Last Friday, I received this update from The Teaching Channel, and I could not agree more with the concept that the idea and the reality of the Common Core Standards have collided for many teachers. It may be helpful to remember, however, that this is the time of year when we typically experience our greatest dip […]

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Teaching the Core: A Non-freaked out approach to the Common Core standards, by Dave Stuart, is the best teacher-written blog I’ve found for discussion and examples of the instructional shifts in the ELA standards. His no-nonsense, conversational blog entries are filled with stories from his own teaching experience, both inside and outside of his instructional […]

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The CCSS Introduction uses the phrase “for any creative and purposeful expression of language” as the simplified end result of developing literacy skills.  Writing Anchor Standard 10 at all levels and for content areas says that writing will become part of the routine of learning as students write often, for various amounts of time, and […]

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While studying the practice of close reading as defined, described, analyzed, compared, modeled, and evaluated in numerous articles, blogs, and videos one thing has become increasingly clear to me: the operative word in this phrase is “close” rather than reading. I’d like you to meet a former student named James. He was a tall, lanky […]

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I became a supporter of the Common Core after reading page 6 of the ELA Introduction: “What is Not Covered by the Standards.” I recommend returning to this page with a highlighter and pencil in hand, annotating for oneself the details of good news for all teachers that unto us a profession has been borne, […]

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Years ago, my middle level colleagues and I were introduced to a document titled This We Believe: Keys to Educating Young Adolescents. We spent many hours of professional development time combing through its pages, making changes to our instructional practice, and planning solutions to the problems of common preps for teacher teams, advocates for every […]

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The way my principal explained it is that we aren’t going to ‘do science and social studies.’ We’re going to read more about topics in science and social studies,” a teacher friend recently told me. Now, I’m wondering how many teachers are planning to jettison their hands-on, walkabout, experiential, model-building activities with kids for the […]

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Pundits abound proclaiming the Common Core Standards are akin to government takeover of public education, a national curriculum, and “education without representation,”  each voice proclaiming with its own prophetic tone that nothing good will come of the Core.  If corporations that garner huge market shares across 45 states were subject to similar criticism, I wonder […]

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