English Language Arts

English Language Arts

Introduction

The English Language Arts curriculum presents what students are expected to know, understand, and be able to do, articulated in a learning progression that begins in Kindergarten and continues through Grade 12. It includes a focus on the joy of reading a variety of materials, including story and informational text, and on First Peoples content, worldviews, and Principles of Learning.

The curriculum is designed to empower students by providing them with strong communication skills, an understanding and appreciation of language and literature, and the capacity to engage fully as literate and responsible citizens in a digital age. Students are guided in their learning to think critically, creatively, and reflectively; to construct a sense of personal and cultural identity; and to be respectful of a range of perspectives and worldviews. The English Language Arts curriculum is a foundational component of education in British Columbia schools.


Features of the English Language Arts curriculum

There is a common English Language Arts curriculum from Kindergarten to Grade 9. In Grades 10 through 12, students may take courses in English 10-12 or English First Peoples 10-12. All courses satisfy the English Language Arts requirements and all are considered academically equivalent.

Flexible teaching and learning

The components of the curriculum work together in a dynamic and flexible way to support deeper learning. Within each grade, there is no single or “correct” way to combine pieces from each of the curriculum components. Rather, the structure allows for a great deal of choice in the ways in which the pieces can be combined to create lessons, units, and learning experiences.

The curriculum also remains flexible in its accommodation of a variety of program structures, as well as school and community contexts. The open design promotes the creation of instructional approaches that combine two or more areas of learning, without mandating any particular form of interdisciplinary learning.

An integrated approach to learning

The curriculum represents an integrated and holistic approach to teaching and learning. In the English Language Arts curriculum, the six language arts elements (reading, listening, viewing, writing, speaking, and representing) are inextricably interconnected. The development of competency in one element supports the development of competency in another, often simultaneously.

The curriculum retains the organization of Curricular Competencies into the two modes of language use: “receptive,” represented by the Curricular Competencies listed under Comprehend and connect, and “expressive,” represented by the Curricular Competencies under Create and communicate.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the English Language Arts curriculum and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Transferability of learning

Students benefit from language learning by gaining the ability to communicate effectively in the classroom as well as by receiving knowledge, competencies, and understanding that are transferrable across the curriculum and to life outside school. The English Language Arts curriculum supports students in becoming educated citizens by:

  • contributing to their overall cognitive development
  • helping them develop language and thinking strategies that can be applied to new contexts
  • developing their cultural awareness and understanding
  • helping them learn to read for information and enjoyment
  • deepening their understanding of the importance of identity
  • enhancing their understanding of how their language is constructed, how it works, and how it is dynamic, changing with time and circumstance
  • preparing them for success in future educational and career contexts

 

Design of the English Language Arts curriculum

The English Language Arts curriculum follows the same format as in all other areas of learning and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

The Big Ideas in English Language Arts reflect a variety of important concepts and competencies, such as strategies, connection building, identity, diverse perspectives, and cultural awareness. Many of the Big Ideas progress and deepen over time; others remain constant. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

K and 1

3

4 and 5

6 and 7

10, 11, 12

Big Ideas

Everyone has a unique story to share.

Stories can be understood from different perspectives.

Texts can be understood from different perspectives.

Exploring and sharing multiple perspectives extends our thinking.

People understand text differently depending on their worldviews and perspectives. 
Texts are socially, culturally, geographically, and historically constructed. 


Curricular Competencies

The Curricular Competencies describe what students should be able to do with the knowledge they have gained. English Language Arts is a process-driven area of learning: students develop as they engage with language and texts. This emphasis on process can be seen in the greater detail of the Curricular Competencies learning standards, compared with level of detail in the Content learning standards. The process-oriented focus reflects the fact that a primary goal of English Language Arts is to enable students to become competent and effective users and creators of a wide variety of texts in diverse contexts, including digital texts. Through purposeful communication, students can develop competencies in listening to understand; communicating effectively; presenting information and ideas with confidence and fluency; and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students build on their Curricular Competencies as they move through the grades. The example below shows how the curriculum progresses from grade to grade, expanding in scope and deepening in complexity.


 

K

1

4

English 10-12

EFP 10-12

Curricular
Competencies

Recognize the structure of story

Stories and other texts help us learn about ourselves and our families

Exploring stories and other texts helps us understand ourselves and make connections to others and the world

The exploration of text and story deepens our understanding of diverse, complex ideas about identity, others, and the world

First Peoples’ texts and stories provide insight into key aspects of Canada’s past, present, and future

Content

Content represents the knowledge students will acquire as a result of their learning at a given grade in English Language Arts; it is what students are expected to know. Content represents what students need to know to be able to achieve the Curricular Competencies. In each grade, each topic in the Content column can potentially be applied through multiple Curricular Competencies.

As the excerpt from the Grade 5 curriculum below shows, knowledge of “literary elements” and “literary devices” in the Content column enables the student to “Recognize how literary elements, techniques, and devices enhance meaning in texts” in the Curricular Competencies column.

Grade 5

Curricular Competencies
Using oral, written, visual, and digital texts, students are expected individually and collaboratively to be able to:
Comprehend and connect (reading, listening, viewing)

  • Recognize how literary elements, techniques, and devices enhance meaning in texts

Content
Students are expected to know the following:
Story/text:

  • literary elements
  • literary devices

Students deepen their learning as they build on their Content knowledge from year to year, through the study of specific topics and through the range of texts in which they encounter the topics. Some topics appear in more than one year, as they may take longer to fully address or they may address more advanced Curricular Competencies. When identical topics appear in multiple grades, the elaborations further clarify the depth and breadth to which the topic should be addressed at each grade.

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided (as hyperlinks) in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples.

Some Elaborations are repeated across grade levels to avoid prescription and to allow teachers to use professional judgment in selecting specific aspects of the Elaborations according to the needs of the student and the learning context. However, many Elaborations show increasingly elevated expectations across grade levels.

The example below shows how the scope and depth of learning grows as students progress along a growth continuum.

 

1

3

4

8

English 10-12

Content

  • literary elements and devices
  • literary elements and devices
  • literary elements
  • literary devices
  • literary elements
  • literary devices
  • literary elements and devices

Elaborations

  • poetic language, figurative language, sound play, images, colour, symbols
  • descriptive language, poetic language, figurative language, images, imagery, rhythm, rhyme, simile, alliteration
  • literary elements: theme, character, setting, plot, conflict, and purpose
  • literary devices: sensory detail (e.g., imagery) and figurative language (e.g., metaphor, simile)
  • literary devices: sensory detail (e.g., imagery, sound devices) and figurative language (e.g., metaphor, simile, hyberbole)
  • Texts use various literary devices, including figurative language, according to purpose and audience.

Important considerations

Selection of texts

“Text” in the English Language Arts curriculum is defined as any oral, visual, or written communication, including digital. Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of engaging and grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms, including First Peoples and other Canadian texts, as well as multicultural texts in a variety of formats, such as digital and multi-genre texts. While allowing as much student choice as possible, it is important that students be introduced to texts that are accessible yet challenging.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples – or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important in First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection to the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C., Canada, and the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Grammar, usage, and conventions

Learning about the English language, including its grammar, usage, and conventions and the ways in which language develops over time, is important for students. The learning of grammar provides students with a valuable meta-language – that is, a language with which to talk about language. However, research evidence is clear that in order for the teaching to be effective, grammar and language skills should be taught within a purposeful context rather than in isolation. Otherwise, there is little or no transference from learning about grammar and conventions to students’ abilities to read or write better.

All forms of text have conventions, including grammar and usage, which vary depending on the form. For example, punctuation applies only to written language. Film and oral language have their own conventions as well. The purpose of conventions is to assist in meaningful communication; their use should thus reflect the purpose of and audience for the text. Students should be introduced to standard written English while also recognizing that there are many other varieties of English, each reflecting a specific cultural, social, or professional context (Roger Passman and Katherine S. McKnight, 2007, Teaching Writing in the Inclusive Classroom: Strategies and Skills for All Students, Jossey-Bass).

Literary terms and techniques

Knowledge of literary terms and techniques builds students’ skills in literary analysis by giving them a language with which to talk about texts and the techniques used by authors. It also expands students’ awareness of the techniques available to them in their own writing. The English Language Arts curriculum includes instruction on literary terms and techniques within the context of meaningful texts and contexts, rather than in isolation from such contexts.

Handwriting

It is important that students be able to communicate in a variety of ways. In the past, written formats were the primary method of communication, and cursive writing therefore held a great deal of importance. Today’s students are able to communicate in a variety of ways and are not limited to paper and pen. However, it is still important that students be able to read others’ handwritten texts and communicate their ideas in handwriting, as well as in electronic formats. The focus should be on legibility in handwriting and the ability to communicate clearly, rather than on a particular style of handwriting.

Theoretical underpinnings

The theoretical underpinning of the English Language Arts curriculum is constructivism, or meaning-making. Constructivism is based on the belief that learning occurs as students are actively involved in a process of meaning and knowledge construction, as opposed to passively receiving information. Students are the makers of meaning and knowledge. The ultimate goal of reading is “a construction of meaning from text. It is an active, cognitive, and affective process,” where readers actively engage with the text and build their own understanding (J. Braunger and J.P. Lewis, 2006, Building a Knowledge Base in Reading, 2nd ed., International Reading Association and the National Council of Teachers of English, 59).

Students should be provided with a variety of activities and texts that allow them to make meaning in their world. It follows that the content of the curriculum should be taught, learned, and assessed holistically.

The English Language Arts curriculum is informed by a strength-based approach to teaching and learning. In the early years, students come to understand that everyone can be a reader and a writer, and it is intended that this understanding will remain with them as they progress through the grades and will become a lifelong understanding.

Critical literacy

Critical literacy is a lens through which all text is viewed as being constructed for a purpose. Students should be taught to question text, challenge authorial authority, investigate an author’s beliefs, and detect bias in relation to others’ texts, as well as their own. Critical literacy also allows students to determine viewpoints that may be missing and to examine a variety of other perspectives (David Booth, 2011, Caught in the Middle: Reading and Writing in the Transition Years, Pembroke).

In order to engage in active citizenship, and to avoid manipulation by others, it is crucial that students be able to assess and analyze text. Teaching students to read critically is especially important in an era in which they are exposed to an almost continuous stream of media and information.

High expectations

It is important to maintain high expectations for all students. The intention is to provide the English Language Arts curriculum with a “low floor and high ceiling” (L. Schnellert, N. Widdess, and L. Watson, 2015, It’s All About Thinking: Creating Pathways for All Learners in Middle Years, Portage & Main Press), with many entry points, and with a high degree of academic rigour. The necessity for all students to have strong literacy skills is recognized, whether students aspire to pursue a university degree or college program or to proceed directly into the workplace: “Many trades programs require high levels of literacy, and feedback from employers involved in programs such as ACE IT is that we need to do a better job in K–12 of supporting high levels of literacy” (FNESC Research).

An inclusive curriculum model

Approaches have differed in the past in terms of how to best address the needs of British Columbia’s diverse students. In the English Language Arts curriculum, an inclusive approach is taken, designed for the benefit of all students. The intention is to separate students according to choice and interest, rather than according to ability or perceived ability. The focus is on differentiated opportunities for learning within common courses that are open to all students, rather than on courses that are themselves differentiated. The approach is based on the understanding that all students can potentially do better in mixed-ability groups. As well, self-esteem and motivation are generally enhanced by not separating students into a “lower” stream.

Choice

The aim of the English Language Arts curriculum structure is to maximize students’ chances of success by allowing them to select the areas of choice that are most engaging for them and to achieve deeper learning. Because the curriculum has been redesigned to be less prescriptive and more flexible, students have more opportunities to pursue their interests, aspirations, and passions and to benefit from more specialized areas of language arts study. Providing students with choice also includes offering more opportunities to select the types of texts they will use, such as in the context of literature circles: “Research has demonstrated that access to self-selected texts improves students’ reading performance. . . . This is especially true for struggling readers . . . ” (Krashen, 2011, as quoted at http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/mar12/vol69/num06/Every-Child,-Every-Day.aspx).

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion of possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education co-ordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples Friendship Centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C.

For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm


Last updated: June 2018

Introduction to Applied Design, Skills,
and Technologies


The ability to design, make, acquire, and apply skills and technologies is important in the world today and key in the education of citizens for the future.

The Applied Design, Skills, and Technologies (ADST) curriculum is an experiential, hands-on program of learning through design and creation that includes skills and concepts from traditional and First Peoples practice; from the existing disciplines of Business Education, Home Economics and Culinary Arts, Information and Communications Technology, and Technology Education; and from new and emerging fields. It fosters the development of the skills and knowledge that will support students in developing practical, creative, and innovative responses to everyday needs and challenges.

Applied learning is an integral part of all of B.C.’s curricula, through the Curricular Competencies, the “doing” part of the curricula, and through the ADST K-12 curriculum.

Design involves the ability to combine an empathetic understanding of the context of a challenge, creativity in the generation of insights and solutions, and critical thinking for analyzing and fitting solutions to context. To move from design to final product or service requires skills and technology.

In the ADST curriculum, students grow through the use of design thinking principles. This approach helps them gain understanding of how to apply their skills to both finding challenges and solving them in creative ways, using appropriate technologies for the task at hand.

Features of the curriculum

The ADST curriculum offers:

  • a focus on designing thinking principles, the acquisition of skills, and the application of technologies
  • multiple methods of delivery that can be offered in different ways at different grade levels
  • curriculum that encourages the use of a range of approaches to support student learning in the manner best suited to their diverse abilities
  • Curricular Competencies that offer logical growth along a continuum, to provide a consistent and continuous focus for both students and teachers on the “doing” aspect of the curriculum, and to encourage student metacognition

Flexible teaching and learning

Through the ADST curriculum’s unified design, teachers have the option of creating learning experiences that combine two or more disciplines. The curriculum’s flexibility accommodates both a range of program structures and school contexts across the province, while supporting the diverse interests of students.

A unified curriculum

The unified K-9 ADST curriculum gives teachers the option of taking integrated instructional approaches without having to follow a discipline-specific or interdisciplinary preference or priority. In Grade 9, both a unified and a discipline-specific curriculum are provided, offering flexibility and choice for students with emerging and specific interests. The unified curriculum employs language shared by the disciplines rather than melding the disciplines into one; however, each discipline retains its distinguishable qualities and unique learning contexts.

Options for in-depth study

Building on the K-9 curriculum, the discipline-specific ADST curriculum in Grades 10, 11, and 12 engages students who are committed to pursuing a greater depth or breadth of study. These curricula transition students to engage more fully in ADST, whether as a career choice, as a source of knowledge to incorporate into another field of work, or simply for enjoyment in daily life.

K-5 Foundations

In the early years, students delve into the ADST curriculum through exploratory and purposeful play. As they get older and both broaden and deepen their interests and passions, they have opportunities to develop foundational skills that have a practical, creative, and real-life focus.

The ADST curriculum facilitates and encourages cross-curricular student learning in Kindergarten through Grade 5. Big Ideas and Curricular Competencies are provided for use with grade-level content from other learning areas. This provides students with cross-curricular opportunities that will lead them to Big Idea understandings, while developing foundational mindsets and skills in design thinking and making.

Grades 6-9 Explorations

Students in Grades 6 through 9 explore specific areas of the ADST curriculum while continuing to build their design thinking and foundational skills. The curriculum includes learning choices such as Computational Thinking and Digital Literacy as well as introduces specialized areas such as Metalwork and Food Studies, through both existing and new and emerging fields, while providing opportunities for choice through modularization and other delivery options.

