By: Caroline Igo, Kendall Hunt
My best friends and I finished our freshman year of college last May. As students, we studied a lot but listened to music even more. At school we had multiple playlists dedicated to different moods, styles, and activities. We listened to one playlist while we did homework, we blasted a different playlist while we exercised, and we kept another in the background while we just enjoyed each other’s company. It is important to note that we never once listened to one entire album. It is becoming clear: current times are killing the album and breathing life into the personalized playlist.
This idea of customizable music is not lost to the education scene. One album can’t reach everyone in a crowd, just as one traditional textbook isn’t right for every school or the students in it. Everyone learns differently, and teachers today are finding it hard to connect with every kind of student. But, there is a solution that fits every classroom’s specific needs: customized curriculum. Just as one makes a playlist, teachers and schools can select “songs” or content to create their own, unique “playlist” of curriculum. Instead of conforming to textbooks and standards set up by the state or school district, teachers can hand-pick their own lessons for their students.
One of the benefits of customizable curriculum is that it keeps up with the ever-changing standards that can take place year-to-year. Traditional curriculum can’t accommodate these changes in standards and adapt curriculum to specific student needs. News and Features from the National Education Association, NEA Today, states, “The general idea behind personalized learning is that the fixed time, place, and curriculum of traditional classrooms is ill-suited to meet the demands of a diverse student population that has a wide range of learning needs” (Walker). In today’s progressive world, students should have the right to learn in all the ways they can and feel comfortable with.
ConstructEd offers a solution. As a leader in customized publishing, this branch of Kendall Hunt meets the needs of every unique student, teacher, and school. The process consists of three simple steps: create, customize, and adopt. Teachers or schools come forth, choose their material, personalize it, and then introduce the new curriculum to their classrooms. It is simple and painless.
For the motivations behind this process, schools have various reasons why they contact ConstructEd/Kendall Hunt. One, cost plays a large part in the decision. Some schools find it more cost effective to adopt than to purchase a curriculum that will only change in the near future. Science, for example, is ever-changing and will continue to further evolve. It is more efficient to customize a curriculum to last for years and years than to continuously buy new textbooks. Secondly, schools choose personalized curriculum to add new items to already existing textbooks. Math curriculum often requires teachers to use extra handouts to teach lessons that the textbooks lack. With ConstructEd/Kendall Hunt, teachers can take a math textbook that works and can add or remove some extra chapters. It is easier on both student and teacher. Overall, education turns to customized curriculum because it meets all the needs of students. One customer states that he chose to customize math curriculum, because the ordinary textbook was too overwhelming for his students. What may seem like a simple change may make all the difference in your students’ academic performance.
It is very important to get through to every student. Sometimes, the standard “album” or curriculum doesn't cut it. That being said, education needs to keep up with current times and meet the needs of the complex, modern-day student. Clearly, the customizable playlist movement is taking over the way we think about everything, even education!