With the budget crunch that most districts are feeling these days, it’s important to save money where possible and where it doesn’t negatively impact the education of students. One excellent way to do this is through the use of Open Educational Resources (OER). These are free resources that anyone may use and modify.
I wrote a while back about an outstanding and free math curriculum for grades 6-8. That same company, Open-Up Resources, is now providing a complete curriculum for ELA in grades K-5. The curriculum is based around texts that students love to read and includes the following:
- Student Materials – digital and print options (perfect whether you are 1:1 or still paper-based)
- Teacher Materials – digital and print options, including module and unit plans, lesson plans, assessments, and embedded professional learning
- Book list of authentic texts
- Curriculum map
- Integrated, lesson-specific supports for ELLs
- Lesson-level supports for students with special needs
- Family resources
The offering also includes STEM and social studies topics. And it is aligned to both state and national standards.
Open-Up is a non-profit association that earns revenue to support these development endeavors by providing professional development on their offerings. But the resources are completely free and do not require that you purchase professional development from them.
With the savings from not having to purchase a curriculum program or to pay staff to write one, districts can spend more on professional learning for staff and on technology for students. This makes this offering from Open-Up a win/win for districts, staff, and students.
By the way, Open-Up is also developing free curricula for high school Algebra 1, Geometry, and Algebra 2 and for middle school language arts. All of these will be available for the 2018-2019 school year. You can request information on their website.