How I Use It
My first introduction to EngageNY was links to teaching videos sent to me by my Assistant Superintendent. I watched teaching demonstrations that showed the Common Core in action. The videos are well done and inspiring, and introduce strategies that can be applied in the classroom.
What I am using it for now is curriculum. My school hasn't yet adopted an commercial Common Core curriculum, as there are not any available yet that we feel meet the needs of our students and address the standards in meaningful way. As I am exploring and experimenting, I've found EngageNY invaluable.
My students find the lessons intriguing and relevant. The standards are introduced and reinforced in a logical way. The texts range in type and difficulty. The scaffolding built into the lessons is amazing, and the themes are interwoven throughout the modules.
I am just beginning teaching the first module I am implementing. So far, my students are enjoying reading historical fiction about working conditions in the industrial revolution, and will later be introduced to figures in the labor movement such as Cesar Chavez and this will be tied to workers rights issues happening around the world today.
EngageNY is a comprehensive Common Core Resource. It has videos of real teachers implementing the Common Core Standards effectively in their classrooms using best practices and discussing their pedagogy. The videos are so well done that my department is discussing bringing them into our weekly staff training.
However, the best part of EngageNY are the learning modules. There is an entire aligned Common Core curriculum for ELA and Math for grades K-12. Obviously, I haven't even scratched the surface of this resource, but everything I've used has been stellar. The lessons in the 7th grade ELA modules are solid, comprehensive, clear, include a variety of texts and text types, and have clear instructions for scaffolding. They are relevant and engaging for the students.
I have never been happy with any commercially available curriculum I've seen, but these lessons are the lessons I'd make if I had hours and hours to research and develop curriculum. This is a resource that the more I use it, the more I love it. Best of all, it's FREE!