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Cool Cat Teacher Blog: 15 Wrong Ways to Implement the Common Core

Cool Cat Teacher Blog: 15 Wrong Ways to Implement the Common Core | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it

As I was talking to Johnna from Discovery Education about this post, I started hearing her talk about districts who are struggling with Common Core. We thought that it would be helpful to know what people are doing to cause their districts to fail in implementation. Of course, if we learn from failure, we can fail forward into success. Thanks Johnna for this guest post. 


Via Deb Gardner, DT Hernandez
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Non-examples can be as powerful as good examples. Many schools are practicing one or more among this list of 15 Watch-out-for... The Common Core is no magic bullet and neither are single, discreet sets of materials and/or methods. 

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PVLEGS: A Public Speaking Acronym that's Transforming my Students into Speakers, not just Talkers | Teaching the Core

PVLEGS: A Public Speaking Acronym that's Transforming my Students into Speakers, not just Talkers | Teaching the Core | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Before I start lathering at the mouth about PVLEGS, let me just state plainly that this acronym for effective speaking was developed by Erik Palmer.
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:
My message: yes! Everyone should be supporting speaking & listening. Our culture has a slowly dying sense of civility. Improved communication practices would go far to turn this slow death around. Unfortunately, though I love technology, it does little to advance meaningful face-to-face discourse. Modeling responsible dialogue and providing opportunities for constructive discussion, debate, and consensus-making is an imperative placed upon teachers, parents, business, and yes, government.
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Cultivating Discussion Skills in Literature Circles

Cultivating Discussion Skills in Literature Circles | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Cultivating Discussion Skills in Literature Circles by Abi Frost and Kathleen Stern Why Discussion Skills? Discussion skills are easy to neglect, especially when there are so many reading and writi...
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

An Common Core aligned literature circle aka Book Club. Works for me!

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5 reasons not to share that Common Core worksheet on Facebook

5 reasons not to share that Common Core worksheet on Facebook | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
You are browsing Facebook on a Sunday evening. Someone has shared a baffling piece of math homework that was sent home with their child. Accompanying commentary bemoans the current state and future...
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

This blog is a response to Facebook post that went viral...you may have seen the number-line as a homework assignment stymying the parent.  Worth taking the time to read.

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All the Children are Above Average

All the Children are Above Average | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
“Where all the women are strong, all the men are good looking, and all the children are above average.” Those are the closing words Garrison Keillor spoke each night on his radio show A Prairie Hom...
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Though this blog is not directly about PARCC, my concern is that PARCC will be lumped in with all other standardized assessments when the reality is....it is so different. Because of the number of writing opportunities in the assessment, students are given a wider berth of thought. Granted, the outcome or product of their thinking is writing and that can be limiting. But, offering students an opportunity to verbalize their thoughts is far distance from conventional multiple choice. No, there will never be an assessment that is all things to all kids, but there will never be a situation meets that high standard, either.

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ReadWork Earth Day Reading Passages

ReadWork    Earth Day Reading Passages | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
You’ll love this free resource for teaching reading comprehension. Check out ReadWorks.org!
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Refreshing methods of introducing poetry to students - Innovate My School

Refreshing methods of introducing poetry to students - Innovate My School | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Great poetry can be the kind of art that stays with you forever, be it Mid-Term Break by Seamus Heaney or Daffodils by William Wordsworth. However, given the old-school nature of poetry means that a lot of students will need a great introduction from a teacher. James Harlan discusses some cool ideas for getting students into the artform.
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Appreciate the admonition. Although poetry is not a focus of the writing standards, it is well represented among the reading standards. Reading and writing are inextricably connected. Mentor poems & lyrics are great jumping off places to motivate and teach the structures of verse.

 

Although most students will not grow up to be poets or song writers, they will appreciate poetry and poetic forms for their entire lives. Having an opportunity to try their hand at a line or two of verse can be enriching for even the most prosaic among the class of students.

