In the Learning Division at Penn-Harris-Madison, our discussion and work revolves continuously around Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment. These three components are essential in helping our students acquire the knowledge and skills necessary for them to advance positively and progressively throughout their education.
Curriculum refers to what our student must learn, instruction refers to the strategies we will use to help our students learn, and assessment refers to the ways we will test our students to see if our students have learned it.
While each one of these components is immensely important, all three must work together to ensure that we are helping our students acquire the knowledge and skills that are essential for their academic growth.
The word curriculum refers to what children are required to learn in specific grades and in specific content areas. For example, during the elementary years, there are standards in the curriculum that identify what important knowledge and skills children must develop in order to read at grade level. Each course at the elementary, middle, and high school levels is based upon curriculum and Indiana standards outlining what students need to learn in that course.
The word instruction refers to the ways that we help students learn what is required in specific grades and in specific content areas. We know that children learn in a variety of ways, and it is important to provide students with different avenues to acquire knowledge and skills so that all students within a classroom can learn effectively.
In order to meet our students’ diverse needs at Penn-Harris-Madison, we utilize many different strategies in our RtI (Response to Instruction). Teachers are then able to provide acceleration for students with high abilities as well as extra help for those students requiring additional time and additional help with key concepts.