Curriculum and Instruction

If it’s taught in the Indianapolis Public Schools district, whether to students or employees, then Curriculum and Instruction had a hand in planning it. Obviously, being over curriculum means our curriculum coaches and district media specialists help plan how ELA, Math, Science, Social Studies, World Languages, ESL and Pre-K courses are taught and how instruction is made available. But we’re also deeply involved in our employees’ professional development. We conduct new teacher induction coaching. We manage Title II grant matters involving the preparing, training and recruiting of high quality teachers and principals. And we maintain and offer a variety of professional development opportunities for all IPS employees. Our students and employees can turn to us with all their instructional needs, and we are happy to serve them.

Contact Information

  • Jessica Dunn – Interim Curriculum Officer – 317-226-3545
  • Amanda Koth – Director of Instructional Design & Support – kotha@myips.org
  • Marlene Hogue – Administrative Specialist – 317-226-3545

K-6 English/Language Arts

7-12 English/Language Arts

K-6 Mathematics

  • Kathy Jones – jonesk@myips.org – 317-226-3797
  • Nick Meyer – meyern@myips.org – 317-226-3796

7-12 Mathematics

  • Stephanie Todd – todds@myips.org
  • Mike Roach – roachm@myips.org
  • Peggy Boulden – bouldenp@myips.org

Online Learning Information for Parents & Students

Online Learning provides learning opportunities for all students through an online platform. IPS students can accelerate their learning through online courses. These classes can be completed independently of their traditional class setting or in a computer-based lab during their school day. Students who participate in Online Learning have the support of licensed teachers who instruct, monitor and grade student work and achievement. Online Learning is designed for students who are highly motivated and looking to advance their academic career or recover credits.

One of the most important aspects of supporting online students is to help them stay on pace with the course and monitor their progress. These are instructions on how to monitor your student’s progress.

  1. Log in to your student’s account:
    Website: PLE.PLATOWEB.COM
    Account: Student can crovide
    Password: Student can provide
  2. The student home page will look like this image. Where it says “Current Grade” it will also say “Course Grade.”
    1. Current Grade is the grade your student has earned on the work the student has completed with a score of 80% or better.
    2. Course Grade is the grade your student would have in the course if the student stopped working right now. This is the grade that will be on the student transcript.
    3. The Progress Bar is color coded to let you know if your student is on pace. Green is on pace and red is behind pace.
    4. There is a marker on the bar that shows where the student’s progress should be.
  3. In class, students can retake mastery tests and unit tests to improve their score. They cannot retake end-of-semester tests.
  4. The goal for all students should be to earn an 80 percent or higher on all activities and complete all assignments.

How do I use the program?

When you log in the first time, it will prompt you to watch an orientation video. This should answer most of your questions. If you have questions after watching the video, please ask the lab specialist at your school or message your online teacher through the PLATO messaging system. Online teachers visit buildings on a weekly basis. If your content area instructor does not visit your school, he/she will arrange to meet with you via the PLATO messaging system.

How long do I have to complete the course?

You have one semester to complete your PLATO course(s). You will be given a deadline date by your counselor. The spring 2018 deadline date is June 6, 2018. If you complete a PLATO course before the deadline date, you may begin a new PLATO course by scheduling an appointment with your school counselor. Your counselor will help you decide if there is time to complete another course. All PLATO courses must be completed by the end of the semester. There is an extension request process for documented cases of hospitalization, death in the family, or social-emotional trauma. Counselors have the extension request forms.

What do I do if I need help?

If you are taking your course in a lab at your school, you can speak with the lab specialist. If you are taking your class either during the day at school OR after school, send your online teacher a message through the PLATO messaging system.

Account Information

  • Website: PLE.PLATOWEB.COM
  • Account Login: INDYPSD
  • Username: Counselor will provide
  • Password: Counselor will provide
  • Login: Go to ple.platoweb.com and enter account login INDYPSD.
  1. Be respectful. While it is easier to say hurtful or disrespectful things without standing face-to-face with someone, it is important to remember that your classmates and teachers are real people who are affected by the words you say and write.  It is essential to keep in mind the feelings and opinions of others, even if they differ from your own. If you wouldn’t say it to someone’s face, don’t say it online either.
  2. Be aware of strong language, all caps and exclamation points. It is easy for written text to be misread and misunderstood.  Have you ever sent a text message with good intent but your recipient thought you were being rude? If so, then you’ve experienced this firsthand.  By being cognizant of strong language, you can identify potential confusions before sending messages. Tip: Read everything out loud before you send it.
  3. Be careful with humor and sarcasm. Certainly you shouldn’t avoid being funny. We love to see your personality shine through in online classes.  Many of our teachers are exceptionally funny too. But like mentioned in Rule No. 2, make sure that it is clear you are being funny and not being rude. Emoticons and smileys can be helpful when conveying humor or sarcasm so that it is read correctly. Just remember to keep the smiley faces away from academic papers
  4. Yes, grammar and spelling matter. While texting, text speak can b gr8 4 ur friends. In an educational setting (even online) however, keep it formal.  Your written communication should be professional and reflect proper writing style. Save written shortcuts and less than stellar grammar for Snapchat if you must, but follow grammar rules for school.
  5. Cite your sources. Whenever you are sharing an idea that originated from someone else (even if it is not word-for-word), it is good practice to cite that source. This applies to discussion forums too. If you read a great thought in your text, share it, but be sure you let your audience know where you saw it first.
  6. Don’t post or share (even privately) inappropriate material. Enough said there. Nothing is truly private online.
  7. Be forgiving. Remember that not everyone will know these rules before posting. Try to be understanding of others when they struggle with written communication. It is very different than simply talking to a person face-to-face.

