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Adult and Community Learning Services (ACLS)

PD Activities Adult Education Practitioners Can Engage in Remotely

Curriculum and Instruction

  1. Align curriculum and instruction to standards: CCRSAE for ABE and MA ELPS for ESOL
    Examples of activities
    • Assess the program's curriculum landscape and develop
      • vertical curriculum coherence so that connections from one level's curriculum to another should be explicit and understood by students and teachers alike.
      • cross subject coherence (e.g., embed science and history/social studies content in mathematics and ELA lessons or develop standalone science and history/social studies curricula) to support connections across subject areas and prepare students for the components of the HSE exams.
    • In collaboration with teachers, develop a set of strategies to ensure curricular coherence is not only on paper but translates into the classroom, especially when different teachers each teach sections of the same class.
    • Develop a curriculum scope and sequence, curriculum units and lesson plans if these are not already in place, or continue refining existing scope and sequence, curriculum units, and lessons plans to ensure proper alignment to CCRSAE and/or MA ELPS
    • Ask teachers to use the ELA and Math Proficiency Guides and the ESOL Professional Standards as self-assessment tools. Develop a program wide or specific individual teacher PD plan based on the self-assessment results.

  2. Revise curriculum and lesson plans to ensure WIOA mandates are incorporated:
  3. Revise the program's curriculum and instruction to ensure it is inclusive and representative of all students regardless of their level of academic readiness, previous formal schooling experience, learning differences, language, ethnicity, race or socio-economic backgrounds.
    Examples of activities:
    • Incorporate differentiation strategies into lesson plans at all levels.
    • Ensure that lesson plans incorporate scaffolding strategies so that students with limited or interrupted formal education can access rigorous content.
    • Use the ESOL Professional Standards to familiarize ABE teachers with second language acquisition strategies so they can support ELLs in their classroom.
    • Ensure that the instructional materials represent the diversity of students in the program (e.g. create a bank of diverse reading texts).
    • Revise curriculum from a culturally responsive teaching lens and/or research culturally responsive and sustaining teaching by using the resources from this DESE guidance document.


Examples of Activities

  1. Explore the MAPT-CCR score reports
    • Teachers can review the Interpretive Guides for the MAPT-CCR score reports for their primary content area (Assessment webpage in the MAPT-CCR section).
      1. Think about the reports. How would you discuss an individual report with a student?

    • Teachers can access the last MAPT-CCR individual Test score report for 2–3 individuals in their class. Look at the items the student got right and wrong.
      1. How would you explain that report to a specific individual?
      2. How does that report align/not align to other assessment or observation information you have about that student?
      3. What questions do you have about the reports that the CEA at UMass Amherst could answer?

    • Explore MAPT-CCR Test Specifications: Teachers can review the MAPT-CCR Test Specifications for their primary content are (Assessment webpage in the MAPT-CCR section)
      1. Think about the students in your class(es), the level at which those students typically perform, and the balance of content that is assessed at that level(s).
      2. Look at or reflect on lessons taught over the past several months / beginning of the academic year and consider the extent to which the content taught aligns to the content assessed on the MAPT at your student(s) level(s).

  2. Complete the Assessment Design Toolkit Modules from the U.S. Department of Education

  3. Check out other online general assessment and test-specific resources

EdTech Center's New Distance Education Guidance site

World Education — Digital Resources
New Website

In response to the need for adult educators to transition from in-person to distance teaching, the EdTech Center @ World Education has created a new website called Tips for Distance Learning, with resources to help adult basic skills programs scale up or launch distance education programs.

The site includes guidance on the first steps to take in planning, successful implementation (recruiting, onboarding, teaching, and assessing learners), and locating and evaluating online learning resources. We include information on how to meet virtually with students, links to offers for free or reduced online courses or curricula from publishers known to provide quality ABE learning resources, and a professional development events calendar.

Webinar Series

Join us for the first of weekly webinars this Friday at 10:00 Pacific, 12:00 Central, 1:00 Eastern. The first webinar, designed for administrators, professional development leaders and other practitioners, will cover a preview of the support site. We will feature lightning talks about LINCS resources and guidance on choosing online curricula. We will offer break out discussion on these and other topics participants have about getting started with distance education.

The link to register and join the webinar is the same.

Jen Vanek, PhD | Director | Digital Learning and Research | EdTech Center
44 Farnsworth St, Boston, MA, 02210 | Mobile # 612.432-8725

Last Updated: March 19, 2020

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