Curriculum Mapping made easier

Active Literacy Across the Curriculum: Strategies for Reading, Writing, speaking, and Listening




Pros: well written, fast paced, small enough to tuck into purse or brief case, good suggestions, well recognized leader in the area of Curriculum Mapping

Cons: niche audience made up mainly of educators, text book language

Interesting read     Recommended         5 stars


Author DR. Heidi Hayes Jacobs, renowned professional acknowledged for her proficiency in the fields of education and core curriculum, is Executive Director of the Curriculum Mapping Institute and President of Curriculum Designers, Inc. Dr. Jacobs has a proven record as an training specialist to schools the world over, and is particularly celebrated in the US on the topic of practices and programme works in particular those relating to: curriculum mapping, vibrant teaching, and 21st century tactical development and standardized testing.

 Active Literacy Across the Curriculum: Strategies for Reading, Writing, speaking, and Listening is an edition of 138 pages having Table of Contents, a foreword, Acknowledgements and 7 chapters regarding role of educators, the teaching of English, and more, as well as a Bibliography suggesting further study and reading.

Chapter headings are enlightening 1. Revising Roles: Every Teachers Becomes an Active Language Teacher, 2. Teaching English as a Foreign Language: Employing Three Distinctive Types of Vocabulary, 3. Creative Notetaking: Activating Extraction and Reaction from Texts, 4 Editing and Revising Independently: Using a Consistent Developmental Policy in Every K-12 Classroom,5 speaking and Listening in Groups: working with the Discussion, 6 Turning the Speaking/Listening Instrument: Giving Voice Lessons in Each Classroom, Mapping Active Literacy: Revising and Integrating Curriculum Maps K-12.

The Foreword begins with 2 quotes, one from Lord Byron, the other from Mark Twain. Rachel Billmeyer asserts that it is more significant than ever that educators move to cultivate strategic learners as students become dynamic thinkers. Further Billmeyer notes that accumulation of information is a vibrant progression; plus and notably, learning is an action of fabrication of meaning from the mental storing of curriculum content.

The basis for writer Jacob’s manuscript is that each instructor, at any grade level in any course area is an English language teacher.

The instruction of English as though it were a foreign language should be accomplished through the employing of 3 unambiguous styles of active vocabulary. In every classroom terminology needs to be fabricated through use of high frequency words, specialized terminology and embellishments. High frequency words is comprised of the words most commonly introduced by educators, these are the words basic for learning the subject matter.

High frequency words are the words appearing again and again during student learning sessions. Specialized terminology is the vocabulary dedicated to application to explicit curriculum fields or disciplines, words should be repeated aloud by students, explicated, defined, paraphrased, and comprehension of the word demonstrated.  Embellishments comprise the synonyms for particular words, as well as the modifications and adjectives to express deeper grasp of the subject.

Hayes notes that a recognized methodology for teaching communication talents by developing four measurable dialog styles in students via using of straight procedural training that encourages vocalization as well as personal involvement as a speaking and communication mechanism for advancing self-assurance, self-reliance and command of material for each student in each classroom is the preeminent technique for guaranteeing student success.

Reading is more than just moving the eye’s across a page of printed symbols whether words are vocalized or not. Reading is discerning meaning stimulated by the text; the insinuation of the words set down are generated by the reader as a result of the response between the reader and the text on the page.

Writer Hayes asserts that language competence is the basis for totality of student performance. Hayes emphasizes that the accomplishment of a classroom learning experience is depended on student vocabulary aptitude. Hayes advances the understanding that the necessity to read, compose, voice and heed productively is central to each curriculum subject, in every grade, and in every class learners will ever attend.

As a classroom teacher I read with attentiveness that Hayes notes the success of need for inculcation of vocabulary is motivated in large part by the learning standards established at the state level. By and large, learning standards students are expected to read and respond to, are written as if every student is in standard English usage. Hayes declares what teachers have known for years; every standardized test, whether a state or national instrument is principally a reading test. Thus, if the student taking the test is not an accomplished reader, who is a student having understanding of a broad vocabulary filled with standard English words, then, the student taking the test is going to face complications with the language used in the test; including words like determine, summarize, select and more.

Hayes provides critical stratagems for revising existing educational practice. These approaches comprise growing the role of every educationalist so that mentors identify themselves as language/vocabulary teachers who will isolate terminology into 3 inimitable categories and with each instructor having unique instructional tactics in each classroom K-12. As an outgrowth; trainers will be seen moving students toward constructing advanced note taking approaches designed to effect an abstraction and response mode in students as opposed to a passive receptive approach.

Hayes recommends use of Curriculum Mapping as an amalgamating, schoolwide vehicle for increasing recognized benchmark assessments for certifying dynamic mastery in every subject and on every level.

Promoting trustworthy expurgation and modification for writing in every class K – 12 Hayes feels should be utilized as a procedure for fostering language education expansion every student must develop in order to reach success in inculcating curriculum essentials along with preparing students for taking the standardized tests so commonly held as THE assessment for determining student accomplishment as well as testing teaching achievement and teacher facility.

I found Active Literacy Across the Curriculum: Strategies for Reading, Writing, speaking, and Listening to be a well written, narrative jam-packed with frank, rapidly understood jargon grounded in a motivating, demonstrable basis besides being packed with practical and valuable endorsements for the classroom teacher.

Hayes makes a superb case for the methodical progression of the terminology students must have in order to attain educational triumph.

Happy to recommend Active Literacy Across the Curriculum: Strategies for Reading, Writing, speaking, and Listening for the school administrator library, for the college professor’s required student reading book list and for those who teach whether in the classroom or other setting. Fine as tuck in gift for the novice teacher beginning his/her career Active Literacy Across the Curriculum: Strategies for Reading, Writing, speaking, and Listening will provide the novice with great insight and foundation for the teaching he/she will be undertaking in the classroom.

TITLE Active Literacy Across the Curriculum: Strategies for Reading, Writing, speaking, and Listening

Author Heidi Hayes Jacobs

Paperback: 152 pages

Publisher: Routledge

Language: English

ISBN-10: 1596670231

ISBN-13: 978-1596670235

Product Dimensions: 8.7 x 5.9 x 0.4 inches


4 thoughts on “Curriculum Mapping made easier”

  1. Fascinating! Your school ‘children’ are so fortunate having you for their teacher – someone who continues to seek new and better ways of shaping their minds for a happier, more productive life.

    Thank you!

  2. long ago I heard bill cosby, the comedian, and also an educator, speaking on the need for everyone having command of the language spoken by those in positions of importance in the country. and, I think he is right.

    we need to have command of the language of the land if we hope to taken seriously

    1. thank you for your comment

      yes, it is summer vacation here in Oklahoma for most of us I think, some schools did have to make up some snow days, I’m almost getting used to the starting in august and ending in may, teaching almost 30 years in California where it was September to June was a tad different!

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