CHEC Curriculum Design Institute

Learn. Adapt. Grow.

CHEC Curriculum Design Institute Big Ideas

Institute Overview

The Common Core State Standards “Big Three Shifts” requires all teachers to change their mindset and retool their skill set to meet the rigorous demands. This change is particularly challenging for secondary teachers, who now are expected to place literacy skills over their content. This is a tall order for the secondary teachers who have traditionally viewed themselves as content teachers, not literacy teachers. This challenge is made more complex because secondary content teachers are not taught to teach the reading and writing process which is the most effective way to assess students’ understanding.

Therefore, our work during the CHEC Interdisciplinary Curriculum Institute will be to equip teachers with the tools and the mindset in order to meet the herculean challenges posed by the Common Core State Standards “Big Three Shifts.” During the first week of the institute, teachers will design, and assess their designs, of a literacy-based curriculum. The collaborative workshop will support teacher learning and transformation through peer feedback and the use of protocols for professional learning and growth.

The second week teachers will focus on the recommendations from “Writing Next” as a foundational text for learning the stages of the writing process. As an application, teachers will take the writing-based performance task they developed during week one through the stages of the writing process. Furthermore, they will teach a demonstration lesson of one of the literacy strategies from their unit.

Enduring Understandings

  • Empathy is at the heart of curriculum design and differentiated instruction.
  • Teachers are designers and instructional guides.
  • Student motivation is nested in the quality of the assessment teachers design.
  • Teachers are the best teachers of teachers.

Essential Questions

  1. How do I design curriculum, instructional and assessment so that learning is irresistible?
  2. How do I plan backwards?
  3. How do I support students' literacy skills in the content areas?

The Power of Empathy

These three videos catalyzed our work for the entire institute. After viewing and reflecting on these videos, teachers participated in the Profile of a Student Protocol in which they had to read and choose a student profile that best described a student they had taught. The they brainstormed strategies that worked with this student. Throughout the institute, we revisited these students during opening Chalk Talks, reflecting upon how our curriculum designs met these students needs.

Touchstone Texts

The Power of Outrospection

RSA Animate - The Power of Outrospection

5 Ways to Listen Better--Julian Treasure

Julian Treasure: 5 ways to listen better

Find Your Greatness

Best Nike Find Your Greatness Commercial - The Jogger

Literacy Matters

LDC: Literacy Matters (Long Version)

Curricular Units, Demonstration Lesson Plans and Support Materials

Big image
Attached below are the teachers' curriculum units from the institute. Each teacher has a completed unit, a lesson plan for a demonstration lesson from the unit and any materials to support their demonstration lesson.

Ellen Nakpil

George Connor

David Onley

Ms. Boero

Mr. Magee

Ms. Hashem

Ms. Weir

Ms. Basuel

Chief Mack

Captain Winkel

Ms. Estrado

Ms. Coleman

Ms. Whitaker

Mr. Hernadez

Mr. Pough

Ms. Gonzalez

Ms. Negron

Mr. Williams


  1. Videos of whole group sessions
  2. Videos of demonstration lessons
  3. video of peer collaboration
Literacy Design Collaborative: What Makes a Quality LDC Task (HD VERSION)