LUMBERTON — Schools across the Public Schools of Robeson County district are rolling out new math and English Language Arts curricula this year that will challenge students as they learn and work to master course concepts.
“The new curriculum will allow teachers to spend more time on annotating scripted lessons rather than having to spend a majority of their time preparing instructional lessons for their students,” said Dr. Robert Locklear, assistant superintendent for Curriculum, Instruction and Accountability.
PSRC administrators, district staff and academic coaches have attended EL Education K-8 Language Arts Curriculum and Eureka Math²™ (Eureka Math Squared for K-7 grades) training sessions to prepare for the implementation of the new curricula. Teachers will be trained next week in preparation for the arrival of students on Aug. 29.
“Having a common curriculum across the district will provide a higher level of transparency for our teachers and students,” said Andrew Davis, PSRC director of Curriculum and Instruction.
“Teachers will be equipped with standards-based instructional materials to provide a quality, equitable education for all students,” he said.
The curricula will offer lessons with increased rigor and will challenge students to engage in productive struggle as they learn and build conceptual understanding.
In an article on the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development’s website, author Barbara Blackburn defines productive struggle as allowing students “to work through struggles independently before we offer assistance.”
According to Blackburn, “for students to become independent learners, they must learn to persist in the face of challenge.”
By allowing students to engage with rich, real-world tasks, the curricula will lead students to rely on their own reasoning and background knowledge rather than mimicking a teacher-led procedure.
“The new curricula will help sharpen students’ understanding of course concepts. We expect the educational transition to include enhanced opportunities for student learning,” said Dr. Windy Dorsey-Carr, PSRC Executive Director of Transformation.
Zack Jones, PSRC K-2 Curriculum supervisor, anticipates the incorporation of the new educational material this school year.
“As one of the PSRC curriculum and instruction supervisors, I am so excited about the learning and teaching experiences that the new curricula will provide our students and teachers. Both EL Education and Eureka Squared provide all students with rigorous and robust learning opportunities,” Jones said.
In addition, the curriculum includes built-in support and resources for parents as students navigate new concepts along their learning journey through the curricula.
“Another great component of EL Education and Eureka Squared is the support provided to support learning within the classroom and at home. All stakeholders will be able to be active participants in student learning,” Jones added.
“As we kick-off a new school year with new curricula, your curriculum and instruction supervisors are ready to serve and support teachers and administrators as they work to provide students with rigorous and robust instruction,” Jones said.
The addition of new curricula is one component that will support the district’s overarching goal, according to PSRC leadership.
“The ultimate goal of the district is to ensure that students receive a strong educational foundation that will prepare them for life after high school,” Dr. Dorsey-Carr said.
About EL Education
“Created by teachers for teachers, and based on college and career readiness standards, the EL Education Language Arts curriculum is a comprehensive, research-informed, core language arts program that engages teachers and students through compelling, real world content,” according to EL Education’s website.
About Eureka Math Squared
“Eureka Math²TM is a revolutionary math program designed to advance equity in the math classroom by helping students build enduring math knowledge,” according to Eureka Math Squared’s website at https://edu.greatminds.org/eurekamathsquared.
PSRC administrators, academic coaches and other staff members participated Tuesday in EL Education training at PSRC Central Office.