Posts Tagged "Elementary"

New Review: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s English 3D

LeaHoughton Mifflin Harcourt’s English 3Drning List has reviewed Houghton Mifflin Harcourt’s English 3D, which is a supplemental resource to support the acquisition of language skills for English language learners and other students with language deficiencies in grades 4-12. Resources are available in print format. Additional online materials for grades 4-8 are available at HMH Teacher Central, and some resources for grades 9-12 are on CD-ROM. Instruction focuses on improving students’ linguistic and academic skill sets during dedicated time for language development.

Instruction is systematic and explicit and focuses on learning and practicing the English language skills, including contextually appropriate language, fluency skills, and purposeful speaking and writing.  Across grade levels, student materials include “Issues Books” and “Language & Writing Portfolios.” Issue Books contain cross-curricular informational and literary texts addressing particular issues of interest to students.  Portfolios are “interactive worktexts” that support vocabulary acquisition, collaborative learning experiences, and the development of written and spoken language skills.

Issues Books address real-world issues relevant to students’ lives, such making health choices, street art, and bullying. The texts build in complexity across the school year. In terms of Lexile (L) levels, texts for grades 4 and 5 range from 770L to 980L, texts for grades 6-8 range from 830L to 1270L, and texts for grades 9-12 range from 890L to 1410L. For each Issue, the Language & Writing Portfolios contain worksheets, graphic organizers, sentence frames (e.g., “Based on my experience, video games mostly [harm/benefit] teens because they are ____ [adjective: enjoyable, distracting] and_____ [adjective: relaxing, violent]”), self-assessment rubrics, and other resources to support student learning. Each Issue concludes with a summative test and English 3D includes beginning-of-the-year, mid-year, and end-of-year assessments of academic language.

About Houghton Mifflin Harcourt (HMH)*

As a global learning company, HMH specializes in pre-K–12 education content, services and cutting edge technology solutions for today’s changing landscape.

HMH creates engaging, dynamic and effective educational content and experiences from early childhood to K-12 and beyond the classroom, serving more than 50 million students in more than 150 countries. Available through multiple media, our content meets the needs of students, teachers, parents and lifelong learners, no matter where and how they learn.

Information in this section is provided by or adapted from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.

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New Review: BrainPop

BrainPopLearning List recently reviewed BrainPOP’s core content resources (i.e., science, social studies, mathematics, and English language arts) for grades K-8. BrainPOP is a supplemental program that supports instruction in the core content areas as well as technology, arts and music, and health. Resources are available online and include some printable materials (e.g., worksheets). Instruction uses engaging videos and interactive concept maps to address content.

BrainPOP organizes content in “Topics” that address a range of subject-area concepts (e.g., atoms, citizenship, writing skills). Topics include a short movie in which an animated characters named Annie (grades K-3) and Tim (grades 4-8) and their robot friend Moby explore a question (e.g., How do tornadoes form?). Movies provide background information, explore and illustrate key concepts (e.g., updrafts), and introduce and define new vocabulary.

After the movie, students can “Make a Map” and/or take a short quiz over content. Make a Map allows students to create a concept map using a set of premade map templates, such as compare and contrast, vocabulary, cyclical relationships, and problem/solution analysis. Tools also allow students to create entirely new concept maps. The quiz is a five-question multiple-choice check for understanding.

Other resources include content-related games, an “FYI” feature, and additional activities related to the video. FYI is a set of 5-paragraph, illustrated, informational articles and a related comic that extend students’ learning. For example, the FYI for a social studies topic addressing the California Gold Rush includes articles about traveling to California Trail and the Donner Party, John Sutter, and a comic addressing gold prices.

About BrainPOP*

BrainPOP was founded in 1999 by Avraham Kadar, M.D., an immunologist and pediatrician, as a creative way to explain difficult concepts to his young patients. Today, BrainPOP is used in 25 percent of U.S. elementary and middle schools, with rapid international growth. An in-house team of educators, animators, and writers produce and continually improve BrainPOP, incorporating valuable teacher and parent input.

*Information in this section is provided by or adapted from BrainPOP.

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New Review: McGraw-Hill Education’s Everyday Mathematics 4


[Source: McGraw-Hill Education]

McGraw-Hill Education’s Everyday Mathematics 4 is a comprehensive mathematics program that supports the implementation of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) in grades K-6. Resources are available in print and online formats. Learning List recently reviewed the program’s online content.

Everyday Math emphasizes coherent content that is spiraled (i.e., revisited) appropriately within and across grade-levels. This “spiraled” approach distributes learning over time rather than concentrating instruction in a single unit, section, or lesson. Instruction is sequenced to address the CCSS and structured in sections and lessons that address “Goals for Mathematical Content” (GMC) and “Goals for “Mathematical Practice” (GMP). For each GMC, sections provide introductory lessons that allow students to explore and practice new concepts. Subsequent lessons develop students’ skills and ability to apply what they have learned. Sections end with concluding instruction in which students review, apply, and transfer their learning in new contexts and to non-routine problems.

