Curriculum Maps Defined
Curriculum maps are used as planning guides to help teachers begin planning their courses with an end in mind. Teachers ask themselves: What do I want the students to know and be able to do by the end of a grade level, or specific course? How will we get there? What methods will we use? How do ALL of the state standards fit within this plan? These are all questions that frame the planning of the maps. The maps are organized by month, and or by marking period. They reflect the prescribed state standards, the method of teaching, the materials used, and how the students will be assessed. Also, the maps provide links to other subject areas as the unit or concept of one area relates to another. Major writing assignments and projects are often highlighted in maps. Strategies for teaching and assessing are also included in the maps.
Rationale and Use
The maps provide a framework for our academic studies from year to year. Teachers are able to get a more concrete notion of what the teachers in the grade or course levels below them cover and assess, and what is expected in the grade or course levels above what they currently teach. Making the maps and evaluating the maps together at the start, middle and end of each school year helps teachers to realize gaps in teaching, areas that need re-teaching, and when the maps are used in combination with teacher made assessments, or state test scores, the teachers can rebuild their maps to fortify areas of weakness.
To our Parents
Reading through your child’s grade level maps, you will be able to understand how your child’s teacher addresses and teaches to the state standards in a variety of ways with a variety of resources. You will be able to see the scope and sequence regarding the series of lessons and activities and assessments put into place in order to ensure that your sons and daughters are learning what is prescribed by the state. More importantly you will see the collective wisdom of the professionals that teach your children.