Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Common Core State Standards

 You've probably heard or read about the Common Core State Standards. If you have wondered what it means for students and educators, please keep reading.

Teachers know that, in the 90s, state standards were developed to guide instruction. Each state had its own.  A few years ago, the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and the Council of Chief State School Officers began work on national standards to increase consistency.  These new national standards are challenging.

According to the Common Core Web site, the "standards provide a consistent, clear understanding of what students are expected to learn, 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."

The Common Core site also states that "these standards define the knowledge and skills students should have within their K-12 education careers so that they will graduate high school able to succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing academic college courses and in workforce training programs. The standards:
  • are aligned with college and work expectations;
  • are clear, understandable and consistent;
  • include rigorous content and application of knowledge through high-order skills;
  • build upon strengths and lessons of current state standards;
  • are informed by other top performing countries, so that all students are prepared to succeed in our global economy and society; and
  • are evidence-based.
Where to Begin:
During our 2012-2013 HMS faculty meetings we will focus on Reading Informational Texts and Informational Writing as these two strands run through the curriculum.

Informational Texts
  1. Reading Closely and Making Logical Inferences
  2. Reading to Determine Central Ideas and Themes
  3. Reading to Analyze How Individuals, Events, and Ideas Develop and Interact Over the Course of a Text
  4. Reading to Interpret the Language Used in the Text
  5. Reading to Analyze the Structure of a Text
  6. Reading to Assess the Author's Point of View and How It Shapes the Text
  7. Reading to Integrate Knowledge and Ideas and Think Across Informational Text
Informational Writing
  1. It Is Especially Important That Information Writers Learn to Sort, Categorize, and Elaborate on Information
  2. Writing About a Topic Extends Learning About It - and Therefore, Informational Writing Belongs In and Beyond the ELA Classroom

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