High quality curriculum matters in the classroom!

Sam LaCasse

Sam LaCasse·– 09/09/2022 10:31am

High quality curriculum leads to better teaching and learning. And yet, over 50% of teachers craft their own curriculum by using a variety of non-curated resources. In fact, a recent RAND study found that 96% of teachers use Google and nearly 75% use Pinterest to find lessons and materials to use in their classroom.

But quality matters! See the research! 

What does High quality actually mean?

There are several criteria that Edreports uses to identify “High Quality” but the two main points are that they are: 

  • Align with college-level and career ready standards
  • It’s easy to use for teachers and students 

Edreports found that improving the quality of the curriculum is 40X more cost-effective than class size reduction. And high quality instructional materials and textbooks is one of the top two funding priorities identified by teachers. 

Recognizing the importance of high quality curriculum, many states are now doing the research and addressing the need. The Oregon department of education recently released a report sharing the importance of high quality instructional materials. They indicated four main points:

  • "Access to high-quality instructional materials is critical to excellent instruction. 
  • A growing and compelling research base suggests that high-quality instructional materials can yield improvements in student learning outcomes equal to or greater than many interventions that are often more costly.
  • A high-quality [instructional material] can give educators within a school and across a school system a common foundation to organize the work they’re undertaking at the classroom level and collaborate to develop together. 
  • Research shows that students in general gain months of learning when teachers use stronger instructional materials.” 

High quality curriculum decreases cost, increases teachers' knowledge of the content and how to teach the material, and increases the learning opportunity for students. 

The research suggest that high quality curriculum is a win, win, win!