The freedom to create my own curriculum

On my final day of Winter Break, I’m finalizing lesson plans for this soon-to-arrive, back-to-school week.

I’m fortunate that I can create my own curriculum and attendant pacing schedule, (as long as I teach the state standards).

This semester, I’m timing my lessons for the second semester US and World History classes so they cover The Great Migration during the month of February.

This year’s Black History Month theme is Black Migrations. My students will first research their own family histories in January and then, hopefully, make some great discoveries as they connect the past to their own lives.

It’s difficult for me to image having to “cover” an externally mandated set of lessons that may not have the same relevance, and therefore impact, as what I now enjoy. The initial workload is greater for my style of teaching, but I’m confident that my students will experience greater academic growth as a result.