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Testing Talk

Testing Talk | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Talking About This Year's Common Core Tests
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:
This looks to be a website to bookmark and share. The finest thinkers and doers in American literacy: Kylene Beers, Harvey Daniels, P.David Pearson, Anne Goudvis, Stephanie Harvey, Bob Probst, Ellin Oliver Keene, Heidi Gayes Jacobs and many more. The only missing name? Mine!
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New Florida Writing Test Will Use Computers To Grade Student Essays

New Florida Writing Test Will Use Computers To Grade Student Essays | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
A computer program will grade student essays on the writing portion of the standardized test set to replace the FCAT, according to bid documents released by the Florida Department of Education.

The essays will be scored by a human and a computer, but the computer score will only matter if the score is significantly different from
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Florida and Utah bullish on computerized writing scores...ME TOO!

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Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's curator insight, March 28, 2:26 PM

With the number of students soon to be assessed, I see the challenge of human eyes for scoring to far outweigh the bumps in a computerized scoring.

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Of Yooks, Zooks and Geopolitics in the ELA Classroom | MiddleWeb

Of Yooks, Zooks and Geopolitics in the ELA Classroom | MiddleWeb | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Learn how the Ukraine crisis, World Read Aloud Day & the birthday of Dr. Seuss inspired teacher Kevin Hodgson's recent lessons on allegory & nonfiction "truth."
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

A great lesson connecting not only geo-political fields and literay genres, but also teaching patterns in history. And, icing on the cake, addressing multiple Common Core Standards!

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Not a walk in the PARCC, but still the best path for Ohio

Two pieces of pending legislation promise to derail long-planned changes to K-12 testing in Ohio if passed; we take a look at the implications of holding the line vs breaking ranks.
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When “You’re Wrong” Isn’t Right

When “You’re Wrong” Isn’t Right | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it

The Anti-Vaccine & Common Core Standards Paradox


Via Darren Burris
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The Evolution of Writing in a Math Classroom

The Evolution of Writing in a Math Classroom | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
The Evolution of Writing in a Math Classroom by Jawad Brown The Standards insist that instruction in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language be a shared responsibility within the school...

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Feeding Our Students' Reading Interests with RSS

Feeding Our Students' Reading Interests with RSS | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it

Guest blogger Troy Hicks, an associate English professor with a technology focus, presents RSS as an essential tool for bringing students reading material that interests them, and how to use it for leveraging critical reading practice.


Via DT Hernandez
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Many adults do not know how to use RSS as a tool to sift through the mass of information available on the web. Great idea for supporting the Standards and teaching kids how to acquire digital information quickly and efficiently.

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Cindy Riley Klages's curator insight, March 24, 11:14 AM

Love this idea~

Les Howard's curator insight, March 24, 11:35 AM

Great idea from Troy Hicks

Mayra.Loves.Books's curator insight, March 30, 8:55 AM

After reading the blog I realized the article is not what I expected. However, the idea of using  RSS to feed students' reading interests does seem interesting.

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Planning Text-Dependent Questions

Planning Text-Dependent Questions | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
The Common Core emphasizes close reading and text-dependent questions. So what are text-dependent questions, and how can teachers develop them?
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

I am leading students through a close reading of "The Story of an Hour" tomorrow at a high school as a demonstration for English teachers. I have always enjoyed the this story and I have always considered what I did with the story is close reading. I still continue to believe what I will be doing is a close reading....hopefully we will be videotaping, so you can be the judge once the tape is ready for "prime time" viewing. However, I would never have thought to approach the story as these teachers do...and I'm not sure I could sustain four days of study in this text. Maybe two or three and the third or fourth writing...and I think 39 tier 2 words is too much. Regardless, a good lesson on how to plan for close reading...

