One of the most impressive presenters at the ASCD Conference so far has been Heidi Hayes Jacobs who opened with a session on curriculum mapping on Saturday. I’ve heard her twice now and her message is strong and insistent: no excuses for not changing.
In the session on curriculum mapping she managed to breathe life into what is often a pretty dry topic, sometimes by diverging into professional development, and the need for ‘differentiated PD’ for staff, and meetings ‘the wrong people are meeting regularly’ and learning, ‘If you’re going to be a lifelong teacher you’ve got to be a public learner.
I thought her most important point on curriculum mapping was that, while it provided gap analysis and help with standards, the most important thing was that it allowed for ‘upgrading’ the curriculum. She talked about curriculum in computer terms a lot, about ‘upgrading’ to the latest ‘version’.
I bought a copy of her new book, with the catchy title, Curriculum Mapping Planner, which I’ll be lugging back to Australia.