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Curriculum Guides on Writing, Spelling, Reading and Mathematics

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A curriculum guide is a plan on what subjects will be taught, how they will be taught and by whom they will be taught. It may be general or specific and is a determinant on what ways materials are taught to diverse groups of students (Tannehill & Lund, 2010).  In most cases, public schools setup curriculum guides for every individual subject and the guides are used as a trajectory of the expected standards of performance in the school. That is, the performance levels that are expected of students. The guides may specify the core concepts that must be taught within a given time limit and provide recommendations on the teaching method s that will appeal to a given group of students.

Curriculum guides should embrace objectivity and proper goals if academic excellence is to be achieved (Glass & Strickland, 2009). They should consider the students educational and social needs based on the age group. In addition, they should be based on content standards, thinking skills and mind habits as well as promote collaborative teaching, learning and assessment opportunities that enable all students to achieve high standards. This paper develops curriculum guides for reading, writing, spelling and mathematics in a way that promotes learning in the classroom situation.

In the context of curriculum guide development, the teacher has the responsibility of teaching and following up on the pupils through mentorship sessions so that specific student needs are taken care of (Mattison, O’Shea & Rowe, 2002). The teacher also has the responsibility of building students based on individual student assets. Assessment is done on a continuous basis to find out how much is being learnt. Apart from periodical assessments of written and oral tests, the teacher will provide end of lesson assignments which the students must do and submit results within a given timeline. There will also be end of year exams which will examine students’ strengths and weaknesses (Malloy, 2006).

Curriculum Guide on Reading, Spelling and Writing for Grade One Pupils

Objective: At the end of the learning year, the pupils are expected to be in a position to write a large proportion of correctly spelt high frequency words. In addition, the pupil should be able to write text that is readable by others regardless of the spelling of words. There should also be phonetic representation in the text. The pupil should also be able to draw a range of resources for deciding on how to spell unfamiliar words such as matching familiar words and word parts. The pupil should automatically and correctly spell words that are used commonly.

Presentation of what is to be learnt within the clarified periods

Class: Grade one

period

activity

One week

Letter formation of single letters

Three days

Students use magnetic letters to build words

Three days

Students sort words in a pocket chart

Two days

Writing and checking of spellings

Two  days

Friends check on what others have done

Four days

Spelling

Two days

syllables

Three days

Name building

Two days

Matching of names and pictures

Three days

Sorting names by categories

Two days

Sorting names by gender

Two days

Sorting names on a chart

Two days

Identifying consonants

Four days

Sorting names by how they end

Three days

Sorting of names that have double consonants

One week

Introduction to vowels

Two weeks

Syllables and their separation by line

Ten days

Naming of objects

One week

Sorting of attributes

Two weeks

Writing of words

Two and a half weeks

Word building

One week

Making of syllable breaks

 

Curriculum Guide for Mathematics

This guide provides direction on what a grade one student should know at the end of the academic year of doing mathematics (Maxwell, Mendez, Goldsmith & Sorenson, 2001). At the end of the teaching period, the student should be able to have basic knowledge on addition and subtraction, measurements, place value and spatial understanding of geometry. The student should also know weights in terms of what is heavy or light and build number sense.

Objective: The student is expected to have all rounded information on numbers, basic algebra, basic geometry, measurement and introductory probability.

Given that grade 2 students are relatively young, the curriculum will engage the children in hands on activities. They will use manipulative aspects such as identification of numerals, writing of the memorized numerals, understanding one to one correspondence, describing positional words, sequencing events, completing simple patterns and addition and subtraction among other things. Here is a diagrammatic presentation of what is expected of students in Grade 1 in Mathematics as adopted from Team (2008).

Time

Objectives

4 weeks

Number sense: count forward and backward, connect numerals and number words represented.

5 weeks

Foundations of addition and subtraction, number words and ordinals: represent real life number stories, describe addition and subtraction using manipulatives, use two or three addends

3 weeks

Fluency in addition and subtraction and introduction to geometry: solve addition and/or subtraction problems using one or two digit numbers, develop an understanding of fractions by dividing objects into equal parts.

3 weeks

Spatial understanding of geometry, place value, counting: describe characteristics and properties of two and three dimensional geometric shapes, explain similarities and differences in plane and solid shapes, recognize and name environmental shapes

4 weeks

Measurements and operational extensions: use the calendar to identify the day, month and year as well as the day before, the day after among other things. Collect data from the environment.

 

Rubric of Assessment and Evaluation

A rubric is a tool that is used to assess several types of assignments including written work, projects and speeches among other things (Harrison 2001, 12). Rubrics are an excellent way to grading assignments that can lead to subjective grading. Rubrics ought to be given to students before the completion of course work so that they have knowledge on how they will be assessed (Bondi & Wiles, 2011).

In both the above subjects: mathematics and writing, spelling and reading there will be two continuous assessment tests and one final examination. The continuous assessment test will all account to 40% of the overall grade whereas the final exam will contribute to 60% of the final grade. For mathematics, the grades will be auto summed to a hundred percent mark. In the languages (reading, writing and spelling) however, there will be both oral presentations and written tests. Oral presentation in the two continuous assessment tests will amount to a total of 15% of the total grade. Oral presentations in the examinations will also contribute to 15% of the overall grade. In essence, oral presentations contribute to 30% of the overall grade in writing, spelling and reading tests. The following is a breakdown of the distribution of grades across the subjects covered with a basis on the guidelines provided by Soven &McLeod (1992).

Breakdown of Distribution of Marks for Grading

subject

nature

Contribution

Overall effect

Reading, writing and spelling

Continuous assessment tests

NB: these are grades for two continuous assessment tests

Oral presentations:15%

Written work: 15%

30%

 

Final examination

Oral presentation:15%

Written exams: 55%

70%

Mathematics

Continuous assessment tests

NB: these are grades for two continuous assessment tests

Counting and symbols: 20%

Written arithmetic: 10%

30%

 

Final examination

Counting and identification of symbols: 20%

Written arithmetic:50%

70%

Conclusion

A curriculum should be purposeful, rigorous and related to the real world. It should focus on developing complex and critical thinking skills of individual students thereby helping them develop deeper creativity in the subjects of study. In addition, it should integrate themes, essential questions and standards into the daily work of students. It should also be class specific and coherent both in writing and implementation.

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