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Close Reading Relief: Re-engage Students with Digital Microstories | MiddleWeb

Close Reading Relief: Re-engage Students with Digital Microstories | MiddleWeb | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Too much close reading is boring, say these ELA experts. Invite students to read & write digital microstories. It's fun and they'll strengthen key CCSS skills.
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Close reading!!! Ouch! As a student and writer of literary theory and criticism since (well, I hate to date myself!) the late 1970s, I know about close reading. If you've done your homework, you know that close reading is NOT a new approach to reading literature. Far from it! Close reading grew from the roots of New Criticism and the belief that the message of the author was complete in the text alone. Now that makes sense in fiction: fiction creates its own world. Granted, a reader brings background knowledge and stored memory, but the idea is that the reader doesn't need to go beyond the "four corners" of the text to figure out what the author is saying. Not the same in technical texts. Forgive me here! What I am about to say will seem blasphemous to the ears of many, but close reading was never intended for highly technical texts. It was a literary convention. Back in the day, close reading proponents even argued about whether footnotes (even if offered by the author) could/should be considered as part of the text. Get my point. Today, in technical reading, the text can be seen as macro and the illustrations, charts, maps, graphs, links, etc. are micro. They are needed to fully understand the text, but may very well take one away from the text. But, I digress. I am really posting this because I agree...close reading is being called upon by EVERYONE not for the skills it entails or the thinking it engages, but for the dollars it can generate. Amen. 

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Common Core Implementation: I Never Promised You A Rose Garden | Partner in Education

Common Core Implementation: I Never Promised You A Rose Garden | Partner in Education | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it

I support the Common Core. I spend most of my waking hours either talking with educators about the standards or working directly with teachers as they craft standards language into teaching objectives and student centered learning opportunities. My weekends are no different from my working days…always the Common Core, or the PARCC assessment, or the new teacher evaluation which in my eyes, is a marriage of the two. Regardless, I try to put away the standards when I leave my office, especially when I go out with my husband to enjoy a relaxed evening over a restaurant dinner. And that is how Saturday night’s dinner began. A glass of red wine and my guy….until our a one-time neighbor spied us in our corner table and came by to say “hello.”

“So good to see the two of you,” she oozed while simultaneously grabbing an open chair from the empty table nearby. “Must be two years anyway!”

“Yes, it has been awhile. How is your family?” I asked as she pulled the chair up to our table and sat down. “Growing, I’m sure. And your mother? I haven’t seen her this winter!” At that I grew uneasy…had her mother passed?

“Mom moved in with me. The winter was so rough and driving dangerous, so she stayed with us. She went home last week.”

Relief.

“Dea, aren’t you supporting that Common Core?” Her tone was almost accusatory. “Our school is doing Common Core and Addie is struggling! Don’t you work with teachers and schools on that?”

“Well, yes, I do.”

Before I could get another word out, she rushed ahead: “God, could our teachers use you! Not only is Addie struggling, her teacher tells me its is really hard for her. Addie used to be a good student. Now she’s just confused. And I am too. She gets this homework and I can’t do it. Whatever happened to memorization!” She threw her hands in the air, clearly frustrated. Finish the blog by clicking on the link above...

Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

The efforts to develop the Common Core Standards began in 2009. Today, 44 states, the District of Columbia, four territories, and the Department of Defense Education Activity (DoDEA) have adopted the Common Core. Granted, this is only 2014, but I would hope that the standards would soon become understood as a “consistent guidelines for what every student should know and be able to do in math and English language arts from kindergarten through 12th grade” (www.corestandards.org) rather than a set of activities or prescribed instructional methods. To this point, the process has not been easy. I can only imagine the resistance to change and the struggle for status quo will diminish as time moves forward, experience widens, and those apprehensive of new ideas find benefits in the standards’ effects.

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Text to Text | ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘Friendship in an Age of Economics’

Text to Text | ‘Of Mice and Men’ and ‘Friendship in an Age of Economics’ | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it

As a new production of "Of Mice and Men" begins on Broadway, this Text to Text celebrates the friendship at the heart of the novel and poses questions about the role of friendship today.


