The Illinois State Board of Education (ISBE) supports Agricultural Education in our Illinois schools as an important component of one of the most important industries in Illinois – the Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources (AFNR) industry. Agriculture has a major impact on the State’s economy and the industry is eager for additional potential employees in the pipeline to fill the demand for hundreds of careers. Nowhere is this support more evident than in the support of the Agricultural Education specific line item in the ISBE budget. See the current ISBE budget​ for appropriations and proposed funding levels.

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Lesson Formatting, including the 5E Plan for CTE Teachers

FREE Professional Learning Session

July 23


The Innovative Curriculum Resources Project had an exciting June with Professional Learning sessions on converting current Face to Face CTE lessons to an on-line format. Over 150 teachers attended with great discussions and resources to convert lessons to on-line.

We will be offering an on-line Zoom PL opportunity in "Lesson Formatting, including the 5E Plan, for CTE Teachers" on Thursday, July 23 from 9:00-11:00 am. Lesson formatting includes face to face, on-line and hybrid formats. This is a FREE session and participants will receive 2 PDU's. Please click here to register for the Lesson Formatting for CTE Teachers.


What is Finance and Business Services?

Finance and Business Services (FBS), one of the Career and Technical Education (CTE) endorsement areas for 6-12 grade Illinois classrooms, helps students become college and career ready through critical thinking and real-world application of skills that are built within the content and application of FBS courses. By taking FBS-specific courses or through the development of integrated units from other Illinois CTE endorsement areas, students develop academic knowledge and technical skills for a lifetime of opportunities as productive and responsible citizens.

Source: Adapted from

Occupational Outlook Handbook


At minimum, Illinois FBS focuses on the following areas:

  • Career Development
  • Communications
  • Digital Literacy
  • Economics
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Financial Procedures
  • Information Systems/Technology
  • International Business
  • Interpersonal and Leadership Skills
  • Marketing
  • Principles of Management and ​Law

For more information about FBS, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., ILCTE FBS Leader. For more information about ILCTE, please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., Project Director. To be added to our communications list, please fill out the contact information. Additionally, please connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.

ILCTE Innovative Lessons

Career Clusters

The National Career Clusters® Framework serves as an organizing tool for Career Technical Education (CTE) programs, curriculum design and instruction. There are 16 Career Clusters in the National Career Clusters Framework, representing 79 Career Pathways to help learners navigate their way to greater success in college and career. The framework also functions as a useful guide in developing programs of study bridging secondary and postsecondary systems and for creating individual student plans of study for a complete range of career options. As such, it helps learners discover their interests and their passions, and empowers them to choose the educational pathway that can lead to success in high school, college and career.


There are 16 nationally recognized Career Clusters; Illinois has 17 Career Clusters (Energy is the 17th). Illinois FBS teachers may want to consider the examination of three-specific career clusters in the development of their program.

​Career and Technical Student Organizations

“Our mission at Business Professionals of America is to develop and empower student leaders to discover their passion and change the world by creating unmatched opportunities in learning, professional growth and service.” – BPA Website

Mission Statement: “To assist local Chapters in the growth and development of DECA. To further develop a respect for education in marketing and management, this will contribute to occupational competence. To promote an understanding and appreciation for the responsibilities of citizenship in our free competitive enterprise system.” – Illinois DECA Website

“The Future Business Leaders of America is a student organization for motivated students who want to have fun and grow as leaders.” – Illinois FBLA Website

State and National Associations

  • Illinois Business Education Association
    Illinois Business Education Association is a professional organization for Illinois business teachers of all levels. They serve these educations by promoting the profession, keeping them informed, providing them with special publications, communicating with affiliate organizations, encouraging membership, inviting membership of others, providing scholarships, promoting cooperation among Illinois business education youth organizations, and recognizing their accomplishments.