Grades 10-12 Specializations

Students in Grades 10 through 12 may either specialize in a specific area or continue to explore their broader interests. The curriculum encompasses content from Business Education, Home Economics and Culinary Arts, Information and Communications Technology, and Technology Education. This will enable students to personalize their learning by pursuing interests that are relevant to them.

Design of the ADST curriculum

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are intended to capture a progression of learning through the application of design processes, skills, and technologies. Examples of the progression of learning are shown in the chart below.

 

K-3

4-5

6-8

9-10

11-12

Applied Design

Designs grow out of natural curiosity.

Designs can be improved with prototyping and testing.

Design can be responsive to identified needs.

Social,
ethical, and sustainability considerations impact design.

Design for the life cycle includes consideration of social and environmental impacts.

Applied Skills

Skills can be developed through play.

Skills are developed through practice, effort, and action.

Complex tasks require the acquisition of additional skills.

Complex tasks require the sequencing of skills.

Design choices require the evaluation and refinement of skills.

Applied Technologies

Technologies are tools that extend human capabilities.

 

The choice of technology and tools depends on the task.

Complex tasks may require multiple
tools and technologies.

Complex tasks require different technologies and tools at different stages.

Tools and technologies can be adapted for specific purposes.

Curricular Competencies

The Curricular Competencies are organized under three primary curriculum organizers:

  • Applied Design – the phases of the design process, from inception to completion (these are described in further detail below)
  • Applied Skills – the skills used to facilitate the design process (e.g., co-operation and collaboration, interview skills, workflow analysis, research skills, task flows)
  • Applied Technologies – the skills needed to access technologies that help facilitate design thinking and the design process; these differ according to the area of application (e.g., the technologies used in Home Economics will differ from those in Computer Programming and those in Woodworking)

Content

The ADST curriculum does not specify Content for Kindergarten through Grade 5, but rather draws on grade-level content from other areas of learning to create learning standards that provide students with cross-curricular opportunities to develop foundational mindsets and skills in design thinking and making.

Grades 6 through 9 in ADST are intended as exploration years. A common set of Content options in Grades 6 and 7 is structured as short modules that may be offered in a variety of ways (e.g., in rotation). The Content options for Grade 8 and Grade 9 differ from those in Grades 6 and 7 and may also be offered as modular rotations of varying length or as full-year courses. The flexible design allows teachers and students to personalize learning by making choices about what they design and make, and the depth and breadth to which both teachers and students choose to pursue a particular topic, based on students’ interests and passions.

For Grades 10 through 12, course options offer students opportunities to continue to explore, and/or to specialize in, an area of interest. These courses continue to draw on design thinking principles, but with greater depth and breadth.

Elaborations

Elaborations are included for many of the learning standards in the ADST curriculum. The elaborations take the form of explanations, definitions, and clarifications. They provide additional information and support for both teachers and students and can serve as potential places to begin teaching and learning. Examples of elaborations are shown below.

 

K

3

6

9

11
Metalwork

Curricular Competency

Decide on how and with whom to share their product

Make a product using known procedures or through modelling of others

Empathize with potential users to find issues and uncover needs and potential design opportunities

Identify criteria for success, intended impact, and any constraints

Engage in a period of user-centred research and empathetic observation to understand design opportunities

Elaboration

share: may include showing to others, use by others, giving away, or marketing and selling 

product: for example, a physical product, a process, a system, a service, or a designed environment

Empathize: share the feelings and understand the needs of others to inform design 

users: may include self, peers, younger children, family or community members, customers, plants, or animals 

constraints: limiting factors such as task or user requirements, materials, expense, environmental impact, issues of appropriation, and knowledge that is considered sacred

user-centred research: research done directly with potential users to understand how they do things and why, their physical and emotional needs,
how they think about the world, and what is meaningful to them

 

Core Competencies

As in all curricular areas, students use and develop the Core Competencies – Thinking (both Creative Thinking and Critical Thinking), Communication, and Personal and Social – through the Curricular Competencies, as shown in the ADST examples shown below.

 

K-3

4-5

6-8

9-10

11-12

Thinking

Generate ideas from their experiences and interests

Add to others’ ideas

Generate potential ideas and add to others’ ideas

Screen ideas
against the objective and constraints

Generate potential ideas and add to others’ ideas

Screen ideas against criteria and constraints

Take creative risks in generating ideas and add to others’ ideas in ways that enhance them

Critically analyze and prioritize competing factors, to meet community needs for preferred futures

Generate ideas and add to others’ ideas to create possibilities, and prioritize them for prototyping

Critically analyze how competing social, ethical, and sustainability considerations impact design

Communication

Demonstrate their product, tell the story of designing and making their product

Demonstrate their product and describe their process

Demonstrate their product and describe their process, using appropriate terminology and providing reasons for their selected solution and modifications

Demonstrate product providing a rationale for the selected solution, modifications, and procedures

Assess their ability to work effectively both as individuals and collaboratively in a group, including the ability to share and maintain an efficient co-operative workspace

Share progress while making to increase feedback, collaboration, and, if applicable, marketing

Assess ability to work effectively both as individuals and collaboratively while implementing project management processes

Personal and Social

Explain how their product contributes to the individual, family, community, and/or environment

Determine whether their product met the objective and contributes to the individual, family, community, and/or environment

Identify the personal,
social, and environmental impacts, including unintended negative consequences, of the choices they make about technology use

Evaluate impacts, including unintended negative consequences, of the choices made about technology use

Evaluate the influences of land, natural resources, and culture on the development and use of tools and technologies

Analyze the role technologies play in societal change

Examine how cultural beliefs, values, and ethical positions affect the development and use of technologies

Design thinking principles  

Ideas feed creative processes throughout everyday life. An idea might spark a new project or enhance a project midway through its development. Students experience this in all areas of learning, and in ADST it is most often associated with hands-on experiential learning.

The ADST curriculum re-imagines learning away from a single, sequential process, where teachers provide knowledge and students demonstrate that knowledge through creation of a project, and toward the processes of creativity, application, and problem-solving, where students build on what they already know and in turn discover new knowledge themselves.

The curriculum approaches the design thinking process through the curriculum organizers of Applied Design, Applied Skills, and Applied Technologies. The phases of Applied Design are described below:     

  • Understanding context – gathering data from multiple sources to determine what the user’s needs are, while considering both what is being requested and the user’s actual day-to-day processes; observing actual experiences as people go through their daily lives; empathizing with others and understanding their challenge(s). Often people cannot define for themselves what they need, as it has not yet been created.
  • Defining – looking for patterns and insights by articulating and defining the challenges and opportunities based on the findings from the data gathered; framing the point of view and defining the scope.
  • Ideating – experimenting and exploring possibilities to envision desired future(s); co-creating in multidisciplinary, diverse teams to make the ideas visible; testing competing ideas against one another to generate a bolder and more compelling outcome; determining what is feasible and viable about the ideas generated. What are the constraints? The ultimate goal is to provide a new solution to a problem that most didn’t know existed. The key is divergent thinking, which is a path to innovation, rather than an obstacle.
  • Prototyping – thinking big, acting small, and failing fast. This is the place and time to uncover unforeseen implementation challenges and unintended consequences on a smaller scale, and quickly, as part of the path to long-term success. It is part of the creative process, not a validation stage for finished ideas.
  • Testing – using the information gathered from the “failures” to re-imagine, reiterate, and refine the approach.
  • Making – conducting final testing, approvals, and launchings, with consideration for economics and factors of scale, time frames to and for production, technology needs, and other implementation points.
  • Sharing – creating communication strategies to disseminate the designed product or service to diverse stakeholders, both inside and outside the development sphere; iterating repeatedly based on feedback from those using the solution(s), adjusting when necessary. This is especially crucial when crossing language and cultural barriers. It is done throughout the cycle to reconfirm direction, not just at the end.

Kindergarten–Grade 3

The subheadings for Applied Design in Kindergarten to Grade 3 are simplified to the developmentally appropriate Ideating, Making, and Sharing. As young children do not typically define, prototype, and test as discernibly separate stages, the three stages of Applied Design at this level encompass all of the stages of design thinking principles that are identified at higher grade levels, but in a naturalistic and developmentally appropriate way.

Important considerations

Safety considerations

To ensure a safe learning environment, teachers should ask themselves the following questions before, during, and after an activity has taken place:

  • Are students aware of established rules and procedures for safety (e.g., hearing conservation, health procedures when working with materials and technologies, safe use of materials and technologies)?
  • Have the instructions been sequenced progressively to ensure safety?
  • Do students fully understand the instructions?
  • Is the activity suitable for each student’s interest, confidence, and ability?
  • Are students being properly supervised?
  • Are the facilities, equipment, and technologies suitable and in good repair?

Teachers are also encouraged to use professional safety reference guides, the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System, and similar orientation resources to support the safe use of materials and equipment in the learning environment. For examples of safety reference materials, see www.actsafe.ca.

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula. The ADST curriculum is inclusive of modern and traditional First Peoples design, skills, and technologies. Students should have opportunities to learn from local First Peoples. This will require that both students and teachers understand appropriation issues and that some knowledge is considered sacred.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the curricula and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to the ADST curriculum, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They also help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to a rich learning environment.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with First Peoples in B.C.

Introduction

The Physical and Health Education (PHE) curriculum aims to empower students to develop a personalized understanding of what healthy living means to them as individuals and members of society in the 21st century. The PHE curriculum focuses on well-being — the connections between physical, intellectual, mental, and social health. This approach aligns with those of jurisdictions across Canada and throughout the world to promote a deeper and more holistic understanding of overall health and well-being in students.

PHE is designed to develop the knowledge, skills, and understandings that students need for lifelong physical health and mental well-being. The PHE curriculum highlights the interconnections between an individual’s health and his or her well-being, the connections between physical and mental health, the importance of positive interpersonal relations, and how interactions with the community affect overall well-being. As well, the PHE curriculum aims to develop students who have the knowledge and confidence to promote their own health and well-being by maintaining healthy habits. The goal is for students to recognize and change unhealthy behaviours and, at the same time, advocate for the safety, health, and well-being of others.

The rationale and goals of PHE justify combining physical and health education as a means to promote and develop all aspects of well-being. The importance of personal well-being, where students develop healthy habits, is clearly identified as one of the principles of British Columbia’s educational transformation. This establishes PHE as essential to a complete education for BC students.

Features of the Physical and Health Education curriculum

Application to personal lifestyle

Students can apply the knowledge, processes, and skills learned to their daily lives while engaging in an exploration of what healthy living means and looks like for them. With the uniqueness of each student in mind, the curriculum facilitates a deep understanding of both physical and health literacy to provide students with the theoretical and practical foundations
to embrace their interests and passions and have a healthy active lifestyle.

Comprehensive

The curriculum unites two curricular areas, physical education and health education, into one concentrated area of learning to provide a comprehensive focus on healthy living for students. Although blended, physical and health education maintain their core attributes and qualities while supporting the development of a deeper understanding of their interconnectedness.

Collaboration and networking opportunities Given its scope and flexibility, the PHE curriculum offers many opportunities for networking, collaboration, and exploration of potential partnerships between teachers, parents, local health authorities, and others who might help support the learning experiences for students, building stronger connections between the school and community.

Flexible teaching and learning

The curriculum promotes flexibility for teachers to create learning experiences that are contextually relevant to their students’ needs, interests, and passions. Teachers use their professional autonomy when considering where (school, community) to teach their students and the amount of time spent on each aspect of the curriculum. The curriculum extends the learning beyond the walls of the school to connect with the lives of students in ways that are authentic and meaningful to them.

Design of the Physical and Health Education Curriculum


As in all other learning areas, the PHE curriculum is based on the Know-Do-Understand model. The four key features of the curriculum structure are the Big Ideas, Curricular Competencies, Content, and Elaborations. More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/fr/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas represent the “understand” component of the curriculum model, the deep understandings that students develop as a result of their learning. Collectively, the Big Ideas progress in sophistication and degree of connections to the lives of students throughout the curriculum. The examples of Big Ideas below illustrate how students’ understanding of well-being and physical activity develop as they progress through the grades.


K

3

6

9

Knowing about our bodies and making healthy choices helps us look after ourselves.

Adopting healthy personal practices and safety strategies protects ourselves and others.

Healthy choices influence our physical, emotional, and mental well-being.

Advocating for the health and well-being of others connects us to our community.

Daily physical activity helps us develop movement skills, physical literacy, and is an important part of healthy living.

Movement skills and strategies help us learn how to participate in different types of physical activities and environments.

Physical literacy and fitness contributes to our success and enjoyment in physical activity.

Daily participation in different types of physical activity influence physical literacy and personal health and fitness goals.

Curricular Competencies

The Curricular Competencies are action-based statements that represent the “do” component of the curriculum model and identify what students will do to demonstrate their learning. Where possible, the Curricular Competencies have been written to promote flexibility and creativity and provide multiple ways for students to demonstrate their learning. The examples of Curricular Competencies below illustrate students’ development of healthy-living goals as they progress through the grades.


K

3

6

9

Identify opportunities to make choices that contribute to health and well-being

Explore and describe strategies for pursuing personal healthy-living goals

Identify, apply, and reflect on strategies used to pursue personal healthy-living goals

Reflect on outcomes of personal healthy-living goals and assess strategies used 


The Communication, Thinking, and Personal and Social Core Competencies underpin the Curricular Competencies. The Personal and Social core competency is strongly relevant to the PHE curriculum. The Core Competencies also support the development of habits of mind that are important to the development of Curricular Competencies; these include:

  • persisting in tasks and goals
  • taking responsible risks
  • thinking interdependently in groups and teams
  • creating, imagining, and innovating new ways to accomplish tasks
  • applying past knowledge and experiences to new situations
  • managing impulses and emotions
  • striving for accuracy and setting high standards

(Adapted from Mindful by Design, by Arthur Costa and Bena Kallick, 2009)


Content

Content is the “know” part of the curriculum model, and includes topics that identify what students will learn about at each grade. Aside from being rich in information, the Content learning standards act as a supporting structure to assist students in demonstrating the Curricular Competencies that will lead them to understanding the Big Ideas. Exmaples of Content are shown below.

K

3

6

9

different types of substances

effects of different substances, and strategies for preventing personal harm

strategies for managing personal and social risks related to psychoactive substances and potentially addictive behaviours

physical, emotional, and social aspects of psychoactive substance use and potentially addictive behaviours


Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided for many of the Content and Curricular Competencies learning standards in the Physical and Health Education curriculum. The Elaborations (included as hyperlinks) offer definitions, clarifications, examples, and further information about the topics or competencies at a given grade. They have been included to provide additional clarity and support for both teachers and students and can serve as potential places to being teaching and learning. Examples of Elaborations within the Physical and Health Education curriculum are shown below.

K

3

6

9

Social and community health

Social and community health

Social and community health

Social and community health

What are some factors that might make a situation unsafe and/or uncomfortable? 
How do caring behaviours make people feel?

What can you do to stand up for yourself in an unsafe and/or uncomfortable situation?
How does acknowledging similarities and differences between you and your peers influence your relationships with them?
What types of outdoor activities can you participate in in your community?

What are some strategies you can use to avoid an unsafe or potentially exploitive situation while using the Internet and/or in the community?
What can you do if you are being bullied and/or see someone else being bullied?

How can you avoid an unsafe or potentially exploitive situation on the Internet, at school, and in the community?
What can you do if you are being bullied and/or see someone else being bullied?


Important Considerations


Alternative Delivery Policy

The Alternative Delivery policy outlines how students and their parents or guardians, in consultation with their local school authority, may choose means other than instruction by a teacher in the regular classroom setting for addressing learning standards in the Physical and Health curriculum.