Curriculum Resources for Educators

Resources for Educators

  • Byrdseed Byrdseed.com is a resource for teachers who work with gifted and talented students. If you work with this population, you know that textbooks do little to address their unique needs, leading to boredom, apathy, and behavior problems. Hopefully you’ll find tools and ideas to help you reach these kids.
  • Hoagies’ Gifted Education Page, the all-things-gifted site, full of resources, articles, books and links to help and support parents, teachers, and gifted children alike.  Pick your path, and explore them all!
  • Prufrock Press Exciting Teaching and Learning Tools. For more than 25 years, teachers, parents, and kids have looked to Prufrock Press for exciting, informative learning resources designed for gifted, advanced, and special needs learners.
  • Royal Fireworks Press Offers educational materials to “challenge and intrigue” students in your classroom.
  • Davidson Institute The mission of the Davidson Institute is to recognize, nurture and support profoundly intelligent young people and to provide opportunities for them to develop their talents to make a positive difference.
  • Supporting the Emotional Needs of the Gifted SENG is a nonprofit organization that empowers families and communities to guide gifted and talented individuals to reach their goals: intellectually, physically, emotionally, socially, and spiritually.

Professional Organizations

  • Indiana Association for the Gifted The Indiana Association for the Gifted educates and advocates for meeting the academic and social / emotional needs of gifted youth.
  • National Association for Gifted Children NAGC’s mission is to support those who enhance the growth and development of gifted and talented children through education, advocacy, community building, and research. We aim to help parents and families, K-12 education professionals including support service personnel, and members of the research and higher education community who work to help gifted and talented children as they strive to achieve their personal best and contribute to their communities.
  • Indiana Department of Education Standards Page The Indiana Academic Standards for Mathematics demonstrate what students should know and be able to do in the areas of K-8 Mathematics; Algebra I, II, and Geometry; and higher-level high school Mathematics courses. Instruction in Mathematics provides vital content and skills for lifelong learning and problem solving in our increasingly complex technological world and engages students in the essential thinking skills and processes used across subject areas.
  • Mathematics Standards Vertical Articulations The Vertical Articulation documents illustrate the significant connections between the standards across grade levels. Administrators and teachers are strongly encouraged to use these documents to facilitate cross-grade level discussions.

Professional Organizations

  • Indiana Council of Teachers of Mathematics(ICTM) The Indiana Council of Teachers of Mathematics (ICTM) is a statewide organization concerned with and working for the interests of mathematics educators and mathematics education. The membership including the ICTM Board of Directors, includes teachers from all levels and from all parts of the state. The activities of the council are many and varied, as are the benefits to be derived from membership and participation.
  • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics advocates for high-quality mathematics teaching and learning for each and every student.
  • Indiana Department of Education Standards Page The Indiana Academic Standards for Mathematics demonstrate what students should know and be able to do in the areas of K-8 Mathematics; Algebra I, II, and Geometry; and higher-level high school Mathematics courses. Instruction in Mathematics provides vital content and skills for lifelong learning and problem solving in our increasingly complex technological world and engages students in the essential thinking skills and processes used across subject areas.
  • Mathematics Standards Vertical Articulations The Vertical Articulation documents illustrate the significant connections between the standards across grade levels. Administrators and teachers are strongly encouraged to use these documents to facilitate cross-grade level discussions.

Professional Organizations

  • Indiana Council of Teachers of Mathematics(ICTM) The Indiana Council of Teachers of Mathematics (ICTM) is a statewide organization concerned with and working for the interests of mathematics educators and mathematics education. The membership including the ICTM Board of Directors, includes teachers from all levels and from all parts of the state. The activities of the council are many and varied, as are the benefits to be derived from membership and participation.
  • National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) The National Council of Teachers of Mathematics advocates for high-quality mathematics teaching and learning for each and every student.

Curriculum Resources for Families

  • Ask Rose Homework Help – Homework isn’t always easy. That’s why AskRose is here to help. It’s a free math and science tutoring service for Indiana and other students in grades 6-12.

Helping at Home 

  • US Department of Education Helping Your Child Learn Math Guide  This booklet is made up of fun activities that parents can use with children from preschool age through grade 5 to strengthen their math skills and build strong positive attitudes toward math.
  • Parent Roadmaps to Math Standards The Council of the Great City Schools’ parent roadmaps in mathematics provide guidance to parents about what their children will be learning and how they can support that learning in grades K-8. These parent roadmaps for each grade level also provide three-year snapshots showing how selected standards progress from year to year so that students will be college and career ready upon their graduation from high school.
  • The Parents’ Guides to Student Success were developed by teachers, parents and education experts in response to the College and Career Ready Standards.  Created for grades K-8 and high school English, language arts/literacy and mathematics, the guides provide clear, consistent expectations for what students should be learning at each grade in order to be prepared for college and career.