With CCSS and newly implemented state standards, as well as school and district requirements, creating a curriculum map is now a must for almost every teacher across the United States. Some schools and districts are even die hard about their mapping, and require all teachers to stay with the map, snow, sleet or storm!
This makes this daunting task even more so.
But it should not be so feared. It is more a challenge in your basic math skills than it is in your ability to lesson plan for your content!
Here are my recommendations for the simple, yet effective curriculum map:
- Start with a simple curriculum map template. It does not need to be pages and pages long, just effective for your personal needs. Try my FREE Curriculum Map Template to get your started.
- Calculate the number of teaching days you will have in the school year. Take your time on this step! Believe it or not, it will be the most challenging. You can start with the number of student days, but you must adjust for testing, final exams, assemblies, field trips, and any other special events that may pull your students from your instruction. Subtracting out these days in your planning will keep you from ending the school year three centuries behind your goal!
- Identify the units you plan to teach. If you are a new teacher, use resources to help you with this task. A textbook Table of Contents can be a valuable tool, or you can utilize my World History or U.S. History Course Bookmarks. At the end of this step, you want a simple number - How many units do I want to teach?
- Divide the number of available days by the number of units. This is your base number of days per unit. Simple, but this doesn't work for me. Some of my units (my favorites) require far more time than others. And some skills that will be taught require much more attention than others within special units. This must be addressed.
- Begin looking at individual units.
- How much content is involved in the unit?
- What activities do you want to implement?
- Are there special skills you plan to teach?
- Will students need additional time for deeper understanding?
- Are there special topics on which you want to focus?
- Will your assessment/unit project require more time?
- Transfer the start and stop dates from your map.
- Add in test or assessment dates for each unit.
- Write a Unit Title or Brief Description of the unit.
- Identify your essential or BIG question for the unit as a whole.
- Identify the core content, CCSS, and state or district standards you will address by number. Do not add every detail unless required by your district. You can always refer to a standards checklist or the online list for more detail.
- List resources, activities, or projects you plan to utilize. Use this space as a reminder of fun activities you don't want to forget. Include links to valuable online resources.
- Identify the type of assessment you will use for the unit.
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