Chief Academic Officer, Kiddom
Abbas Manjee is Chief Academic Officer at Kiddom. Before Kiddom, Abbas taught high school math serving at-risk youth in New York City.
Responsive Curriculum Management provides visibility into classroom progress so you can build systems of continuous improvement
Well-designed curriculum affords teachers the opportunity to help students meaningfully connect with the subject matter and engage in deeper learning. In fact, a growing body of research confirms curriculum is a critical factor in academic success.
While these findings might seem obvious, measuring the efficacy of curriculum gets tricky because of the diverse nature of classrooms: teachers modify curriculum to best suit their students, based on the resources and training available to them, and their preferred teaching style. This is what makes teaching and learning beautiful and so powerfully personal.
However, some consistency across classrooms and schools can help school and district leaders make better meaning of student achievement data. Without clear and consistent learning goals and strong curricular design, it can be challenging for administrators to ensure transparency, accountability, and alignment across learning communities.
What Challenges Exist Today?
Two challenges make measuring and improving curriculum difficult for administrators.
The first is that curriculum artifacts are generally disconnected from teachers’ day-to-day work. Whether curriculum is purchased from a publisher, adopted from a free provider (e.g. EngageNY), or completely custom, it generally lives in either a curriculum management product or Google Drive/Microsoft Office.
If a school or district relies on a curriculum management product, teachers generally access it at the beginning and end of a term. What the curriculum produces, i.e. the student achievement data, is housed in a gradebook or a learning management system, siloed from the curriculum.
If schools rely on Google Drive or Microsoft Office, collaboration and on-the-go course adjustment gets easier, but there is no way to look at holistic student data and content side by side. To measure the effectiveness of a unit plan housed in a curriculum management product or a Google Doc, administrators must first gather the lesson plans associated with that unit and then separately pull the student achievement data from another source. This practice results in administrators spending far too much time gathering information instead of acting on it to better support classroom instruction.
The second challenge facing administrators is curriculum is a living, breathing roadmap. What’s agreed upon at the beginning of the term never proves enough once the term gets underway, and so it must be fine-tuned on an ongoing basis. This is reality of curriculum design: the work is never done.
This is why, despite the plethora of curriculum products and services that exist today, teachers still report spending twelve hours a week searching for or creating curricular materials. How much do these additional materials impact student achievement? How could teachers’ lives be improved if curriculum developers at the district office could access the additional materials teachers found and used on an ongoing basis to fine-tune curriculum?
After months of researching, designing, engineering, and testing solutions for this problem, the Kiddom team is excited to introduce Responsive Curriculum Management on Kiddom Academy to help everyone support the work happening in classrooms more effectively.
Responsive Curriculum Management
Using Responsive Curriculum Management, curriculum developers can design and share standards-aligned curriculum directly to their teachers’ Kiddom Planner. The curriculum can be designed centrally in-house, co-designed with teachers, or adapted from a publisher.
When teachers access their respective Planners via Kiddom Classroom, they can view the curriculum map and collaborate with colleagues to build a collection of lessons and activities designed with their students in mind.
Student-facing artifacts from the curriculum, e.g. assessments, quizzes, intervention resources, can be used by teachers and accessed by students directly via Timeline in Kiddom Classroom. Additionally, there are many options to personalize assignments to meet student needs.
As teachers and students move through the planned curriculum, school and district leaders can monitor classroom progress and performance live, at any moment. They can view which units, lessons, and activities are driving student outcomes, and view overall student progress in all subjects.
This helps administrators make timely and data-informed resource allocation decisions, from the contents of professional development sessions to the purchasing of curriculum or intervention materials. Administrators can finally measure the impact curriculum makes from design, delivery, and assessment, across classrooms and schools, in real-time. That’s a game-changer, folks.
Using Academy, you can easily add a new course to share with teachers.
Administrators can add units, standards, and other details, then click into any teacher’s curriculum to view what resources teachers have added into their Planner.
Build and Share Curriculum
Teachers can access and use the curriculum designed in Academy, simply dragging resources from Planner and dropping them into a a student’s Timeline.
Implement, Teach, & Assess
Administrators using Academy have views to track classroom data, like student achievement (shown to right), as well as engagement, and teacher and student dashboards. Read more here.
Measure Implementation and Impact
Review, Reflect, and Adjust Course
Responsive Curriculum Management on Kiddom Academy effectively bridges the gap between curriculum, instruction, and assessment. Calibrate on academic expectations and take action on classroom data to make sure teachers have everything they need for a successful school year.
While classes are in session, make informed decisions to support student learning in a timely manner. After the classes are done, you’ll finally have everything you need, all in one place to review, reflect, and adjust course for next time.
Curriculum is a Roadmap
Curriculum design is fundamentally emotional work, representing the journey educators plan for students to make meaningful connections with concepts. How curriculum is implemented in the classroom is a significant predictor of student achievement gains. Now that Responsive Curriculum Management is available, we’re excited to learn how administrators will use it to support the work happening in classrooms.
Ready to align curriculum, instruction, and assessment? Learn more by completing this inquiry form. We’d love to support you in this work.
Kiddom Academy picks up where the LMS leaves off, offering an operating system for K-12 schools and districts to measure and act on classroom intelligence. We define a K-12 operating system as a set of interconnected tools to enable schools to operate more productively, increase student outcomes, and improve upon their respective instructional models.
What People Are Saying
“Kiddom is great for assessing data and then assigning appropriate work based on individual student performance. I love that it’s very easy to attach standards and rubric to every assignment.”
Jackie Curts, Middle School Teacher
“Using Kiddom has made me stop and ask ‘Am I just letting this student repeat what they already know or am I really challenging them?’”
Ann Leghorn, High School Literacy Specialist
“I can see where my class and any student is at any moment in their educational journey. This way I can take action to assist them to work towards mastery.”
Mr. Albrecht, High School Teacher
You might also be interested in these articles:
How to build and measure a cross-disciplinary, school-wide digital literacy curriculum using responsive curriculum management.
After creating a team to test the new feature, our School Success Lead shares notes with both excitement and regret that she didn’t have this tool when she was a teacher!
Kentucky’s Marshall County adopted advanced technology to help build a more individualized learning experience; learn more in this doc hosted by Rob Lowe.