My Mission Statement

I write to serve, to unite, to educate. I write to share literature and flesh out ideas that may be of interest to others. I write to document an emotion, experience, or a blip in time. My mission is to write in such a way that the reader is reminded that we can find humor in all situations. It's one of the great blessings of life.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Feedback on the Common Core Curriculum from a master teacher

It’s a good time for us to hear from another teacher.  While we are still ‘in kindergarten’, the following teacher survey is from a 3rd grade teacher in a public school environment.  However, she has been very involved in CCC.  As a former teacher myself, I notice all the rumbling about CCC.  Lots of teachers have been very outspoken in their disdain for it.  Or at least that’s how it seems, at first.  Actually, I think teachers are expressing the same thing they have struggled with for years---too many responsibilities, too little time, too little help, and too many changes coming down the pike every few years.  I was relieved to hear (not to spoil the ending) that this teacher seems to think the CCC is here for a while. IMHO, simply sticking with one curriculum and honing it will be an improvement over ANYTHING, as opposed to changing gears too often.  

Read carefully.  This teacher is truly a master teacher, and her opinion means a great deal to me.  She is one of the many teachers that I worry we will lose due to frustration and overwhelming work load.  She is brilliant, talented, and gifted in the classroom, and it would be an enormous loss to let someone of her caliber get away.  Perhaps, the CCC will have some staying power, and that fact alone will give the teachers some relief and security.  

Now let’s hear from this awesome educator.

Summarize the Common Core Curriculum in 1-3 sentences.  

The Common Core State Standards initiative was designed to create college and career ready students. The majority of states have adopted these language arts and math standards.  

 What kind of training have you received and do you expect to receive on the Common Core Curriculum?  

I have spent every workday this school year studying the Common Core Curriculum, especially for language arts.
Last year, I co-chaired the curriculum committee at my school and we studied math and language arts K-2. 
I am currently reading Pathways to the Common Core and creating integrated units to address third grade standards. 

How will the changes affect teachers, students and librarians on a daily basis? 

The Common Core Curriculum, nor any other curriculum, is going to make a big enough change without us making some structural changes.  We have students with extreme, diverse needs and one teacher is supposed to address the needs from students with severe learning disabilities to incredibly gifted. 
I have a teaching assistant for thirty minutes a day! 

 How can writers of children’s literature help support the Common Core Curriculum?

There is a huge need for informational text rich in text features at early reading levels. Another genre we have difficulty finding children’s literature at an early reading level is mythology (and this is in the 3rd grade CCSS).   

What new resources are needed to support this curriculum?
Schools, in our area at least, were not given textbook funds so there is little if any funds to order the literature to support the CCSS.  

And with the increased focus on technology (insert eye roll), book funds, instructional supplies and resources, and professional development are often cut.  
Most teachers I know spend a huge amount of their personal money on books for instructional purposes.  

In your opinion, is the CCC just another passing fad, or do you think it will be around for a while?

They will be around for a while.  The consortium creating assessments won’t even be in place until next year.  

 Do you have any recommended reading on this subject?  

-ironically a recent post was about children’s lit
-under “Our Favorites” there are a couple different CCSS links

Pathways to the Common Core-Lucy Calkins,…

Thank you ALL for your participation in the surveys.  MORE TO COME!  

But first, back to kindergarten!

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