Contributed by Chris T.
How have you integrated Curriculum Trak into your school culture?
We started by having an outside person lead us and hold us accountable. That person was paid for by Title money. Once as few of us had a grasp it then became our job to hold each other accountable. We used a variety of methods to keep each other on track. One was the SCRUM method
What steps did you take to train, support, and encourage your teachers in their mapping efforts?
We used a variety of methods to keep each other on track. One was the SCRUM method. We made a bulletin board in the hallway near where we meet every morning and it had three columns To Do, In Progress and Done. Under each column was a note card that had a topic example (6th grade math). The teacher responsible would move the card as he progressed through the process. Another was the stand up meeting where our consultant would ask us three questions. What have you done? What’s getting in your way? and How can I help? These happened about once a month.
What unexpected insights, findings or benefits have you discovered from your mapping efforts so far?
Since we are in the process of accreditation through NLSA, we have found that it meets the requirements for a mapped curriculum. I have worked with other schools through this process and our curriculum map looks better than theirs! 🙂
Also, not everyone will be on board with this. We had two teachers leave and during the summer, I did most of their tracking. One teacher had two years to do ELA and only had a few units completed. That being said, my efforts were appreciated by the new teachers coming in. They both felt they had an idea what to do and how to do it.
What advice would you offer to schools just starting the process?
Start small, but have a schedule. Give your teachers scheduled time to work on it. Encourage them to work on the subject that they are most familiar with or enjoy the most. For example, we started with ELA (yuck!) I tried to put in all the objectives, but there’s sooo much to that one strand. I quit ELA and moved to math and science (which I enjoy teaching and had a better understanding of the textbooks and my method of teaching) I was able to track multiple grades (time frames and objectives only) in just a few hours. I did get back to ELA, but I did it last.
What tips, strategies, or tools did you find most helpful in advancing your efforts?
Use the search option! I wish I had used it sooner to find another school that used our Religion curriculum since the objects are longer than any other subject.
I used Google Docs to voice type by objectives and then copy and paste them into Curriculum Trak.
Where are your mapping efforts leading you? What’s next as a result of your efforts?
Next step for us will be to analyze our map and look for gaps.