Choosing the Right Curriculum

Hello Teachers! In this webinar we discuss various aspects of choosing the right curriculum for the next school year. Our Regional General Managers and former teachers cover different curriculum formats such as print, digital courseware, eBooks, eTexts, and combo products. They’ll explain publisher terms, emphasize the importance of differentiation in curriculum to cater to the diverse needs of students, and highlight the availability of supplemental resources to enhance the learning experience. You’ll also discover tips about considering budget, the age of the curriculum, platform fidelity, and requesting samples when choosing curriculum.

In this month’s webinar you’ll discover:

  • Curriculum format options
  • Publisher terms
  • Considering differentiation
  • Supplemental curriculum
  • And more!

Resources:

Navigating Curriculum Choices for Educators

As educators begin the pivotal task of selecting curriculum materials for the upcoming school year, the vast array of options and considerations can seem overwhelming. From understanding different formats and publisher terms to ensuring the curriculum meets the diverse needs of all students, there’s a lot to unpack. In this article, we’ll dive into key aspects to consider.

Understanding Curriculum Formats

Selecting the right format for curriculum materials is crucial for effective teaching and learning. Educators need to choose between print, digital, and combo products based on their teaching style, student needs, and technological resources available.

  • Print Materials: Traditional hardcover, softcover, or loose-leaf books. Loose-leaf, while common in higher education, may not be ideal for K-12 due to the ease with which pages can be lost.
  • Digital Courseware: Involves licenses or codes that may be assignable to individual students, offering flexibility but requiring careful management.
  • eBooks and eTexts: Digital versions of textbooks and other educational materials that can vary in their interactivity and how they mimic the traditional book experience.
  • Combo Products: Packages that combine print and digital elements, offering a versatile approach to curriculum delivery.

Deciphering Publisher Terms

Understanding publisher terms is key to navigating the procurement process and ensuring that the selected materials meet the school’s needs without unexpected shortages or discontinuations.

  • Out of Print: Indicates that a publisher has ceased production of a particular material, though copies may still circulate.
  • Out of Stock: Temporarily unavailable items, which may or may not be replenished.
  • Back Ordered: Items not currently in stock but expected to be available at a later date.

Emphasizing Differentiation

Differentiation ensures that all students’ learning needs are met, from those requiring additional support to high achievers looking for more challenging content.

  • English Language Learners (ELLs) and Struggling Readers: Require materials that provide language support and cater to varying reading levels.
  • High Achieving Students: Benefit from enrichment opportunities and supplemental resources like ALEKS, IXL, and OpenStax that challenge and extend their learning.
  • Students with Diverse Learning Styles and Needs: Curriculum should accommodate various learning preferences and include provisions for students with IEPs and 504 plans.

Supplemental Resources

Supplemental resources can significantly enhance the core curriculum, providing additional support where needed and allowing for a more tailored learning experience.

  • Adaptive Platforms like ALEKS: Tailor learning paths to individual student needs, reinforcing concepts and promoting mastery.
  • IXL: Offers personalized learning experiences across a broad range of subjects and grade levels.
  • Open Educational Resources (OER) like OpenStax: Provide free, high-quality materials that are cost-effective and accessible.

Key Considerations for Curriculum Selection

Making informed curriculum choices involves considering a variety of factors, from budget constraints to the technological readiness of both teachers and students.

  • Budget: Assess both the school’s budget and the cost implications for students. Digital options may offer cost savings over traditional print materials.
  • Currency of Material: Opt for the most up-to-date editions to ensure relevance, especially in rapidly evolving fields.
  • Platform Fidelity: Consider whether to standardize on a single platform across the school or allow individual teachers to choose.
  • Samples and Demos: Request samples or access to demo materials to thoroughly evaluate options before making a decision.
  • Reputable Platforms: Research and consider well-known platforms like McGraw Hill, Cengage, and Pearson for quality and support.

Selecting the right curriculum involves a careful balance of understanding the available formats, recognizing the diverse needs of students, and considering practical factors like budget and platform compatibility. By staying informed and considering a range of resources, educators can make choices that not only align with educational goals but also enrich the learning experience for every student.

To explore more of our training resources visit our Teacher Training Webinars page.

If you have questions, comments, or feedback, please email us at teachercorner@edtechsolutions.com. If you’d like to be featured in our next teacher webinar, let us know.


EdTech Solutions leverages education technology to improve learning by making it easy and simple for schools and students to manage and access individualized digital content on any device. EdTech’s cutting-edge approach to schoolwide ebook implementation and our innovative online platform and tools give school administrators and teachers the controls they need while providing students and parents with access to all their content on one easy-to-use platform with a single login, in most cases.

When you work with us, we create a personalized bookstore for your school where students can access and purchase their ebooks and textbooks on Shelfit.com. We also help publishers make their content available digitally to students on our robust multi-publisher ebook reader platform. We strongly believe that knowledge and good education should be available to all, and we are committed to developing and providing the online learning tools and modern services that make it possible.

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