LearnZillion is an online, open educational resource (OER) that provides supplementary English language arts and reading (ELAR) instructional materials for grades 2-12. Resources are free and address the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Instruction focuses on developing students’ close reading, writing, and language skills and supporting teachers’ understanding of the CCSS. Content is presented in short video lessons that include detailed lesson plans that focus on a particular standard or set of standards. Learning List recently completed reviews of their materials for grades 2-12.
Lessons are organized in three overarching categories: (1) Close Reading: Informational Text, (2) Close Reading: Literary Text, and (3) Writing. Close Reading instruction is presented in units focused on particular text (e.g., The Diamond Necklace) and made up of five lessons (i.e., about a week’s worth of instruction). Writing instruction focuses on writing skills (e.g., write opinions that can be supported with facts) and language skills (e.g., recognize and correct run-on sentences).
LearnZillion is dedicated to championing teachers and supporting their ongoing professional development. Teachers develop expertise and insights while working with students, and have exceptional ideas for how to improve classroom learning. However, they have never been able to integrate that expertise into a curriculum that keeps getting better. LearnZillion believes that empowering teachers to collaborate and share best practices creates new possibilities for students, and the profession.
LearnZillion Content Philosophy: It’s hard to teach a lesson. It’s harder to teach it well. And it’s particularly hard to teach it in a way that resonates and sticks with students. Teachers not only have to understand their content, they have to know the best way to teach it. This idea of Pedagogical Content Knowledge (PCK) – knowledge of the content and the way to make it accessible to students – is at the heart of LearnZillion. PCK has become even more important with the depth that is now required by the Common Core State Standards. Their offerings are meant to help get teachers started with lessons that were designed with PCK in mind. The resources on their site were built by a talented group of hundreds of practicing teachers (a.k.a. the LearnZillion Dream Team) for teachers everywhere. Collectively, as a community, LearnZillion will continue to improve upon these lessons, building more practical resources and PCK as they move forward.
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*The content in this section is provided by or adapted from LearnZillion.