www.mycoreapp.com • Retail Price: $125 per user per year (subscription)
Product Description: myCore is an online
tool that guides teachers with embedded
coaching and content resources that allow
them to plan and share curriculum based on
Common Core standards (and any other state
standards) with colleagues and administrators.
Quality and Effectiveness: MyCore has a
clean, user-friendly interface, but the product
is more than just a pretty face. It addresses the
two top concerns of teachers today: Common
Core standards and the annual professional
performance review (APPR) process by which
they are being evaluated. As a teacher creates
lessons with myCore, the appropriate standards are automatically
addressed. Teachers can also easily track which skills have been
addressed in previous lessons. Then, by seamlessly aligning Bloom’s
Taxonomy to the standards through a color-coding tool, myCore
allows teachers to build lessons that are rigorous and engaging. These
units and lessons, once they are flagged as “ready to teach,” can then
be shared with administrators. Administrators can easily see how the
teacher is meeting Common Core and teaching standards and can use
the lesson plans when completing their APPR.
Ease of Use: The interface—which was
designed and tested by teachers, curriculum
specialists, and administrators in the Baltimore
City Public Schools system—is clear, logical,
and offers numerous ways to access help.
Supportive prompts and refreshers are
embedded into the process, and suggestions
are offered through a “fuzzy feedback” process
by which the system coaches a teacher through
the plan. Teachers can flag any point in their plans for a personal
review, a formal annual review, and assistance from their mentor teacher.
Exchanges between teachers and coaches are stored in a
Facebook-type system that makes them easy to track and review.
Once lessons are created, they are easy to access and to edit, which
allows teachers to refine, share, and reflect on their lesson plans and
their teaching. Sample lessons in ELA and math are available, and a
full year’s supply of units for grades K-6 began to roll out in August.
Teachers will be able to search for lessons, complete units, add them
into their libraries, edit, and share them with their administrators.
Creative Use of Technology: myCore is simple to use on any
Internet-connected device and the interface looks the same on iPads,
Macs, and on PCs. There are no fancy bells and whistles here, but
the seamless integration of Common Core curriculum, Bloom’s
Taxonomy, and the ability to share units are the best aspect of this
program’s capabilities. The ability to share lessons with colleagues
and administrators makes this a tool that connects curriculum
development with professional development.
• myCore offers a system through which teachers can “unpack” the Common
Core standards and embed them into each and every lesson.
• myCore makes it easy for teachers to group standards into units, design
engaging activities and assessments, and use Bloom’s Taxonomy to measure
students’ mastery of the Common Core standards.
• myCore is both a lesson planner and a professional development tool.
myCore helps teachers
design more effective units
and lessons with the Common
Core standards as their foundation,
while adding rigor and student
accountability. Its tools and design are
appealing, and there is ample support
even for novice teachers. Teachers
are encouraged to reflect upon their
teaching and to share successful
lessons with administrators,
which aids the APPR