Learning Tools | FTC 2013 News

Pearson Launches K-5 Instructional System at FETC

At the FETC 2013 conference Wednesday, Pearson released a new instructional system of services, tools, and curriculum for K-5. Forward, available now, was developed in collaboration with Maryland's Montgomery County Public Schools.

Forward, which is aligned with Common Core State Standards, is intended to develop students into "well rounded" individuals. Instruction integrates academic success, creativity, and critical thinking skills into the subjects of reading, writing, mathematics, and social studies. It uses the concepts introduced in Montgomery County Public Schools' Curriculum 2.0 program and makes connections across subject areas.

Joshua Starr, Montgomery's superintendent, described the program in a letter to parents: "Curriculum 2.0 is based on a strong body of research and is designed to provide a well-rounded education for students, while also developing the critical and creative thinking skills that are so important for success in academics and in life. In mathematics, reading, and writing, the curriculum is based on the Common Core State Standards, the new internationally driven standards adopted by Maryland and 45 other states. At the same time, Curriculum 2.0 allows for more instructional focus on the arts, information literacy, science, social studies, and physical education- areas that have been crowded out at times during the past decade."

Features of Forward include:

  • A learning portal with Pearson materials, including enVisionMath, Reading Street, and Interactive Science;
  • Activity-based formative assessments for each lesson, and success skills assessments that focus on critical thinking, creative thinking, and academic success skills;
  • Weekly planners, which include a library of sample learning tasks. Each task is based on a question, focuses on a thinking or academic success skill, and is aligned with specific Common Core standards; and
  • A variety of teaching tools including videos, animations, instructor notes, and student lesson pages.

For an additional cost, Forward provides a Leveled Reader Library, which includes 20 readers per level from a variety of genres and difficulty levels. Trade Book Library features 24 titles for grades K-2 and 30 for grades 3-5 for group reading instruction.

Pearson rolls out Forward to school districts over a three-year period, and includes professional development, on-site and virtual training, and implementation plans.

For more information, visit pearsonschool.com/forward.

About the Author

Tim Sohn is a 10-year veteran of the news business, having served in capacities from reporter to editor-in-chief of a variety of publications including Web sites, daily and weekly newspapers, consumer and trade magazines, and wire services. He can be reached at timothyjsohn@gmail.com and followed on Twitter @editortim.

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