Bernd Nuss is the creator of the Immersion Curriculum Map (ICM), a resource developed for language immersion programs to coordinate and chart lesson plans for K-5 students. Built with Wikispaces, the Immersion Curriculum Map provides all participating schools with a series of wikis containing learning materials and an academic roadmap for each grade level and subject.
1. Please describe the Immersion Curriculum Map, and what you use it for.
The Immersion Curriculum Map is a resource, planning, alignment, and collaboration tool designed specifically for language immersion programs in the USA. The ICM empowers teachers to easily select, store and retrieve language specific content resources through a highly interlinked surface structure. Teachers can plan collaboratively as grade level teams by sharing instructional material and by using an integrated pacing guide. The ICM also permits schools to effectively align curricular and language contents between grade levels.
2. Tell us about a particular moment that made you say, “Aha! THIS is why we use wikis!”
As a public language immersion school, the E.E. Waddell Language Academy in Charlotte, NC, had been looking for an online tool to organize and store language-specific instructional resources. But, it was not possible to find a product flexible enough to address the complexity of immersion planning. Wikispaces was the one product with the aptitude to build up a storage structure matching exactly the needs of dual instructional planning for multiple languages.
3. What advice do you have for schools and districts that would like to build a similar resource?
We heavily rely on our own templates supported by Wikispaces. A template version of the Immersion Curriculum Map is accessible on the online platform of the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI). Upon request, it can be cloned to any district or school. ICM organizer training is administered through the NCDPI and accessible through their website. This allows us to offer unique instances of the curriculum map to every participating school without having to re-build content.
4. What do you plan to do next with your wiki?
The plan is to use this structure for building a statewide immersion resource center catering to all available immersion languages in the state. The ultimate vision is to network immersion programs nationwide by sharing resources and through training modules that pertain to language immersion.
5. What kind of feedback have you been receiving from your users?
An ICM training participant left this feedback: “I love the layout of the Wikispaces, especially the vertical alignment section and the content and language area sections. This is truly an all-in-one site full of information which will make planning and collaboration so much easier.”
Additional information about the Immersion Curriculum Map can be found on the program’s training wiki.