Curriculum Mapping @ the AIS Executive Conference

I’m spending two days at the AIS Executive Conference in Brighton-Le-Sands on Botony Bay, Sydney.  On day one, the committee set up an excellent program featuring John Hattie, Alma Harris and Peter Freebody.  The three keynotes complemented each other and contributed to a solid basis for further discussions.  My interest focused on John Hattie whose book Visible Learning is fast becoming the bible for evidence-based educators.  John made presented an insightful and no holds barred case for what strategies have a greater effect on student achievement.  His bottom-line is that the difference is educators whose attention is on evaluating the effect they have on student learning.  It’s a reminder of the simple wisdom of questions like those put forward by the likes of Rick Dufour:

  • What do we want the students to learn?
  • How do we know when each student has learned it?
  • What do we do when a student experiences difficulty in learning it?

On Day Two, my friend Steven Armstrong (Deputy Head Academic) and I shared Oxley College’s journey so far with Curriculum Mapping.  We offered a “warts and all” tale that begins with a hazy vision of where we want to go and ends (so far) happily with a very successful inspection by the Board of Studies earlier this month.

Our slides are available (+notes page) as well as a handout with a few example maps and template.

Curriculum Mapping in Melbourne

I’m fortunate to be working with ACEL and ASCD as they bring Heidi Hayes Jacobs and Ann Johnson to Australia to continue the introduction of Curriculum Mapping to our schools.  My perspective is that available technologies enable students to “side-step or super-charge” their learning.  The determining factor is a meaningful and individualised curriculum that engages intrinsic motivation and develops a culture of thinking.  My session is titled “Curriculum Mapping + Web 2.0 = Personal Learning” as I don’t think education stands a chance of taking advantage of digital technologies without better articulating and tracking individual student learning. Curriculum Mapping has to happen.

The following handouts accompany the session:

Finally – don’t miss the Conference Archive on Heidi’s Web site, for access to presentations, handouts, etc. A real treasure of support.