Curriculum Newsletter THS

October 2019

Active Engagement


Of course, we want students to be engaged in the lessons we deliver. That is not always an easy task. Even if we develop an amazing high energy lesson with all the bells and whistles, we can’t measure their engagement without proof. We are often satisfied when students seem on-task but we need them to be actively engaged - proof they are taking on the learning.


On-Task is good but not enough to assure students are taking on new ideas and concepts.


Active Engagement requires students to be actively processing information -listening, reading, thinking, making and/or communicating information -speaking, performing, writing. Learning should be visibility because it is evidence of engagement and understanding. It also holds students accountable for their learning. We can then provide feedback and support to students who need it.


Try out one of these active engagement strategies.

Big picture

Active Engagement at Tecumseh

Creating Common Formative Assessments to Guide Powerful Monthly TBTs


  1. Data should be quick and easy to collect. Your common formative assessments should take students no more than 1 class period to complete. Assessment data is only valuable if (1). you are actually willing and able to collect it and (2). you can act on it promptly.

  2. Create assessments and criteria for success at the same time. This should be done with colleagues that teach the same subject/grade level. Set clear expectations for what is required from students.

  3. Assess ONLY the most essential learning targets. Don’t waste time assessing and grading standards the students are not struggling with.

  4. Ask at least 3 questions for each learning target that you are assessing. It takes at least 3 questions to determine if students have mastered a standard.

  5. Focus on 3 to 4 learning targets a month. Doing so makes remediation after an assessment doable.

  6. Write or find questions that mimick the AIR. This is most aligned to how students are expected to think.

Ohio Model Curriculum for Science Professional Learning Available Now!


On Sept. 30, the science team at the Ohio Department of Education began providing a series of continuous learning opportunities at seven locations for curriculum directors, coordinators and specialists from educational service centers and school districts, along with individual science educators across the state.

Working primarily through four regionally located educational service centers and three local school districts, the science team will provide a series of three to five sessions for each training site. These sessions are spaced at increments that allow teachers to implement and reflect on ideas from the sessions. The professional learning series is focused on the newly revised Ohio’s Learning Standards for Science and Model Curriculum.

The focus of the first day centers around providing awareness and understanding and the intended use and relationships of the components of the Model Curriculum. Components that will be featured include: the Nature of Science, science and engineering practices, Cognitive Demands, and Visions into Practice, as these are main focal points within the revised standards. Day two develops a deeper understanding of instructional practices, allowing participants to investigate instructional practices that are best able to engage students in rigorous scientific learning. Day three integrates planning tools for transitioning to the updated standards and evaluating local curricula.

Additionally, there will be practice in evaluating instructional materials using a quality review rubric specifically tailored to science to determine if they are high quality. Participants will have opportunities to collaborate with district colleagues to evaluate current instructional materials and methods, as well as create their plans for science instruction for the 2020-2021 school year, which is the implementation year for the Ohio Revised Standards and Model Curriculum.

The dates and locations of the professional learning sessions for the 2019-2020 school year are as follows.

Butler County ESC – Oct. 16, Dec. 6, Feb. 6

Perrysburg Exempted Village Schools – Oct. 22, Jan. 23, May 14

Columbus City Schools – Nov. 18, Jan. 13, May 18

Lima Local School District – Nov. 19, Jan. 21, March 17, June 1 & 2

Some sites still have availability. Please contact the individual location to inquire about availability. If interested in hosting a series during the 2020-2021 school year, please contact Robin Deems.

GRIT: It Matters More Than You Think!

Grit: the power of passion and perseverance | Angela Lee Duckworth

Beth Moore

Curriculum Specialist

District Test Coordinator