Teachers often use search engines to select supplemental instructional materials, such as videos and other interactive content, instead of relying on vetted, adopted or approved instructional materials. Education leaders should encourage teachers to access vetted instructional materials, whether they are reviewed by the state, district, school, or an external organization.
State digital learning repositories are one option for accessing curated instructional materials. States and districts that host a resource repository of approved instructional materials have a process for selecting and approving these materials. The process often involves reviews by various content experts to ensure alignment to standards and support of learning behaviors, such as deeper learning. Teachers can be confident that they are accessing quality instructional materials that impact student learning.
Repositories may include both copyrighted and open licensing materials. Resources can be purchased, free, or open educational resources that can be modified and remixed. In some cases, states require state credentials for access even if the resources are free. Some states manage their own repositories, other states partner with other education stakeholders or contract out for these services. A few examples of how states host and/or manage digital learning repositories are listed below:
- Northwest Textbook Depository – managed by an independent contractor serving Alaska, Oregon and Washington
- District Sample Curriculum Project, managed by the Colorado Department of Education’s Standards and Instruction Unit, provides educators with access to standards-based projects.
- New Hampshire Educators Online provides digital and online educational and instructional resources.