Sunday morning I continued my reading of Principles to Actions. This book, released by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics, describes what a high-quality mathematics program is supposed to look like. The illustration in the chapter about curriculum (page 76) is an excellent example of how a small group of teachers improved the organization and instruction of one topic within their curriculum.
If I were in that group of teachers, I would want to figure out a way to get our ideas in front of textbook writers and curriculum designers. The teachers' work improves upon the sequencing of instruction presented in the textbook so that it is in better alignment with the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and in better alignment with effective methods for teaching the concepts. These improvements could help the textbook publisher when they go to write the next edition. This leads me to the title question of this post, "What's the mechanism for getting the word back to publishers?"
I work in assessment development rather than textbook development. However, I have the same question because, in my experience, I rarely get feedback from the marketplace about our work. For custom-developed assessments, our client provides ongoing feedback that we incorporate before releasing a test or an item bank to the field. However, for product development, there is little client feedback until after a product launch.
Have you tried to report something back to either a textbook publisher or an assessment publisher? What was your experience? What was the result? I'm curious to learn whether or not publishers are responsive to good ideas presented to them from educators.
National Council of Teachers of Mathematics. (2014). Principles to action: ensuring mathematical success for all. Reston, VA: National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.