The Enhanced Learning Maps (ELM) project provided professional development, instructional resources, and learning maps tied to standard in mathematics and English language arts to 376 teachers of students in grades 2–8 in Alaska, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, and Wisconsin.
Participating teachers received access to all the resources produced by the ELM project for implementing a robust formative assessment process. Teacher implementation of learning maps and resources in over 119 school districts and 214 schools proved the value of learning maps and resources through bridging the gap between teaching theory and practice, and teacher use of ELM instructional resources. Teachers provided the ELM research team with invaluable insight into the connection between an appropriately implemented formative assessment process and true achievement gains among students.
Between 2016 and 2018, feedback from teachers using the maps and resources in their classroom provided valuable insight for researchers to make iterative improvements to the ELM resources.
During this time, teacher participants made use of:
- Interactive maps, useful for identifying where students are in the learning process;
- Specially designed activities for eliciting evidence of student learning;
- Tools for interpreting student work and adjusting instruction accordingly; and
- Dedicated support staff, who can assist in using the ELM software, implementing lessons and activities in the classroom, and evaluating student work in light of the learning map model.