Secondary English Biweekly #18


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If you have not done so already, please take a minute to answer the questions on the SURVEY: NCTE, JUSTWRITE OHIO, AND POWER OF THE PEN OHIO to provide the district with information that may lead to helping teachers attend the NCTE national convention and getting our students involved in creative writing competitions.


Christina Harris, a CCS Academic Support TOSA, is currently working towards the OSU Computer/Technology Endorsement with Dr. Yolanda Stewart, a supervisor in our CCS Equity department. Christina is interested in having two or three middle or high school English teachers who are interested in exploring Standards-Based Grading help with the project. Here are some project details.
  • Purpose: Implementation of Standard-Based Grading in order to increase differentiation
  • Audience: Secondary English teachers
  • Possible approach/workshop: A PD of how to implement SBG in a Secondary English Classroom
Ideally, she would really like to work with 2-3 teachers. If you are willing to help with this project, please email Christina at

Teacher Interviews Wanted: Teaching Poetry

Meghan Kuehnle, a doctoral student at OSU who is studying poetry education, would like to interview some poetry instructors about their teaching approach to get a sense of the current state of poetry education in secondary schools. If you are willing to be interviewed, reach out to Meghan at and let her know you teach in CCS and are willing to help.

TeachRock Pilot Opportunity

Something new is brewing at TeachRock! They’ve recently partnered with a literacy specialist to transform the biographies of contemporary and historical musicians on their Trace It Back page into a reading comprehension library! Would you like to be one of the first educators to try them out? They’re hungry for some feedback! To apply to participate in the pilot program, please respond to this Google Form.

Here’s how it’ll work. If selected:
  • You’ll receive the materials by April 3rd.

  • You’ll complete a survey with your feedback on the material by May 8.

  • All participants who complete the survey will receive a $100 Target gift card, as well as our infinite gratitude!

Ohioana Book Festival 2023

The 2023 Ohioana Book Festival will be held at the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s Main Library, on Saturday, April 22, 2023! The list of authors that will be attending was recently announced and includes Mark Dawidziak (author of The Mystery of Mysteries: The Death and Life of Edgar Allan Poe), Amanda Flower (author of Because I Could Not Stop for Death: An Emily Dickinson Mystery), and Brad Ricca (author of an adapted version of Nellie Bly's Ten Days in a Madhouse, of which the original is in English 8, Unit 1). You can find out more about the authors and the festival here: Ohioana Book Festival 2023.

Holocaust PD for Central Ohio Teachers: June 6 & 7

Click HERE to register for the Echoes & Reflections free two-day seminar hosted by Congregation Beth Tikvah and Jewish Columbus to support your classroom instruction on the Holocaust.

  • Earn a certificate to be turned in for 12 contact hours equal to 1.2 CEUs
  • Come away with ready made lesson plans and resource materials for use in classrooms
  • Network with fellow teachers


  • June 6th, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM | Foundations of Holocaust Education: Focus on Nazi Germany
  • June 6th, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM | Analyzing Propaganda and Teaching Media Literacy: the Holocaust as a Case Study
  • June 7th, 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM | Teaching the Holocaust Using the Humanities: Integrating Photographs, Literature, Art, and Poetry to tell the Human Story
  • June 7th, 1:00 PM - 4:00 PM | Antisemitism: Understanding and Countering this Hatred Today

All sessions will happen at Congregation Beth Tikvah, 6121 Olentangy River Road, Worthington, OH 43085. Lunch will be provided between sessions.

BONUS: Attendees are invited to attend an optional trip to the Holocaust and Humanities Center in Cincinnati on June 8th. Transportation is provided.


Women's History Month Ideas: TeachingBooks, StudySync, and TeachRock

TeachingBooks Explore jumping-off points that deepen discussions, inspire reading interest, and support connections to books and authors. Easily share and include in your instructional plans, newsletters, and social media. Discover quick ideas to support literacy with Women's History Month.

StudySync Discover ways to celebrate "Wonder Women" with the latest Blast+Text Pairing. View two pairings about inspirational women who have broken barriers and become leaders in their communities below. Make It a Pair.

TeachRock Celebrate by stepping into the Trace It Back Library and read a biography about one (or all!) of the four featured musicians who collectively contribute to 100 historic years of women making music. Janelle Monáe (1985-present), Whitney Houston (1963-2012), Mavis Staples (1939-present), Mahalia Jackson (1911-1971)

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CCS Poetry Slam-Register Your Team BY MARCH 31ST!