  • National Business Education Association
    “The National Business Education Association (NBEA) is the nation's leading professional organization devoted exclusively to serving individuals and groups engaged in instruction, administration, research, and dissemination of information for and about business. NBEA is the leading association devoted to the recognition that business education competencies are essential for all individuals in today's fast-changing society.” – NBEA website

  • Illinois Association for Career and Technical Education
  • Association for Career and Technical Education
  • Illinois State Board of Education CTE

Additional Resources

The following documents have been publicly shared online

Accounting Ethics Project

This project gives the students a list of famous accounting scandals. Students will research all about a specific scandal and combine their findings in a paper or PowerPoint presentation.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Buying a Computer Project

This project has the students research various options to a computer when looking to buy one. Answers will be recorded in a Google Doc and then compiled into a Google Presentation.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Create a new OREO package

Students will create a new flavor and design a new OREO package.The package must be appealing and obvious on who the target market is.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Company Research Project and Display

Students will choose one company to research. They will look at marketing strategies, target markets, competitors, pricing strategies, etc. Students will create a visual presentation.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Contract Writing - Having a Child

This project provides several different scenarios on people expanding their family. Students must write a contract must include religion, background, and discipline.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Disney Park Expansion Project

Students will choose a country where Disney does not already have an amusement park. The final product must include a map, overall country profile, and detailed explanations on what is in the park.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Dream Car Project

This project has the students find a car online and then do a cost analysis on the vehicle. Then the students will research four other cars and graph a cost comparison in Excel.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Illinois Teacher Licensure

​Illinois offers three different Educator Licenses with Stipulations (ELS) endorsed in Career and Technical Education (CTE). Career and Technical Education programs provide instruction for occupations in Agricultural Education; Business, Marketing and Computer Education; Family and Consumer Sciences; Health Science Technology; and Technology and Engineering Education (Industrial).​(Click here for more information)

Illinois Teacher Job Bank

Search the Illinois Teacher Job Bank for your next career move (Click here for more information)

Keyboarding Technique Outline

In this worksheet, students will read three different articles and fill in the provided outline about keyboarding technique.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon


This worksheet has the students come up with an educational goal and then takes them through the SMART steps to ensure that the goal is obtained.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Vacation Budget Project

Students will utilize Excel to research and compare various vacation destinations. They will record their data and create charts in Excel.

Click here to download:  pdfdownloadicon

Employment Tools

Skills2Succeed Academy (Click Here)

This website is a free, highly interactive online training program.  It helps learners build the skills and confidence they need to make smart career choices and find and succeed in employment. (Click Here!)


Converting a CTE Lesson to an On-Line Lesson

FREE Professional Learning Session

July 21 & 27


The Innovative Curriculum Resources Project had an exciting June with Professional Learning sessions on converting current Face to Face CTE lessons to an on-line format. Over 150 teachers attended with great discussions and resources to convert lessons to on-line.

With the popularity of the sessions we are repeating the session on "Converting a CTE Lesson to an On-line Lesson". We have two Zoom sessions scheduled, July 21 and 27 from 9:00-11:00 am. Both of these sessions are identical, so you can select the session that best fits your schedule. The sessions are FREE and you will receive 2 PDU's.

Limited space is available, so please register quickly. Please click here to register. Questions, please contact Rod McQuality at: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or your contact leader listed below.


Professional Teaching and Learning

The lessons that you are viewing, downloading, and implementing in your classes have been developed through a Professional Teaching and Learning Cycle 1 2 approach for the seven Illinois Career and Technical Education Endorsement Areas and related Career Clusters. This endeavor was led by the Illinois Career and Technical Education Innovative Curriculum Resources Project (ILCTE). Each lesson was written by Illinois 6-12 grade Career and Technical Education (CTE) teachers. Funding for ILCTE was made possible through the Carl D. Perkins grant by the Illinois State Board of Education. Each lesson was developed from Wiggins and McTighe’s Backward Design Process 3, as well as the 5E instructional model 4 most notably used in the development of science curricula. While internal to ILCTE, each lesson was developed from 11 Quality Indicators.

