Curriculum & Instruction


REAL Journey Academies teachers use a variety of curricula for their daily instruction, including Math in Focus: Singapore Math, Standards Plus Common Core, Journeys (grades K – 2), STEMscopes California, and History Alive. All grades also use teacher-selected core literature and nonfiction texts in their English language arts instruction.

In May and June 2016, several of our teachers participated in the first annual RJA Curriculum Institutes, during which they created scope and sequences and curriculum maps for the 2016-17 school year. The RJA Curriculum Institutes will continue to be held annually in the spring to revise these instructional planning documents based on data gathered throughout the school year, such as student assessment scores and teacher feedback.

Core Instruction:

For the past three years, REAL Journey Academies instruction has been based on the research and strategies presented in three foundational texts provided to all teachers:

  • Classroom Instruction That Works: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement, 2nd Edition
  • Teaching Reading in the Content Areas: If Not Me, Then Who?, 3rd edition
  • Vocabulary for the Common Core
Academic Supports:

REAL Journey Academies provides comprehensive academic support and intervention:

  • All students in grades K – 8 are assessed at the beginning of school year using Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills (DIBELS) Next for grades K – 6, Content Area Reading Indicators (CARI) for grades 7 -8, Easy Curriculum Based Measurement (easyCBM) for grades K – 8, and Rocket Math Fluency Assessments for grades 2 – 8.
  • For those students who are identified as not reading at grade level by the DIBELS Next initial score, the DIBELS Next Survey is utilized to identify the appropriate progress monitoring and instructional levels for each student.
  • For those students identified by the DIBELS Next Survey as two grade levels behind in reading, DIBELS Deep is utilized as an in-depth diagnostic assessment of literacy skills.
  • After all students are assessed and their reading levels are identified, students are grouped for intervention.
Response to Intervention:
  • Our Response to Intervention Program consists of the following components of tiered instruction at each school site:
    • Tier I: Core Instruction – All students receive evidence-based effective instruction in all subject areas. All students are assessed at the beginning of the year, the middle of the year, and the end of the year using DIBELS Next, CARI, Easy CBM/CCSS and Rocket Math.
    • Tier II: Group Interventions – During designated times throughout the school day, students are pulled for small group instruction based on their DIBELS Next Survey and/or DIBELS Deep, easyCBM, and Rocket Math Fluency assessment results. Students receiving Tier II interventions have their progress monitored using the appropriate tools at frequent instructional intervals (a progress monitoring assessment is usually given after the student has received the specific intervention three or four times).
    • Tier III: Intensive Individual Interventions – Students who do not make sufficient progress with Tier II interventions or who require unique instructional strategies are identified and monitored through the SST and/or IEP processes and receive additional services or interventions. All students receiving Tier III interventions also receive Tier II and Tier I interventions.
Intervention Curricular Resources:
  • Reading A – Z
  • ABC Mouse
  • Reading Eggs
  • Education City
  • Study Island
  • Journeys: HMH California Decoding Power: Intensive Reading Instruction
  • Florida Center for Reading Research
  • Ironbox
English Learner Programs:
  • Integrated ELD K – 8 in all classes
  • Designated ELD for K – 6 during language arts block (vocabulary and language instruction) and science block (STEMscopes “Explain” and Picture Vocabulary and Explain: Communicate tools)
  • Designated ELD for 6 – 8 during STEP period
  • CELDT preparation in STEP classes August and September, Grades 6 – 8
English Learner Curricular Resources:
  • CELDT preparation workbook and released test questions
  • Academic Vocabulary for English Learners by Voyager Sopris Learning, Grades 6 – 8
  • Journeys, California Language Workshop Resources and ELL Readers, K – 2
  • Reading A – Z Enhanced ELL Reading Solution, K – 6