Via DT Hernandez
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The Top 50 Education Blogs Every Teacher and Educator Should Know about

The Top 50 Education  Blogs Every Teacher and Educator Should Know about | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
I have seen several lists featuring 'top education blogs' but I never dared cite them here because their authors do not have the recommended authority in the field for them to compile and rank...

Via Dafnord , Aki Puustinen
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Not only do I appreciate the blog roll, if you are a blogger, you can register for your blog to be rated among these top-notch resources.

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Writing Fluency: A Key to Success on Next Generation Assessments

Writing Fluency: A Key to Success on Next Generation Assessments | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it

AUse this simple strategy to pump up your students' writing muscles and prepare them for the new assessments.

Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Appreciate the point Ryan is making. During my workshops, I regularly ask teachers to write for three minutes on a topic we are discussing. You would be amazed at the number of teachers who do not have the persistence and fluency of writing thought process to sustain their own writing for three minutes. My activity lays the groundwork for teachers to experience the dilemma many students face when asked to write. My thoughts: start with one minute. When everyone can write for one minute, up the time to two minutes, then three and then four. Before you know it, your students will be focused on writing for twenty minutes at a time. And teachers, write with them. At the core of our students persistence and desire to succeed is a model in the classroom. Don't ask kids to do something you are not prepared to do yourself.

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Core to College: Developing and Using a Definition of College & Career Readiness

Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

This 64-page guide is packed with information regarding the work of groups directly associated with the Common Core State Standards as well as the work of educationally based companies aligned to the CCSS. Within the pages are definitions of College and Career Readiness, means by which to expand the discussion and encourage thinking about college and career readiness, and methods to support building on the concept and increasing opportunities of success for all students.

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Employers, Teachers Step Up for Common Core | Business Roundtable

Employers, Teachers Step Up for Common Core | Business Roundtable | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
The POLITICO headline, "Big Business Takes on Tea Party over Common Core," elevates political conflict over the subtantive nature of the debate, but such is the nature of the journalistic beast, and well, the political beast. The reporting is solid.
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A concluded battle in the curriculum wars

A concluded battle in the curriculum wars | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
At the Hoover Institution’s Defining Ideas journal, Tom Loveless has a brief, measured examination of curriculum debates at the present time.
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

Voicing my agreement. Knowledge is necessarily incised within the precepts of comprehension. To enjoy a novel, one must have comprehension not only of the meaning and nuance of words, but also the nature of humanity, in its goodness and in its evil. The premises of close reading were never designed for application among the texts of scientific study--close reading was a literarily- based intellectual practice. It works in literature because the text creates the setting and the premise of the conflicts. Texts of other domains and disciplines science and social studies, and every other discipline require that readers have varying degrees of knowledge in either the working memory or the background memory. Without that, reading comprehension becomes a labor in frustration.

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Navigating the Common Core - Education Next

Navigating the Common Core - Education Next | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Complexities threaten implementation
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

This article reports on three significant issues confronting and potentially undermining the continued success of the Common Core: oversight, infrastructure, and politics. Yes, there needs to be a "national czar" with educational credibility and political agnosticism. I'm available!

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Heidi Hayes Jacobs: "21st Century Teaching & Learning within the Common Core" - YouTube

http://www.siis2012.com Keynote from the second general session of the 2012 School Improvement Innovation Summit held in Salt Lake City. Heidi Hayes Jacobs i...
Dr. Dea Conrad-Curry's insight:

"Paper is dead." We have met the enemy and it is a "number 2 pencil..." Much of what Heidi Hayes Jacobs says in this talk is accurate and much is predictive. Actually, she recognizes paper does have a place, but not in books. Paper binds content and makes the dynamic nature of life and study a static, flat delivery system of static flat content.

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Analyzing Sources in Science

Analyzing Sources in Science | Common Core ELA_Literacy | Scoop.it
Analyzing Sources in Science: Using Facts, Reasoned Judgment, and Speculation to Determine Reliability By Christine Schepeler Determining the reliability of a source is important throughout all dis...

Via Darren Burris
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