Florida’s CPALMS: An Interdisciplinary Project Built Upon Collaborations
From Danielle Sherdan
CPALMS aims to organize efforts to support educators working together toward goals of understanding and implementing standards. CPALMS is not only the official source of Florida’s Standards, with a collection of some of the best educational resources and tools to help educators develop and use those resources, but it is also a community of educators. The CPALMS community is growing—with over 27 million visitors and more than 26,000 registered users. Registered users have built and shared more than 4, 400 resources using CPALMS tools.
CPALMS resources include course plans, units, lessons, simulations, activities, professional development, and more from some of the best sources, including Florida’s teachers. All resources that are shared through CPALMS are reviewed by peer teachers and content-area experts using a criteria-based feedback system, with the aim of providing constructive feedback toward high-quality lessons and resource integration. The review process ensures CPALMS resources are aligned with standards, include accurate and appropriate content, and utilize research-based approaches to instruction.
CPALMS already has excellent coverage of resources for Florida’s standards for mathematics and science, and resources for the CCSS for Mathematics and English Language Arts are now under review. This spring, the CPALMS community is launching several initiatives to support understanding and implementing the CCSS. Initiatives toward understanding the standards will include “unpacking” the standards to analyze what students are expected to know and be able to do, what common misconceptions students have related to standards, and what research tells us about how students learn the content and skills in the standards.
The cognitive complexity of these standards will be determined to help educators align their instruction and assessment with the cognitive complexity expected of the standards. Standards progressions will be developed in a web-based and interactive map. Initiatives toward implementing standards are twofold:
- development of lesson study toolkits to maximize the benefits of and support school-based implementation of lesson study; and
- development of resource collections with innovative and integrated approaches to standards-based instruction and assessment.
The most exciting development for CPALMS— iCPALMS— is coming this summer. The individualized CPALMS portal will take full advantage of individual interests to bring standards information, resources, and professional development to educators in a customizable portal with apps designed to make the CPALMS initiatives work together to truly support educators working individually and together. Visit us at cpalms.org to learn more and maybe you’ll become a CPALMS Champion.
Danielle Sherdan is on the leadership team for CPALMS/iCPALMS and a science specialist at the Florida Center for Research STEM at the Learning Systems Institute of FSU.
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