Qualities of Instructional Materials

Do Your Instructional Materials Support Critical Thinking?

Critical thinkers ask questions, formulate and solve problems, use reasoning and evidence to reach conclusions, approach situations with an open mind, and so much more. School districts set goals designed to support students in becoming effective critical thinkers and problem solvers, but creating a learning environment that is conducive to the development of critical thinking rests with the teacher. Instructional materials can either greatly support or hinder teachers’ efforts.

Based on our experience reviewing thousands of instructional materials, this blog offers five considerations to help educators evaluate the degree to which an instructional material supports the development of critical thinking skills.

Read More

Do the materials you are using for remote instruction support a high-quality learning experience for your students?

When implementing an instructional material during in-person instruction, teachers can adjust instruction, add instructional strategies, and differentiate instruction for their students. During remote instruction, however, teachers may not have as many opportunities to adjust instruction to meet their students’ needs. Therefore, the quality of instructional materials used for remote instruction is more important than ever.

Learning List has reviewed thousands of instructional materials, and we consider many factors in our qualitative reviews. In previous blogs we’ve written about considerations for selecting materials to support continuous learning and things to look for if selecting online materials.   This blog takes a deeper look at assessing the quality of instructional materials used for remote instruction.

Read More

Assessing the Assessments In a Material

Assessing the Assessments In a Material

Having facilitated many districts’ adoption processes and listened to educators articulate what they are looking for in instructional materials, we have observed that assessments are often under assessed during an adoption/selection process. Assessments are a critical component of the instructional cycle. Therefore, as part of Learning List’s qualitative, Editorial Review of each instructional material, we evaluate the material’s assessments. Based on our review of thousands of instructional materials, we offer the following four key considerations to help you determine whether the assessments embedded in an instructional material will meet your needs.

Read More

Will Students See Themselves in My Materials?:

8 Features of “Culturally Responsive” Materials

Image by Heejin Jeong from Pixabay 

As schools are tackling all of the demands of educating students during Covid-19, teachers continue to focus, and re-focus, on building relationships with students and providing supportive environments. Part of providing a safe, supportive learning environment is providing a culturally responsive classroom. “Culturally Responsive” is a term frequently heard in educational circles today. It goes beyond building relationships to ensuring academic growth for all students. While culturally responsive teaching is a complex topic, there is one piece of it that does not have to be challenging. Consider how you would answer this question: “Do students see themselves in the instructional materials I am using?” In formulating your answer, think about the following factors:

Read More

Save Time & Money: Read Reviews

Save Time & Money: Read Reviews

Yesterday, my husband and I were discussing how to clean the exterior windows of our house. The house sits on the side of a hill, so many of the windows are too far off the ground to reach. I suggested standing on a ladder and cleaning them. But, given that we’re both short people, my husband thought that was a very bad idea.  

So, I researched options online and discovered a spray solution that involves a plastic canister, garden hose and “specially formulated crystals” to wash exterior windows. I showed my husband the ad, and he immediately said, “Great, buy it.” The product cost between $10 and $31, depending on the seller. 

However, I run a company that reviews PreK-12 instructional materials. I believe in and have avoided many expensive mistakes by reading product reviews. So, I started reading the online reviews. After five minutes, I realized that this product was not worth our time or money. I showed him the reviews, and he agreed. We saved $31. 

Read More

Finding Materials to Support English Learners Successfully

Finding Materials to Support English Learners Successfully

Districts increasingly are reaching out to us for assistance in finding materials to support English Learners (ELs).  Some districts are seeking comprehensive materials with strong support for ELs; others are seeking materials specifically designed to support EL students’ language acquisition. Learning List has reviewed both types. In January, we wrote about seven trends we have observed in materials’ support for ELs. This article discusses the types of supports to look for when seeking materials to support ELs successfully.

Read More

Subscribe!

Click here to subscribe for weekly updates.

Connect with us

Categories

Blog Calendar

April 2021
M T W T F S S
 1234
567891011
12131415161718
19202122232425
2627282930