with curriculum selection and implementation
- Sharing stories (blogs, etc)
- Sharing via social media
- Fielding questions from educators in other districts about your experiences with your curricula
Interested in shaping the work of literacy and math thought leaders
We periodically collaborate with math and literacy leaders such as Sue Pimentel, the lead author of the CCSS in ELA, and the other thought leaders shaping the education research and advocacy landscape (ex. Daniel Willingham, Timothy Shanahan).