A Quick Guide to Benchmark Advance” is a series of six posts to help you get started using Benchmark Advance. Each blog post is inspired by topics that are frequently asked about in my Benchmark Advance Planning, Organization, and Tips Facebook support group. They share compiled information gathered from the posts in the group. The information is shared by teachers using the program and is not affiliated with the publisher. Your district’s official Benchmark training should still take precedence as you begin your implementation of the program.
So you’re trying to figure out this whole Benchmark thing.
But first, a quick message to get you started.
Anytime you’re feeling overwhelmed, tell yourself this:
I. TEACH. THE. STANDARDS.
The curriculum is a resource.
Take a step back and reacquaint yourself with your state’s standards and look at them with a new lens. Then, look at the lessons that come with Benchmark and analyze them. Do you think they help you teach the standard well? Is there anything you think you might add or change? Don’t try to teach every single lesson – it all comes back around.
You can use this program with “fidelity” without doing every single lesson all the time. I know this because I don’t know of a single teacher who has managed to teach every single lesson each week. Also, the skills repeat themselves over and over again. Didn’t teach figurative language in week 1? Well, it comes up again in week 3! And then again in another unit! This is just an example, but take the time to find those patterns in the program.
Give yourself a moment to reflect on your teaching philosophies and then think about how Benchmark can complement your teaching style. And please, allow yourself some grace! You will make mistakes. You’re doing a great job already by just seeking out this support!
Be sure to join my Facebook group, Benchmark Advance Planning, Organization, and Tips. Once you click “Join Group” and answer the three screening questions, you’ll be approved and have access to tons of great resources and support!
Click on the links to read the posts included in this “Quick Guide” series.
- SUPPLY LIST: A short list of items you may want to purchase for your students
- MATERIALS OVERVIEW: A shortcut page to reference materials in the program
- WHOLE VS. SMALL GROUP INSTRUCTION: What everyone is doing and using in whole and small group time
- PLANNING: Tips for planning a unit and week effectively
- TEACHER TIPS: Advice from teachers who are already using the program