The policy recognizes the family as the primary educator in the development of children’s attitudes, standards, and values, but still requires that all learning standards be addressed and assessed in the agreed-upon alternative manner of delivery.

It is important to note the significance of the term “alternative delivery” as it relates to the Alternative Delivery policy. The policy does not permit schools to omit addressing or assessing any of the required learning standards within the physical and health education curriculum. Neither does it allow students to be excused from meeting any learning standards related to health. It is expected that students who arrange for alternative delivery will address the health-related learning standards and will be able to demonstrate their understanding of these standards.

Safety considerations

Educators should keep the following safety guidelines in mind and develop procedures to prevent or minimize incidents and injuries. In a safe learning environment, the teacher will:


  • Consider safety as a key consideration in planning and organizing for learning
  • Remain knowledgeable about up-to-date safety information
  • Ensure that students are familiar with safety rules and guidelines
  • Remind students of safety rules and guideline and observe students to ensure that they follow them
  • Have a plan in case of emergency
  • Ensure that students are aware of procedures for responding to emergencies

By planning safe learning environments and choosing age-appropriate and developmentally appropriate activities, teachers can reduce risk and guard against injury.


Inclusion, equity, and accessibility for all learners

British Columbia’s schools include young people of varied backgrounds, interests, and abilities. The Kindergarten to Grade 12 school system focuses on meeting the needs of all students. When selecting specific topics, activities, and resources to support the PHE curriculum, teachers are encouraged to ensure that these choices support inclusion, equity, and accessibility for all students. In particular, teachers should ensure that classroom instruction, assessment, and resources reflect sensitivity to diversity and incorporate positive role portrayals, relevant issues, and themes such as inclusion, respect, and acceptance.

Government policy supports the principles of integration and inclusion of students who have English as a second language and of students with special needs. Some standards may require adaptations to ensure that those with special and/or ELL needs can successfully achieve the required learning standards in this curriculum.

Some students with special needs may require program adaptation or modification to facilitate their achievement of the learning standards in this curriculum.

Adapted programs

An adapted program addresses the learning standards of the required curriculum but provides adaptations to selected learning standards. These adaptations may include alternative formats for resources, instructional strategies, and assessment procedures.

Adaptations may also be made in areas such as skill sequence, pacing, methodology, materials, technology, equipment, services, and setting. Students on adapted programs are assessed using the curriculum standards and can receive full credit.

The following are examples of strategies that may help students with special needs succeed:

  • Adapt the task by simplifying or substituting skills, maintaining the integrity of the intended activity/outcome
  • Adapt the task by changing the complexity
  • Adapt the rules and scoring systems (e.g., allow kicking instead of throwing)
  • Adapt the equipment (e.g., smaller, softer, or lighter equipment) or the setting (indoors instead of outdoors)
  • Provide opportunities for more practice, extra time, or extension of learning
  • Adapt evaluation criteria to accommodate individual student needs
  • Adapt the number of activities the student is expected to complete
  • Increase the amount of learning assistance
  • Adapt the expectation of how a student is to respond to the instruction
  • Adapt the extent to which a student is actively involved in the activity.

Modified programs

A modified program has learning standards that are substantially different from the required curriculum and have been specifically selected to meet a student’s special needs. A student on a modified program is assessed in relation to the goals and objectives established in the student’s Individual Education Plan (IEP).

The following are examples of strategies that may help students on modified programs:

  • Specify personal support (e.g., by peers or teacher assistants)
  • Set individualized goals that consider prescribed outcomes but are developed to suit the student’s special needs
  • Modify activities by providing parallel ones for students with unique needs

Healthy learning Environments
The learning spaces for PHE are many, including the schoolyard, community centres, fields and trails, and various other outdoor places. Teaching students to appreciate and respect the environment is an integral part of being active in these spaces.
Teachers may look for ways to connect learning in PHE with other provincial curricula. There are many natural connections, such as:

  • English Language Arts — communicating ideas and viewpoints about healthy living topics
  • Mathematics — calculating heart rate, using daily physical activity time in calculations
  • Social Studies — group processes and teamwork, leadership, and rights and responsibilities at home, at school, and in the community
  • Science — human body systems; appreciating the value of fresh air and outdoor spaces
  • Environmental Science — implications of human impacts on the environment, such as making various food choices, being aware of the impact of using trails, and understanding the health risks associated with sun exposure and air pollution

Whatever the approach used to facilitate connections among these subject areas, it is important to maintain the integrity of each discipline.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the curricula and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to the Physical and Health Education curriculum as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and positive self-identity in learners. They also promote the well-being of the self, family, and community, all of which are key elements of the Physical and Health Education curriculum.


Working with the First Peoples community

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion of possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education co-ordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples Friendship Centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in BC.
For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education web site: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm

Arts Education

Introduction

The Arts Education curriculum strives to encourage students’ artful habits of mind through engaged arts learning. The curriculum includes a general arts program, as well as four core discipline-specific programs – dance, drama, music, and visual arts – that capture the language, activities, and experiences unique to each of those disciplines.

Features of the Arts Education curriculum

The Arts Education curriculum promotes the arts as a means of self-expression and understanding of identity, and as a place to connect with artists, art processes, artwork, and arts learning in students’ own community.

The natural progression for creative and artistic work is central to the Arts Education curriculum, which includes:

  • a focus on creative and artistic processes, including responding to creative work
  • a focus on increasing the depth of content and concept application over multiple years
  • content relating to the elements and principles of each discipline
  • value placed on discipline-specific language
  • connections between theory and practice
  • opportunities for making connections with the local community
  • support for classroom and personal safety
  • connections between grades to support multi-year program models
  • celebration of students’ unique ideas and creative potential

Throughout the Arts Education curriculum, “artist” is used as an inclusive term to refer to people who create works in any of the arts disciplines (e.g., dancers, actors, musicians, visual artists). This usage views students as artists, too. Similarly, “artistic works” is used to refer to the results of creative processes in any of the four disciplines.

Canada's unique cultural heritage is a rich and varied tapestry of experiences and perspectives, from those of First Peoples to those of people newly arrived here. This diversity is part of the historical and contemporary foundation of our country. The Arts Education curriculum offers opportunities for students to explore, understand, respect, and appreciate their own and others’ cultural heritage through artistic works.

Flexible teaching and learning

The language and design of the curriculum give teachers the flexibility to teach in any one of four core disciplines. Through the curriculum’s unified design, teachers have the option of creating learning experiences that combine two or more disciplines. The curriculum’s flexibility also accommodates both the range of program structures and school contexts across the province and the range of student interest in pursuing arts learning in breadth or in depth.

A unified curriculum

The unified K-8 curriculum gives teachers the option of taking integrated instructional approaches, without having to follow a discipline-specific or interdisciplinary preference or priority. In Grade 9, both a unified and a discipline-specific curriculum are provided, offering flexibility and choice for students with emerging and specific interests. The unified curriculum employs language shared by the disciplines rather than melding the disciplines into one; however, each discipline retains its distinguishable qualities and unique learning contexts.

Options for in-depth study

Building on the K-9 curriculum, discipline-specific curricula in Grades 10, 11, and 12 support students who are committed to a greater depth of study in one or more of the four core disciplines. These curricula transition students to lifelong engagement with the arts, whether as a career choice, as a source of knowledge to incorporate into another field of work, or simply for enjoyment in daily life.

Lifelong learning

The curriculum supports the notion that all students, in becoming educated citizens, can develop an artistic mindset in all aspects of their daily life, both during and beyond their school years. The curriculum connects skills, processes, and knowledge cultivated in students’ arts learning experiences with opportunities for application.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

Incorporating First Peoples ways of knowing and the First Peoples Principles of Learning, the curriculum promotes informed and respectful engagement with First Peoples arts, artists, and worldviews.

Creative and collaborative learning

While traditional collaborative performance learning environments (e.g., concert choir, orchestra, theatre, dance company) continue to be supported, the curriculum also allows for innovative and dynamic changes to program offerings as students’ interests change. Connections between grades respect the process-based nature of exploration, inquiry, and creation in the arts while transitioning students from experiences in purposeful play to experiences in improvisation and innovation. The curriculum reflects the notion that there are many processes and pathways through which creative potential is realized.

Design of the Arts Education curriculum

As in all areas of learning, the key concepts and competencies of the Arts Education curriculum are organized around the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. These are captured in Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Content

Each discipline’s key concepts, elements, processes, and strategies are included in the Content learning standards in a carefully thought-out progression of what students are expected to know. This progression ensures that students become aware of each element’s presence, use, and capacity over multiple years of study, with growing sophistication and increased depth.

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies describe what students should be able to do with the knowledge they have gained. In every grade, each topic in the Content learning standards can potentially be applied through multiple Curricular Competencies. The Arts Education curriculum at all grade levels supports a progression of study that engages students in discovering their artistic and creative potential through activities in dance, drama, music, and visual art. These learning standards, underpinned by the Arts Education goals and rationale, contribute to the development of the educated citizen.

The Curricular Competencies, which are directly linked to the Core Competencies, are structured around artistic habits of mind and engage students to:

  • explore with artistic curiosity
  • create with artistic intellect
  • reason through considerations and possibilities
  • reflect on choices and imagining opportunities
  • communicate ideas and perspectives
  • document artistic growth and understandings
  • connect with themselves, artists, artworks, and the world
  • expand artistic capacity through perseverance

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are the general statements and principles that shape both teaching and learning. They represent what students are expected to understand and take away from the curriculum – the deeper learning. Each Big Idea in the Arts Education curriculum can be explored through learning in any one or more of the four core disciplines: dance, drama, music, and visual art. The Big Ideas are intended to nurture in students an increasingly sophisticated ability to make connections among the artistic habits of mind.

The examples of Big Ideas below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

K

Grade 3

Grade 6

Grade 8

Grade 10

 Big Ideas

People connect to others and share ideas through the arts.

The arts connect our experiences to the experiences of others.

Experiencing art is a means to develop empathy for others’ perspectives and experiences.

Artists often challenge the status quo and open us to new perspectives and experiences.

Growth as an artist requires time, patience, and reflection.

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided for many of the Content and Curricular Competencies learning standards in the Arts Education curriculum. The elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum and offer definitions, clarifications, examples, and further information about the topics or competencies at a given grade. They have been included to provide teachers with additional clarity and support and may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Arts Education.

Creative processes

Ideas feed creative processes throughout everyday life. An idea might spark a new project or enhance a project midway through its development. Students experience this in all areas of learning, even though creativity is most often closely associated with learning in the arts.

The Arts Education curriculum reimagines the creative process away from a single, sequential process and toward the notion of multiple processes composed of phases of learning and development that generate quality thinking and creative thinkers in any area of learning. The four phases of the creative process are described below. While they may not always exist in the order shown here, aspects of each phase will always be part of the whole process.

The Creative Thinking Core Competency comes alive through this model, which transcends discipline-specific language, cultivating active learning, metacognition, and transferable skills. The model poses questions that prompt inquiry in the creation of any type of project or demonstration of learning (e.g., essay, presentation, performance, artwork). These questions will challenge students to engage in research and observation activities that build self-awareness and self-efficacy through independent and/or collaborative learning. Suggested questions are contained in an instructional support document entitled “Connecting, Creating, Presenting, and Responding in Arts Education” which is available at: www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca/sites/curriculum.gov.bc.ca/files/pdf/en_ae_support_CCPR.pdf
Creative Thinking Process

 

Explore and focus

Getting ready to be creative means getting ready to think, learn, and share ideas. Students learn about their own thinking and abilities while they explore their potential and develop a vision for creative success.

Select and combine

Prior knowledge is an important asset when matching skills, elements, and techniques with a focused project. Many choices will be made during the development of a project, and each will be based on the impact of the skills, elements, and techniques employed on their own or in combination. Inquiry prompts will guide some decision making and develop mid-point assessment skills.

Refine and reflect

A project needs time and the opportunity to be assessed to reveal how it connects with its intention. As part of that assessment, it is important to review previous choices and understand how those choices affect the project. Sometimes this will mean reconsidering decisions, asking for the opinions of others, or repeating a task. Responding to these considerations facilitates confident, polished work.

Reflect and connect

Bringing a creative project to completion is exciting, but the learning does not stop there. Every creative project, exercise, or experience builds knowledge, improves confidence in decision making, and refines an individual’s approach to creative processes. Reflecting on an experience might spark ideas for a new endeavour that continues to generate new learning. Linking prior learning helps us imagine what else can be achieved.

Important considerations

Safety considerations

To ensure a safe learning environment, teachers should ask themselves the following questions before, during, and after an activity has taken place:

  • Are students aware of established rules and procedures for safety (e.g., hearing conservation, health procedures when sharing instruments or costumes, warm-up and cool-down activities, vocal health and safety, safe use of materials and technologies)?
  • Have the instructions been sequenced progressively to ensure safety?
  • Do students fully understand the instructions?
  • Is the activity suitable to each student’s interest, confidence, and ability?
  • Are students being properly supervised?
  • Are the facilities, equipment, and technologies suitable and in good repair?

Teachers are also encouraged to use professional safety reference guides, the Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System, and similar orientation resources to support the safe use of materials and equipment in the learning environment. For examples of safety reference materials, see www.actsafe.ca.

In addition to ensuring physical safety, teachers should consider the emotional safety of students when planning instruction in dance, drama, music, and visual arts. This includes, but is not limited to, being sensitive to individual students; being prepared to respond to unique situations; and employing creative strategies to deal with rivalry, stress, fear of failure, stage fright, and so on. As well, teachers should be mindful of activities that may cause emotional or psychological stress for individual students (e.g., blindfolding, working in closed environments, solo performance, body contact, heterogeneous groupings) and be prepared to offer alternative strategies as necessary.

Working with the First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples Friendship Centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations.

In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Working with the arts community

The broad nature of the arts as envisioned by the Arts Education curriculum requires that students learn through experience with a variety of art forms. All aspects of learning in Arts Education can be enriched when arts practitioners from the community are involved. Teachers are encouraged to provide these experiences for their students when possible and appropriate. When teaching students about culture-specific art forms and contexts, engaging with experts from the community is particularly important in order to avoid offence or appropriation or misrepresentation of culture. Cultural appropriation includes the use of cultural motifs, themes, “voices,” images, knowledge, stories, songs, or drama without permission or appropriate context, or in a way that may misrepresent the real experience of the people from whose culture the form is drawn. Community artists can also act as mentors, providing feedback and perspective for students’ work.

When working with guest arts practitioners/instructors, teachers might consider using the following approach:

  • Familiarize yourself with your school and board/authority policies for involving guest practitioners/instructors in the classroom (e.g., reference checks).
  • Meet with the guest arts practitioner/instructor ahead of time to:
    • discuss appropriate learning expectations
    • decide which areas of the curriculum are to be addressed by his or her involvement with the students
    • plan for the use of age-appropriate material
    • determine his or her needs during contact time with the students (e.g., space, technology, equipment, materials)
  • Prepare students for the experience (e.g., discuss the expectations for process and etiquette, provide relevant background information).
  • Debrief with students and guests after the sessions or presentations.

The Arts Education curriculum can also be enriched when students have opportunities to work as arts practitioners themselves, creating dance, drama, music, and visual art with or for use by peers, younger students, and the community at large. When students do this and work as choreographers, dramaturges, conductors, or visual arts teachers, encourage them to consider the following questions:

  • What are participants able to reasonably accomplish at this grade level (i.e., in terms of their experience and their physical, cognitive, and psychosocial development)?
  • What safety factors must be kept in mind?
  • Which warm-up and cool-down activities need to be incorporated?
  • Is the work appropriate for a school setting?
  • What is the best way to work through and sequence the various parts of the work?
  • What are the criteria for success?

