School Year Overview
Connecting Curriculum through Theme
UCDS Teachers use each year’s Theme as basis to design innovative experiences. Our annual theme is the thread that connects every part of the curriculum. Students discover new connections and share fresh perspectives about what they learn. Students become aware of multiple perspectives through the exchange of ideas. They use this practice to refine their thinking and enhance their understanding. UCDS students develop strong communication skills, have a sense of responsibility, and actively contribute to their community.
The UCDS Continua - Frameworks for Learning Design
Accountability is at the center of learning design at UCDS. The UCDS Continua serve as a framework for curriculum design and assessment. These documents outline the developmental progression of skills in Reading, Writing, and Math and identify important conceptual threads that will be covered each school year. Teachers use the continua as they plan curriculum to ensure students experience the range of skills that are important to learn in each area. Teachers revisit these document throughout the year to assess student progress. Curriculum design follows an iterative process where design and assessment are applied in a continuous cycle.
Relevant, resourceful learning
Teachers capitalize on opportunities and experiences that are relevant to each year’s all-school theme. UCDS teachers search for geographic, cultural, and contemporary possibilities for learning. Experiential learning is at the heart of every activity whether it is within or outside of school walls. Students go into the community to connect and learn from the world around them. Teachers at UCDS design challenging curricula that is dynamic and connected to the community. Students utilize technology to support academic engagement, reflective thinking, and to deepen their conceptual understanding.