Common Core Related Resources
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Sourcing Primary Documents Primary sources/documents are the backbone of our understanding of history, snapshots of the past that have been left behind by those that experienced it. In the same way you leave clues about the world around you with every text, photo, status update, so too have people in our past left the same clues. With so many types of artifacts, we group them into the following categories: Images, framework courtesy of the Thinking Like a Historian Framework by Bobbie Malone and Nikki Mandell through a joint effort by the Wisconsin Historical Society and the University of Wisconsin-Madison. <p style="text-align:right;color:#A8A8A8"></p>
There is increasing criticism about the Common Core State Standards as they are being implemented around the country, including from supporters of the initiative. Here’s one such piece, by Stephen Lazar, a founding teacher at Harvest Collegiate High School in New York City, where he teaches Social Studies. A National Board certified teacher, he blogs at Outside the Cave . Stephen is also one of the organizers of Insightful Social Studies , a grass roots campaign of teachers to reform the newly proposed New York State Social Studies standards.
A veteran educator works hard to get the reaction to learning she was looking for all along. A teacher for 40 years, Reed Howard worked hard to reach her students through engaging and interesting lessons all throughout those decades. Nonetheless, she found that she couldn’t reach every student the way she wanted to. The two companies her family has founded since then, Wowzers and their first education-based company, Brain Hurricane , were developed with the goal of engaging students and building a love of learning. “When we launched Wowzers in 2011, we wanted to use the latest adaptive, game-based technology to engage students, and help them learn at their own pace so they remained interested in math lessons, which can be particularly challenging for many students,” she explains. “Each lesson on Wowzers is individualized to the student and scalable to students across the country, and we hope eventually students around the world.”
In all the hubbub about the balance of fiction and nonfiction in the common core , you might well have been hearing less lately about its other expectations. One of those is a renewed focus on the teaching of vocabulary, especially academic vocabulary. The latest, fascinating installment in an ongoing series of studies examining the teaching of vocabulary holds some ominous advice in light of the Common Core State Standards: If kindergarten teachers aren't doing strong work on this, there isn't much hope for children succeeding in later grades on the new standards. In a story today, my colleague Sarah Sparks takes you on a detailed tour of the new research about the importance of academic vocabulary . So check that out.
Proponents of the new standards, including the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, say U.S. students have suffered from a diet of easy reading and lack the ability to digest complex nonfiction, including studies, reports and primary documents. That has left too many students unprepared for the rigors of college and demands of the workplace, experts say. The new standards, which are slowly rolling out now and will be in place by 2014, require that nonfiction texts represent 50 percent of reading assignments in elementary schools, and the requirement grows to 70 percent by grade 12. Among the suggested nonfiction pieces for high school juniors and seniors are Alexis de Tocqueville’s “Democracy in America,” “FedViews,” by the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco (2009) and “Executive Order 13423: Strengthening Federal Environmental, Energy, and Transportation Management,” published by the General Services Administration.
December 2012/January 2013 | Volume 70 | Number 4 Common Core: Now What? Pages 24-27 Here we are at the end of 2012. Who would have thought just three years ago that education would be in the position that it is in today—that 46 states, three U.S. territories, and the District of Columbia would have voluntarily agreed to share a set of standards for English language arts and literacy and mathematics? One would be hard-pressed to identify another initiative that has a greater potential to affect the teaching and learning that take place in so many classrooms across the United States. That being said, the widespread adoption of the Common Core State Standards has, to date, done little to change education.
For the almost four years I’ve been writing this blog, I’ve periodically shared my concerns about developing national standards. I’ve feared that people were over-estimating its impact on the classroom (where, in fact, I think it’s more like callers to talk radio feeling like they’re actually doing something about a problem). And I’ve been concerned that it was a boondoggle for publishers and testing services salivating at the prospect of selling new textbooks and tests. But the Common Core Standards train has long left the station, and that fight is lost.
( This is the first post in a two-part series on this topic) Mary Lou Baker asked : "How can we best prepare our students for the common core in language arts?" I have been no fan of the Common Core standards (see The Best Articles Sharing Concerns About Common Core Standards ). However, one of the key lessons I learned in my nineteen year community organizing career was that, though we should always recognize the tension inherent in "the world as we'd like it to be" and "the world as it is," living in the former seldom leads to success in the latter.
December 7, 2012 by Diane Staehr Fenner Understanding Language’s December 6 webinar , presented by George Bunch, Susan Pimentel, Aída Walqui, Lydia Stack, and Martha Castellón, showcased the first of the Stanford University initiative’s curricular units for teachers to use in their classrooms. The official launch of the exemplar provides one example of what is possible when educators collaborate to design instruction that will help ELLs access the English Language Arts CCSS. The five-lesson middle school unit, called Persuasion Across Time and Space: Analyzing and Producing Persuasive Texts , was designed for ELLs at the intermediate level of English language development. The unit builds upon existing research as well as the strong belief that ELLs bring many strengths to the classroom.
Common Core standards–adopted in 46 states Common Core State Standards , proposed by the National Board of Governors and adopted by 46 states to date, provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn in the critical areas of math, science, language, reading, writing, so teachers and parents know what they need to do to help them. The standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world, reflecting the knowledge and skills that our young people need for success in college and careers.
(NOTE: Readers have begun to contribute some excellent ideas in the comments. I’ll get around to adding them to the body of this post but, until then, be sure to review the comments, too!) I’m obviously not a real big fan of Common Core standards, and am a bit skeptical about its practical impact on what happens in the classroom.
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) is here and teachers are trying to figure out how to best integrate it into their tried-and-true lessons. They’re struggling to integrate technology to best augment CCSS. They are in desperate need of classroom materials that they can trust. Like a superhero, the U.S. Library of Congress has just swooped in and unveiled an enormous new (and free!) resource that’s all about the Common Core.
Educators across the nation are working hard this summer to begin developing updated curricula that will fit into the new Common Core State Standards, which will be fully applied in 45 U.S. states (Texas, Alaska, Nebraska, Virginia, and Minnesota have opted out of statewide participation) by 2015. Yet despite the hubbub about the new standards, which were created as a means of better equipping students with the knowledge they need to be competitive in the modern world, many teachers still have a lot of unanswered questions about what Common Core will mean for them, their students, and their schools. Luckily, the Internet abounds with helpful resources that can explain the intricacies of Common Core, offer resources for curriculum development, and even let teachers keep up with the latest news on the subject. We’ve collected just a few of those great resources here, which are essential reads for any K-12 educator in a Common Core-adopting state.
Download the overview below in PDF format With the adoption of the New York P-12 Common Core Learning Standards (CCLS) in ELA/Literacy and Mathematics, the Board of Regents signaled a shift in both instruction and assessment. Educators around the state have already begun instituting Common Core instruction in their classrooms. To aid in this transition, we are providing sample 3–8 math and ELA questions to help students, parents, and educators better understand the instructional shifts demanded by the Common Core and the rigor required to ensure that all students are on track to college and career readiness.
Tools to assess knowledge and level of agreement This tool provides a summary of the insights provided by the participants in the development of this Collection. You may consider using this document to begin discussions and assess the degree to which your stakeholders agree with these insights. These documents provide the unifying beliefs that address the technical side of implementation and are the foundation for our collaborative efforts on Common Core. You might want to share these among the groups with whom you work to build a common sense of purpose. Tools to build common knowledge and understanding