Many community and web resources can be used for broadening the range of learning opportunities in the Arts Education curriculum. Key among these are:

  • professional studios, performance groups, galleries, and associations
  • high school, college, and university arts departments
  • school and public libraries
  • arts teachers’ associations
  • community, provincial, and national arts councils
  • arts-regulating and policy-making authorities
  • First Peoples artists and performance groups
  • cultural associations, artists, and performance groups
  • continuing education programs
  • community and recreation centres
  • arts periodicals and publications
  • local radio and television stations (for access to audio-visual equipment)
  • arts broadcasting
  • arts and cultural festivals
  • advocacy organizations

Introduction to Career Education

A person’s career is considered their “journey” through life, and the Career Education curriculum offers students the opportunity to pursue this journey in personally meaningful and goal-oriented ways. Career-life development with intent is the ongoing process of self-discovery, growth in competence, and learning from experiences in educational, work-related, and personal life contexts.

The Career Education curriculum supports students in becoming successful, educated citizens by helping them learn how to effectively manage their life journey toward preferred future possibilities. This area of learning requires students to identify and develop their personal interests, passions, and competencies. Students reflect on learning experiences in school and community, build confidence through their contributions, and explore multiple career-life roles and choices. The curriculum fosters lifelong learning, beginning in Kindergarten and continuing through to graduation and beyond.

Features of the Career Education curriculum

The Career Education curriculum:

  • promotes a holistic view of the student, providing opportunities to explore identity, purpose, and well-being in diverse learning contexts and related to multiple life roles
  • recognizes the value of experiential learning, community connections, and reflection in advancing career-life development
  • is organized in three Content areas that foster purposeful career-life development: personal development, community connections, and planning
  • includes consistent and gradual growth in the Curricular Competencies to support specific learning in career-life development as well as learning across disciplines
  • is structured to facilitate integration across multiple areas of learning

Flexible teaching and learning

The language and design of the Career Education curriculum promotes flexibility for teachers in pursuing career-life development with students. This flexibility accommodates the range of student interests, needs, and goals, as well as the diversity of school and community contexts.

The Career Education curriculum consists of three major phases: Developing Foundations, Exploring Possibilities, and Pursuing Preferred Futures. The connection between grade levels and phases is one of emphasis: many high school students will still need to focus on developing foundations, for example. Students will transition through each phase based on their personal development, community context, and emerging career-life opportunities.

K-5: Developing Foundations in Career-Life Development

In Kindergarten to Grade 5, career-life development is largely about the expanding sense of self, positive community engagement, and reflection on learning and goal-setting. Students develop an awareness of their personal interests and strengths, and the roles and responsibilities of family, school, and community in supporting their lifelong learning journey.

Grades 6-9: Exploring Possibilities in Career-Life Development

In Grades 6-9, students continue to reflect on, self-assess, and set goals in personal competency development and determine their strengths and preferences as they explore career-life concepts such as identity, leadership, personal planning, and transferable skills. Students are introduced to increasingly diverse experiential learning opportunities and ways in which family, mentors, and community networks support their continued career-life development.

Grades 10-12: Pursuing Preferred Futures in Career-Life Development

In Grades 10-12, students further refine personal career-life development goals through experiential learning, cultivating community connections, gathering authentic evidence of learning, and reflecting on competency development. They explore post-graduation possibilities in diverse educational, work, and personal life contexts and build the personal career-life management skills needed to effectively pursue who and how they want to be in the world. Career-Life Education (CLE) and Career-Life Connections (CLC) are part of the graduation requirements, and Career-Life Connections includes a career-life exploration component and a capstone.

For many students, contemplating career-life possibilities becomes prominent for the first time during grades 10-12. Curriculum that provides an intentionally aligned learning progression encourages students to move from exploring various career-life possibilities and practicing employability skills to applying their refined self-knowledge and career-life strategies as they move forward in advancing preferred future possibilities.

A thoughtful learning progression occurs across the Career-Life Education and Career-Life Connections curricula.

Career-Life Education focuses on gaining a clear understanding of career-life development knowledge, skills, and strategies for life’s journey into adulthood, and includes:

 

Career-Life Connections focuses on applying personal career-life management knowledge, skills, and strategies to the one’s own personal life journey, and includes:

 

  • exploring career-life possibilities for adult life, such as roles, opportunities, and community resources
  • examining ways to publicly represent ourselves both face-to-face and in digital environments
  • practising inclusive and respectful interactions for various community and work-related contexts
  • connecting and engaging with supportive community members
  • researching post-graduation options and planning resources, such as labour market trends, budgeting tools, and workplace safety guidelines.
  • deepening career-life concepts and thoughtful self-knowledge to inform personal life-long learning choices and post-graduation plans
  • using self-advocacy and employment marketing strategies, such as creating one’s own effective public profiles
  • employing developed social capital, such as leadership and collaboration skills, to cultivate community networks
  • engaging in a substantive experiential learning opportunity of 30 hours or more that is intended to expand and/or deepen student exposure to career-life possibilities, such as service learning, volunteerism, employment, fieldwork projects, entrepreneurship, and passion projects
  • designing, assembling, and presenting a capstone to an audience, celebrating the learning journey and next steps toward preferred futures.

Design of the Career Education curriculum

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas represent what students are expected to understand as a result of their learning – the “Understand” component of B.C.’s learning model. Collectively, the Big Ideas progress in both sophistication and degree of connection with the lives of students throughout the curriculum. The examples below show how the Big Ideas about personal development as lifelong learners and connections to community advance as students progress through the curriculum.

K-3

4-5

6-7

8-9

CLE

CLC

Learning is a lifelong enterprise.

Exploring our strengths and abilities can help us identify our goals.

Leadership represents good planning, goal-setting, and collaboration.

Reflecting on our preferences and skills helps us identify the steps we need to take to achieve our career goals.

Career-life choices are made in a recurring cycle of planning, reflecting, adapting, and deciding.

Lifelong learning and active citizenship foster career-life opportunities for people and communities.

Strong communities are the result of being connected to family and community and working together toward common goals.

Family and community relationships can be a source of support and guidance when solving problems and making decisions.

Our attitudes toward careers are influenced by our view of ourselves as well as by our friends, family, and community.

The value of work in our lives, communities, and society can be viewed from diverse perspectives.

Cultivating networks and reciprocal relationships can support and broaden career-life awareness and options.

Engaging in networks and reciprocal relationships can guide and broaden career-life awareness and options.

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are action-based statements that reflect the “Do” component of the curriculum model and identify what students will do to demonstrate their learning. The Curricular Competencies have been written to promote as much flexibility and creativity as possible, enabling students to explore and find multiple ways to demonstrate their learning.

The Curricular Competencies connect with the Core Competencies – Communication, Thinking, and Personal and Social – which are the intellectual, personal, social, and emotional skills that will contribute to lifelong learning. The Curricular Competencies throughout the Career Education curriculum provide ongoing opportunities for student self-assessment of the Core Competencies and growth in self-awareness as it relates to purposeful career-life development.

Content

The Content learning standards reflect the “Know” component of the learning model and are stated as concepts and topics. The Content acts as both a supporting structure intended to assist students in demonstrating the Curricular Competencies and a foundational element leading students to the Big Ideas.

The Content of the Career Education curriculum is organized into three areas that support meaningful career-life development: personal development, community connections, and planning. In Kindergarten to Grade 5, students focus on the first two areas – personal development and community connections. In Grade 6, planning for career-life development is introduced and continues through to graduation.

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided for many of the Content and Curricular Competencies learning standards in the Career Education curriculum. The elaborations offer definitions, clarifications, examples, and further information about the topics or competencies at a given grade. They have been included to provide additional clarity and support for both teachers and students and can serve as potential places to begin teaching and learning. Examples of elaborations within the Career Education curriculum are shown below.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

CLE

Career-life choices are made in a recurring cycle of planning, reflecting, adapting, and deciding.

  • Examine the influences of personal and public profiles on career-life opportunities
  • value of volunteerism for self and community
Elaborations

Career-life choices:
Sample questions to support inquiry-based learning:

  • How do we pursue open-ended career-life goals in a rapidly changing world?
  • What tools and strategies can help us commit to short-term actions, while keeping us open to emerging possibilities?
  • What evidence of learning both in school and out of school best represents development of our competencies?

personal and public profiles: taking into consideration:

  • personal versus public contexts
  • digital and face-to-face contexts
  • various audiences being addressed
  • social and peer group interactions and the potential loss or gain of reputation/opportunities/status
  • the importance of both verbal and non-verbal communications in interviews and presentations

value of volunteerism: for example, develops self-esteem, resilience, social responsibility, connections, and practical workplace skills and provides opportunities for service learning; contributes to community

 

Important considerations

 

Mentorship

Students may explore and experience various career-life roles and opportunities before they discover preferred options that are personally meaningful. Mentors play an important role in purposeful career-life development for students, including exposure to new possibilities, connecting with community networks, gathering authentic evidence of learning, and planning and decision making. In high school, this mentorship role is often performed by the Career-Life educator but may involve a different educator or educators depending on the needs, interests, and goals of the student.

 

First Peoples Principles of Learning

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the curricula and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to the Career Education curriculum, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in learners. They also help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to a rich learning environment.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion of possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples Friendship Centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C.

For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website:

www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm

Introduction

The French Immersion Language Arts (FILA) curriculum describes what students must know, understand, and do from Kindergarten to Grade 12. The objective of this program is to place students in learning situations in a French-speaking context. Through these situations, students can acquire the competencies, knowledge, and strategies they need to effectively and confidently communicate and interact in French.

The aim of the French Immersion Language Arts program is to motivate all students to become educated citizens capable of questioning the world around them. Through the acquisition of Curricular Competencies, students are guided to develop their critical and creative thinking skills, and to formulate hypotheses, collaborate, and solve problems. In this program, the French language is considered a tool for reflection and communication that enables students to contribute to the society in which they live.

Features of the French Immersion Language Arts (FILA) Program

A Conceptual Framework

The Concepts and Big Ideas components support a deeper level of reflection by encouraging students to associate several concepts in order to understand the underlying elements that link them together.

Students will discover and expand their knowledge of language and literary concepts, including structure, meaning, interpretation, emotions, and identity. Once these concepts are familiar, students will be able to make generalizations and identify recurring phenomena and implied connections between concepts. For example, by exploring the concept of image in association with the concepts of message and interpretation, Grade 6 students will discover that images – like texts – contain information and clues that reveal their meaning and the artist’s intentions.

The various elements of this curriculum will therefore help students to develop competencies by applying them to concepts and specific content. In this way, students become able to identify patterns so that they can “understand” rather than merely “become familiar with” fundamental notions of the French language.

Openness to a Wide Range of Literature

Starting in Grade 3, the French Immersion Language Arts curriculum encourages the use of many different types and genres of texts. Throughout their studies, students will have the opportunity to study a variety of genres of Francophone literature from Canada and elsewhere, thus motivating them to explore and appreciate the diversity and richness of this work. Drawing on a vast array of texts, educators can convey the unique characteristics of each text. A text is a coherent set of written, oral, or visual elements that bears meaning and serves to communicate or convey a message. Texts can take many forms, including First Peoples stories, articles, advertisements, novels, albums, tales, legends, comics, biographies, correspondence, instructions, diagrams, graphics, news reports, films, songs, poems, nursery rhymes, photographs, images, artworks, oral presentations, blogs, surveys, reports, and text messages.

The Cultural Dimension

Culture and the development of student identity continue to be the focus of the French Immersion Language Arts program. The curriculum offers students the opportunity to explore and better understand the realities of their own culture, as well as the cultures of the French-speaking world. Through the study of French, students build their linguistic, cultural, and personal identities, all of which are reinforced throughout the learning process. 

A Language Continuum

Grammar tools are presented gradually, in a progression, taking into account the types of texts studied and the associated Curricular Competencies. This continuum enables students to develop their linguistic competencies contextually, which helps them to improve their communication skills and gain a better understanding of the mechanics of the language.

A Holistic Approach to Instruction and Learning

The French Immersion Language Arts curriculum represents an integrated and holistic approach to teaching and learning. In this curriculum, the six language arts elements (reading, listening, viewing, writing, speaking, and representing) are inextricably interconnected.

The program retains the organization of Curricular Competencies according to the two modes of language use: “understanding” (which corresponds to “Exploring and Reflecting”) and “expression” (which corresponds to “Creating and Communicating”).

The curriculum is based on the principle that all students must actively participate in the learning process. Students are encouraged to interact, interpret the meaning of messages, and implement communication strategies in French, both orally and in writing. Students are given special attention according to their needs, motivations, and pace of learning.

Flexible Teaching and Learning

The components of the curriculum work together in a dynamic and flexible way to facilitate in-depth learning. Within each grade, there is no single or “correct” way to combine pieces from each of these components. Instead, the structure allows for a great deal of choice in the ways in which these pieces can be combined to create lessons, units, and learning experiences.

The curriculum remains flexible, allowing for a variety of program structures in the context of the school or community. This open design promotes the creation of instructional approaches that combine two or more areas of learning, without mandating any particular form of interdisciplinary learning.

Design of the New French Immersion Language Arts (FILA) Program

The French Immersion Language Arts program follows the same format as all other areas of learning in the province, inspired by the Know-Do-Understand (KDU) model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do) and Big Ideas (Understand). More information about this model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

Big Ideas represent the fundamental notions students should “Understand.” Students discover or grasp Big Ideas through the “Do” aspect of the area of learning, by associating the Content with the Curricular Competencies to reach a conceptual understanding. 

The example below shows how the Big Ideas become more complex each year.

 

Grade 2

Grade 5

Grade 8

Grade 11

Big Ideas

Awareness of other cultures helps us discover our own culture and build our own identity.

Cultural elements within a text reflect the diversity of cultures in society.

Becoming aware of the values conveyed in texts helps us to better understand their cultural content.

Linguistic variations offer cultural reference points within the French-speaking world.


Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies reflect what students must be able to “Do,” depending on their grade level and the area of learning. Students develop their overall competency by applying the Curricular Competencies (intellectual skills, processes, and habits) in diverse contexts. Curricular Competencies are related to the Core Competencies – Communication, Thinking, and Personal and Social.

The objective of this program is to put students in learning situations that will enable them to acquire the competencies, knowledge, and strategies required to effectively and confidently communicate and interact in French. Students develop Curricular Competencies that will allow them to explore and reflect (“Exploring and Reflecting”) as well as create and communicate (“Creating and Communicating”), in order to understand the connection between language and culture. The example below shows how the curriculum progresses from grade to grade.

 

Grade 2

Grade 5

Grade 8

Grade 11

Curricular Competencies

Identify the themes and keywords present in a text in order to understand the message.

Distinguish secondary ideas from the main ideas of a text.

Analyze a text in order to explore various interpretations.

 

Interpret a text to identify the explicit and implicit messages


Content

The Content represents the “Know” component of the model. This component includes the essential information students are expected to acquire as a result of their learning at a given grade, in order to achieve the Curricular Competencies. In each grade, each topic in the Content can potentially be applied through multiple Curricular Competencies that foster students’ understanding of Big Ideas.

Elaborations

Elaborations are provided for the majority of Curricular Competencies and Content via hyperlinks. They contain examples, clarifications, definitions, or any other information related to curriculum components at each grade level. The Elaborations serve as instructional and learning guides.

