Curriculum: Week of September 9, 2012

What’s Happening:

  • Check out the Free Professional Development section of the Curriculum Weekly . There are a plethora of golden opportunities right at our fingertips to learn something new, refresh skills, and make professional connections. The link will always be a work in progress and found in the left-hand column.
  • AIS student iPad distribution will begin this week for students who have paid the user fee. The iPads should be loaded with apps according to requests from departments and divisions that were made during last school year. Here is the complete list:  AIS student iPad suite of apps by division and department.
  • Physical Education curriculum is in the final stages of formatting and editing. The new document is an upgrade to reflect 21st century learning and thinking skills.
  • The Math Curriculum Outcomes Project will continue to support the ongoing implementation of the AIS Math curriculum.
  • Student literacy is being supported through the teaching of contextual vocabulary, IB command terms, and the use of the Cornell note-taking system which helps students to synthesize and apply learned knowledge.

Do you have something you’d like to share that is happening in your classroom? How are you using iPads to extend learning in your classroom? How are you making curriculum come alive for your students? Please let me ( know so that I can share what is happening and provide you the support you need for success.

21st Century Thought of the Week:


Copyright All rights reserved by Birgit44

The expectation for collaboration that exist at AIS is stated in the IB’s Programme standards and practices document (Standard C1: Collaborative Planning). The emphasis on collaborative planning and reflection is inherent in the IB programmes. Best Practices in Teaching acknowledge the direct correlation between collaborative teachers and student success. Collaboration between teachers can be a powerful tool for professional development and a driver for school improvement by providing “opportunities for adults across a school system to learn and think together about how to improve their practice in ways that lead to improved student achievement” (Annenberg Institute for School Reform, 2004, p. 2).

Some rights reserved by Michael Connell

What collaboration looks like in 2012 may not always involve sitting face-to-face or getting our hands dirty. We may choose from numerous social networking platforms such as Skype, Twitter, Whatsapp, or blogging. Which platform we choose will be driven by our needs. As educators in the 21st century, we are able to enter into collaborations with members of our profession from around the globe at virtually any moment (Any Time, Anywhere).
Working together in the true spirit of collaboration takes time, effort, and commitment. (I wrote more about this here.) Lucky for us, AIS is committed to collaboration! There is collaborative time for professional development and planning built into all schedules: from grade level teams to department meetings to the Administrative Council to the Faculty Advisory Council. In addition there are numerous people in coaching roles to support collaborative planning. These individuals can be called upon to provide a variety of support (e.g., backwards planning, unit question design, implementing the writing process, integrating technology into a unit). From IB programme coordinators to tech coaches to literacy coaches to the curriculum coordinator, to Heads of Department know that there are many people ready and willing to collaborate with your team this school year.

Wishing you happy and successful collaborations this year!

Article(s) of the Week:

There are numerous apps that enable creation sharing without having to rely on printing (nor paper). Here is an article listing 50 apps that are out there for the sharing. Many of these apps have been requested to be included in the AIS Student iPad suite of apps in each division.

  • Here is a great list of education blogs listed by subject area.  If you are interested in seeing what other educators are writing and talking about in your particular subject area, take a minute and look over this list.  Consider setting up a Google Reader account so that blog articles come to you each week. If you would like help in setting up a Google Reader account, send a quick email and I can help.

App of the Week:

  Zite Personal Magazine

  • What does it do? Zite is a free personalized magazine for your iPad that automatically learns what you like and gets smarter every time you use it. Zite delivers all the great news, articles, blogs, and videos you want – and helps you discover new stuff that you’ll love. Zite personalizes your content automatically and gets better the more you use it. Gaming and tech? Motorcycles, cats, or vegetarianism? Create your magazine based on your choices from  thousands of sections and a smart auto-suggest tool. Get a head start on finding amazing content tailored just for you by automatically syncing Zite with your Twitter and Google Reader accounts.
  • How can it be used to support learning?  This is a great app for supporting personal interests and professional development. At the secondary level, students could easily tailor their Zite Magazine to include articles that might support their studies in Literature, Economics, or current events.

Video of the Week:

Did You Know?/Shift Happens – Version 6

Blog(s) of the Week:

Book of the Week:

Curriculum 21: Essential Education for a Changing World by Heidi Hayes Jacobs

What year are you preparing your students for? 1973? 1985? 1999? 2021? With this provocative question, author and educator Heidi Hayes Jacobs launches a powerful case for overhauling, updating, and injecting life into the K 12 curriculum. Sharing her expertise as a world-renowned curriculum designer and calling upon the collective wisdom of 10 education thought leaders, Jacobs provides insight and inspiration in numerous areas of teaching.