Thursday, May 22, 2008

Workbooks That Don’t Work

We’re making a commitment to look at every aspect of our spending, and one area that is getting a close look is student workbooks, because there’s a ton of them and they’re all expensive. In my first grade room we have two different books for reading and one for math; they cost about $40 each per child. That’s about $10,000 a year, then just for workbooks for my one grade level.

Looking at that, we decided that next year we would eschew the reading workbooks in favor of a cheaper phonics workbook; we didn’t feel like we could do without math. Even in reading it will be difficult because of how the workbook paces the curriculum, and so we’re going to have to make a pretty strong commitment to bringing in other ways to teach specific reading strategies, high frequency words, and spelling.

If you’re doing a curriculum adoption make sure that you nail down what the year-to-year costs will be to keep it going. We got caught with our pants down.

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