Important Considerations

Interactions with Francophone Communities

Interactions with members of Francophone communities help students gain open-mindedness and interculturality. Interactions can take various forms in different contexts. For example:

  • outings (plays, films, festivals, restaurants, concerts)
  • exchanges or travel in Francophone settings
  • use of technology (media, social media)
  • online interaction with French-speaking communities (blogs, forums)

These experiences offer authentic, varied, and interesting possibilities for interaction, both within and outside students’ own communities.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

To encourage students to become aware of their own points of view and those of others, the French Immersion Language Arts program takes into account First Peoples Principles of Learning and perspectives. These principles were developed with educators and members of the First Peoples community, and were confirmed by First Peoples societies to guide the instruction and learning of provincial curricula. Students will deepen their knowledge of the French language by establishing, through a process of reflection, explicit ties between Francophone and First Peoples languages and cultures.

Introduction to Science

Science and scientific literacy play a key role in educating citizens of today for the world of tomorrow. Critical to succeeding in this endeavour are the core competencies that provide students with the ability to think critically, solve problems, and make ethical decisions; to communicate their questions, express opinions, and challenge ideas in a scientifically literate way; and to exercise an awareness of their role as ecologically literate citizens, engaged
and competent in meeting the responsibilities of caring for living things and the planet.

Features of the Science curriculum

  • With a focus on inquiry and conceptual learning, the Science curriculum provides students with opportunities to ask questions, consider a range of views, recognize their beliefs and opinions, work collaboratively, and ultimately make informed conclusions that lead to personally and socially responsible choices.
  • The story of science in the curriculum takes the students from observing their immediate environment to engaging in actions and decision making on a global scale as scientifically educated citizens.
  • First Peoples knowledge and perspectives and other traditional ecological knowledge are embedded throughout the Science curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Science curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Big Ideas, Curricular Competencies, and Content to create lessons, units, and learning experiences. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that support instruction and acquisition.

Design of the Science curriculum

The Science curriculum has the same format as all other areas of learning. The curriculum elements – the Big Ideas, Curricular Competencies, Content, and elaborations – link the knowing, doing, and understanding of science. By connecting scientific knowledge with a hands-on approach to doing science, the curriculum elements support learning in biology, chemistry, physics, and earth, space, and environmental sciences, leading to a deep understanding of science concepts. More information on the curriculum model is available at https://www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas in the Science curriculum tell the story of science through principles and key concepts, emphasizing the “understanding” of science. For each area of science – biology, chemistry, physics, and earth, space, and environmental sciences – important concepts are introduced in Kindergarten and expanded in subsequent grades, resulting in a deep understanding of the story of science. In chemistry, for example, the progression of the Big Ideas is designed to provide students with a deep understanding of matter, beginning with human interactions with matter through familiar materials and building to the behaviour of matter at the molecular level.


THE STORY OF CHEMISTRY (BIG IDEAS)

K

Humans interact with matter every day through familiar materials.

3

All matter is made of particles.

6

Everyday materials are often mixtures.

8

The behaviour of matter can be explained by the kinetic molecular theory and atomic theory.

10

Energy change is required as atoms rearrange in chemical processes.

12

Reactants must collide to react, and the reaction rate is dependent on the surrounding conditions.


Curricular Competencies

The Curricular Competencies introduced in Kindergarten are expanded in a developmental continuum through Grade 12, emphasizing the “doing” of science. The Science Curricular Competencies develop student explorations in the scientific method and other scientific protocols, using the following six organizers:

  • Questioning and predicting
  • Planning and conducting
  • Processing and analyzing data and information
  • Evaluating
  • Applying and innovation
  • Communicating

The Core Competencies – Thinking, Communication, and Personal and Social – are embedded in the Curricular Competencies as illustrated in the condensed table below. (The complete list of Curricular Competencies can be found at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/search.)


 

K

4

8

12

Thinking

Demonstrate curiosity and a sense of wonder about the world

Demonstrate curiosity about the natural world

Demonstrate a sustained curiosity about a scientific topic or problem of personal interest

Demonstrate a sustained intellectual curiosity about a scientific topic or problem of personal, local or global interest

Communication

Share observations and ideas orally

Represent and communicate ideas and findings in a variety of ways, such as diagrams and simple reports, using digital technologies as appropriate

Communicate ideas, findings, and solutions to problems, using scientific language, representations, and digital technologies as appropriate

Communicate scientific ideas and information, and perhaps a suggested course of action, for a specific purpose and audience, constructing evidence-based arguments and using appropriate scientific language, conventions, and representations

Personal
and Social

Take part in caring for self, family, classroom, and school through personal approaches

Contribute to care for self, others, school, and neighbourhood through individual or collaborative approaches

Contribute to care for self, others, community, and world through personal or collaborative approaches

Contribute to care for self, others, community, and world through individual or collaborative approaches


Content

The Content is conceptual in design, aligned with the Big Ideas, and outlines what students should know, emphasizing the “knowing” of science. The Content learning standards identify the specific concepts in biology, chemistry, physics, and earth, space, and environmental sciences that students will explore in each grade.

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided (as hyperlinks) in many places throughout the curriculum.

For the Big Ideas, elaborations are intended to support scientific inquiry by providing sample questions. The questions offer possible entry points through which students can begin to investigate concepts related to each Big Idea.

Elaborations for the Curricular Competencies in K-9 are explanations of cross-cutting concepts relevant in science. The intent is for these concepts to be applied across other learning areas. For example, cause and effect is featured in Grade 3 when exploring biodiversity, matter, energy, and landforms. As a cross-cutting concept, this could be extended into cause-and-effect relationships in, for example, Mathematics, English Language Arts, and Social Studies.

Cross-cutting concepts introduced in the Science curriculum include:

Grade Cross-cutting Concept Grade Cross-cutting Concept

Kindergarten

Patterns

5

Systems

1

Form and function

6

Change

2

Cycles

7

Evolution

3

Cause and effect

8

Matter and energy

4

Order

9

Interactions


Elaborations for the Curricular Competencies from Grades 10-12 are intended to support scientific inquiry and development of a deeper understanding of concepts. They offer suggested entry points by providing a variety of concept-based examples and sample inquiry questions.

The Content elaborations provide additional information that teachers may find useful in clarifying the learning standards.

Important considerations

Inquiry in Science

The Science curriculum is rooted in inquiry. Inquiry is the tool with which students gain scientific knowledge, learn the habits of mind associated with the doing of science, develop a deeper understanding of science concepts through Big Ideas, and acquire Core Competencies as scientifically educated citizens. Curricular Competencies are structured within an inquiry process model focused on “doing” and include numerous elaborations providing sample questions for students to explore.

First Peoples knowledge and perspectives

The Science curriculum is designed to acknowledge, recognize, and respect the First Peoples Principles of Learning. It is important for teachers to use these principles to guide the integration of First Peoples knowledge and perspectives into the Science curriculum in meaningful ways.
As well, the Science curriculum aims to address the Calls to Action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, particularly the call to “integrate Indigenous knowledge and teaching methods into classrooms” (clause 62) and “build student capacity for intercultural understanding, empathy and mutual respect” (clause 63).

Working with the First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations.

In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Additional resources for teaching science in a First Peoples context are available through the First Nations Education Steering Committee and the First Nations Schools Association. The Science First Peoples Teacher Resource Guide, Grades 5 to 9, for example, is available at www.fnesc.ca/wp/wp-content/uploads/2015/08/PUBLICATION-61496-Science-First-Peoples-2016-Full-F-WEB.pdf

Scientific habits of mind

Scientists and students alike use scientific habits of mind as they delve into the system of inquiry that we know as science. Scientific habits of mind are important for equipping students with the thinking skills necessary for engaging in the pursuit of discovery and innovation, as well as for understanding science. In addition, when students approach learning with scientific habits of mind, science learning is exciting and includes a knowledge base that is constantly refined and expanded and that is relevant to the modern world. Developing scientific habits of mind provides students with the thinking skills needed to effectively participate in society as scientifically educated citizens and invites them to explore further studies in science.

Scientific habits of mind include:

  • a sustained intellectual curiosity – the desire to continually learn more about something of interest
  • an openness to new ideas and consideration of alternatives – an attitude of wonder and interest in new concepts, coupled with a willingness to rethink notions and form new opinions based on evidence
  • an appreciation of evidence – an understanding of what proves or disproves a scientific theory
  • an awareness of assumptions and a questioning of givens – mindful questioning about something accepted as true without evidence
  • a healthy, informed skepticism – challenging the truth of a claim by requiring additional scientific evidence
  • a desire to seek patterns, connections, and understanding – the ability to make connections in information and interpret meaning from the patterns
  • a consideration of social, ethical, and environmental implications – a willingness to think about personal, societal, moral, and environmental impacts of actions

The environment and science learning

Educated citizens understand the importance of learning about the environment. Environmental education is part of the Personal and Social Core Competency, because it is a responsibility that connects with every area of learning. While the Science curriculum enables a variety of instructional approaches, it was designed with a place-based approach in mind. A place-based approach is an evolving, cross-curricular instructional approach that emphasizes the value of learning directly from students’ own community or region.

Place-based learning:

  • emphasizes hands-on, real-world learning experiences
  • helps students develop ties to their community
  • enhances students’ appreciation for the natural world
  • develops an active, engaged, educated citizenry

As students experience and interpret their local environment, they develop a sense of place. Place is any environment, locality, or context with which people interact to learn, create memory, reflect on history, connect with culture, and establish identity. The connection between people and place is foundational to First Peoples perspectives of the world.

Scientifically educated citizens are place-conscious, see themselves as part of the planet rather than ruler of the planet, stay informed about scientific developments, and are aware of the impact of science on the planet and its subsystems. The Science curriculum features reflection questions about place, to develop environmental awareness and a deep understanding of ecological concepts.

Considerations for classroom action

The Science curriculum includes several considerations for classroom action:

  • The concept-based, competency-driven curriculum enables a variety of approaches (e.g., place-based, inquiry-based, interdisciplinary, STEM, STEAM) for teachers to use to support student learning.
  • The curriculum places significant value on place-based perspectives in British Columbia, acknowledging the diversity of localities in the province and inviting students to experience their local environment.
  • The curriculum is inclusive of modern and traditional First Peoples knowledge and perspectives and other traditional ecological knowledge.
  • While inquiry is at the heart of science learning, inquiry-based learning is not necessarily always an efficient way to learn certain important things in science (e.g., terminology, safety procedures, how to use equipment). However, an inquiry might create the need and motivation to learn these skills and concepts.
  • In supporting hands-on science experiences, student safety remains a key consideration. Refer to the Science Safety Manual for further support in this area.

“Emphasizing hands-on, real-world learning experiences, this approach to education increases academic achievement, helps students develop stronger ties to their community, enhances students’ appreciation for the natural world, and creates a heightened commitment to serving as active contributing citizens. Community vitality and environmental quality are improved through the active engagement of local citizens, community organizations, and environmental resources in the life of the school.” (David Sobel, 2004, Place-Based Education: Connecting Classrooms and Communities, p. 7)

 

Introduction

The primary goal of Social Studies education is to give students the knowledge, skills, and competencies to be active, informed citizens who are able to think critically, understand and explain the perspectives of others, make judgments, and communicate ideas effectively.

Through their study of historical events, students will gain an understanding of the people, places, issues, and events that have shaped the world they live in. By studying some of the many different cultures and ways of life that exist and have existed throughout the world, students will develop both a deeper understanding of the differences between peoples and an appreciation of the aspects of human experience shared across time and space.

Social Studies provides students with an understanding of their place in the world and the connections between the human and natural environment. The increasing cultural and economic interconnections between societies and the growing awareness of the importance of environmental sustainability make geographic understandings a crucial part of informed citizenship.

Social Studies also develops knowledge and understandings of the economy, the interdependence of economies, and how economic decisions can have consequences at individual, local, national, and international levels.

The Social Studies curriculum provides opportunities for students to learn about Canadian society, our democratic institutions, and the rights and responsibilities of Canadian citizens.It explores how students can have an impact on the decisions made in their society and advocate for causes important to them. Students will also understand the importance of being open to new ideas and civil to those with whom they disagree in creating a healthy and vibrant democracy.


Features of the Social Studies curriculum

Required content

The learning standards in the curriculum are less prescriptive than past curricula and allow teachers and students to go in directions of particular interest or local relevance. The goal of this more open curriculum is to allow teachers to spend more time delving deeper into key topics and focus less on simply rushing through a long list of factual details in an attempt to cover all of the required topics.

Greater emphasis on key disciplinary thinking skills

The shift to less prescriptive learning standards places greater emphasis on acquiring and developing key disciplinary thinking skills. These skills are built around six major historical and geographical thinking concepts: significance, evidence, continuity and change, cause and consequence, perspective, and ethical judgment. The focus on disciplinary thinking means that students will be involved in developing their own understanding of important concepts, rather than simply receiving that knowledge from textbooks, the teacher, or other authoritative sources.

First Peoples perspectives

In order to build greater understanding of First Peoples history and culture, the study of these important topics and perspectives is embedded throughout all grades. The Curricular Competencies also ensure that students consider topics from multiple perspectives and are constantly able to question the justification and evidence for interpretations of events and issues.

Focus on inquiry

Throughout the Social Studies curriculum, students examine big, open-ended questions so they can make informed decisions. Making an informed decision about an issue requires an understanding of the key historical, geographical, political, economic, and societal factors involved, and how these different factors relate to and interact with each other. Students build these deeper understandings through investigations into interesting, open-ended questions, debating and discussing historical and contemporary issues, and developing and supporting their own hypotheses, solutions, and conclusions.

Flexible Teaching and Learning

One of the key elements of the Social Studies curriculum is the ability for teachers to use a variety of examples when teaching major topics. For example, rather than listing all of the different civilizations that must be studied, the Social Studies curriculum requires the study of a variety of civilizations and allows teachers and students to decide which specific ones to study. This allows teachers to adjust the topics they teach to respond to the local community, to student interests, and make connections to current events, or a variety of other considerations.

Also, the shift to less prescriptive content allows teachers more opportunities to vary their instructional methods. Having fewer but broader required topics allows more time for teachers to engage in hands-on learning and inquiry activities rather than having to focus on covering a long list of required content.

Design of the Social Studies Curriculum

As in all other learning areas, the Social Studies curriculum is based on a Know-Do-Understand model. There are four key features of the curriculum structure: Big Ideas, Curricular Competencies, Content, and Elaborations. More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

Big Ideas represent the “understanding” component of the curriculum model, the deep understandings that students develop as a result of their learning. The Big Ideas are understood through activities that examine Content topics through the use of key disciplinary skills found in the Curricular Competencies.

Collectively, the Big Ideas progress in sophistication and degree of connection to the lives of students throughout the curriculum. The examples below illustrate how the Big Ideas advance in depth as students progress through the curriculum.


K

3

6

9

Our communities are diverse and made of individuals who have a lot in common.

People from diverse cultures and societies share some common experiences and aspects of life.

Economic self-interest can be a significant cause of conflict among peoples and governments.

Disparities in power alter the balance of relationships between individuals and between societies.

Curricular Competencies

These action-based statements represent the “do” section of the curriculum model and identify what students will do to demonstrate their learning. The Curricular Competencies have been written to promote as much flexibility and creativity as possible to enable students to explore and find multiple ways to demonstrate their learning.


