Bring your curriculum to life – 20 ways the Mondrian Wall can help your school

mondrianWall_bringYourCurriculumToLife

  1. Bring your curriculum to life
    Bring your Curriculum to LifeRather than dead bits of data locked as bits of paper in drawers, spreadsheets in each department or caged in a timetable – bring your curriculum to life!
    Turn it into a living, breathing, continually improving, developing and evolving part of your school.
     
    As Sir Ken Robinson says “the curriculum should be a map of knowledge – not an administrative chore” – with the Mondrian Wall your curriculum can become something that can be seen, explored, interrogated, questioned and reviewed. It will lead to new ideas and new relationships between stakeholders.
     
    With the Mondrian Wall – you can make your curriculum fun.
    1. let everyone see the latest version and contribute to its growth and development
        
    2. map and visualise your whole curriculum from different perspectives – ask questions of your curriculum – either to facilitate learning or to look for ways to improve the curriculum
       
    3. make your curriculum topical – update it to reflect the latest world events or local issues
         
  2. Take charge of / own your curriculum
    Take charge / own your curriculumMake your curriculum more relevant, targeted and tailored to your school’s ethos, challenges and ideology (whilst still taking advantage of the resources and experiences you already have). Ensure your curriculum is focused on the things that are important to your school and your students.
       
  3. Make planning your curriculum easier
    Make planning your curriculum easierGive curriculum leaders tools to monitor the development and status of your curriculum. Get every teacher helping to develop your curriculum:
      
    • better and easier vertical planning and horizontal planning
    • re-use previous work and best practice (no need to re-invent the wheel!)
    • support continual improvements
    • allow teachers to work asynchronously
    • ensure you cover all the bases your curriculum needs to cover (e.g. ensure your units map to external curriculums such as the National Curriculum)
    • centralisation of information
    • support backwards design
         
  4. Whole school curriculum planning
    Whole School Curriculum PlanningFor most schools, the Mondrian Wall will represent the first time a school has ever seen their whole school curriculum in one interactive view.
    Plan the curriculum as a whole across all years and all subjects.
     
    Embed competences or other programmes into the whole school and check how evenly skills are distributed.
      
  5. Make your curriculum accessible to all, anywhere, any time
    Make your curriculum accessible to allBecause your curriculum will be accessible online 24/7 – you can choose to enable access to it for all staff, students, parents, your wider school community and even other schools.
        
    • Engage the wider school community
      The Mondrian Wall will make your curriculum available (and comprehensible) to your wider school community – will they have ever seen the curriculum before? Imagine how they can get involved.
        
    • Support Area Based Curriculum projects.
         
    • Meet the moral responsibility to make your school curriculum accessible
      (in the case of IB MYP schools – meet a specified IB MYP requirement)
          
  6. Make the most of your current resources
    Make the most of your current resourcesPromote the best use of the resources you already have in school – your teachers, your time and existing curriculum / teaching resources. Tap in to unused potential energy – such as student voice, parents, your community and even other schools.Not every school will be able to change their whole structure to support their chosen ideology – so the Mondrian Wall works within your school’s current framework whilst helping you make a big step in the direction of your preferred education ideology.
      
  7. Engage Teachers
    Engage teachers with the curriculumEngaging teachers with the curriculum planning process will make teaching more about ‘facilitating learning’ rather than just lecturing, and create a sense of ownership of the curriculum.
     
    A curriculum planning process enabled by the Mondrian Wall will boost morale by investing in such a powerful, engaging and fun system – which says that the school believes in their ability to innovate and make the curriculum come to life through their teaching.Challenge your teachers to be the best they can be.
     
    “It’s going to give teachers the satisfaction of having been involved in curriculum planning, the motivation which is going to make them more stimulated about what they’re doing because they feel they’ve actually got an influence about what is being learned by their students in their classes”
     
  8. Improve the quality of teaching & learning
    Improve the quality of teaching and learningCentralise best practice and resources -stop losing best practice and great teaching ideas. Learn from other teachers in other subjects (and possibly even from other schools) using the Mondrian Wall to break down the artificial barriers that stop best practice spreading.Involve students in the learning process to create a unity and common purpose – turning students into engaged, motivated learning partners.
     
    With the Mondrian Wall you can choose to share your best practices within your school and potentially with other Mondrian Wall schools – providing leadership and value to benefit education as a whole.
      
  9. Promote collaboration between (all) teachers
    Promote collaborations between all teachersPromote interdisciplinary work and true collaboration between all teachers – across faculties, with real benefits. The Mondrian Wall enables teachers to easily document cross-curriculum links to a curriculum plan within seconds. These links can then be visualised, tracked and measured by your school leadership.For example, the Mondrian Wall will allow you to see at a glance the links between Units of teaching (and the details of these links) and to search / filter for Units where there are no links yet established.
      
