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The Ever-Evolving Unit Organizer

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Instructional Strategies

The language arts curriculum tends to be cumbersome when creating Unit Organizers. Fitting ELA content into a linear flow is a difficult task. Even for the experienced UO creator, shifting your mindset away from the tidy planning process of basing a unit around a specific genre can be challenging. The advantage of this type of thinking is that students are able to better see connections across genres. A thematic-based unit builds around students gaining understanding of a question, topic, or idea rather than around studying one type of text explicitly. As we are constantly striving to improve upon our Unit Organizers and planning processes, we have made the change from genre-based units to thematically-based units. In this session, we will share an in-depth look at the progression of our Unit Organizers and the shift in thinking that we've had to make as we have evolved.

Learning Outcomes/Next Steps

Participants will walk away with an understanding of how unit organizers can be transformed and improved upon in the ELA classroom by shifting from a linear, genre based format to thematic based units.

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