ACPS is in the process updating our textbooks and learning materials.
In 2019-20, ACPS will be upgrading its secondary math materials, aligned with Virginia Standards of Learning.
In 2018-19, students in kindergarten through grade five received updated textbooks and materials aligned with the current Virginia Department of Education adoptions.
Over the next few years, ACPS plans to reintroduce a regular textbook adoption cycle so that all learning materials stay up to date.
New Classroom Reading Materials for K-5
In September 2018, ACPS purchased a new K-5 literacy program. The current program had not been updated since 2004. The new textbooks and materials are aligned with current Virginia Standards of Learning. Teachers began using the newly adopted resources as a suggested core tool. Teachers now have resources to use when planning daily lessons with guides for how it will look in action.
Benefits of the new reading materials:
- Teachers can now have deeper conversations about refining the already provided materials to fit their teaching styles and students’ learning styles.
- The new resources give supports with working with students on, above, and below grade level in reading.
- The new materials have allowed teachers to cross school plan units and lesson plans because they are using the same materials.
- ACPS has also been able to develop common language around best practices with the new materials.
- Having a wide range of culturally relevant authentic books for students to read allows for a global mindset to be developed.
- Teachers have seen their students browse books and offer book recommendations to grow new thinking for all readers.
- Students are stretching themselves to read books they think are engaging and interesting.
- These materials have changed the way teachers view reading. Teachers see reading as a journey, not a destination.
- Readers grow and evolve to become stronger problem solvers and thinkers from the beginning stages of how words work with phonics in text to how meaning is made when text complexity increase.
- Having supports for explicit phonics instruction with the word study materials has helped teachers have data driven conversations about how to strengthen kids phonemic awareness and phonics from kindergarten to fifth grade.
- Using a common tool to measure growth and common resources allows teacher in a school to collaborate more and have shared conversations around a common goal.
- Teacher conversations are more in depth and richer because of the common new materials.
Along with the professional learning and training with the new materials, teachers feel supported with how to move the learning forward for all students. The trainers from the publishing vendors have been high level and have met the needs of the individual schools.
Students have been able to see themselves as readers. This is changing the narrative from previous years where students just read and may have viewed it as a chore. Now students see themselves as contributing to a community of readers. Classrooms have rallied around book titles and themes and had grand conversations to guide students to new thinking. The joy the classroom library books bring the students is undeniably the greatest benefit of this adoption.