Educators Convene to ‘Spring Clean’ Resources in the Digital Library

chris.barron Features

NOTE: The Smarter Balanced Digital Library was decommissioned. Please visit Tools for Teachers, the new home for instructional resources and professional learning.

Nearly 60 educators from around the nation met for three days last week in Denver for a “spring cleaning” of the Digital Library and its nearly 3,000 resources. By the end, educators who attended the State Network of Educators Workshop were able to review and edit more than half of the Digital Library’s instructional resources.

Educators worked in pairs to review existing resources, focusing first on the Digital Library’s oldest ones—those that were posted in 2014 and 2015. The State Network of Educators (SNEs) reviewed resources, made edits and decided on necessary changes (e.g., tags for grade level, state standard, student population). In addition, they added tags for two new tagging fields: assessment targets and educational use. The educators will continue to review the remaining resources over the summer.

The following are a few highlights from the June meeting:

  • The US Virgin Islands with a team of five, was represented at the SNE Workshop for the first time. In all, educators from eight states and territories attended the meeting.
  • Collaboration was the theme of this summer’s workshop. SNEs worked in teams of two and three to calibrate and accomplish the workshop goals. State Leadership Team representatives and Smarter Balanced staff worked to facilitate, motivate and guide the work.
  • A smaller group of about 16 SNEs, recruited for their content expertise and understanding of the formative assessment process, participated in a small-scale trial for collaborative resource development. These SNEs worked in small groups with a trained facilitator, to examine specific Smarter Balanced assessment targets and develop a comprehensive resource with multiple embedded lessons. This group was able to produce 6 new instructional resources: three in English language arts and three in math.