The Thigh Bone’s Connected to the Hip Bone; the Hip Bone’s Connected to the …

[Source: Cartoonstock.com]

[Source: Cartoonstock.com]

It’s axiomatic: students can’t learn what they are not being taught. As the song (above) suggests, if your instructional materials (IMs) are not well aligned to the state’s standards, your students’ test scores will likely reflect it.

Here’s why:

– Studies have shown that teachers rely on their IMs for 80% of their curriculum. They expect that the IMs their district has purchased are aligned to the standards.

– If the IMs are not aligned to 100% of the standards and teachers don’t know where the deficits are, they will not adjust their instruction (with supplemental materials and/or instructional strategies) to make up for the materials’ deficits.

– If students are not taught the knowledge and skills the standards require them to know, they won’t ace the state tests.

– Teachers, campuses and districts are evaluated based on their students’ performance.

Bottom line: If your students have underperformed on a standard or group of standards, the first step to remediating the problem is to examine the alignment of your instructional materials. A simple way to improve your students’ test scores is to go through this analysis:

Step 1: Are the IMs your teachers are using aligned to those standards?

If the IMs are not aligned to those standards, your teachers should either (a) incorporate into their lesson plans supplemental resources that are aligned to that/those standard(s); or (b) adjust their instructional strategies (e.g,, questioning) to make up for the deficit(s) in the material’s coverage of the standards.

Step 2: If the material is aligned to those standards, you must determine whether all of the citations for that/those standard are aligned or whether there are some citations that are not aligned.

Click Image for YouTube Video [Source: Super Simple Songs]

Click Image for YouTube Video [Source: Super Simple Songs]

If some citations are not aligned and your teachers assigned the non-aligned citations, students were not being taught everything those standards require them to know; thus, they did not master the test questions covering those standards.

Bottom line: The degree to which your instructional materials are aligned will likely be reflected in your students’ test results. If your district subscribes to Learning List, our alignment reports make this analysis easy. Under Training Resources, see the step-by-step guidance on “Analyzing your Test Results.”

If you want to set your students (and teachers) up for success, make sure the materials you are using (either individually or in the aggregate) are aligned to each standard. If you use a product series that spans multiple grade levels, you need to review the alignment of the product at each grade level because the alignment may vary greatly from grade level to grade level.

The “hip bone’s connected to the thigh bone, the thigh bone’s connected to the ….” Your instructional materials will impact your students’ and teachers’ success.

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New Review: CompuScholar’s Kid Coder – Web Design

[Source: CompuScholar, Inc.]

[Source: CompuScholar, Inc.]

CompuScholar’s KidCoder: Web Design is a year-long, online course that covers all topics generally included in introductory web-design programs at the middle school and high school level. Instruction meets the requirements for Texas Web Design courses and no prior programming experience is required. The course addresses the HTML, CSS, and JavaScript skills needed to create websites in both the Windows and Mac operating systems. Learning List has recently completed a review of the online course.

Click Image for YouTube Video Demo [courtesy of CompuScholar]

Click Image for YouTube Video Demo [courtesy of CompuScholar]

KidCoder: Web Design introduces students to the basic concepts of web design, such as web languages and the organization of content. Instruction builds across the year to cover more advanced topics, including the use of graphics, audio, and video; HTML5, CSS3, and JavaScript skills; and jQuery. Most lessons contain a closed-captioned video, a lesson text, and a quiz. Videos are narrated slide shows or animations that introduce and demonstrate web programming and design tasks. Lesson texts complement videos, providing more in depth coverage of content.

Each chapter includes one or more hands-on projects and ends with a summative test. The course’s mid-term and final exam are projects in which students work with peers to create their own websites. Supplemental lessons and projects are provided to extend instruction and meet advanced student needs. Click here for a free trial.

About CompuScholar, Inc.*

The company was founded by software engineers with many years of experience in the software industry. CompuScholar has a passion for quality computer programming and encourages students of all ages to learn best practices and modern technical skills.

A love of computers starts early. Many computer programmers write their first programs in middle school. Their courses let kids and teens take that important first step towards what could become a lifelong hobby, career, and passion!

CompuScholar is led by Chris Yust, a 17-year computer science veteran and author of eight computer programming textbooks for children. Chris has a M.S. in Electrical Engineering and has run a professional consulting company for over a decade. Chris regularly speaks at workshops, telling teachers and parents that computer science really isn’t that scary after all. CompuScholar, Inc. offers curriculum tailored for public and private school systems. Individuals who wish to purchase the same material in a self-study format can visit their sister company, Homeschool Programming, Inc.

* The content in this section is provided by or adapted from CompuScholar, Inc.

© 2015 Learning List

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New Review: McGraw Hill’s Sociology and You

[Source: McGraw Hill Education]

[Source: McGraw Hill Education]

McGraw-Hill Education’s Sociology and You is a comprehensive sociology course for high school students that includes print and online resources. The course introduces students to the study of social structures and includes engaging multimedia features, such as videos and interactive learning tools, which support instruction in blended learning environments. Learning List has recently completed a review of Sociology and You.

Sociology and You addresses how social structures shape human societies and behavior. Content is organized using Understanding by Design® (UBD) model, which frames instruction in terms of “Enduring Understandings” and “Essential Questions.” Chapters open with essential questions to guide students’ thinking and include a “Technology and Society” feature that examines how technology influences social experiences. Chapters include primary source documents for analysis and hands-on projects.

Lessons begin with lesson-specific essential questions, a brief overview of content, and an explanation of why it matters to students. Students have access to a glossary in Spanish and English and online libraries of “Skills Builder” and “Test Prep” resources. Skills Builder resources address geography, research, writing, and presentation skills and include links to college and career readiness development materials. The Test Prep library provides rubrics and resources to improve test-taking skills. Click here for an outline of the course or here for a program overview.

 

About McGraw Hill Education at a Glance*

Sociology & You is written exclusively for high school to introduce students to the discipline of sociology and the sociological study of society.

[Source: McGraw Hill]

[Click for Video; Source: McGraw Hill]

McGraw-Hill Education believes that their contribution to unlocking a brighter future lies within the application of a deep understanding of how learning happens and how the mind develops. It exists where the science of learning meets the art of teaching.

Educators have been and always will be at the core of the learning experience. The solutions McGraw Hill develops help educators impart their knowledge to students more efficiently. McGraw Hill believes that harnessing technology can enhance learning inside and outside of the classroom and deepen the connections between students and teachers to empower greater success.

By partnering with educators around the globe, McGraw Hill learning engineers, content developers and pedagogical experts are developing increasingly open learning ecosystems that improve pass rates, elevate grades and increase engagement for each individual learner while improving outcomes for all. Why? Because learning changes everything.

* The content in this section is provided by or adapted from McGraw Hill Education.

© 2015 Learning List

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