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Meet the Modules: Orienting to a Module

How do a module's topics, tasks, targets, and texts work together to promote learning?

Created By

EL Education

Topic

  • Curriculum
  • Professional Development

Type

Online Learning

A year of instruction with EL Education Grades 3–8 ELA Curriculum consists of four modules. Teachers can choose from a total of six modules that are offered for each grade level. Before teaching a module, teachers are encouraged to read the module-level documents carefully to understand the “arc,” or story, of students’ learning. Module-level documents explain the design and flow of the content and assessments as well as how the assessments build toward the final performance task of each module. Specifically, analyzing the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents gives teachers the context they need to begin to implement a given module. 

Learning Targets

  • I can describe the structure of a module, including its assessments and final performance task. 
  • I can use the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents to prepare to teach a module.  
  • I can use the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents to analyze how the modules address the Common Core State Standards.

Facilitation Moves for Instructional Leaders

Instructional leaders are strongly encouraged to read the following documents (download from this page) before leading teachers in module study and implementation: Preface to the Modules and Preparing to Teach a Module. Orienting to a Year is a resource to support the use of this PLP in a group setting. If you are completing this PLP on your own, proceed with the activities below. 

Created By

EL Education

Topic

  • Curriculum
  • Professional Development

Type

Online Learning

A year of instruction with EL Education Grades 3–8 ELA Curriculum consists of four modules. Teachers can choose from a total of six modules that are offered for each grade level. Before teaching a module, teachers are encouraged to read the module-level documents carefully to understand the “arc,” or story, of students’ learning. Module-level documents explain the design and flow of the content and assessments as well as how the assessments build toward the final performance task of each module. Specifically, analyzing the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents gives teachers the context they need to begin to implement a given module. 

Learning Targets

  • I can describe the structure of a module, including its assessments and final performance task. 
  • I can use the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents to prepare to teach a module.  
  • I can use the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents to analyze how the modules address the Common Core State Standards.

Facilitation Moves for Instructional Leaders

Instructional leaders are strongly encouraged to read the following documents (download from this page) before leading teachers in module study and implementation: Preface to the Modules and Preparing to Teach a Module. Orienting to a Year is a resource to support the use of this PLP in a group setting. If you are completing this PLP on your own, proceed with the activities below. 

All you need is the plan, the roadmap, and the courage to press on to your destination. Earl Nightingale, author and motivational speaker

Watch: Orienting to the Modules 

Watch the screencast Orienting to the Modules for a brief orientation to how the modules fit together to create a yearlong curriculum.

Watch: Locating Overview Documents

Watch the screencast Locating Module Overview Documents for a tutorial on how to locate the overview documents for the first Module of each grade level. Please note that the same steps can be followed to locate the overview documents for Modules 2, 3, and 4. 

Independent Practice

Locate a Module’s Overview Documents 

Open a new tab and visit the Common Core Success website.  Follow the steps in the video above to practice locating and downloading the Module Overview, Performance Task, and Assessment Overview for the Module you intend to explore (begin with Module 1).  You will use these files to answer the questions below, so keep the files open once located.

Questions to Guide Exploration

You will now have an opportunity to explore the Module materials for your chosen grade level.  To simplify this process, we recommended that you first read the three downloaded documents for the Module. Then, summarize your thinking by answering the questions below, or download the note-catcher on this page.

Get the “Gist” or the “4 T’s” of the Module:  

  1. What is the TOPIC of this module? 
  2. What are the central TEXTS of this module? 
  3. What are the TARGETS (the standards, in student-friendly language) that students will be working to master? 
  4. What are the main TASKS (assessments and performance tasks) students will complete?  

Check Your Understanding

Are you unsure if you are on the right track with your responses to the questions above? Download the sample 4T’s note-catcher for an example. 

Reflect  

Read the learning targets below and self-assess your current progress using the rubric downloaded from this page. Choose the number you feel best represents where you are right now. If you’re working in a group, share that number with your colleagues. 

Learning Targets: 

  1. I can describe the structure of a module, including its assessments and final performance task. 
  2. I can use the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents to prepare to teach a module. 
  3. I can use the Module Overview, Assessment Overview, and Performance Task documents to analyze how the modules address the Common Core State Standards. 

Implementation Implications

Teachers, what steps do you need to take to prepare to teach and further your understanding of this module? Building leaders, what structures can be implemented to support teachers in the module analysis and preparation process? Download the list of implementation questions to guide your thinking. 

Resource Downloads