Power Curriculum

 Bay Haven Charter Academy Inc.                                                         

“Making Connections”

Power Curriculum

“Staff and students are the heart of curriculum.  The relationships between them are shaped by the answer to key questions about, assessment, content, learning interactions, and the connections between those elements.” (Flinders University)

Key components of the power curriculum include a focus on building rigor, relevance, and relationships; an emphasis on core standards (wrapped in technology and interdisciplinary); and the Kitts Plus Model: Team Articulation.  Each component is dependent on the other to develop, implement, and sustain a curriculum that prepares Students for the 21st century.

Overview of the components:

 Provide job-embedded professional development that integrates these measures allowing teachers to make connections and analyze curriculum in order to plan and deliver instruction that cultivates 21st century skills. The following tools will guide professional development:

Rigor, Relevance, and Relationships

Daggett’s Rigor/Relevance Framework + Webb’s Theoretical Model of Higher Order Thinking:

 "Making Connections”

  • Utilize two widely accepted measures of describing cognitive rigor- Webb’s Depth of Knowledge levels and Bloom’s Taxonomy of Educational Objectives.



REMEMBER -Retrieving relevant knowledge from long-term memory (e.g., recognizing, recalling)

Recall – Recall of a fact, information, or procedure (e.g., What are the Red Cross Emergency Action steps [check, call, care]?)

Depth of Knowledge Level 1 (Low)

UNDERSTAND -Determining the meaning of instructional messages, including oral, written, and graphic communication (e.g., interpreting, exemplifying, classifying, summarizing, inferring, comparing, explaining)

APPLYING -Carrying out or using a procedure in a given situation (e.g., executing, implementing)

Basic Application of Skill/Concept – Use of information, conceptual knowledge, procedures, two or more steps, etc.  (e.g., Given an emergency scenario, students determine the care needed for a victim, and explain the reason for their actions).

Depth of Knowledge Level 2 (Moderate)

ANALYZING -Breaking material into its constituent parts and detecting how the parts relate to one another and to an overall structure on purpose (e.g., differentiating, organizing, attributing)

Strategic Thinking – Requires reasoning, developing a plan or sequence of steps; has some complexity; more than one possible answer; generally takes less than 10 minutes to do  (e.g., Module 363 –ER – Stressed due to parents’ divorce; Crunched for time; Signs of stress – ways to relieve stress – why managing stress is important to health.)

Depth of Knowledge Level 3 (Moderate)

EVALUATE -Making judgments based on criteria and standards (e.g., checking, critiquing)

CREATING -Putting elements together to form a novel, coherent whole or make an original product (e.g., generating, planning, producing)

Extended Thinking – Requires an investigation; time to think and process multiple conditions of the problem or task; and more than 10 minutes to do non-routine manipulations (e.g., Task 608 – Welcome to Health High – Create fact sheet/brochure from research activity)

Depth of Knowledge Level 4 (High)



 Rigor/Relevance Framework®

The Rigor/Relevance Framework is a tool developed by staff of the International Center for Leadership in Education to examine curriculum, instruction, and assessment. The Rigor/Relevance Framework is based on two dimensions of higher standards and student achievement.

First, there is the Knowledge Taxonomy, a continuum based on the six levels of Bloom's Taxonomy, which describes the increasingly complex ways in which we think. The low end involves acquiring knowledge and being able to recall or locate that knowledge. The high end labels the more complex ways in which individuals use knowledge, such as taking several pieces of knowledge and combining them in both logical and creative ways.

The second continuum, known as the Application Model, is one of action. Its five levels describe putting knowledge to use. While the low end is knowledge acquired for its own sake, the high end signifies use of that knowledge to solve complex real-world problems and to create unique projects, designs, and other works for use in real-world situations.

The Rigor/Relevance Framework has four quadrants. Each is labeled with a term that characterizes the learning or student performance at that level.

The Rigor/Relevance Framework has four quadrants. Each is labeled with a term that characterizes the learning or student performance at that level.

The Rigor/Relevance Framework is easy to understand. With its simple, straightforward structure, it can serve as a bridge between school and the community. It offers a common language with which to express the notion of a more rigorous and relevant curriculum.

The Rigor/Relevance Framework is versatile; it can be used in the development of instruction and assessment. Likewise, teachers can use it to measure their progress in adding rigor and relevance to instruction and to select appropriate instructional strategies to meet learner needs and higher achievement goals.



 Cognitive Rigor Matrix (Karen Hess)

The cognitive rigor matrix combines Bloom’s Taxonomy with Webb’s Depth of Knowledge framework.   It is a tool for:

 Designing units of study that have a range of cognitive demand and assessing tasks for the thinking they require of a student


The Cognitive Rigor Matrix (sample)


Depth + thinking

Level 1

Recall & Reproduction

Level 2

Skills & Concepts

Level 3

Strategic Thinking/ Reasoning

Level 4

Extended Thinking


- Recall, locate basic facts, details, events


- Select appropriate words to use when intended meaning is clearly evident

- Specify, explain relationships

- summarize

– identify main ideas

- Explain, generalize, or connect ideas using supporting evidence (quote, example…)

- Explain how concepts or ideas specifically relate to other content domains or concepts


- Use language structure (pre/suffix) or word relationships (synonym/antonym) to determine meaning

– Use context to identify meaning of word

- Obtain and interpret information using text features

- Use concepts to solve non-routine problems

- Devise an approach among many alternatives to research a novel problem


- Identify whether information is contained in a graph, table, etc.

– Compare literary elements, terms, facts, events

– analyze format, organization, & text structures

- Analyze or interpret author’s craft (literary devices, viewpoint, or potential  bias) to critique a text

– Analyze multiple sources

- Analyze complex/abstract themes


– Cite evidence and develop a logical argument for conjectures

- Evaluate relevancy, accuracy, & completeness of information


- Brainstorm ideas about a topic

- Generate conjectures based on observations or prior knowledge

- Synthesize information within one source or text

- Synthesize information across multiple sources or texts


Core Standards: Math/Science/LA /SS:  Wrapped in Technology and Interdisciplinary

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  •    Curriculum Mapping to :

ü  improve quality and continuity of instruction

ü  provide consistency and uniformity

ü  increased rigor and equity of instruction for all students

ü  ensure that the necessary content included in the FCAT assessment is addressed

ü  foster collaborative planning and increased rigor of instruction leading to improved student achievement

ü  assist teachers with transition to new standards


  •   Provide professional development in technology integration and Interdisciplinary planning through workshops and professional learning communities.



Plus Model:  Team and Articulation

“Making Connections”


  • The horizontal axis of the Plus Model depicts the Team approach to grade level and department level communication.  This takes place in Team planning, Team hiring of fellow teammates, Team support mechanisms across grade levels in an articulated curriculum. 
  •   The vertical axis shows the curriculum guides are based upon the Core Curriculum Standards and Next Generation Standards.  The faculty has determined High Expectations criteria for each grades level's outgoing expectations of student skills and for subsequent grades they have determined incoming expectations.