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    English Language Arts (ELA)

    In 2016, Seattle Public Schools adopted English language arts instructional materials created by Center for the Collaborative Classroom for reading and writing instruction in grades K-5.  

    Collaborative Literacy is a comprehensive ELA curriculum designed to develop independent readers, writers, and critical thinkers. Comprising three components-- Being a Reader, Making Meaning, and Being a Writer-- Collaborative Literacy addresses the core competencies traditionally taught in the language arts block while at the same time creating classroom communities in which students can learn and grow. The curriculum marries the latest research in literacy education with integrated social skills development and embedded professional learning. 

    Firmly rooted in best practices, Collaborative Literacy reflects the following principles throughout: 

    Learners become independent readers, writers, and thinkers: Students are invited to take risks in their learning, building their confidence and ability to express their thinking

    Authentic reading and writing experiences: Students immediately apply what they are learning in whole-class instruction to their own reading and writing, reinforcing the new learning and showing students that what they are learning is relevant to their own lives

    Equitable access: Lessons are carefully structured with whole-class and partner discussions to ensure that all students have ample opportunity to articulate their thinking

    Professional learning: Lessons build teachers’ understanding of best practices in literacy instruction and give teachers the tools to transform classrooms

    Meaningful assessments: Formative and summative assessments support instructional decision making for the class and for individual students

    SEL with literacy instruction: Teachers foster fundamental shifts in the ways their students feel, speak, think, and learn, with the goal of enabling students to become independent learners

    Having every student be a strong independent read is the goal of the staff at Coe Elementary. To this end, students and families also have the support of a reading specialists who provide intensive support to students in small groups settings. 

     


    Mathematics

    A new math resource was initiated fall 2014 in the Seattle Public Schools after the School Board approved Math in Focus.

    Math in Focus, uses the Singapore method of teaching math, takes an approach called “bar modeling” as the primary strategy to visually depict problems. Students learn early how to draw these models, and they continue to use them to show their thinking as problems become more complex.

    The District will use Math in Focus as one basis for aligning curriculum with Common Core State Standards, the new statewide benchmarks that also emphasize pictures and graphics to foster “number sense” in learning math.  One commonality with Common Core is the program’s emphasis on skill mastery – providing a deep focus on one skill with repeated exposure, moving from concrete to pictorial to abstract.  

    The single adoption across the District helps improve equity – maintaining consistency for students who move from school to school and ensuring that students enter middle school equally prepared. The aligned program also helps with teacher collaboration and professional development. In addition to the Math In Focus materials, Coe teachers supplement using other materials to best meet the needs of learners. 

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    Science

    The newly adoption Seattle Public Schools K-5 science curriculum is Amplify Science. It is the product of a collaboration between the University of California, Berkeley’s Lawrence Hall of Science and the instructional technologists at Amplify, with funding from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Institute of Education Sciences, and the National Science Foundation.

    Since their release in 2013, the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) have raised the bar for science education. Moving the focus of instruction away from memorization and toward active engagement and critical thinking, the standards aim to teach students to think like scientists and engineers and grapple with core scientific principles, in addition to supporting deep learning of concepts that cut across science domains. Amplify Science has been designed from the ground up to meet the Next Generation Science Standards and respond to the instructional shifts called for by the National Research Council’s Framework for K-12 science education (2012).

    Instruction

    Amplify Science’s instructional model allows students to access their prior knowledge and to connect past learning experiences to the present. Students have the opportunity to ask questions and define problems about the natural and designed world, design investigations in which they collect and analyze trends and patterns in their data, engage in argument form evidence in both writing and through discourse with their peers, develop conceptual scientific models of physical phenomena, and to communicate their findings from their investigations.

    Learn More about the Amplify Science K-8 Curriculum

     

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