  1. Professional Teaching and Learning Cycle (2nd Edition) Southwest Educational Development Laboratory
  2. Learning Cycles: A Powerful Tool for Teacher-to-Teacher Professional Learning. Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WestEd
  3. Bowen, Ryan S., (2017). Understanding by Design. Vanderbilt University Center for Teaching.
  4. Summary of the 5E Model

Illinois Career and Technical Education Endorsement Areas and Related Career Clusters


Illinois CTE Endorsement Area


Related Career Cluster


Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources

  • Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources


 Arts and Communication

  • Arts (Performing and Visual)
  • Audio/Video Technology and Communications


 Finance and Business Services

  • Business Management and Administration Finance
  • Marketing
  • Hospitality and Tourism


 Human and Public Services

  • Law
  • Public Safety
  • Corrections and Security
  • Human Services


 Health Sciences and Technology

  • Health Sciences and Technology


 Information Technology

  • Information Technology


Manufacturing, Engineering, Technology, and Trades

  • Architecture and Construction
  • Manufacturing
  • STEM
  • Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics
  • Energy


The Professional Teaching and Learning Cycle

The professional teaching and learning cycle (PTLC) is a professional development process in which teachers collaboratively plan and implement lessons aligned to their state standards.



Lesson Development Level:

Each lesson is the result of an extensive development process. Each lesson goes through a series of steps, each improving its quality. The level of each lesson can be found at the bottom of the first page of each lesson.


Level 1

The Practical Lesson Writing Guide has been completed resulting in a description of the lesson and its many components.

Level 2

The lesson has been converted to the Professional Lesson Template with some minor revisions and clarifications occurring in the process.

Level 3

The lesson has been prepared for use in the classroom. Resources are available and specific steps/processes have been written.

Level 4

The lesson has been used and revisions made. The Student and Teacher Editions have been written (if appropriate).

Level 5

The lesson has been converted to a final format and is placed on the Bookshelf of the ILCTE project’s website. Comments are encouraged and revisions are on-going.


Each initial lesson posted on the ILCTE website will be labeled as Level 3. A link will be provided for each lesson for teachers to provide additional input on how the lesson can be further improved. ILCTE will take teacher input and make changes to the posted lesson and repost the lesson; this process will move lessons to Level 4. Eventually, each lesson will be placed on a virtual bookshelf. However, ILCTE believes that no lesson can be completely finished without constant updating for relevance and classroom appropriateness, so each lesson deemed a Level 5 will be appropriately changed on a yearly basis through a focused professional teaching and learning cycle by Illinois CTE teachers.


5E Model:

All lessons incorporate the 5E instructional model approach. This instructional approach creates an environment where the student experiences and discovers the content; it is carefully designed and skillfully executed so that students construct an accurate and detailed understanding of the topic being addressed. 





An activity is conducted that attracts student attention to the topic and communicates its importance and relevance.


Students do an activity that allows them to experience and discover the content of the lesson.


From their experience, students explain the content. Teachers use their responses as formative assessment. Misconceptions are addressed through additional questioning or other appropriate means.


The content is applied to a “real life” situation or expanded into some related content.


Student understanding of the content is assessed through various instruments.


How to Teach a 5E Lesson:

The primary difference between a traditional, teacher-centered pedagogy and that of the 5E Model is in the delivery of content. In the traditional model, the teacher describes, presents, addresses, shows, demonstrates, and/or explains all content; the students sit attentively and listen, taking notes so that they remember it in preparation of the test. If time and materials permit, a project may be conducted after the instruction so that students can see “how it works.” The project is done last, if at all.

In the 5E model, students discover the content by experiencing it. The project or activity is used as the vehicle for instruction, not simply the application of it later. Teachers ask questions to guide student thinking, not answer their questions directly. There is no “front-loading” or “pre-teaching.” Students learn the content by doing it, clarify their understanding through questioning, and demonstrate their mastery through proper use of the concepts.

Consideration of the 5E model always prompts the same question: How can you expect students to know something if you do not teach them? From strictly an educational perspective, that is legitimate, but it is not reality. For example, one of the most complex things modern adults learn is how to operate the cell phone; it has its own set of operating instructions and language. Yet there are no books published, no classes taught, or tests given at the store before the proud new owner carries it out. Modern society changes so quickly that we learn how to learn. We figure it out. Our understanding grows through use, not necessarily through lecture. As students encounter new vocabulary, they will learn to look for clues to its definition. As students run into problems, they will learn to find resources for solving them. As students discover new content, they will figure out how it connects to previous knowledge. None of this, however, diminishes the role or importance of the teacher. The teacher is critical to guide the learning process and adjust for the individual learners. The teacher is the expert in pedagogy but no longer the all-knowing master of the content. With proper instructional strategies, the knowledge level of the student can, and probably should, exceed that of the teacher.