A set of “Spiral” tools allow teachers to see how each lesson’s instruction connects concepts and ensures coherent instruction within and across grade levels. The “Spiral Shapshot” is a lesson-level resource that illustrates how content is building across previous lessons, the current lesson, and future instruction. The “Spiral Trace” is presented at the opening of each unit and illustrates how concepts develop over the course of the unit’s instruction. The “Spiral Tracker” provides a comprehensive view of how content is developed over the course of a year, including lesson activities and assessments.

About McGraw-Hill Education*


[Source: McGraw-Hill Education]

At McGraw-Hill Education, we believe that our contribution to unlocking a brighter future lies within the application of our 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 we develop help educators impart their knowledge to students more efficiently. We believe 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, our learning engineers, content developers and pedagogical experts are developing increasingly open learning ecosystems that are proven to improve pass rates, elevate grades and increase engagement for each individual learner while improving outcomes for all.

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

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New Review: Curriculum Associates’ STAAR Ready Math

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[Source: Curriculum Associates]

Learning List has reviewed Curriculum Associates’ STAAR Ready Math. This supplemental resource supports math instruction and preparation for Texas’s STAAR testing for students in grades 1-8. Materials are available in print format. Content addresses grade-level TEKS while developing students’ understanding of key concepts and ability to apply concepts in problem solving activities.

Content is presented in units organized by the STAAR Performance Categories (e.g., Measurement and Graphing). Units are made up of short, scaffolded lessons that focus on one or more TEKS. Instruction is organized using the Gradual Release of Responsibility (GRR) model and includes direct instruction, modeling, and guided and independent practice.  

At each grade level, “Teacher Guides” contain tools to help teachers transition to the new mathematics TEKS. Guides provide a crosswalk document that explains how the STAAR Ready program addresses the demands of the TEKS, including the process standards. A pair of tables (1) identify lesson activities and problems that require higher level thinking as measured by Webb’s Depth of Knowledge index, and (2) present a “Cognitive Rigor Matrix” that combines Webb’s and Bloom’s indicators of high level thinking and describes student behaviors that demonstrate higher-level thinking. Teacher Guides also have correlation tables for lesson activities and STAAR Practice problems.

curriculum associates logo

[Source: Curriculum Associates]

About Curriculum Associates*

Curriculum Associates is a rapidly growing education company committed to making classrooms better places for teachers and students. We believe that all children have the chance to succeed, and our research-based, award-winning products, including i-Ready®, Ready®, BRIGANCE®, and other programs, provide teachers and administrators with flexible resources that deliver meaningful assessments and data-driven, differentiated instruction for children.

Because we are independently owned and operated, we are able to provide the best prices so that every district, school, and educator can afford to bring top quality resources to their students. By maintaining our independence, we are able to channel our investments toward the things that really matter—like product development, research, and unmatched customer service.

For the past 40 years, we have consistently developed high-quality products that make a profound difference in the lives of students and educators, and we will continue to bring these proven products—as well as new ones—to you in the future.

*The content in this section is provided by or adapted from Curriculum Associates.

Subscribe to Learning List for access to full editorial reviews, alignment reports and spec sheets.

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Reviewed: Inquiry by


[Source:]’s Inquiry is a web-based, K-8 resource focused on developing students’ technology skills and supporting schools’ transition to project-based learning (PBL) in the core subject areas. Content includes subject-based projects at each grade level as well as age-appropriate instruction in digital citizenship differentiated for the early elementary (K-2), elementary (3-5), and middle (6-8) school levels. Learning List has reviewed the Texas Edition resources for grades K-8.

Each grade level includes six pre-developed blended learning projects that address one of the four core content areas (i.e., math, ELA, science, and social studies). Projects begin with an optional pre-test that assesses whether students have the technology skills needed to complete the project. Based on pre-test results, students are prescribed individualized lessons from the “EasyTech” library that address gaps in technology skills.

Projects are framed in terms of an “Essential Question” and are structured as sequential tasks that students complete either individually or in groups to produce a final digital product. Projects require students to research, create, and present content using digital resources and some projects also include games, quizzes, and journaling assignments. Projects are flexible and teachers may choose to implement some or all components. Each project includes detailed lesson plans, estimated timelines, and suggested evaluation and extension activities.

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About* provides K-12 solutions to help students, teachers, and schools excel in a digital world. Districts around the country equip their students with the digital literacy skills needed for online assessments, college, and the workforce using their digital literacy solutions. supports districts as they move to digital content with tools to build and share district-created digital curriculum.

*The content in this section is provided by or adapted from

Subscribe to Learning List for access to full editorial reviews, alignment reports and spec sheets.

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