New ThinkCERCA Updates: Improved Lesson Library, Cleaner Design

This weekend, our team will be busy implementing updates inside the ThinkCERCA application. In addition to a cleaner design, we're putting the lesson library upfront and center while making it easier to explore ThinkCERCA's tools and features. So how will these changes affect you? Here’s a quick guide to what we’re changing and why.

New Homepage

After logging into ThinkCERCA, both subscribers and free members will now be welcomed by our lesson library. Formerly, paid subscribers were taken to the classroom dashboard after signing in. (Free members were always taken to the QuickCERCA lesson library.) Because teachers assign lessons through the lesson library, and not through the class dashboard, we decided to give the content more prominence. You’ll notice content carousels on the homepage, featuring CERCA Sets and QuickCERCAs, that can be scrolled through by clicking the buttons on the left and right on each carousel. And teachers can always navigate back to the classroom dashboard by using the top navigation menu and selecting the “Classes” drop-down.

Redesigned CERCA Sets

CERCA Sets (grouped lessons focusing on a central idea or theme) have been redesigned to allow for individual grade-level searching. In addition, the topic or theme of each CERCA Set is more prominent with the writing prompt and the associated Common Core standard visible without having to click into each individual lesson.

Featured-CERCA-Sets-Preview

More Access for Free Members

As a free member, the overall functionality of QuickCERCAs will stay the same, but you’ll now be able to preview select minilessons and applied lessons within ThinkCERCA’s lesson library. We wanted to make it easier for everyone to learn about and understand how ThinkCERCA’s features and tools engage students in critical thinking. All lesson themes, titles, and corresponding standards will be visible to any user, but anything featuring a green ThinkCERCA lightning bolt can be accessed by our free members. What’s more, QuickCERCA users now have access to our differentiation tools and can assign lessons to students based on readiness levels.

Quick-CERCA-Featured

We hope these improvements help teachers and educators spark even more courageous thinking inside their classrooms. Please review our FAQs page within the app to learn more or email us with any questions or concerns at support@thinkcerca.com.

Eileen Murphy

Eileen Murphy

Eileen taught English for 15 years and was the founding English Department Chair at Walter Payton College Prep as well as the author of 360 Degrees of Text (NCTE, 2011).

As the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for over 100 of Chicago’s highest performing schools, Eileen became passionate about the role technology could play in education in the 21st century and left CPS in 2012 to develop ThinkCERCA to help all students achieve career and college readiness. ThinkCERCA is one of the top Literacy Courseware Challenge winners (Gates Foundation).