Backward Design Process:

Briefly, this process of developing quality lessons is based on three stages: Stage 1: Identify the desired results; Stage 2: Determine acceptable evidence; Stage 3: Plan the learning experiences and instruction. In the first stage of backward design, the teachers consider the goals of the lesson, which comes from content standards and curriculum expectations. In this stage, teachers use the following “filters” to determine whether the overall lesson topic is appropriate by asking:

  • To what extent does the idea, topic, or process represent a “big idea” having enduring value beyond the classroom?
  • To what extent does the idea, topic, or process reside at the heart of the discipline?
  • To what extent does the idea, topic, or process require uncoverage?
  • To what extent does the idea, topic, or process offer potential for engaging students? 

The second stage of the lesson development process is for teachers to think like assessors by determining the formative and summative assessments that will be used in the lesson. Teachers develop the assessment instruments by asking, “What should students know and be able to do?” What will I as the teacher accept as evidence? During the final stage of this process, teachers develop the enabling knowledge and skills students need to perform effectively and achieve desired results – the lesson plan.

 Additional Resources: 

Illinois State Board of Education Career Guide

ILCTE Lesson Development Process
One-page handout on the process ILCTE used in the development of each lesson.

Professional Learning Through the Development of Innovative Curriculum
This infographic provides the logic behind the professional teaching and learning decision-making of an ILCTE lesson.

Converting a CTE Face-to-Face Lesson to Remote/Online: Professional Teaching and Learning Practices, Findings, and Recommendations (Outcomes of June 2020)

Practical Lesson Writing Guide
This lesson writing guide was developed by ILCTE to capture what an innovative lesson should contain.

How to Teach a 5E Lesson
One-page handout on instructional strategies to teach a 5E-based lesson.

ILCTE Professional Teaching and Learning Sample Agenda (face-to-face)

ILCE Professional Teaching and Learning Sample Agenda (online)

Career Ready Practices

Career ready practices consist of the knowledge, skills, and dispositions that are important in becoming career ready. (Source:

Common Core Technical Core
The Common Career Technical Core (CCTC) is an important step forward for the Career Technical Education (CTE) community. For the first time in the history of CTE, states throughout the nation have a common benchmark for what students should know and be able to do after completing a program of study.

The CCTC is a state-led initiative, with 42 states, the District of Columbia and Palau participating in the development stage.

Business and industry representatives, educators and others helped guide the development of the CCTC from beginning to end to ensure CTE students will have the knowledge and skills to thrive in a global economy. The resulting CCTC is a set of rigorous, high-quality standards for CTE that states can adopt voluntarily. The CCTC includes a set of standards for each of the 16 Career Clusters® and their corresponding Career Pathways that define what students should know and be able to do after completing instruction in a program of study (pages 4-21 of this document).

The CCTC also includes an overarching set of Career Ready Practices that apply to all programs of study. The Career Ready Practices include 12 statements that address the knowledge, skills and dispositions that are important to becoming career ready (pages 2-3 of this document). (Source:

Endorsements: Creating Paths from High School to Effective College and Career Experiences
Two-page journal article that focuses on Illinois’ College and Career Pathway Endorsements. (Source: Education Systems Center)

Learning Cycles: A Powerful Tool for Teacher-to-Teacher Professional Learning
Six-page journal article focused on teacher-to-teacher professional learning. (Source: Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning at WestEd)

Illinois Essential Employability Skills: Framework and Self-Assessment
The Illinois Essential Employability Skills Framework is designed to define and clarify the essential employability skills and provide a standard for the state. Essential employability skills are those general skills that are required to be successful in all sectors of the labor market and are separate from the technical skills attained in career pathways or academic skills such as math and reading. The framework was developed through the collaboration of the Illinois Community College Board; the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity; representatives of Illinois businesses; local chambers of commerce; secondary, postsecondary and adult educators and professionals; and other important stakeholders. (Source: Illinois Community College Board)