My Classroom, My Curriculum: Post 2

I like Dr. Krashen’s curricular model for its simplicity:

First stories.

Then Free Voluntary Reading.

Finally academic language.



I believe in simplifying and lightening the load for teachers.  Yet, sometimes writing curriculum out for stakeholders can show teachers’ intentionality and expertise.  This gives teachers increased professional autonomy to use the curriculum we know is best for students.  It is not for everyone and is just one tool to reclaim our craft and protect students with ability-appropriate programming.I wrote a set of Scope and Sequence documents using the SOLO Taxonomy.  I chose not to narrow my curriculum to mere target structures, word lists, or grammar.  Every student outcome in my Scope and Sequence demonstrates either of these:

1. Can children comprehend messages?

2. Are they compelled by messages?


I weeded through WIDA Can-Do descriptors and threw out  the majority- skill-building outcomes.  I focused only on those few student indicators that would tell me if children understood compelling, comprehensible messages. With authentic performance-based assessments,  I can gauge both comprehension and affect (how compelling it is).  Pearson can’t see love for reading.  I can.

When children self-select books, tell me their favorite author or subject, ask for clarification, or listen on the edge of their seats, I don’t teach that- I just observe it as a natural outcome of comprehending compelling messages.  I assess and plan instruction around children’s responses to show they understand text, feel confident in their reading habits, or are engaged in a story.  It’s my classroom and I am the only expert on the curriculum my students need.

Basic Interpersonal Conversational Speech ESL Scope and Sequence

Cognative Academic Language Proficiency ESL Scope and Sequence


Published by

Claire Walter

I am an ESL teacher and I promote differentiated, compassionate instruction and assessment for English Language Learners.

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