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A Model for Urban Student Engagement and Achievement
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Strategy #3:

ESSENTIAL PLANNING

 

“Teachers in high achieving urban schools DO NOT teach or assess everything; however, they teach AND assess the most important concepts exceptionally well.”
-National Center for Urban School Transformation, 2008

The next aspect of C.R.E.A.T.E. model is that the teacher emphasizes mastery of essential concepts instead of racing through the entire book.   Therefore, during the summer, I plan a pacing guide that is based on the key essential standards that are stated in the CA blueprint of standards.  The CA blueprint informs educators what the key standards in every subject are.  The blueprint tells you what the California state exam will test heavily on.  Use the Blueprint to plan a road map for delivery and instruction.

Spiral Essentials until mastery through frequent repetition on the exit price, over-and-over, until it is in their blood and they can never forget it

“We learn and remember 80 to 90%
of what we do and say
OVER and OVER.”
-Tiberius and Tipping, 1990

By focusing on essential ideas and the essential pre-requisites, I have more time to be creative and teach concepts that are not in the book.  I can incorporate social justice ideas or do projects because I have more time to be creative.  Therefore, focus on the essential ideas that will be seen on the state exam and the pre-requisite skills needed.

“A Teacher’s success is not seen in how much he has covered but how many key concepts the
student has actually mastered”
-Pedro Noguera, 2003

Teachers should teach the most essential concepts indicated by state standards and standardized exams. Also teachers in urban school should intgrate essential prerequiste skills in the context of the big idea.

Essential Curriculum Planning

  • Teach only the most essential concepts indicated by state standards and standardized exams
  • Integrate missing pre-requisite skills in context of bigger essential concepts
  • Develop or use existing pacing guide to teach essential concepts until mastery

How do I Backward Map Essential Concepts?

  • List the most essential concepts indicated by state standrads and exams
  • List concepts by order that MOST helps studenst learn
  • Break each concept into the necessary prerequisite
  • Plan to teach those prerequisites in context of the major concepts
  • Creat or use a pacing guide based on how long the big concepts and prerequisite take the studenst to learn
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