About Janet Hale
I began my curriculum journey in the early 1980s, before I knew of Dr. Heidi Hayes Jacobs or her curriculum mapping model. Since then, I have had the honor of getting to know Dr. Jacobs personally and am included as a member of her Curriculum 21 Faculty.
I have had the pleasure of consulting, training, coaching, and mentoring teachers, support staff, and administrators, nationally and internationally. I am told that I am caring and motivating, while at the same time practical and to the point. Please feel free to review my Vitae. I also have a mini-bio and photo available for your use.
If you would like to learn more about my personal educational odyssey, please read on.
The Early Years
I started teaching when I was 12 years old. I was living in Seoul, Korea, at the time (my father was in the Army). My first job title was Summertime Volunteer and I was responsible for teaching mentally challenged students to swim.
During the next school year, I took on the role of Library Tutor for the early elementary students. On Saturday mornings I enjoyed helping Korean children who were blind learn English at the Korean Lighthouse for the Blind. Needless to say, I was hooked!
I continued my newfound love by working with severely mentally challenged young adults during my high school years. Those years proved priceless. My responsibilities enabled me to learn how to break down tasks and concepts so that they are easily understood--an important attribute for Curriculum Mapping consulting, training, and coaching.
I attended Northern Arizona University in Flagstaff, Arizona, and earned a Bachelor's Degree in Education with dual majors in Elementary Education and Special Education. My first certified teaching position was at Sunnyside High School in Tucson, Arizona. I surfed through a few grade levels due to the Low-teacher-on-the-totem-pole Syndrome, which proved priceless as it taught me to adapt quickly to my students' needs. Changing grade levels also provided insight and understanding into the pains, frustrations, and joys of teaching within a variety of grade-level and school-site cultures.
I went on to receive my Masters, with Honors, in Educational Leadership and Curriculum Development from Northern Arizona University. My course instructors were actively "in the field," including superintendents, principals, curriculum coordinators, and even district lawyers. Oh, the stories I heard! This truly opened my eyes to the role that all levels of administration play in creating harmony, or disharmony, in a school or district's life.
I was active on committee after committee after committee, both at school and district levels. I was also a member of many site-based teams and enjoyed being involved in these collaborative models. I conducted a variety of intra-district workshops and trainings, which eventually led me to search beyond my district borders to investigate various educational opportunities.
In the mid-1980s, I decided to try my hand at writing an educational-resource book. I submitted my manuscript to a relatively young company at that time: Teacher Created Materials. My manuscript was accepted and I began a wonderful writing experience that has lasted many years. My published titles with this company exceed three dozen.
My latest books, published by Corwin Press, are A Guide to Curriculum Mapping: Planning, Implementing, and Sustaining the Process (2008), and A Educational Leader's Guide to Curriculum Mapping: Creating and Sustaining Collaborative Cultures (2010).
Due to my connection with Teacher Created Materials, I began conducting Make It and Take It workshops around the United States in the late 1980s. I approached the company with the concept of presenting one-day seminars and as they say, "The rest is history!"
I have developed and presented seminars, workshops, and trainings, both nationally and internationally, for over 20 years. Due to a personal desire and need to stay current concerning educational methods, models, frameworks, and philosophies, my role as a school-improvement consultant and trainer blossomed during this time.
A Curriculum Mapping Focus
My extensive consulting and training work has been in literacy, math, and science with an emphasis on aligning curriculum and articulating learning. I heard about Dr. Heidi Hayes Jacobs through a series of conversations with cohorts and clients. I began attending trainings conducted by Dr. Jacobs. For awhile, I stayed in the shadows, studying the model, and then began my work with schools and districts. Much personal learning and growth came from those days! I am thankful for the earlier schools and districts' willingness to grow and learn alongside me as I gained my expertise in curriculum mapping. Even now, years later, I love experiencing new viewpoints or variations that facilitate moving Dr. Jacobs's curriculum mapping model forward.
In 2000, I made the decision to work full-time assisting learning organizations in their curriculum mapping implementation and ongoing processes. Therefore, I am on the road a lot. Thankfully I have a wonderful, loving husband, Johnny, and great friends that support me in my work and my desire to positively affect curriculum and educational reforms (and new forms) on behalf of our next generations, the children that have been entrusted to our care.
As I shared previously, I have written a comprehensive professional book, A Guide to Curriculum Mapping: Planning, Implementing, and Sustaining the Process, dedicated to understanding the complexities of curriculum mapping. It is published by Corwin Press. I am happy that it is helping those new to mapping, as well as those looking for ways to advance their curriculum mapping journeys.
A New Book With Corwin Press
Corwin Press asked me to write a second curriculum mapping book to compliment the first one I wrote. It is exciting to be able to provide a professional resource for those who are specifically responsible for a curriculum mapping initative, which includes both administrators and teacher leaders.