K

3

6

9

Explain the significance of personal or local events, objects, people, or places

Explain why people, events, or places are significant to various individuals and groups

Construct arguments defending the significance of individuals/groups, places, events, or developments

Assess the significance of people, places, events, or developments, and compare varying perspectives on their historical significance at particular times and places, and from group to group


The Curricular Competencies have been linked with the  Core Competencies — Communication, Thinking, and Personal and Social Awareness. Identified and developed through provincial consultation, the Core Competencies represent a collection of intellectual, personal, and social and emotional skills that contribute to lifelong learning and help develop habits of mind such as:

  • persisting in tasks and goals
  • taking responsible risks
  • thinking interdependently in groups and teams
  • creating, imagining, and innovating new ways to accomplish tasks
  • applying past knowledge and experiences to new situations
  • managing impulses and emotions
  • striving for accuracy and setting high standards

(Adapted from Mindful by Design, by Arthur Costa and Bena Kallick, 2009)
Content

Content represents the “know” part of the curriculum model, and includes concepts or topics that identify what students will learn about at each grade level. In addition to being rich in information, the Content learning standards act as a supporting structure to assist students in their efforts to demonstrate the Curricular Competencies and to help lead students to the Big Ideas. Examples of Content are shown below.


K

3

6

9

rights, roles, and responsibilities of individuals and groups

governance and social organization in local and global indigenous societies

roles of individuals, governmental organizations, and NGOs, including groups representing indigenous peoples

nationalism and the development of modern nation-states, including Canada

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided for many of the Content and Curricular Competencies learning standards in the Social Studies curriculum. The Elaborations (included as hyperlinks) offer definitions, clarifications, examples, and further information about the topics or competencies at a given grade. They have been included to provide additional clarity and support for both teachers and students and can serve as potential places to being teaching and learning. Examples of Elaborations within the Social Studies curriculum are shown below.

K

3

6

9

Explain the significance of personal or local events, objects, people, or places

Explain why people, events, or places are significant to various individuals and groups

Ask questions, corroborate inferences, and draw conclusions about the content and origins of a variety of sources, including mass media

Assess the significance of people, places, events, or developments, and compare varying perspectives on their historical significance at particular times and places, and from group to group

Sample activity:

  • Give a presentation about a family story or heirloom.

Key questions:

  • What is meant by significance?
  • What makes something a personal or family treasure?
  • Which events, objects, people, and places are significant to you?

Key questions:

  • Why are stories important to indigenous people?
  • Why do Elders play and important part in the lives of First Peoples?
  • What values were significant for local First Peoples?

Sample activities:

  • Compare a range of points of view on a problem or issue
  • Compare and contrast media coverage of a controversial issue (e.g., climate change, resource management)
  • With peer and teacher support, determine criteria for evaluating information sources for credibility and reliability (e.g., context, authentic voice, source, objectivity, evidence, authorship)
  • Apply criteria to evaluate selected sources for credibility and reliability
  • Distinguish between primary sources and secondary sources

Sample activities:

  • Compare and contrast the events considered by English-Canadian, French-Canadian, and First Peoples scholars to be the most significant during this period.
  • Track and compare key developments in the creation of two nation-states (e.g., Japan, Germany, Canada) during this period.

Key questions:

  • To what extent do individuals determine the direction and outcome of revolutions?
  • Would World War I have taken place without the actions of Gavrilo Princip?

Important Considerations
Establishing a positive classroom climate

Teachers are responsible for establishing and promoting a classroom climate in which students feel comfortable learning about and discussing Social Studies topics. The following guidelines may help educators establish and promote a positive classroom climate:

  • Allow students sufficient time and opportunities to become comfortable with each other before engaging in group discussion. It is important that the classroom climate encourage students to relate to one another in positive, respectful, and supportive ways. Be prepared to facilitate any potentially controversial discussions.
  • Establish clear ground rules for class discussions that demonstrate respect for privacy, diversity, and the expression of differing viewpoints.
  • Activities and discussion related to some of the topics in Social Studies may evoke an emotional response from individual students. Inform an administrator or counsellor when any concern arises, and ensure that students know where to go for help and support.

Inclusion, equity, and accessibility for all learners

British Columbia’s schools include young people of varied backgrounds, interests, and abilities. The Kindergarten to Grade 12 school system is committed to meeting the needs of all students. When selecting specific topics, activities, and resources to support the Social Studies curriculum, teachers are encouraged to ensure that these choices support inclusion, equity, and accessibility for all students. In particular, teachers should ensure that classroom instruction, assessment, and resources reflect sensitivity to diversity and incorporate positive role portrayals, relevant issues, and themes such as inclusion, respect, and acceptance.


First Peoples Principles of Learning

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the curricula and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to the Social Studies curriculum as they promote experiential learning. One of the major curricular competencies in the new curriculum is comparing different perspectives, which will include the consideration of indigenous knowledge and consideration of First Peoples memory and stories. Learning about the local community also helps to develop a sense of place and community.

Working with the First Peoples community

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion of possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education co-ordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples Friendship Centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in BC.

For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education web site: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm

Introduction

The aim of the Français langue première (French Language Arts) curriculum is to help students become informed and educated citizens, capable of exerting a positive influence on the society in which they live.

Through the discovery and exploration of literature, art, and culture, students will deepen their understanding of general culture. By developing critical and creative thinking, they will demonstrate discernment, sensitivity, insight, and open-mindedness.

The curriculum presents what students should Know, Do and Understand, from Kindergarten to Grade 12. Teaching is student-centred, allowing for greater flexibility based on individual learning modalities. Students are guided in their learning to think critically, creatively, and reflectively, in order to construct a personal and cultural identity and to respect a variety of perspectives and world views.

Characteristics of the Français langue première Curriculum

Literary and Artistic Openness

Starting in Grade 3, the Français langue première curriculum encourages the use of various types and genres of texts, with the word text referring in this context to any oral, written, or visual medium. Drawing on a variety of texts, educators can convey their unique characteristics. A text is a coherent set of written, oral, or visual elements which conveys meaning and communicates or conveys a message. Texts can take many forms, including First Peoples stories, articles, advertisements, novels, albums, tales, legends, comics, biographies, correspondence, invitations, instructions, diagrams, graphics, news reports, films, songs, poems, nursery rhymes, photographs, totem poles, images, artworks, oral presentations, blogs, surveys, reports, text messages, videos, and television shows.

Cultural Components

The curriculum fosters the development of both Francophone identity and intercultural sensitivity. By speaking and living in French, students develop a sense of belonging to the Francophone community of British Columbia.

Flexible Instruction and Learning

The various components of the curriculum function together in a dynamic and flexible manner to facilitate in-depth learning. Within each grade, there is no single or “correct” way to combine pieces from each of these components. Instead, the structure allows for a great deal of choice in the ways in which these pieces can be combined to create lessons, units, and learning experiences.

The curriculum remains flexible, allowing for a variety of program structures in the context of the school or community. This open design promotes the creation of instructional approaches that combine two or more areas of learning, without mandating any particular form of interdisciplinary learning.

A Holistic Approach to Instruction and Learning

The Français langue première curriculum represents an integrated and holistic approach to teaching and learning. In this curriculum, the six language arts elements (reading, listening, viewing, writing, speaking, and representing) are inextricably interconnected. Increased competency in one of these components supports an increased competency in another, often simultaneously.

The curriculum retains the organization of Curricular Competencies according to the two modes of language use: “understanding” (which corresponds to “Exploring and Reflecting”) and “expression” (which corresponds to “Creating and Communicating”).

The benefits gained by students through the Français langue première program go beyond learning how to communicate effectively in class: they also receive knowledge, skills, and understanding that can be applied to the curriculum as a whole, as well as to life outside school.


A Conceptual Framework

The Concepts and Big Ideas components foster a deeper level of reflection by encouraging students to associate several concepts in order to understand the underlying elements that link them together.

Students will discover and expand their knowledge of language and literary concepts, including structure, meaning, interpretation, emotions, and identity. Once these concepts are familiar, students will be able to make generalizations and identify recurring phenomena and implied connections between concepts. For example, by exploring the concept of image in association with the concepts of message and interpretation, Grade 6 students will discover that images – like texts –  contain information and clues that reveal their meaning and the artist’s intentions.

The various elements of this curriculum will therefore lead students to develop competencies by applying them to concepts and to specific content. In this way, students become able to identify patterns so they “understand” rather than merely “become familiar with” fundamental notions of the French language.

Design of the Français langue première Curriculum

The Français langue première curriculum follows the same format as all other areas of learning, inspired by the Know, Do, Understand (KDU) model. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do) and Big Ideas (Understand). More information about this model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

Big Ideas represent the fundamental notions students should “Understand.” Students discover or grasp Big Ideas through the “Do” aspect of the area of learning, by associating the Content with the Curricular Competencies to reach a conceptual understanding.

The example below illustrates the progression of Big Ideas and how some of the sociocultural elements studied in various texts evolve over the years, increasing in both complexity and scope.

 

Grade 1

Grade 5

Grade 8

Grade 11

Big Ideas

Through texts, we learn about ourselves and discover the world around us.

Texts create a portrait of an era and a population’s values, practices, and beliefs.

Through their texts, authors share their identity, culture, perception of the world, and portrait of the era with readers.

A text is inevitably linked to the time and space in which it was created and in which it is consumed.


Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies describe what students should be able to do with the knowledge they have acquired. The Français langue première curriculum involves an area of learning that is process guided, with student progression occurring through engagement with the language and texts. The emphasis on process is illustrated by the comprehensiveness of the Curricular Competencies learning standards when compared to the Content learning standards. This focus on process reflects the primary goal of the Français langue première curriculum: to enable students to competently and effectively use and create a wide variety of texts, including digital texts, in different contexts. Through conscious communication, learners can develop their ability to listen in order to understand, communicate effectively, present information and ideas with confidence and fluency, and comprehend the connections between language and culture.

The objective of this curriculum is to place students in learning situations that will enable them to acquire the competencies, knowledge, and strategies required to effectively and confidently communicate and interact in French. Students develop Curricular Competencies that will allow them to explore and reflect (“Exploring and Reflecting”) as well as create and communicate (“Creating and Communicating”). The example below shows how the curriculum progresses from grade to grade.

 

Kindergarten

Grade 1

Grade 2

Grade 3

Curricular Competencies

Recognize and manipulate phonological units

Segment and combine phonological units to develop phonological awareness

Recognize the root of unknown words in order to infer their meaning

Define the meaning of a word based on its root and affixes

Content

The Content represents the “Know” component of the model. This component includes the essential information students must know by the end of the school year in order to develop Curricular Competencies. In every grade, the Content can be applied to multiple Curricular Competencies that foster student understanding of Big Ideas.

Elaborations

Elaborations have been created for the majority of Curricular Competencies and Content, and are accessible via hyperlinks. They contain examples, clarifications, definitions, and any other information related to curriculum components at each grade level. The Elaborations serve as instructional and learning guides.

Important Factors

Grammar, Usage, and Conventions 

It is important that students be knowledgeable about the French language, including grammar, conventions, usage, and how languages develop over time. Learning grammar provides students with a useful metalanguage (i.e., a form of language they can use to talk about language itself). However, research clearly shows that, in order for instruction to be effective, language and grammar competencies need to be taught in a specific context rather than in isolation. Otherwise, little or no transfer occurs between the learning of grammatical and linguistic conventions on one hand and the ability to read or write better on the other.

Critical Literacy

Critical literacy is the lens through which texts are viewed as being constructed for a specific purpose. Students should be taught to call a given text into question, to challenge the authority of the author, to examine the author’s convictions, and to detect biases in the works of others as well as in their own. Critical literacy also enables students to decide whether or not some voices are missing and to examine multiple points of views (David Booth, 2011, Caught in the Middle: Reading and Writing in the Transition Years, Pembroke.)

In order to become active citizens and avoid being manipulated, it is crucial that students know how to evaluate and analyze texts. Teaching students to read critically is especially important in today’s world, where they are being bombarded almost constantly by media and information.

A Special Note For Optional Grade 10 and 11 Courses

A variety of oral, written, visual, digital, and multimodal communication should be explored in each of the optional courses.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

First Peoples communities have contributed to the cultural and linguistic richness of the Canadian Francophonie, and many First Peoples words have found their way into the French language. The First Peoples Principles of Learning were developed with educators and First Peoples community members, and were confirmed by First Peoples societies to guide the instruction and learning of provincial curricula. These principles not only honour the First Peoples of British Columbia and their educational perspectives, but also promote, in the Français langue première curriculum, experiential and reflexive learning as well as the rights and personal responsibility of learners.

The integration of First Peoples principles of learning in the curriculum creates classroom cultures based on community, collaborative learning, and trust. These principles and the First Peoples content are not additions or separate units, but are woven into the very fabric of the curriculum.

Introduction to Mathematics

Mathematics is integral to every aspect of daily life. Mathematical skills are essential for solving problems in most areas of life and are part of human history. All peoples have used and continue to use mathematical knowledge and competencies to make sense of the world around them.

Mathematical values and habits of mind go beyond numbers and symbols; they help us connect, create, communicate, visualize, and reason, as part of the complex process of problem solving. These habits of mind are valuable when analyzing both novel and complex problems from a variety of perspectives, considering possible solutions, and evaluating the effectiveness of the solutions. When developed early in life, mathematical habits of mind help us see the math in the world around us and help to generate confidence in our ability to solve everyday problems without doubt or fear of math.

Observing, learning, and engaging in mathematical thinking empowers us to make sense of our world. For example, exploring the logic of mathematics through puzzles and games can foster a constructive mathematical disposition and result in a self-motivated and confident student with unique and individualized mathematical perspectives. Whether students choose to pursue a deeper or broader study in mathematics, the design of the Mathematics curriculum ensures that they are able to pursue their individual interests and passions while establishing a strong mathematical foundation.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Mathematics curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components may be combined to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within and across grades, there are multiple ways to combine learning standards to create lessons, units, and learning experiences, encouraging any and all approaches that support the growth and development of students’ mathematical understandings and skills.

The focus on flexible teaching and learning enables teachers to confidently choose the strategies, resources, and applications best suited to the needs of students in their local setting (e.g., embedding mathematics in issues, projects, and passions relevant to the local community). It enables teachers to focus on “hands-on” experiential learning, by incorporating  the learning of foundational skills through opportunities to encounter math in a wide variety of situational contexts.

Explicit financial literacy components are included throughout the K-12 curriculum, as part of building a strong foundation of mathematical understanding and skills for every student. Regardless of the pathway students choose in Grades 11 and 12, they will share a common experience in the Mathematics curriculum that includes mathematical reasoning and probability/statistics, along with financial literacy components that have been customized to fit each area of specialty:

  • Grade 11 courses (with the exception of History of Mathematics) share similar financial literacy concepts, with the structure and emphasis differing, based on the course.
  • In Grade 12, both Apprenticeship Mathematics 12 and Foundations of Mathematics 12 continue financial literacy education. Apprenticeship Mathematics 12 emphasizes financial learning relevant to those pursuing the post-secondary apprenticeship path, and Foundations of Mathematics 12 continues to broaden student understanding in personal financial decision making.

Features of the Mathematics curriculum

The Mathematics curriculum is designed to build on students’ mathematics knowledge and enables them to apply this knowledge to a broad range of situations encountered in everyday life. This is facilitated by condensing the learning standards, focusing on flexible teaching and learning within relevant situational contexts, and continuing to develop a strong foundation of mathematical understandings and skills, as just one part of an interdisciplinary set of problem-solving, exploratory, and investigative skills and knowledge.

