Targeting Instruction with Google Docs

We went to a 1:1 laptop program this year in our school. The learning curve has been huge for both students and myself and me too- in learning how to best utilize this resource and not have it be a ominous distraction. We've been utilizing Google Apps and it's been an awesome platform. With the collaborative nature of spreadsheets, documents, and presentations, I hardly use wikis at all anymore. 

One of my professional goals this year was to make my curriculum more "accessable" and transparent to my students and parents. We've used the "Understanding By Design" model for the last few years and I felt I just got a good hold on my standards through alignment and supporting resources. What I wanted to do, was create a "working document" that was organic in nature that chronicled a students journey through a unit. Some of my requirement and ideas for this document were that it:
  1. Had the standards clearly stated and students could indicate how well they met these standards
     through formative assessments. 
  2. Had the essential questions and enduring understandings in them. In the past, I felt that I gave them lip service and didn't allow students to answer them on their own words. 
  3. Be editable. I wanted students to add occassional notes and hyperlinks to online resources that they found interesting. 
  4. Correlated supporting resources to the learning standards. 
I've attached a link to the master copies for my math and science classes. The format is different for both because my math standards are very clear, but for science, they're very broad.
Grade 6 Science Curriculum and Practice Guide-MASTER
Grade 7 Math Curriculum and Practice Guide-MASTER

My math study guide has some little summaries to better reinforce the understanding, but the science standards are a summary in themselves. I think I'll tinker with them a little next year, but the theory is sound. Each student can make a copy and share it with me so I have evidence through assignments, labs, practice tests on how well a student has "understood" a particular topic. It's made remediation much easier than saying merely: "Review all of chapter 8 if you don't understand." Feel free to steal these if you'd like and I appreciate any suggestions you might have.

I think they're a step towards targeting instruction well and bring accountability to learning. However, I am concerned about whether or not this is too methodical, too regimented. We don't make additions to these guides every day, but we do roughly once a week or having a good debrief about an essential question. There is no substitute for great practice in the classroom, and this is merely a supplement to that good teaching.

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