General Information

The District Slam will happen on April 29th at Eastmoor Academy (5-9pm). It is time to register your team!!

2023 SEJONG WRITING COMPETITion (Essay and Poetry)

The 2023 Writing Competition is open. The deadline to submit is March 31, 2023 (11:59pm CDT)

Sijo category

The sijo is a traditional three-line Korean poetic form organized technically and thematically by line and syllable count. Using the sijo form, write one poem in English on a topic of your choice. For examples of sijo, more information, and teaching materials – including teaching guides for sijo, please visit this website.

The goal of our sijo category is to introduce students to a lesser-known style of poetry, the traditional Korean sijo. Read about how to write sijo, or see last year's winning entries.

Adult division (age 19 & older)
Pre-college division (age 18 & younger)

Sijo Category Prizes:

  • Adult division: First ($1,000), Second ($750), Third ($500)
  • Pre-college division: First ($500), Second ($400), Third ($300)
  • Honorable mention (for both divisions listed above): Friends of Pacific Rim Awards ($50 each)

Essay category

Focusing on introducing students and young adults to Korean culture and history through literature, this essay category utilizes folk tales and contemporary literature to explore Korean culture, past and present.

Adult division (age 19-30 years): Contestants are to read Kim Jung-hyuk's short story “The Glass Shield” and write an essay in response to the provided prompt.

Snior division (grade 9th - 12th): Contestants are to read Ha Seong-nan's short story “Waxen Wings ” and write an essay in response to the provided prompt.

Junior division (grade 8th and younger): Contestants are to write an essay in response to one of two provided prompts regarding a folktale of the contestant's choice. Contestants must choose one of the stories listed on this folktales page.

Essay Category Prizes:

  • Adult division: First ($1,000), Second ($750), Third ($500)
  • Senior division: First ($500), Second ($400), Third ($300)
  • Junior division: First ($300), Second ($200), Third ($100)
  • Honorable mention (for all divisions listed above): Friends of Pacific Rim Awards ($50 each)

Mission: The goals of the Sejong Writing Competition are to discover children and young adults talented in writing and to encourage them to learn and write about Korean and its culture. Through this writing competition we hope to increase the awareness and understanding of Korea’s cultural heritage amongst the younger generations growing up in the United States. Note: Only one entry per category per applicant is permitted.

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Tuesday, March 28, 2023

  • StudySync: 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM Diversity and Representation in the StudySync Library Register Now
  • Achieve3000: 2:45-3:15PM Lesson Planning with your Learning Targets and Content Area in Mind (Science/Social Studies) Register Here
  • Thurber House Author Event: David Wright Faladé—Black Cloud Rising Register here

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

  • StudySync: 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM Vocabulary Best Practices Register Now

Thursday, March 30, 2023

  • StudySync: 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM Spotlight Skills: Build a Solid Foundation in Any Standard Register Now

Friday, March 31, 2023

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StudySync’s 10th Annual Media Contest! PLAN & DEVELOP YOUR ENTRIES NOW!

LET'S ENTER AND WIN StudySync’s 10th Annual Media Contest!! SEE THE LINK FOR ALL OF THE DETAILS.

Students can express their creativity, collaborate with peers, and strengthen their writing, speaking and listening, and presentation skills. Contest entries also make great stations. Give students voice and choice with station rotations that allow them to draft original StudySyncTV scripts, record podcasts or videos, draw book posters or create their own graphic novels. Search ‘contest’ in the Help Center to find contest best practices and steps to get started. All entries must include only original artwork, content, or audio. Entries are due on or before May 1st, 2023. See rules for details. Have questions about the contest or entries? Contact

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Use this tool to examine objectives and standards in the StudySync lesson plans, and then backward plan instruction. Start Planning


Review Dr. Timothy Shanahan's guidance around reading comprehension and share three StudySync test prep tips for the win! Read Test Prep Tips Blog.



Below are the StudySync webinar offerings for the month. If you register and cannot attend, you will be sent a recording. StudySync is the core Tier 1 Resources for Secondary English. The CORE ELA Units are used in English 6-12. Items from the StudySync Library are used in all alternative English courses (Humanities Language Arts 8, Humanities English 9 & 10, African American Literature, Major British Writers Seminar, Shakespeare's Literature, and Women's Literature) and many of the elective courses (e.g., Essay Writing 6, 7, and 8).

