We have always viewed every teacher—regardless of subject area, grade or specialization—as a teacher of readers, writers, and content. Our curriculum engages students and supports teachers in building students’ capacity to read, think, talk, and write about complex texts.

Four modules, with 3 units in each, comprise a full year’s curriculum. Each module progresses in a standard sequence: Building Background Knowledge (Unit 1), Extended Reading and Research (Unit 2), and Extended Writing (Unit 3).

Each module comes with books – not textbooks or anthologies – which have been carefully selected and vetted by the authors of the Common Core as the best books for teaching grade level content. These central texts are supported by a list of recommended texts—books, articles, and primary source documents—that balance literary and informational texts at appropriate levels of complexity. For procurement, please refer to our Trade Book List.

For information about how to order printed curriculum or trade books, please go to How to order curriculum materials.

The Learning Path for Students and Teachers

Students…

  • Get “hooked” on what they are going to learn.
  • Learn and practice collaborative structures and protocols to use throughout the module.
  • Discover the purpose for learning new skills that build towards the standards.

Unit 1

Building Background Knowledge

Teachers…

  • Develop a vision of a Common Core-aligned classroom.
  • Launch a learning experience with a clear roadmap of the texts, lessons, and assessments that lie ahead.
  • Establish classroom routines that lead to productivity and engagement.
  • Become experts on a compelling topic and texts.
  • Gain academic and domain-specific vocabulary.
  • Deepen their capacity to read for and write and speak with evidence.

Unit 2

Extended Reading & Research

  • Develop expertise in the Common Core’s instructional shifts.
  • Use assessment results to monitor students’ progress and make thoughtful decisions about differentiation.
  • Communicate with parents, administrators, teaching partners, and student support teams about effective strategies and students’ performance.
  • Write from sources about topics they understand deeply.
  • Develop a vision of quality work in collaboration with their peers and revise their own work accordingly.
  • Share their learning and excitement with peers, teachers and others beyond the classroom.

Unit 3

Extended Writing

  • Develop a classroom community focused on quality work.
  • Use revision techniques that lead to student engagement and quality work.
  • Provide focused yet differentiated support to ensure that all students make progress.
  • Reflect on new skills in planning and preparation, instruction and classroom management.

The shifts

What you will see in the grades 3–5 curriculum

Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction
  • Effective literacy instruction emphasizes the use of compelling topics which engage students in informational and literary texts.
  • Students build expertise about a topic and often share that expertise with classmates or a wider audience.
Reading, writing and speaking grounded in evidence from text, both literary and informational
  • Students use evidence, including self-assessing, learn to ask strong text-dependent strategic questions as they read, and do research for a real purpose.
  • Performance tasks require students to cite textual evidence, to revise their writing and critique their peers’ writing, and to share their writing with a real audience.
Regular practice with complex text and its academic language
  • Students are exposed to a wide range of increasingly complex texts to build background knowledge and interest.

The shifts

What you will see in the Grade 6 to 8 ELA Curriculum

Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction
  • Effective literacy instruction through the use of compelling topics which engage students in informational and literary texts, and emphasizes “author’s craft” in accordance with the rigor of the Grade 6-8 standards.
  • Students build expertise about a topic and often share that expertise with classmates or a wider audience.
Reading, writing and speaking grounded in evidence from text, both literary and informational
  • Students use evidence, including students self-assessing, learning to ask strong text-dependent strategic questions as they read, and doing research for a real purpose.
  • Performance tasks require students to cite textual evidence, to revise their writing and critique their peers’ writing, and share their writing with a real audience.
Regular practice with complex text and its academic language
  • Students are exposed to a wide range of increasingly complex texts to build background knowledge and interest.
  • Awakened curiosity gives students purpose for reading, then we support and challenge them with increasingly complex texts.

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