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The Progression of Learning in Elementary School is a supplement that complements each of the subject-specific programs at the elementary level, providing further information on the essential knowledge that students are expected to acquire and be able to use in each year of elementary school. This supplement is intended to assist teachers in planning both for teaching and determining specific learning outcomes for their students.

The knowledge that young people acquire enables them to better understand the world in which they live. From a very early age, within their families, among friends and through contact with the outside world as represented by the media, they accumulate and learn to use an increasingly greater body of knowledge. The role of the school, beginning in kindergarten, should be to progressively broaden, deepen and structure this knowledge.

However, helping young people acquire knowledge raises the challenging question of how to make this knowledge useful and durable, evoking the notion of competency. For example, we can never be really assured that a grammar rule has been assimilated until it is used appropriately in a variety of texts and contexts that go beyond the confines of repetitive, discrete exercises.

In this way, a competency and its related knowledge reinforce each other.On the one hand, knowledge becomes consolidated when it is used, and on the other hand, the exercise of competency entails the acquisition of new knowledge.

The role of the teacher in knowledge acquisition and competency development is essential, and he or she must intervene systematically throughout the learning process. In effect, the Education Act confers on the teacher the right to “select methods of instruction corresponding to the requirements and objectives fixed for each group or for each student entrusted to his care.” It is therefore the teacher’s responsibility to adapt his or her instruction and to base it on a variety of teaching strategies, whether this involves lecture-based teaching for the entire class, individualized instruction for a student or a small group of students, a series of exercises to be done, a team activity or a particular project to be carried out.

In order to meet the needs of students with learning difficulties, teachers should encourage their participation in the activities designed for the whole class, although support measures should also be provided when necessary. These might involve more targeted teaching of certain key elements of knowledge, or they might take the form of other specialized interventions.

The evaluation of learning has essentially two functions. Firstly, it enables us to look at the students’ progress during the learning period in order to guide and support them effectively. Secondly, at the end of the school year or cycle, it enables us to verify the extent to which the students have acquired the expected learning outcomes. Whatever its function, in accordance with the Policy on the Evaluation of Learning, evaluation should focus on the acquisition of knowledge and the students’ ability to use this knowledge effectively in contexts that draw upon their competencies.

The progression of learning is presented in the form of tables that organize the knowledge to be acquired in the same manner as the subject-specific programs. In Physical Education and Health, for example, the presentation of essential knowledge and the progression of learning are closely linked. Each type of essential knowledge provided is correlated to one or more years of elementary school during which it is formally taught.

A uniform legend is used for all subjects in order to specify the pattern of progression for each aspect of learning identified. The legend employs three symbols (an arrow, a star and a shaded box). For each aspect of learning cited, what is expected of the student is described as follows:

Flèche Student constructs knowledge with teacher guidance.

An arrow indicates that the teacher must plan for the student to begin this learning during the school year and continue or complete it the following year, in a process that requires the systematic intervention of the teacher.

Étoile Student applies knowledge by the end of the school year.

A star indicates that the teacher must plan for the majority of students to complete this learning by the end of the school year.

  Student reinvests knowledge.

A shaded box indicates that the teacher must plan to ensure that knowledge already acquired will be called upon throughout the school year.

The Progression of Learning in Elementary School is now available on the home page of the Web site of the Ministère de l’Éducation, du Loisir et du Sport. Access is easy and navigation a breeze!

After accessing the Progression of Learning in Elementary School through the English icon, teachers can use the menu, found on the left side of the screen, to rapidly view the progression of learning for each elementary subject-specific program in the Québec Education Program.

After picking a program, the teacher can easily consult one of the sections for a better overall understanding of the corresponding progression supplement.

In addition, hyperlinks to Geography, History and Citizenship Education, for example, provide direct reference to footnotes or another section of the text that provides additional information.

The Progression of Learning in Elementary School is also available in PDF format, in an effort to make it more accessible. Teachers can save pages, sections or the Progression of Learning for a specific program as a whole and, if they so desire, can print the section(s) they require.

To conclude, the Ministère would like to thank its many partners in schools and universities—teachers, Educational Services personnel and specialists in different disciplines—who agreed to share their expertise throughout the process of bringing this document through to completion. As well, the Ministère would like to take this opportunity to reaffirm its intention to accompany the schools in the implementation of the Québec Education Program.

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