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VDOE Instructional Resources That Support the Written, Taught, and Tested Curriculum in English and Math

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) website contains multiple resources to assist in aligning the curriculum that is taught with the written and tested curriculum. Use of these resources can only enhance our pedagogical practices. VDOE has done the work for us to make this necessary alignment possible with supporting resources.

Alignment of taught curriculum with the written and tested curriculum is integral to ensuring that students graduate with the knowledge and skills necessary to be productive citizens. The written curriculum, based on the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOLs), provides a framework and guidance for identifying the competencies necessary for productive citizenship.

… In a truly aligned curriculum, the written curriculum (our planned curriculum) should align with the taught curriculum (how we implement the plan), which should align with the tested curriculum (how we measure the outcomes of our planning and implementation). (VDOE – Office of School Improvement, 2013)

This article with screencasts explores VDOE resources, including links and explanations to the following:

VDOE website: User Tips, Viewers and Hints

Teacher Direct

Written Curriculum

Taught Curriculum

Tested Curriculum

*View the videos below in the highest quality:  Click on the video, go to “Settings”, and choose 720p HD.

Introduction Video

Click on Virginia Department of Education Website: User Tips, Viewers and Hints to learn tips and hints to easily navigate the website while maximizing its many communication features. This introductory video will assist in locating the valuable instructional resources discussed throughout this article.

VDOE Instructional Resources

The remainder of this article will highlight specific resources that educators can access to strengthen their instructional practices.

Teacher Direct. Teacher Direct is a VDOE communication tool through which teachers can access new instructional resources, the latest SOL news, upcoming professional development events, a lesson plans library, as well as presentations and videos modeling instructional techniques. Click on the Teacher Direct link above to sign up to receive weekly updates and click on the video below to preview this helpful resource.

Teacher Direct Video

Virginia Standards of Learning and Curriculum Frameworks. The VDOE website contains resources that support the written curriculum and the VA standards and curriculum frameworks for English and mathematics.

The VDOE also provides educators with news and announcements, as well as planning and instructional resources regarding Career and Technical Education (CTE), including the revised CTE Work-Based Learning Guide, career clusters, and curriculum resources.

View the screencast below to take a tour of these sites.

Written Curriculum Video

Content-specific resources for the taught curriculum. The taught curriculum, supporting the written curriculum, is enhanced through the resources provided on the VDOE website for mathematics and English/reading with professional development opportunities and instructional and assessment resources.

Mathematics. Click here for resources that support the taught curriculum in mathematics:

  • Math Vocabulary Cards
  • Enhanced Scope and Sequence Sample Lesson Plans
  • Vertical Articulations
  • Algebra Readiness Initiative
  • Resources by Grade Level
  • Professional Development Resources

Professional development opportunities from the Mathematics SOL Institutes support the implementation of the 2009 Mathematics SOL. They are found on this page, organized by institute year and topic.

English and reading. Click here to locate resources that support the taught curriculum in English and reading. Links to these and additional instructional and assessment resources may be found in the last column, Resources for Instruction & Assessment; they include:

  • Online Writing Resources
  • Vocabulary Resources
  • SOL Institute Presentations and Lessons
  • Sample Text-Dependent Questions With Paired Passages
  • Progression Charts
  • ESS Sample Lesson Plans
Watch the screencasts below to explore the multiple instructional resources for mathematics, English, and reading that support the taught curriculum.

 Taught Curriculum: Mathematics Video

Taught Curriculum: English & Reading Video

 Special education. The VDOE provides special educators with literacy and reading resources to improve outcomes in these areas for students with disabilities, organized by school level (i.e., elementary, middle, and high school). At the high school level, for example, information is presented to link teachers with Project Graduation, a resource that supports reading outcomes at that school level. VDOE also links educators to outside technical assistance and professional development resources to expand available sources to effectively meet the needs of students with disabilities. Finally, navigate to the Special Education Program Improvement page to access training and technical assistance resources on various topics related to school improvement, including Lexile and Quantile measures.

Click on the video below to learn how to most effectively navigate the special education pages of the VDOE website and access these essential resources.

 Special Education and Federal Programs Video

Content-specific resources outlining the tested curriculum. VDOE also provides multiple resources that support the tested curriculum, including the following:

  • English and Math 2013 Student Performance Analysis provides educators with an overview of content found challenging for Virginia students. By clicking on the analysis presentations for each content area and grade level, educators can view specific standards with which students have struggled and access suggested instructional techniques to promote successful mastery.
  • Through the 2013-2014 Office of School Improvement (OSI) Contractor Meeting Materials on the School Improvement and Reform: Contractor Resources page, VDOE provides numerous resources on a variety of school improvement topics (e.g., curriculum alignment presentation and handouts from December 16, 2013).
  • Curriculum Frameworks for English and Math: The Virginia Standards of Learning as presented in the curriculum frameworks are the written, taught, and tested curriculum.
Watch the screencasts below for an explanation of these resources and for help in navigating the tested curriculum resources for mathematics, English, and reading.

Tested Curriculum Video

This presentation of the VDOE resources examined these resources in light of the written, taught, and tested curriculum, which creates a cycle of instructional improvement, as we begin with the end in mind and conversely, end with the beginning in mind (see Figure 1). Alignment of these resources, although challenging, allows for a mutually reinforcing system. Aligning these resources is critical to ensuring successful outcomes for students by preparing them for college, careers, and citizenship (Weiss, 2007). VDOE has made this task less difficult by supporting the development of aligned materials; all we need to do is access them.

cycleFigure 1. Cycle of instructional improvement.
From Weiss (2007).


Gareis, C., & Grant, L. (2013). Curriculum alignment: Connecting the curriculum, instruction, and student learning; District leadership support team. Presented at the College of William and Mary, December 16, 2013. Retrieved from 2013-2014 Contractor Meeting Materials,

Virginia Department of Education. (2013). Introduction to evaluating the written, taught, and tested curriculum (Notes from slide 5). Presented at the College of William and Mary, October 22-24, 2013. Retrieved from Academic Review Tools and Materials from October 22-24, 2013 Meeting, improvement/academic reviews/

Weiss, J. (2007). Conditions for student success: The cycle of continuous instructional improvement (Working Paper 4). Seattle, WA: University of Washington, Daniel J. Evans School of Public Affairs. Retrieved from

 Co-Author:  Donni Davis-Perry, M.Ed.