Advice on curriculum planning for every student K-12

Advice for teachers to support curriculum planning for every student in every classroom.

Our sample learning sequences and units are provided as a starting point for teachers to contextualise learning for their students. Students are more likely to experience success if they are engaged, can access the curriculum, and are able to demonstrate their learning in a way appropriate to their needs.

In NSW classrooms there is a diverse range of students including:

  • Aboriginal students
  • students learning English as an additional language or dialect
  • high potential and gifted students
  • students with disability.

Some students may identify with more than one of these groups, or possibly all of them. There are no ‘average’ students. The diversity of students and the range of learning needs within a classroom means teachers must plan experiences that ensure all students can access and engage with the curriculum.

High expectations, quality teaching practices and effective learning environments enable teachers to optimise learning for every student. A strengths-based approach to planning teaching and learning experiences enhances learning for the full range of students. Planning strategies could include:

  • assessment of prior knowledge to inform teaching and learning
  • opportunities for students to use their first language
  • multiple opportunities to engage with and use vocabulary in context
  • scaffolding for language learning
  • acknowledging the cultural background and lived experience of students and ensuring they are represented in the resources you use
  • opportunities to learn ‘on Country’ and about Country
  • using culturally-responsive teaching and ensuring a culturally-safe learning environment
  • providing appropriately challenging learning experiences to support student growth
  • opportunities to empower student choice in their learning
  • differentiating the products students are asked to create so learning is accessible for those who have limited written or spoken language skills
  • incorporating digital technologies to enhance engagement, provide multiple options for students to access the curriculum and demonstrate their learning.

Inclusive practices

The principles of Universal Design for Learning (UDL) and differentiated learning can provide useful frameworks for curriculum planning. Implementation of inclusive practices in planning, programming and assessing supports learning for the full range of students and is aligned with the department’s goals and strategic policies, including:

For more curriculum planning strategies and resources to optimise learning for every student, enrol in Curriculum planning for every student in every classroom (AC00180) in MyPL.


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