Big Picture Pacing

Hello Discoveries folks,

I am working with a middle school to include CS in to their schedule, and would love your collective support as they think about possible ways of integrating Units/the whole curriculum in to their program. Right now, they are in the process of redesigning the school schedule, and have pledged to incorporate “some time” for CS at each grade level (6-8). Based on your experience, I am curious what an “ideal”, “acceptable”, or “minimum” schedule would look like in terms of seat time per grade. What is your current schedule and how does Discoveries fit in to the school day?


Hi Madeline,

Discoveries is incredibly flexible in how you implement. For suggestions and ideas on implementation, I would start with the different options in the Curriculum Guide Intended Options and be sure to scroll down to the pacing suggestions. I agree with the tip that the second chapter in most units can be skipped if pressed for time. You can also search the forum for suggestions as well. Here is a recent post with some good suggestions. Hope these ideas help get you started.

Thanks Michelle,

I’m less worried about Discoveries, and more curious how folks have been able to schedule it in to their school day. (Is CS a separate block? Year long? Does it get the same seat time as ‘core’ courses?) In our school bell schedule redesign, I’m hoping to get a CS block, but its probably not likely to meet as frequently as other classes. I’ve been trying to look at Middle School websites, but very few have the bell schedule up online! Just looking for some inspiration. That post is a good start!

Thank you for giving more information. Hopefully the forum will contribute with even more ideas. In my district, I have a computer science elective class that is equal in time to any other elective or core class and it runs for one semester. Other schools in my district include some of the units from CSD (especially Units 2 & 3) in existing technology classes.

Again - hopefully others in the forum will contribute with what CS offerings looks like in their district.

We have CS Discoveries as an elective for 1 semester. Our classes are about 50 minutes M-F. So from August- December I will be able to get through 3 full units with some breakouts for CS ED Week and such.

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We have taken the whole course and spread it across three years. Our 6th grade has class twice a week for 40 minutes and works on Units 1 & 2 for half a year. Our 7th grade learns units 3 & 4 twice a week for 40 minutes for the full year, and our 8th grade works with units 5 & 6 twice a week for the full year.
This is our second year and it seems to be going better than last year. Unfortunately, someone decided we would all start at the assigned Units and that didn’t work as well. We should have all started on unit 1 and worked forward from there.

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Good idea Debbie, Thanks for the advice!