Tuesday, March 28, 2023

  • StudySync: 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM Diversity and Representation in the StudySync Library Register Now

Wednesday, March 29, 2023

  • StudySync: 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM Vocabulary Best Practices Register Now

Thursday, March 30, 2023

  • StudySync: 2:00 PM - 2:30 PM Spotlight Skills: Build a Solid Foundation in Any Standard Register Now
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The video above gives you an overview for Secondary English Curriculum. Use the Quick Links on the landing page of the ELA 6-12 Webpage for easy navigation to English Curriculum items (Curriculum/Instructional Resources 6-8 Quick Link; Curriculum/Instructional Resources 9-12 Quick Link). To access many curricular and district items, you must be logged into Google using your CCS credentials and not a personal account.

Curriculum Maps & Folders:

Adopted Curriculum Resources:

You can see all courses with core resources for English 6-12 in the items linked below:

The TIER 1 Instructional Resources

  • StudySync: English 6-12, Alternate English courses, and some Electives
  • StudySync Info Page (access, tutorials, trainings, and more)
  • Bedford Texts/Launchpad: Honors and AP English
  • Bedford/Launchpad Info Page (access, tutorials, trainings, and more)
  • Some Elective Courses will have single resource adoptions.

Intervention Resources and Courses
  • Achieve3000 (6-9) The contact person for this resource is Sonja Dill.
  • Achieve3000 Info Page (access, tutorials, trainings, and more)
  • Progress to Success (9-12) You can request copies by emailing Carla Mae Phillips.
  • Core Enrichment (6-8) This course can be used for Tiers II/III Intervention.
  • College/Career Ready Literacy (6-12) This course can be used for Tiers II/III Intervention.

Supplemental Resource
  • TeachingBooks is the where the lists of novels available for teacher use from the warehouse, the curriculum office, in StudySync, and in Course Folders, are found.
  • TeachingBooks Info Page (access, tutorials, trainings, and more)

Secondary Literacy Plan

  • The CCS Secondary Literacy Plan provides teaching strategies/PD (how to teach) that can be used with the texts/lessons from your adopted resources (what to teach) to address these components of the plan: Academic Language, Reading Comprehension, Writing Competency, and Classroom Discussion. It is rooted in Ohio’s Plan to Raise Literacy Achievement and guided by the Adolescent Simple View of Reading. The plan spans from intermediate literacy that crosses curricular areas to disciplinary literacy that reflects the demands of specific disciplines while allowing for individualized intensive interventions, as needed. Inherent in the plan is that students are reading, writing, and discussing every day in classrooms.
  • CCS Secondary Literacy Plan Info Page




NEW TEACHERS: If you are new to teaching a secondary English course and did not attend the new teacher orientation sessions, here are some links for you to the items you may have missed.


The 2022 OST DATA REPORT WITH RECOMMENDED ACTIONS can be found on the Standardized Testing Quick Link on the English 6-12 Webpage. This yearly report details how the District is performing on the ELA II and Grade 6-8 ELA State Tests. Check it out!

Crosswalk between i-ready boy/moy domains and curriculum resources

If you are looking for a crosswalk between how your students scored on the i-Ready Domains and where those areas are taught/supported in the Secondary English adopted resources, check out the new document below or at the Standardized Testing Quick Link on the English 6-12 Webpage.
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GET YOUR COSTUMES READY!! The Department of Communications Wants to Record Your Students Bringing Literature to Life for our CCS Channels!

Are your students rewriting and acting out scenes? Will you be acting out part of a drama with costumes? Do you have a special dress-like- a-character day for works of literature? If so, use this link to contact Christopher Croft in Communications to have your students recorded for social and broadcast media.

