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English Language Arts

Our Approach


The Fishtank ELA curriculum aims to develop students into critical readers, writers, and thinkers. We hope to widen their perspectives so that they can better understand themselves and the world around them.

The curriculum is designed around the following guiding principles for ELA. Explore the foundations of Fishtank ELA, including the research base, standard progression, and more information about the guiding principles.

Building knowledge to nurture critical thinking and agency.

Effective literacy instruction builds students’ reading/writing skills and knowledge, develops students' identity and agency, helps students understand the world around them, and creates independent critical readers.

Centering diverse, relevant, and rigorous texts.

Every student, regardless of background and reading level, should read complex, engaging texts written in a variety of genres and by diverse voices, to highlight the diversity and richness of the human experience.

Prioritizing student voices and ideas.

Engaging in regular academic discourse is essential for students to synthesize texts and content, spark their curiosity, develop original ideas, and find their own voice.

Learning to write, writing to learn.

Writing and language skills are best taught in context, allowing students to authentically analyze an author’s craft and structure, develop their own voice as writers, and build deeper meaning with the texts and ideas.

Preparing teachers to support students.

Intellectual preparation allows teachers to do their best teaching: when teachers deeply understand the text and unit themes they can help all students master grade-level content and standards.

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Unit Archive


Can't find the unit you're looking for? Visit our archives to find units that we've retired from our core curriculum.

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