Monday, July 21, 2008

Curriculum Summary: Monday July 21

The following is the July 21 update on the activities of the Hoboken Curriculum Committee:

World Language- Things that were accomplished today:

1) We revised and corrected several 6th grade thematic units

2) Also, we started to work on the development of the thematic units for
grade 7. Unit # 1 – Theme’s name “The family” was completed using the MYP
and the UBD templates. The unit contains the rubrics as required by the IBO
organization and the interdisciplinary NJCCCS.

3) In addition, we started to work on unit 2 for the 7th grade curriculum.

Language Arts- The language arts group spent a very productive day inputting missing but relevant data in the MYP Unit plans for the sixth, seventh and eighth grades. We also, reviewed and updated curriculum maps with Denise's assistance.We believe this work will be completed by tomorrow morning. At that time we plan on doing a final review of all documents related to this work.When satisfied with the final product we will divide into two groups, one working on Ninth grade and upward, the other working fifth grade and downward.

Language (Grades 1-5)- Today, we completed Unit 1 of LA for first grade using the MYP format. Tomorrow, we will transfer our Unit to the PYP format as you agreed upon in our small group meeting. In addition, we have begun to add/modify our timeline map to better follow the first grade concepts.

Mathematics Group- Today as a group we complete the Drafting a Design from the Big Idea for 11th grade Algebra 2. We also starting to convert the the Drafting a Design to the MYP Unit Plans. So far we have complete one and half unit plans for sixth grade.
Plans for July 22-Tomorrow we plan to complete the MYP Unit Plans for the sixth grade and begin the Unit Plans for the 7th grade. It is our hope that by the end of the week we will have finished MYP Unit plans for grade 6-9.

Technology Group- Today we worked independently on units as we divided them last week.In progress currently for 6th grade: September: Keyboarding October, November, December: Internet Use and Safety
Completed: May: Computer History
Issues: Mapping needs revision as map does not reflect MYP concept of technology (design process) but more of a traditional "computer skills" concept. We need to develop some ideas of design projects for 6th grade and work them in to the units.

Health/Physical Education- The physical education/ health curriculum group has now completed the following unit plans for both 7th and 8th grades: Soccer, Football, Fitness, Nutrition, Net sports In addition to the above we added the softball/baseball unit planner for 5th and 6th grade.
Tomorrow we will make revisions on the unit planners for the 5th and 6th grade to articulate the areas we spoke about today. Our goal tomorrow will be to complete all revisions on 5th and 6th grade. By the end of the week we will have completed the Physical Education/ Health portion of the unit planners for 7th and 8th grade .

Social Studies- This was quite a productive day for the group. With the addition of some fresh minds we were able to complete the 6th grade (pending your review of course). Thank you for stopping in to meet with us it was very helpful. Wwe will be moving on to the 7th grade tomorrow and hope to have that finished this week. In the next few days we will decide if it is more beneficial to split up into sub-groups or to continue working as a whole.

Arts- Today was very productive. We set out to define the mapping for grades 3-4 and were successful in meeting our goal. Our ideas are even organically beginning to spill over into the 5th grade, which we will definitely nail down tomorrow.

The highlight of today was actually an ice-breaker session between the teachers. To keep things in perspective, I handed out a questionnaire to everyone with the following questions:

1. Why do you love music/theater/dance/art?
2. What is your first memory, or your best memory, about being in the arts?
3. Why do you think music/theater/dance/art is important?
4. What about music/theater/dance/art would you like to share with your students?

We shared our responses and here are some observations:
• We are passionate about our content area, thinking of ourselves as teaching artists who all still love to perform and exhibit/showcase our own work.
• Students will be more likely to subscribe to a curriculum in the arts when a teacher is consistently sharing their own passion for it.

We also agreed that there should be an exposure element for each grade, meaning that the students should be exposed to a certain number of works and be expected to identify the title, artist, period, date, and culture from which it comes. The method of helping the students learn this information will vary according to age level, but the expectation will build within our students not only the capacity to memorize art information, but become well-educated in their understanding of various pieces and exposure to different styles, cultures, and time periods. We talked about 3 per year, but the quantity of work studied may even rise depending on grade level. This is still in discussion. At minimum, having the students study 3 pieces a year from K-8 will result in them being able to identify fully 27 pieces by the time they enter high school. Another possibility could be 3/year in K-2 (9); 4/year in grades 3-4 (8); 5/year in 6-8 (10); 6/year in 7-8 (12); and 7/year in 9-12 (28). This would total 67 works of art by the end of high school.