Thurber House Young Writers' Studio-Spring 2023 Registration Open


Every other week, local teens gather to write, create, and explore ways to get their stories on paper. Whether it's a passion, or just a hobby, Thurber House invites any student in grades 9-12 to join them for an opportunity to spend time with others who also like to write. Sessions take place on select Tuesday evenings from 6:30-8:30 pm Eastern Time. Young Writers' Studio is held at Thurber Center, 91 Jefferson Ave, and simultaneously Zoomed for virtual participants. Each session is $17, or $150 for the season (a savings of $20), and can be paid in advance by registering online. There are a limited number of scholarships available for students who would like to attend. All sessions will be hybrid—held in-person at Thurber Center and simultaneously Zoomed for virtual participants from 6:30–8:30 pm. REGISTER

Remaining Dates: April 4, April 18, May 2, May 16

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Poetry + Spoken Word Workshops & Open Mic Nights at Freedom A LA CART

OPEN MIC NIGHTS: Back by popular demand, Freedom a la Cart is partnering again with the Black Women Rise Poetry Collective to bring you more Open Mic Nights. Come share your voice through poetry, song, music, comedy or drama — or be inspired by listening to that of others!

May 10, July 12, September 13, and November 8; 7-8:30pm

POETRY + SPOKEN WORD: Become empowered to express yourself through written and spoken word. Freedom a la Cart has partnered with the Black Women Rise Poetry Collective to bring you another Poetry + Writing Workshop. Through this workshop, we aim to empower each participant with the tools they need to express themselves, both in written and spoken format. Learn the art (& science) behind curating words of impact, acquire knowledge in how to shape your feelings into a tangible script, and inspire others in the community with your words. Your words matter.

April 12, June 14, August 9, October 11; 7-8pm

FREEDOM A LA CART empowers survivors of sex trafficking and exploitation to build lives of freedom and self-sufficiency. They believe that giving a woman practical job skills and developing strong work ethic is vital for creating a pathway to freedom. So, they’ve created a safe place of restoration where survivors can heal, learn and grow as they prepare for sustainable employment and reintegrate into our community. Location: 123 E. Spring Street, Columbus, OH 43215

Ohio Teacher of the Year

Ohio Teacher of the Year nominations are open.More than an award, the Ohio Teacher of the Year program offers a way to elevate the teaching profession. The nomination period for the 2024 Ohio Teacher of the Year is open through March 31.

OEA Exceptional Educator Nominations Open

Celebrate Ohio’s exceptional educators. Nominate an educator in your community today! Ohio’s educators make a difference in their students’ lives every day. From classroom teachers to paraeducators, professors, bus drivers, school secretaries, custodians, and more, Ohio’s public school employees have dedicated their lives to serving our kids and making our schools great.m Join the Ohio Education Association in recognizing our Education Champions across the state. Use this Nomination Form to nominate a special educator.

More outings, classes, contests, grants, and pd


  • 3/28: David Wright Faladé—Black Cloud Rising

  • 4/12: Dr. Genevieve West—You Don't Know Us Negroes and Other Essays

  • 4/25: Laurie Notaro—Excuse Me While I Disappear
  • 5/3 Alexandra Petri—U.S. History: Important American Documents (I Made Up)
  • 5/23: Mia Mercado—She's Nice Though

Register for any of these author events here.


Free Opportunities (Check out the entire FREE Corwin Spring 2023 Webinar Lineup HERE.)


  • COLUMBUS METROPOLITAN LIBRARY Sesquicentennial Author Series The Columbus Metropolitan Library Carnegie Author Series has a new name for 2023, celebrating Columbus Metropolitan Library’s 150 years of bringing joy to readers. It is the Sesquicentennial Author Series. Here are some of the authors visiting in 2023: Leonard S. Marcus, Donte Woods-Spikes, Silvia Moreno-Garcia, Saeed Jones, and Jason Mott. Check out the lineup HERE. Next Up: Friends & Fiction on April 26 | 7 p.m.


The Columbus Book Festival will happen July 15-16 in the heart of the city’s downtown Discovery District. The two-day event featuring national and local authors, exhibitors, entertainment and more will showcase Columbus Metropolitan Library’s historic Main Library, the adjacent Kaufman Plaza and Topiary Garden Park. Call for authors, exhibitors and entertainers is now open! Get Involved/Learn More; About the Event Here.


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A SONG FOR THE WEEK in Celebration of Our Theatrical Students and the Spring Plays/Musicals.

half·alive - Did I Make You Up? (Official Video)
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Carla Mae Phillips

English 6-12 Curriculum Coordinator

Southland Center, Suite 125

Previous Newsletters are available on the CCS ELA 6-12 Webpage.