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K12 Library Curriculum & The Common Core--RILINK presentation: Curriculum Basics

Presented at RILINK Conference, Strengthening the Core: SLMS as Curriculum Leader, Aug 14, 2013


Curriculum.  What does it even mean?

A) a lot of work

B) sometimes as much fun as a root canal

C) A living document that needs to be revised every  three to five years.

If you guessed "all of the above", you're in the right neighborhood.

First and foremost, you need to follow the requirements of your district.  If your district is trying to become streamlined,  all disciplines may need to conform to the same templates, sometimes designed by someone who may not be a practioner and almost certainly is not in your discipline.  

So the "boilerplate" format for your district may be unique and idiosyncratic.  

So then, what isn't unique?

Universally, you will need:

1)      Curriculum map

2)      Scope and sequence

3)      Aligned to standards.  Do yourself  a favor:  AASL for 21st century 1st, then ISTE second, and then in Common Core Standards, which thankfully are so closely aligned with our standards that your matrixes will be overflowing.  Don’t forget about the crosswalk:

However, careful adherence to the above crosswalk is very, very involved.  Cranston is offering a more basic guideline.  It won’t take you to the element level, but you won’t go nuts. (See Cranston's abbreviated crosswalk under Step 3:  Additional Resources)

5)      Related assessments, both formative and summative.  (See formative assessment resource documents under Step 3:  Additional Resources)

6)      Resources.  Try to not tie yourself down to specific examples.  Use “suggestions” instead.  That way no one can insist that your entire department use identical resources, which can be a death knoll to individual creativity and skill sets.

7)      For other disciplines, we need to worry about common tasks and common course assessments in the secondary levels.  Cranston (our district) decided that secondary librarians are service providers rather than classroom teachers.  This means that our secondary librarians do not grade students, so we don’t have to worry about that… but this may vary between districts.

8)      Appendices.  Everything in the world.  Including the kitchen sink.  Remember to include whatever buzzwords are “in” in your district.  At the moment, ours are  21st century  skills (see resources under Step 3:  Additional Resources), formative assessments, Blooms Taxonomy (see resources under Step 3:  Additional Resources), glossaries, any CCS correlations or resource material, depth of knowledge,  and of course information literacy resources:  Big 6, sometimes IIM, Kathy Shrock 5W, Radcab rubric.

9)   Sample lessons.

9)   Sample student work

11)   Sample exemplars for things that are big on our evaluation, such as parent/community communication (blogs, websites),  even a LibGuides page.

12)   Bibliography.  Be exhaustive; it's worth it.  Include everything in the world, even if you didn’t cite from it.  You might in the future. 

Sample Curriculum Map Format

This is one of the many samples of curriculum format/template that we could choose to use.  Other formats could include information by quarter or by month.   You need to find out what template/format your district requires, if any.  And the best format that works for your content.

Subject Guide

Sue Rose's picture
Sue Rose
Chester W. Barrows School
9 Beachmont Avenue
Cranston, RI 02905