Design of the Mathematics curriculum

The Mathematics curriculum has the same format as all other areas of learning. Three curricular elements – the Big Ideas, Curricular Competencies, and Content – link the knowing, doing, and understanding of mathematics learning. Elaborations support each curricular area by providing suggestions, definitions, and clarifications to better support teaching and learning. More information on the curriculum model is available at https://www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

In all courses, the focus is on real-life, relevant contexts for learning, and all courses take a problem-solving approach. The Curricular Competencies for all Mathematics courses are organized around a problem-solving process adapted from the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM), which supports inquiry, the development of thinking strategies, and the explanation and justification of mathematical ideas.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

The Big Ideas of the Mathematics curriculum highlight the progression of related skills and concepts. For each area of mathematics in Kindergarten through Grade 9 (K-9) – computational fluency, number, patterns and relations, spatial sense, and statistics and probability – important concepts are introduced in Kindergarten, growing with students and expanding in scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades. For Grades 10 through 12, students have the opportunity to further explore their passions and interests through diverse Mathematics courses. In each of these, specialized learning builds on the K-9 progression of skills and concepts.

The chart below shows an example of the progression of number from Kindergarten through Grade 9.

Big Ideas

Number: Number represents and describes quantity

K

Numbers represent quantities that can be decomposed into smaller parts.

1

Numbers to 20 represent quantities that can be decomposed into 10s and 1s.

2

Numbers to 100 represent quantities that can be decomposed into 10s and 1s.

3

Fractions are a type of number that can represent quantities.

4

Fractions and decimals are types of numbers that can represent quantities.

5

Numbers describe quantities that can be represented by equivalent fractions.

6

Mixed numbers and decimal numbers represent quantities that can be decomposed into parts and wholes.

7

Decimals, fractions, and percents are used to represent and describe parts and wholes of numbers.

8

Number represents, describes, and compares the quantities of ratios, rates, and percents.

9

The principles and processes underlying operations with numbers apply equally to algebraic situations and can be described and analyzed.

 

Curricular Competencies

The Core Competencies – Thinking, Communication, and Personal and Social – are embedded in the Curricular Competencies. The Curricular Competencies introduced in Kindergarten have been expanded based on a developmental continuum throughout the grades that is focused on what students can do with their Content knowledge in mathematics. Students also build on their Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below shows how the Curricular Competencies grow with students and expand the scope and depth of learning.


 

Curricular Comp.

K

3

6

9

12
Pre-calculus

 

Use reasoning to explore and make connections

Use reasoning to explore and make connections

Use reasoning and logic to explore, analyze, and apply mathematical ideas

Use reasoning and logic to explore, analyze, and apply mathematical ideas

Explore, analyze, and apply mathematical ideas using reason, technology, and other tools

 

Content

The Content is concept-based and reflects what students should know. It identifies the concepts or topics that students will learn about at each grade level. The Content acts as both a supporting structure intended to assist students in demonstrating the Curricular Competencies and a foundational element leading students to the Big Ideas. Examples of Content learning standards are shown below.

 

Content

K

3

6

9

12
Pre-calculus

 

number concepts to 10

number concepts to 1000

small to large numbers (thousandths to billions)

operations with rational numbers (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and order of operations)

polynomial functions and equations

 

Elaborations

There are elaborations (included as hyperlinks) for many of the learning standards in the Mathematics curriculum. The elaborations take the form of explanations, definitions, and clarifications. They provide additional information and support for both teachers and students and can serve as potential places to begin teaching and learning. Examples of elaborations are shown below.

 

K

3

6

9

12
Pre-calculus

Content

equality as a balance and inequality as an imbalance

addition and subtraction to 1000

multiplication and division facts to 100 (developing computational fluency)

operations with rational numbers (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, and order of operations)

polynomial functions and equations

Elaboration

equality as a balance:

  • modelling equality as balanced and inequality as imbalanced using concrete and visual models (e.g., using a pan balance with cubes on each side to show equal and not equal) fish drying and sharing

addition and subtraction:

  • using flexible computation strategies, involving taking apart (e.g., decomposing using friendly numbers and compensating) and combining numbers in a variety of ways, regrouping
  • estimating sums and differences of all operations to 1000
  • using addition and subtraction in real-life contexts and problem-based situations
  • whole-class number talks

facts to 100:

  • mental math strategies (e.g., the double-double strategy to multiply 23 x 4)

operations:
includes brackets and exponents
simplifying (-3/4) ÷ 1/5 + ((-1/3) x (-5/2))
simplifying 1 – 2 x (4/5)2
paddle making

polynomial: 

  • factoring, including the factor theorem and the remainder theorem  
  • graphing and the characteristics of a graph (e.g., degree, extrema, zeros, end-behaviour)
  • solving equations algebraically and graphically

 

Important considerations

Inquiry in mathematics

The Mathematics curriculum continues to support the application of foundational math skills in problem solving. It is important for students to be able to approach problem solving with confidence. A problem-solving model provides students with the necessary skills to read a problem, choose from a variety of appropriate strategies, apply a strategy to solve the problem, and then reflect on the efficiency and accuracy of the strategy to explain the answer.

Mathematical habits of mind

Extensive research indicates that for students to develop mathematical habits of mind they must encounter and interact in intentional learning settings. Classroom design combined with active participation strategies will enhance student learning, increase achievement, and contribute to the development of well-educated citizens.

Students who have developed mathematical habits of mind exhibit expertise in:

  • persevering and using mathematics to solve problems in everyday life
  • recognizing that there are multiple ways to solve a problem
  • demonstrating respect for diversity in approaches to solving problems
  • choosing and using appropriate strategies and tools
  • pursuing accuracy in problem solving

First Peoples knowledge and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the B.C. curriculum and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to mathematical learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to learning.

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

Introduction

The Core French curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for engaging students in learning experiences through which they can become proficient users of French, gain new perspectives, and engage with Francophone communities.

Features of the Core French curriculum

Integration of components

The Core French curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. In this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the French language and the Francophone world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the many varieties of Francophone culture – and the relationship between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Core French curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content, Curricular Competencies, and Big Ideas to create lessons, units, and learning experiences. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that support language instruction and acquisition, and supports students learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.
 

Core French Introductory 11

A new course, Core French Introductory 11, has been developed to offer an opportunity for students who did not begin Core French in the elementary grades to enter Core French at the secondary level. Core French Introductory 11 is an intensive course, designed to cover essential learning standards from Grades 5 to 10 in an accelerated time frame in order to prepare students for Core French 11. It should be noted that this course does not replace the richness of the regular Core French 5-10 curriculum.

It is assumed that students will have limited to no background in Core French prior to enrolment in Core French Introductory 11. However, as contexts vary, districts may use their discretion with regard to admission criteria for this course. Enrolment in Core French Introductory 11 is not limited to Grade 11 students, and there are no prerequisites for this course.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Core French curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Core French curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication, including authentic or adapted texts (e.g., advertisements, articles, biographies, blogs, brochures, cartoons, charts, conversations, diagrams, emails, essays, films, forms, graphs, indigenous oral histories, instructions, interviews, invitations, letters, narratives, news reports, novels, nursery rhymes, online profiles, paintings, photographs, picture books, poems, presentations, songs, speeches, stories, surveys, text messages).

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic and/or adapted texts with their students. Purposes for using adapted texts include increasing:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Infusing Aboriginal content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

First Peoples Principles of Learning

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning greatly influence the Core French curriculum and are woven throughout. They lend themselves well to second-language learning as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in learners. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to second-language acquisition.

Design of the Core French curriculum

The Core French curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other areas of learning and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information about the model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content
and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below, concerning the theme of culture, illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as students progress through the grades.

 

5

7

8

10

12

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Deepening our knowledge of Francophone communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Our understanding of culture is influenced by the languages we speak and the communities with which we engage.

Cultural expression can take many different forms.

Exploring diverse forms of cultural expression promotes a greater understanding and appreciation of cultures worldwide.

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Core French curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, learners develop competencies in listening to understand, in communicating effectively, in presenting their ideas in French with confidence and fluency, and in understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

 

7

8

9

10

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend and retell stories

Narrate simple stories

Narrate stories

Explore the importance of story in personal, family, and community identity

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Explore the importance of story in personal, family, and community identity

 

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum). Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards appear over more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, Elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

 

5

7

8

10

12

Content

likes, dislikes, preferences, and interests

 

reasons for likes, dislikes, and preferences

descriptions of items, people, and personal interests

 

hopes, dreams, desires, and ambitions

 

explanations of needs, emotions, and opinions

 

 

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided (as hyperlinks) in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Core French.

  

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

      Grade 8

We can share our experiences and perspective through stories

Explore ways to engage in experiences with Francophone communities and people

a variety of questions

 

Elaborations

stories: Stories are narrative texts that can be oral, written, or visual. Stories can be simple or complex and may be derived from real or imagined experiences. They can be used to seek and impart knowledge, entertain, share history, and strengthen a sense of identity. Examples are indigenous oral histories, personal stories, skits, series of pictures, songs, student-created stories. 

ways to engage: for example, blogs, classroom and school visits (including virtual/online visits), clubs, concerts, courses, exchanges, festivals, films, pen-pal letters, magazines, newspapers, plays, social media and other online resources, stores/restaurants with service in French

questions: for example, Combien…?; Comment…?; Est-ce que…?; Où…?; Pourquoi…?; Quand…?; Quel…?; Qu’est-ce que…?; Qui…?

 

 

Important Considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn French in many contexts. Schools where Core French is offered are organized in different ways – for example, K-5, 6-9, and 10-12, or K-7 and 8-12. Schools also allocate different amounts of time for Core French, and some include programs such as Intensive French. These contexts affect staffing and the types and amounts of resources and supports available to teachers and students. As well, Core French teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. Although these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Core French curriculum is designed to support teachers and learners in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that French be used as the language of instruction for the Core French curriculum. As French is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use French at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The Core French curriculum supports the principle that Core French students gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in French but also many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the wider Francophone community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members
of the target language community. Engagement with Francophone communities, people, or experiences can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example, inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually); making connections with other French classes and schools; attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events; frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where French is used; and interacting with the online Francophone community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media. Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Francophone communities, people, or experiences to help build their identity as French speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the French language beyond graduation.

Links to Common European Framework of Reference for Languages

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their Core French classroom. The ministry recognizes that CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool for second-language learners and that a number of Core French teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue doing so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol for gaining support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin a discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples Friendship Centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in British Columbia.

For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices – that is, historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples (or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection to the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour).

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in British Columbia and Canada and of indigenous peoples in the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.  

Introduction to American Sign Language

The American Sign Language (ASL) as a Second Language curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with D/deaf communities, and become proficient users of ASL. 

Features of the ASL curriculum

Integration of components

The ASL curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Receptive and expressive reciprocal communication skills – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role. ASL has its own grammatical rules and syntax, which are not based on, or derived from, any other language.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore American Sign Language and the D/deaf world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of D/deaf culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The ASL curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The ASL curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the ASL curriculum refers to all forms of visual, written, and digital communication.         

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the ASL curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the ASL curriculum

The ASL curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below from the ASL curriculum illustrates how the theme of non-verbal cues grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

 

Big Ideas

Non-verbal cues contribute meaning in language.

Non-verbal cues are integral to communicating meaning.

Conversing about things we care about can motivate our learning of a new language.

The communicative context determines how we express ourselves.

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the ASL curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in viewing to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in ASL with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

 

Curricular Competencies

Recognize the relationship between gestures, common facial expression and meaning

Recognize the relationship between common hand shapes and location of signs and how they make meaning

Recognize the relationship between common hand shapes, movement and location of signs to make different meanings

Recognize how choice of signs affects meaning

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

8

10

12

 

Content 

Information about themselves and others

People, objects, and personal interests

Situations, activities, sequence of events

Needs and emotions

Complex questions and opinions

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching ASL.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate and retell stories

cultural aspects of Deaf communities

Elaborations

Creative works:  represent the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., books, dance, paintings, pictures, poems, songs, architecture)

Narrate and retell:
  • using common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression
  • using past, present, and future time frames
  • in ASL or written language

cultural aspects: Deaf communities and culture tend to be collectivistic (i.e., focused on the group and its interests) in nature.

 

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn ASL in many contexts. Schools where ASL is offered are organized in different ways, resources and support available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and ASL teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the ASL curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that ASL be used as the language of instruction for the ASL curriculum. As ASL is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use ASL at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The ASL curriculum supports the principle that ASL language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in ASL but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the D/deaf community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with the wider D/deaf community and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other ASL classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting locales where ASL is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online ASL community through blogs, visual “chats”, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with ASL communities and people, to help build their identity as ASL users and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of ASL beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so. While the CEFR does not explicitly include ASL, other European-based sign languages are included, and as a result there may be value in this tool for some teachers.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Introduction to German

The German curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with German-speaking communities, and become proficient users of German.

Features of the German curriculum

Integration of components

The German curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the German language and the German-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of German culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The German curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The German curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the German curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into German) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the German curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the German curriculum

The German curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below from the German curriculum illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

 

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the German curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in German with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Derive meaning in speech and a variety of other texts and contexts

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

6

8

10

12

Content

Descriptions of people

Descriptions of people, objects, and personal interests

Activities, situations and events

Needs and emotions

Expression, support, and defense of opinions

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum.  They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching German.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

German works of art

Elaborations

Creative works:  representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:
  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

works of art: e.g., creative works in dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism.

 

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn German in many contexts. Schools where German is offered are organized in different ways, resources and supports available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and German teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the German curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that German be used as the language of instruction for the German curriculum. As German is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use German at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The German curriculum supports the principle that German language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in German but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the German-speaking community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with German-speaking communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other German classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where German is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online German-speaking community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with German-speaking communities and people, to help build their identity as German speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the German language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their German classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Introduction to Italian

The Italian curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with Italian-speaking communities, and become proficient users of Italian.

Features of the Italian curriculum

Integration of components

The Italian curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the Italian language and the Italian-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of Italian culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Italian curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies, in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Italian curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Italian curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into Italian) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the Italian curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the Italian curriculum

The Italian curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.       

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below from the Italian curriculum illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

Curricular Competencies          

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Italian curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in Italian with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Derive meaning in speech and a variety of other texts

Narrate and write stories

Content                   

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning. 

 

5

8

10

12

Content

Simple information and descriptions

People, objects, and locations

Activities, situations, and events

Complex questions and opinions

Needs and emotions

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Italian.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

      Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Italian creative works

Elaborations

Creative works:   representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:
  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

creative works: e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism.

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn Italian in many contexts. Schools where Italian is offered are organized in different ways, resources and supports available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and Italian teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Italian curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that Italian be used as the language of instruction for the Italian curriculum. As Italian is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use Italian at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability      

The Italian curriculum supports the principle that Italian language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in Italian but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the Italian-speaking community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with Italian-speaking communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other Italian classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where Italian is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online Italian-speaking community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Italian-speaking communities and people, to help build their identity as Italian speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the Italian language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their Italian classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Introduction to Korean

The Korean curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with Korean-speaking communities, and become proficient users of Korean.

Features of the Korean curriculum

Integration of components

The Korean curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the Korean language and the Korean-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of Korean culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Korean curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies, in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Korean curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Korean curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into Korean) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension  
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns  
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns  

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the Korean curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the Korean curriculum

The Korean curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example from the Korean curriculum below illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

 

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Korean curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, sstudents develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in Korean with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.
   
Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Analyze cultural points of view in texts

 

Content  

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Content

Simple questions and descriptions

Types of questions

Types of questions

Complex questions 

      

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Korean.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Korean works of art

Elaborations

Creative works: representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:

  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

works of art: e.g., creative works in dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism

 

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn Korean in many contexts. Schools where Korean is offered are organized in different ways, resources and support available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and Korean teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Korean curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that Korean be used as the language of instruction for the Korean curriculum. As Korean is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use Korean at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability 

The Korean curriculum supports the principle that Korean language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in Korean but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the Korean-speaking community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with Korean-speaking communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other Korean classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where Korean is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online Korean-speaking community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Korean-speaking communities and people, to help build their identity as Korean speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the Korean language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their Korean classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Introduction to Japanese

The Japanese curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with Japanese-speaking communities, and become proficient users of Japanese.

Features of the Japanese curriculum

Integration of components

The Japanese curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the Japanese language and the Japanese-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of Japanese culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Japanese curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies, in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Japanese curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Japanese curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into Japanese) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the Japanese curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the Japanese curriculum

The Japanese curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://www.curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum — the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum — the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example in the Japanese curriculum below illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Japanese curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in Japanese with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Analyze cultural points of view

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

12

Content

Simple questions and descriptions

Types of questions

Descriptions of people

Types of questions

Descriptions of people, objects, and locations

Complex questions

Explanation and justification of opinions and points of view

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Japanese.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

      Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Japanese works of art

Elaborations

Creative works:   representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:
  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

works of art: e.g., creative works in dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism.


Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn Japanese in many contexts. Schools where Japanese is offered are organized in different ways, resources and support available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and Japanese teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Japanese curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that Japanese be used as the language of instruction for the Japanese curriculum. As Japanese is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use Japanese at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The Japanese curriculum supports the principle that Japanese language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in Japanese but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the Japanese-speaking community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with Japanese-speaking communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other Japanese classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where Japanese is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online Japanese-speaking community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Japanese-speaking communities and people, to help build their identity as Japanese speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the Japanese language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their Japanese classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Introduction to Punjabi

The Punjabi curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain perspectives, engage with Punjabi-speaking communities, and become proficient users of Punjabi.

Features of the Punjabi curriculum

Integration of components

The Punjabi curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the Punjabi language and the Punjabi-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of Punjabi culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Punjabi curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Punjabi curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Punjabi curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into Punjabi) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the Punjabi curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the Punjabi curriculum

The Punjabi curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview 

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below from the Punjabi curriculum illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Punjabi curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in Punjabi with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Analyze cultural points of view in texts

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

12

Content

Simple questions and descriptions

Types of questions

Descriptions of people and objects

Types of questions

Descriptions of people, objects, and locations

Complex questions

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Punjabi.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Punjabi works of art

Elaborations 

Creative works: representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:

  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

works of art: e.g., creative works in dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn Punjabi in many contexts. Schools where Punjabi is offered are organized in different ways, resources and support available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and Punjabi teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. Although these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Punjabi curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that Punjabi be used as the language of instruction for the Punjabi curriculum. As Punjabi is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use Punjabi at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The Punjabi curriculum supports the principle that Punjabi language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in Punjabi but also experience many other benefits, include:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the Punjabi-speaking community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with Punjabi-speaking communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other Punjabi classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where Punjabi is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online Punjabi-speaking community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media.

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Punjabi-speaking communities and people, to help build their identity as Punjabi speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the Punjabi language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their Punjabi language classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.

Introduction to Mandarin

The Mandarin curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with Mandarin-speaking communities, and become proficient users of Mandarin.

Features of the Mandarin curriculum

Integration of components

The Mandarin curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the Mandarin language and the Mandarin-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of Chinese culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Mandarin curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies, in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Mandarin curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Mandarin curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into Mandarin) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the Mandarin curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the Mandarin curriculum

The Mandarin curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below from the Mandarin curriculum illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

5

7

9

11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

 

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Mandarin curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in Mandarin with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Analyze cultural points of view in texts

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

 

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

5

6

8

11

Content

Simple questions and descriptions

Types of questions

Types of questions

Complex questions

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum. They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Mandarin.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Chinese works of art

Elaborations

Creative works:   representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:
  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

works of art: e.g., creative works in dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism.

 

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn Mandarin in many contexts. Schools where Mandarin is offered are organized in different ways, resources and support available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and Mandarin teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Mandarin curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that Mandarin be used as the language of instruction for the Mandarin curriculum. As Mandarin is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use Mandarin at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The Mandarin curriculum supports the principle that Mandarin language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in Mandarin but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the Mandarin-speaking and Chinese communities

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with Mandarin-speaking and Chinese communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other Mandarin classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where Mandarin is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online Mandarin-speaking community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Mandarin-speaking and Chinese communities and people, to help build their identity as Mandarin speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the Mandarin language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR) as a supporting tool in their Mandarin classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.  

Introduction to Spanish

The Spanish curriculum presents what students are expected to know, do, and understand in Grades 5 through 12. It provides teachers with a framework for immersing students in learning experiences through which they can gain new perspectives, engage with Hispanic communities, and become proficient users of Spanish.

Features of the Spanish curriculum

Integration of components

The Spanish curriculum represents an integrated approach to language acquisition. With this approach, the following components of language acquisition are viewed as interconnected rather than as existing in isolation:

  • Reading, writing, listening, speaking, and interacting – These essential competencies are the foundation of language acquisition. As they rarely exist in isolation in authentic communication contexts, they are integrated throughout the curriculum. Each element of the curriculum supports the simultaneous development of multiple competencies.
  • Grammar – With a focus on the purposeful use of language to communicate meaning, grammatical instruction plays a supportive role.
  • Culture – Language is inextricably bound to culture. Culture is a vehicle for acquiring a deeper understanding of a given language, of others, and of oneself. Authentic communication always takes place in a cultural context, and language acquisition activities in the classroom must therefore be situated within such a context. As students explore the Spanish language and the Spanish-speaking world, they simultaneously acquire both the language and an understanding of the diversity of Spanish culture and the relationships between the two. This contributes to their appreciation of other cultures as well as their own.
  • Language-learning strategies – Language-learning strategies are seen as a vehicle for helping students succeed in their language acquisition journey and are integrated throughout the curriculum.

Flexible teaching and learning

The Spanish curriculum allows for instructional flexibility. For example, the curriculum components can be combined in different ways to provide a diverse range of learning opportunities. Within each grade, there are multiple ways to combine Content and Curricular Competencies in creating lessons, units, and learning experiences to lead students to discovery of the generalizations and principles of the Big Ideas. The curriculum encourages the use of a range of approaches that both support language instruction and acquisition and support students’ learning in a manner best suited to their diverse abilities.

Use of a wide variety of text types

The Spanish curriculum encourages the use of a wide variety of text types. “Text” in the Spanish curriculum refers to all forms of oral, written, visual, and digital communication.

Teachers are encouraged to use a wide range of grade-appropriate text types in their classrooms. Teachers may choose to use authentic (primary source) and/or adapted (translated into Spanish) texts with their students to encourage:

  • student comprehension
  • student exposure to target vocabulary and patterns
  • the saliency of high-frequency vocabulary and patterns

Integrating First Peoples content and perspectives

The Ministry of Education is dedicated to ensuring that the cultures and contributions of First Peoples in British Columbia are reflected in all provincial curricula.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning have been affirmed within First Peoples societies to guide the teaching and learning of provincial curricula. Because these principles of learning represent an attempt to identify common elements in the varied teaching and learning approaches that prevail within particular First Peoples societies, it must be recognized that they do not capture the full reality of the approach used in any single First Peoples society.

The First Peoples Principles of Learning are woven throughout and greatly influence the Spanish curriculum. They lend themselves well to language learning, as they promote experiential and reflexive learning, as well as self-advocacy and personal responsibility in students. They help create classroom experiences based on the concepts of community, shared learning, and trust, all of which are vital to language acquisition.

Design of the Spanish curriculum

The Spanish curriculum follows the same format as is used in all other curricular areas and is based on the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Students learn through Content (Know), Curricular Competencies (Do), and Big Ideas (Understand). More information on the curriculum model is available at https://curriculum.gov.bc.ca/curriculum/overview.

Big Ideas

The Big Ideas are generalizations and principles discovered through experiencing the Content and Curricular Competencies of the curriculum – the “Understand” component of the Know-Do-Understand model of learning. Big Ideas represent the “aha!” and the “so what?” of the curriculum – the deeper learning.

From year to year, students discover new Big Ideas and also build on the Big Ideas from previous years. The example below from the Spanish curriculum illustrates how the theme of culture grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning as they progress through the grades.

 

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7

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11

Big Ideas

Each culture has traditions and ways of celebrating.

Knowing about diverse communities helps us develop cultural awareness.

Acquiring a new language allows us to explore our identity and culture from a new perspective.

Language and culture are interconnected and shape our perspective, identity, and voice.

 

Curricular Competencies

Curricular Competencies are what students should be able to “Do” with their Content knowledge. Language acquisition is very process-driven, and “Doing” plays an important role. Since the goal is proficiency in using the language rather than learning about the language, more elements are included in the Curricular Competencies column of the Spanish curriculum than in the Content column. Through purposeful communication in class, students develop competencies in listening to understand, communicating effectively, presenting their ideas in Spanish with confidence and fluency, and understanding the connections between language and culture.

Students also build on their application of the Curricular Competencies from year to year. The example below illustrates how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

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7

9

11

Curricular
Competencies

Comprehend simple stories

Comprehend meaning in stories

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Derive meaning in speech and a variety of other texts and contexts
Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Content

Content represents the core knowledge students will have – what they are expected to “Know.” In language acquisition, Content represents the pieces students must have to be able to use the language at a given grade level (i.e., to apply the Curricular Competencies). In each grade, each of the Content learning standards supports multiple Curricular Competencies (the “Do” component of the curriculum).

Students build on their Content knowledge from year to year. Some Content learning standards bridge more than one year because they may take longer to fully acquire or they may support increasingly complex Curricular Competencies. When identical Content learning standards appear across multiple grades, elaborations further clarify how deeply the Content learning standard is expected to be covered at each grade. The examples below illustrate how the curriculum grows with students and expands the scope and depth of learning.

 

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7

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Content

Basic information about themselves and others

Opinions and preferences

Personal interests, needs, and opinions

Personal lifestyles and relationships
Explanation and justification of opinions

Elaborations

Elaborations have been provided in many places throughout the curriculum.  They offer additional clarification and support for teachers, including definitions, examples, and information regarding the depth and breadth to which topics should be covered at a given grade. Examples provided in the elaborations are not intended to be comprehensive lists of what must be covered in a given grade; they are simply examples. Elaborations may be particularly useful to teachers who are new to teaching Spanish.

 

Big Idea

Curricular Competency

Content

Grade 8

Creative works are an expression of language and culture.

Narrate stories, both orally and in writing

Spanish  works of art

Elaborations 

Creative works: representing the experience of the people from whose culture they are drawn (e.g., painting, sculpture, theatre, dance, poetry and prose, filmmaking, musical composition, architecture)

Narrate:

  • use common expressions of time and transitional words to show logical progression.
  • Use present, past and future time frames.

works of art: e.g., creative works in dance, drama, music, or visual arts, with consideration for the ethics of cultural appropriation and plagiarism

Important considerations

Diverse contexts

Throughout British Columbia, students learn Spanish in many contexts. Schools where Spanish is offered are organized in different ways, resources and support available to teachers and students vary among different schools, and Spanish teachers range from beginning generalists to highly experienced specialists. While these diverse factors may result in variations in instruction, the flexibility of the Spanish curriculum is purposefully designed to support teachers and students in a wide range of contexts.

Language of instruction

It is important that Spanish be used as the language of instruction for the Spanish curriculum. As Spanish is a minority language in British Columbia, opportunities for students to use the language outside the classroom may be limited. Research shows that increasing exposure to and use of the target language is essential to increasing proficiency. Therefore, while it is also understood that students at times may need some discussions or examples in the prevailing language of the school, both teachers and students are encouraged to use Spanish at every opportunity.

Benefits beyond linguistic ability

The Spanish curriculum supports the principle that Spanish language learners gain not only the ability to communicate effectively in Spanish but also experience many other benefits, including:

  • improved overall cognitive development and creative thinking
  • the development of cultural awareness and understanding
  • a deepened understanding of their own identity
  • an enhanced understanding of their first language
  • language-learning strategies that can be transferred to additional languages

Engaging with the Hispanic community

In language education, all aspects of learning are enriched when students engage with members of the target language community. Engagement with Hispanic communities and people can mean different things in different contexts. It may include, for example:

  • inviting community members into the classroom (in person or virtually)
  • making connections with other Spanish classes and schools
  • attending festivals, films, concerts, plays, and other cultural and community events
  • frequenting stores, restaurants, and community centres where Spanish is used
  • interacting with the pre-approved and secured online Hispanic community through blogs, chats, and other forms of social media

Teachers are encouraged to provide a variety of these experiences for their students. Students, particularly in the upper grades, are also encouraged to seek and initiate engagement with Hispanic communities and people, to help build their identity as Spanish speakers and to foster opportunities to continue their acquisition of the Spanish language beyond graduation.

Links to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR)

The Ministry of Education remains supportive of teachers who wish to make use of the CEFR as a supporting tool in their Spanish classroom. The Ministry recognizes that the CEFR can be a valuable assessment tool and that a number of language teachers in the province are currently using it with their students and would like to continue to do so.

Working with First Peoples communities

To address First Peoples content and perspectives in the classroom in a way that is accurate and that respectfully reflects First Peoples concepts of teaching and learning, teachers are strongly encouraged to seek the advice and support of members of local First Peoples communities. As First Peoples communities are diverse in terms of language, culture, and available resources, each community will have its own unique protocol to gain support for integration of local knowledge and expertise. Permission for the use or translation of cultural materials or practices should be obtained through consultation with individuals, families, and other community members. This authorization should be obtained prior to the use of any educational plans or materials.

To begin discussion about possible instructional and assessment activities, teachers should first contact First Peoples education coordinators, teachers, support workers, and counsellors in their district who will be able to facilitate the identification of local resources and contacts, such as Elders, chiefs, First Nations tribal or band councils, First Peoples cultural centres, First Peoples friendship centres, and Métis or Inuit organizations. In addition, teachers may wish to consult the various Ministry of Education publications available, including the “Planning Your Program” section of the resource Shared Learnings. This resource was developed to help all teachers provide students with knowledge of, and opportunities to share experiences with, First Peoples in B.C. For more information about these documents, consult the Aboriginal Education website: www.bced.gov.bc.ca/abed/welcome.htm.

Authentic First Peoples texts and resources

In order to present authentic First Peoples content and worldviews, it is important to draw from First Peoples learning and teaching resources. Authentic First Peoples texts and resources are those that:

  • present authentic First Peoples voices (i.e., historical and contemporary texts created by First Peoples or through the substantial contributions of First Peoples)
  • depict themes and issues important to First Peoples cultures (e.g., loss of identity and affirmation of identity, tradition, healing, role of family, importance of Elders, connection with the land, the nature and place of spirituality as an aspect of wisdom, the relationships between individual and community, the importance of oral tradition, the experience of colonization and decolonization)
  • incorporate First Peoples story-telling techniques and features as applicable (e.g., circular structure, repetition, weaving in of spirituality, humour)

Because of the diversity of First Peoples communities in B.C. and Canada and indigenous peoples in the rest of the world, and the need to provide a relevant context for classroom instruction and assessment, it is suggested that resource selection focus primarily on First Peoples texts and resources from the local community wherever possible.