Closing with an invitation
As an added resource we include an annotated bibliography you can use as you take your own journey to identify, select, implement, and institutionalize high-quality instructional materials for all students. We offer this orientation to entice you to dig into the rich planner that follows and find new strategies you can apply to increase the impact of your Title IIA investment.
Achieve, Council of Chief State School Officers, Council of the Great City Schools, Student Achievement Partners. (2015).
Materials alignment planner.
The purpose of the Materials Alignment Planner is to catalyze the impact that the CSSS can have on student achievement by increasing the prevalence of CCSS-aligned, high-quality instructional and assessment materials.
Allan, S. & Leifer, R. (2017, March 29). How high-quality instructional materials can drive teacher growth. Educational Week, 36(26).
"A growing and compelling research base suggests that high-quality instructional materials can yield improvements in student learning outcomes equal to or greater than many interventions that are often more costly…When teachers continuous examine their practice and can access and adapt instructional resources to meet individual student learning needs, it feeds a coherent cycle of instructional improvement." p. 18
Bybee, R. & Chopyak, C. (2017, June). Instructional materials and implementation of Next Generation Science Standards: Demand, supply, and strategic opportunities. Carnegie Corporation of New York. Available here.
Boser, U., Chingos, M., & Straus, C. (2015, October). The hidden value of curriculum reform. Center for American Progress.
The report provides new insight into how curricula are selected and examine related costs. Selection is relatively low cost; there is large ROI in switching to better curriculum compared to other changes; more impactful than class-size reduction.
Chingos, M. M. & Whitehurst, G. J. (2012, April). Choosing blindly: Instructional materials, teacher effectiveness, and the Common Core. Brown Center on Education Policy at Brookings. Available here.
Effective instructional materials either reduce the variability in performance across teachers, raise the overall performance level of the entire distribution of teachers, or both. Large scale randomized comparative trial of the effectiveness of four leading elementary school math curricula showed that second-grade students taught using one curriculum scored 17 standard deviations higher than other.
About Learning Forward
Learning Forward is a nonprofit, international membership association of learning educators committed to one vision in K-12 education: Equity and excellence in teaching and learning.
To realize that vision Learning Forward pursues its mission to build the capacity of leaders to establish and sustain highly effective professional learning.
Information about membership, services, or products is available from:
504 S. Locust St.
Oxford, OH 45056
Email: firstname.lastname@example.org www.learningforward.org
Davis , E. A. & Krajcik, J. S. (2005, April). Designing educative curriculum materials to promote teacher learning. Educational Researcher,34(3). Available here.
Provides a foundation for the term "educative" and makes a powerful case for why professional learning is so important to the implementation of these materials. Educative materials are curriculum materials designed with the intent of supporting teacher learning as well as student learning.
Davis, E. A., Palincsar, A. S., Smith, P. S., Arias, A., & Kademian, S. M. (2017, August). Educative curriculum materials: Uptake, impact, and implications of research and design. Educational Researcher, 46(6). Available here.
In summarizing a three-year study the authors report on how teachers use curricular materials and evidence of impact on teachers and students. Adaptions are affected by a number of things and keeping the priority on what is best for the children can be a challenge.
Gallagher, A. (2016, October). Professional development to support instructional improvement: lessons for research. SRI International. Available here.
PD that offers new knowledge and skills combined with program materials that help teachers transfer new ideas into their instruction can be a potent combination for instructional improvement.
Hirsh, S. (2019). 4 cornerstones of professional learning: Fundamental principles pave the way for educators' actions. Oxford, OH: Learning Forward. Provides assumptions and evidence base for focusing on future professional learning on equity, high-quality instructional materials, job-embedded professional learning, and advocacy.
Learning Forward (2018, December). Instructional materials. The Learning Professional, 39(6). Six articles showcase the importance, implementation, and impact of investments in high-quality instructional materials as well as curriculum anchored professional learning cycles.
Jackson, C.K. & Makarin, A. (2017). Can online off-the-shelf lessons improve student outcomes? Evidence from a field experiment. Northwestern University. Available here.
Use of scripted lessons showed significant effects on student outcomes, especially for weaker teachers: .08 for 80th-percentile teachers; .13 for 20th-percentile teachers.
Kane, T., Owens, A., Marinell, W., Thal, D., & Staiger, D. (2016, February). Teaching Higher: Educators' perspectives on Common Core implementation. Center for Educational Policy Research at Harvard University.
Average student using aligned math textbooks scored 0.1 standards deviations higher on assessments than students using other textbooks. Students using misaligned textbooks scored 0.15 standard deviations lower.
Koedel, C. & Polikoff, M. (2017, January). Big bang for just a few bucks: The impact of math textbooks in California. Economic Studies at Brookings, 2(5). Available here.
Math textbook choice showed significant effects on test scores.
Learning Forward. (2018). High-quality curricula and team-based professional learning: A perfect partnership for equity.
A comprehensive summary of the research that supports a shift in professional learning to selection and support of the implementation of high-quality instructional materials. Displays how curriculum-anchored professional learning cycles leads to ongoing sustained improvements in educator learning and practice.
McDougald, V. & Weisskirk, L. (2017, September). Want all students to learn? Make sure their teachers get great content for their classrooms.
Short, J. (2016). Thinking to learn: Improving teacher practice by investing in transformative professional learning and educative instructional materials. Paper prepared for a meeting hosted by Aspen Institute.
Teachers need transformative professional learning and support to implement new curricular materials because they will challenge their beliefs and practices and lacking support teachers will not invest and materials will not be used.
Steiner, D., Berner, A., & Hopkins, J. (2017, August). Hiding in plain sight: Leveraging curriculum to improve student learning. Chiefs for Change. Available here.
Spotlights states (FL, LA, MA, NY, DC) that have shown how smart strategies can be used to ensure that high-quality standards are matched with high-quality instructional materials and it leads to stronger student outcomes.
Taylor, J. A., Getty, S. R., Kowalski, S. M., Wilson, C. D., Carlson, J., & Van Scotter, P. (2015, October). An efficacy trial of
research-based curriculum materials with curriculum-based professional development. American Educational Research Journal, 52(5). Available here.
This study demonstrated that curriculum as part of an integrated delivery model drives changes in teacher behaviour, which can lead to an even greater impact on student outcomes. Students in an integrated improvement model gained an estimated four months of learning over two years relative to groups in the comparison group.
Weiner, R. & Pimentel, S. (2017, April). Practice what you teach: Connecting curriculum & professional learning in schools. The Aspen Institute Education Society Program.
Paper describes research supporting argument to improve teaching and learning, you must weave curriculum and professional learning.
WestEd. (2017). Evidence-based improvement: A guide for states to strengthen their frameworks and supports aligned to the evidence requirements for ESSA. This guide provides tools to help SEAs and LEAs implement evidence-based improvement strategies through a continuous improvement process.