From DSC:
1) To start out this posting, I want to pose some questions about “The Common Core” — in the form of a short video. <— NOTE:  Please be sure your speakers are on or you have some headphones with you — the signal is “hot” so you may need to turn down the volume a bit!  🙂

With a special thanks going out to
Mr. Bill Vriesema for sharing
some of his excellent gifts/work.

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DanielChristian-SomeQuestionsReTheCommonCore-June2013

 

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Having asked those questions, I understand that there is great value in having students obtain a base level of knowledge — in reading, writing, and basic math.  (Should we add keyboarding? Programming? Other?  Perhaps my comments are therefore more appropriate for high school students…not sure.)

Anyway, I would be much more comfortable with moving forward with the Common Core IF:

* I walked into random schools and found out which teachers the students really enjoyed learning from and whom had a real impact on the learning of the students.  Once I identified that group of teachers, if 7-8 out of 10 of them gave the Common Core a thumbs up, so would I.

* The Common Core covered more areas — such as fine arts, music, drama, woodworking, videography, photography, etc.    (Just because STEM might drive the economic engines doesn’t mean everyone enjoys plugging into a STEM-related field — or is gifted in those areas.)

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2) Secondly, here are just a few recent items re: the Common Core:


 

Good Read: Who’s Minding the Schools? — from blogs.kqed.org by Tina Barseghian

Excerpt: (emphasis DSC)

For those uninitiated to the Common Core State Standards, this New York Times article raises some important questions:

“By definition, America has never had a national education policy; this has indeed contributed to our country’s ambivalence on the subject… The anxiety that drives this criticism comes from the fact that a radical curriculum — one that has the potential to affect more than 50 million children and their parents — was introduced with hardly any public discussion. Americans know more about the events in Benghazi than they do about the Common Core.”

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The Common Core Standards

 

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Editorial: Make the Common Core standards work before making them count — from eschoolnews.com by Randi Weingarten
AFT President Randi Weingarten calls for a moratorium on the high-stakes implications of Common Core testing until the standards have been properly implemented.

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How to train students’ brains for the Common Core — from ecampusnews.com by Meris Stansbury
Excerpt:

According to Margaret Glick, a neuroscience expert and educational consultant at the International Center for Leadership in Education (ICLE), the Common Core State Standards and the accompanying assessments will cognitively require more than past standards. “They will require a deep understanding of content, complex performances, real-world application, habits of mind to persevere, higher levels of cognition and cognitive flexibility,” Glick said during “The Common Core State Standards and the Brain,” a webinar sponsored by the Learning Enhancement Corporation.

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Common Core testing will require digital literacy skills — from ecampusnews.com by Dennis Pierce
Excerpt:

It also will require students to demonstrate certain digital literacy skills that go beyond the core curriculum, observers say. These include technology operational skills such as keyboarding and spreadsheets, as well as higher-order skills such as finding and evaluating information online. And many observers have serious concerns about whether students will be ready to take the online exams by the 2014-15 school year.

 

Minn. moves ahead with some Common Core education standards — from minnesota.publicradio.org by Tim Post

 

Carry the Common Core in Your Pocket! — from appolearning.com by Monica Burns

Excerpt:

Whether you are a parent or educator, you have likely heard the buzz around the Common Core Learning Standards. Here’s the deal.

Across the United States schools are adopting these national standards to prepare students for college and careers by introducing rigorous content to children in all subject areas. The standards cover students in Kindergarten through Grade 12 in English Language Arts and Mathematics. The Common Core Standards app by MasteryConnect organizes the CCLS for students, parents and teachers with mobile devices.

 

 

Addendum on 6/19/13:

Addendum on 6/27/13: 

 

Goalbook app -- great tool for providing excellence for students with special needs

 

Special Education and the Common Core — from goalbookapp.wordpress.com

Excerpt:

The three strategic initiatives below are the most fundamental initial steps to fulfill the promise of this new change:

  1. Special Educators Trained in Common Core Standards and Curriculum
  2. Standards Aligned IEPs
  3. General Educators Trained in Universal Design for Learning

 

Also see:

50 important links for Common Core educators — from onlinecolleges.net

From DSC:
I wish I could pour through these resources to clarify my views on the Common Core…but I can’t at this time.

 

Willing but not yet ready: A glimpse of California teachers’ preparedness for the Common Core State Standards

Excerpt:

California is on the precipice of implementing the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), which were developed through an initiative of the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers to reflect the knowledge and skills needed for success in college and careers. In California, one of 45 adopting states, the standards represent a significant shift in expectations for both teaching and learning, not just in English language arts (ELA) and mathematics, but also in literacy related to science and history/social science. The newly adopted standards call for a deep conceptual understanding of the content in ELA and mathematics and, also, for the ability to apply this content to other disciplines. New assessments aligned to the standards are due to be implemented in 2014-15. It all sounds good. But are teachers ready to teach to the new standards?

From DSC:
Due to my lack of knowledge, the jury is still out for me re: what I think about the Common Core State Standards.  The crux of my struggle has to do with:

  • Who determines which courses/topics are included in the standards — both now and in the future?
  • How often will they be updated to insure the foundations are truly foundational to our students’ futures?
  • Are such large swaths of standards helpful and effective or are they an extension of a one-size-fits all approach?  (For example, I look back on some of the items that I took in K-12 — many of which I’ve forgotten and I never use — but I’ll bet are still in the standards. )

I would like to see some solid foundations being built as well — as I assume that’s what the standards seek to implement.  I just hope we can provide places for students’ wide variety of passions to be identified, explored, and strongly nurtured as my economics training taught me that we all win when each of us does what we do best.

Can someone educate me on these standards? What are the upsides and downsides — the pros and cons — of these standards? Thanks!

 Addendum on 3/2/12:

 

Common Core State Standards: Resource Roundup — from Edutopia.org

 

Illio of USA made out of orange dots

 

Tagged with:  

Common-Core writers craft curriculum criteria — from edweek.org by Catherine Gewertz

Excerpt:

New guidelines on crafting curriculum materials for the common standards in English/language arts are reigniting debate about how to ensure a marketplace of good instructional materials for the new standards without crossing the line into telling teachers how to teach.

Also see:

 

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