    Which of your departments / teachers have been the most successful in establishing collaborations with other departments of your school? Find out with the Mondrian Wall…
      
  10. Free your teachers to be more creative
    Free your teachers to be more creativeFree your teachers (and your students!) from restrictions of external curriculums and bought-in schemes of work (whilst still meeting your subject content requirements and still benefiting from the best bits of existing resources)
      
  11. Turn your curriculum plan into a classroom resource
    Turn your curriculum into a classroom resourceAn interactive, growing map of knowledge rather than just an administrative chore. In lessons teachers can bring up the Unit plan to show not only the aims and objectives of the current section of learning – but to show and discuss how this links through and relates to the rest of the curriculum – both what they’ve learnt already and where their learning is heading.
       
  12. Improve parental engagement
    Improve parental engagementRecent research we conducted showed that students wished their parents were able to see more about what they do in school. By making approved parts of your curriculum available to your parents wherever they have access to the internet you will have a valuable tool in supporting and developing parental engagement.
      
  13. Engage students
    Student EngagementMost students don’t even know what a ‘curriculum’ is let alone influence how it is created or taught. Allow teachers to create more relevant, topical and engaging learning experiences. Turn your curriculum into a classroom tool that helps engage and motivate your students.
     
    The Mondrian Wall’s innovative and lightning fast interface makes it fun and engaging software to use – imagine the value of your students enjoying themselves just exploring your curriculum!
      
    • Help students understand the work that goes into building your curriculum – hence help them help their teachers more.
        
    • Allow students to create Evaluations of their curriculum – to harness student voice and gather valuable feedback
        
    • Give students a sense of ownership and influence of the curriculum – hence increase student motivation and concentration levels
       
  14. Promote interdisciplinary work
    Promote interdisciplinary workStudents understand the potential for interdisciplinary work to save them time and reinforce the work they have already done.
     
    We’ve been pleasantly surprised to find the degree to which students were very aware of the lack of joined up thinking between disciplines and found it very frustrating when supposed links were not meaningful or useful.
    Just as the benefits of interdisciplinary work are clear to students, teachers will find enormous benefits in interdisciplinary work – reinforcing previously taught concepts and maximising their curriculum time.
        
  15. Independent learning
    Promote independent learningIn our research students wanted to see the curriculum so they could work from home without the distractions from other students in the classroom. Allow students to see what is coming up next.
     
    Students who harness their eagerness to find answers and progress to the next level of learning will set new levels of expectations from your teachers.
     
    More gifted and talented students will be able to push themselves further and take the lead in their learning.
      
    The Mondrian Wall will help students to take responsibility for their own learning because it will allow them to see where the curriculum is leading them and therefore understand the value of it for themselves.
     
  16. Better exam results / “improve student achievement”
    Better exam results (improve student achievement)By engaging students, improving the quality of teaching and learning, getting students involved and using cross-curriculum links and work to reinforce previously taught concepts the Mondrian Wall will lead to improved student achievement.
     
    The Mondrian Wall can be a tool to improve student motivation and levels of concentration – and allow more gifted and talented students to look ahead and a mechanism to aim for more advanced levels of understanding.
           
  17. Support curriculum leaders
    Support curriculum leadersHelp curriculum leaders develop teachers and the curriculum.
    With the Mondrian Wall School leadership will get high level data to see how the development of the curriculum is progressing – and low level data such as which teachers are engaging with the design of the curriculum and what parts of the curriculum are getting the best feedback.
     
    Mondrian Wall Workflow features help curriculum leaders ensure quality, promote best practice and support teachers more.
      
    All teaching staff will be able to consult / interrogate the curriculum to learn about its progress and development (e.g. “show me all the Units that have been approved / are in draft”)
         
  18. Buy back / maximise curriculum time
    Buy Back Curriculum TimeThe Mondrian Wall will help you maximise your curriculum time through collaborative planning.
     
    “I always use the phrase that if you do an interdisciplinary unit you ‘buy curriculum time’. Because instead of it being all focused in one lesson and then another subject is doing something similar and perhaps repeating some of those skills – you bring those together and suddenly there seems to be a whole lot more time.  Because of the overlap between the 2 topics and the transfer of skills – and the increased motivation that comes with it because it’s interesting, exciting and more engaging – you buy more curriculum time essentially – so you get more for your money – more for your hours.” (Richard Matthews)
        
  19. Promote the sharing of best practice
    Promote the sharing of best practiceThe Mondrian Wall is the perfect mechanism for your teachers and school leadership to promote best practice within the school.
     
    Additionally, through the Mondrian Wall your school can choose to engage with a wider community of schools who also want to learn from others and share their best practice too.
       
  20. Support Curriculum Evaluation and Continuous Improvement
    Continual improvement and curriculum evaluationThe Mondrian Wall helps you to stop losing great ideas and time by creating a central place to store the curriculum, keep all the improvements and ideas and build on them unit by unit, term by term, year by year.
     
    The Mondrian Wall allows teachers and students to create Evaluations of curriculum units – which will give you real information to help you improve the curriculum and how it is taught.

About Kevin Heppell

Managing Director of Sequential - creator of the Education Identity Platform that powers didbook (www.didbook.com) and the dynamic curriculum planning innovation - the Mondrian Wall (www.mondrianwall.com)
This entry was posted in Benefits, Cross-curriculum Links, Easier curriculum planning, Features. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s