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Helping teachers complement, support and extend curriculum based on the CCSS to improve educational outcomes for all students.
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Common Core Reading: Difficult, Dahl, Repeat

Common Core Reading: Difficult, Dahl, Repeat | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it
Backers of the Common Core say it's important for kids to tackle complex texts. Critics argue that reading shouldn't be a struggle for kids. We'll visit one classroom that borrows from both sides.
Deb Gardner's insight:

A five minute story about Reading in a Common Core classroom and a breath of fresh air.  

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Using Informational Text to Teach Literature – How to Find Great Informational Texts

Using Informational Text to Teach Literature – How to Find Great Informational Texts | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Finding the right informational text can seem daunting, but it is possible and can be very rewarding for both you and your students. Sometimes you’ll find the right piece with your first internet search; other times it can be a very time-­ÔÇÉconsuming hunt. The key is finding pieces that your students will want to read either because they connect with what you’ve been doing in class or because they are topically interesting to them. So, here are some tips and resources.

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Using Informational Text to Teach Literature

Using Informational Text to Teach Literature | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it
We were excited to attend the session, “Reinvigorating Traditional Literature with Relevant Nonfiction to Meet the Common Core,” presented by Stacey O’Reilly and Angie Stooksbury at the 2013 NCTE.  And of course we were eager to follow up on their excellent presentation by reading their new book, Common Core Reading Lessons: Pairing Literary and Nonfiction Texts to Promote Deeper Understanding (Routledge 2014).  In their book, they offer student and teacher-friendly ideas and activities for combining informational text with Frankenstein, Romeo and Juliet, Animal Farm and other classic literary pieces. There’s a lot of good material to work with here! 
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Newsela: A Resource for Informational Text

Newsela: A Resource for Informational Text | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it
Unlimited access to hundreds of leveled news articles and Common Core–aligned quizzes, with new articles every day.
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Lisa Burkhalter's curator insight, February 7, 10:50 AM

Great resource for informational text, formative assessment, and differentiation.

Diane Johnson's curator insight, February 8, 12:07 PM

Nice source of leveled reads on a range of topics in all subject matters.

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Infographics as Assessments for Nonfiction Reading

Infographics as Assessments for Nonfiction Reading | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

This year I revisited the infographic as a means for assessing nonfiction reading and research. Although some students are still finishing their projects, this year’s results far surpass last year’s because I changed my approach to marry the infographic to nonfiction reading (factual information) and data gathering through authentic research.

Deb Gardner's insight:

While infographics don't take the place of writing, they do offer students another way to collect, synthesize, evaluate and communicate their learnings in another way. 

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No nonsense nonfiction: Tips for incorporating nonfiction into the ELA curriculum

No nonsense nonfiction: Tips for incorporating nonfiction into the ELA curriculum | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Many school districts are going through a painstaking process of writing new curricula to meet the Common Core State Standards. One of the biggest changes for English language arts teachers working to refine and update curricula is the need to incorporate larger amounts of nonfiction texts. As ELA teachers, we are experts in teaching literature — but nonfiction? Having recently gone through the process of writing a new middle-school ELA curriculum, I fully understand this challenge. Below are some of the ways our middle school ELA teachers worked to more organically integrate nonfiction texts into our teaching.

Deb Gardner's insight:

Keep in mind the expectation to increase non-fiction texts (and more complex texts) is not only in the ELA class, but other subjects as well. 

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Mary Clark's curator insight, January 8, 1:21 PM

Great examples of how to painlessly add informational text to your teaching.

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Educational Leadership:Tackling Informational Text:You Want Me to Read What?!

Educational Leadership:Tackling Informational Text:You Want Me to Read What?! | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

We're now in the implementation season, and things have heated up a bit, but the main arguments against the standards are more about issues like federalism, test policy, President Obama's education preferences, data mining, and so on (Strauss, 2013). Such complaints do not say much about whether these standards are any good.

 But there has been one kind of criticism leveled against the new mandates—and it targets informational text. The new standards have asked for big increases in rigor and the level of instruction in reading, added prominence to a literary canon, proposed a shift from an emphasis on personal writing to one on academic writing, expanded literacy teaching into the disciplines of history and science, promoted deeper analysis of the ideas and arguments in texts, and placed a new emphasis on inquiry and 21st century research tools (National Governors Association Center for Best Practices [NGA] & Council of Chief State Schools Officers [CCSSO], 2010). Despite all those momentous changes, the major grumbles have been aimed at the fact that the standards encourage more reading of informational text at school.
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Language Magazine » Cutting to the Common Core: Analyzing Informational Text

Language Magazine » Cutting to the Common Core: Analyzing Informational Text | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Given the decisive shift toward informational text reading and evidence-based response, school districts from California to New York are working earnestly to integrate more complex informational text assignments into English language arts curricula and other core subject areas. Similarly, disciplinary and grade-level teams are collaborating on writing text-dependent questions that will ensure students do more than a cursory reading. Close analytic reading of an informational text involves returning to the text to conscientiously identify significant arguments and evidence before scrutinizing the author’s support and language use.


Assessments requiring objective, text-dependent responses are additionally prompting teachers to refrain from instructional practices that actually discourage students from delving into complex nonfiction selections, such as assigning personal response journals or providing detailed Cornell notes for students to copy and study.


While these curricular involvements are well warranted, less-proficient readers and English learners will need far more than an increase in text and task complexity to engage in competent text investigation and response.

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Reading for Literature AND Information (CCSS 10)

Reading for Literature AND Information (CCSS 10) | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Following is a post (fourth in a series on breaking down the Common Core ) from guest blogger Susan Weston, a Kentucky education consultant who often works with the Prichard Committee:


Here's the tenth and last of the Common Core Anchor Standards for Reading.


10. Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently.


Standard 10 sums up the three "key ideas and details" Standards, the three "craft and structure" Standards, and the three "integration of knowledge and ideas" Standards I blogged earlier . It adds that students need to be able to handle the complexity of documents they will have to use on the job and in higher education.


Standard 10 also carries two additional points central to Common Core.

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ReadWorks.org

ReadWorks.org | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it
Free, research-based K-6 reading comprehension lesson plans and non-fiction reading passages & question sets. Common Core aligned, teacher & principal endorsed.


As your school year ends, we want to give you a preview of a few of our new comprehension lesson units and passages and questions sets, all of which will be live on the site by September.  We will have:


  • 70  new lesson units (10 for each K-6 grade) with 140 lesson plans, all Common Core aligned, for grades K-6! Check out our 2nd grade unit for The Empty Pot and our 4th grade unit for The Mangrove Tree!
  • 500 new non-fiction and fiction passages and question sets based on the latest science and social studies standards for grades K-6, and     7 & 8! Here's a sample of some of these passages and question sets:

         The Harmonica (2nd grade)

         Building a Bridge (5th grade)

         Computers and Design (6th grade)

         What Mitosis has to do with Families (7th grade)


We also want to say thank you for so generously giving us feedback and comments on the site and for sharing ReadWorks with your colleagues! Our mission is to make ReadWorks available to every educator to support their success in teaching reading comprehension. Your help has been invaluable and we encourage you to continue to share and give us your feedback.

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Pam Foust's curator insight, May 28, 2013 2:20 PM

free registration - access to lots of passages

RPMs's curator insight, June 22, 2013 9:01 PM

Please note the skills on the left.

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The Gettysburg Address: Literary Nonfiction and the Common Core

The Gettysburg Address: Literary Nonfiction and the Common Core | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

The CCSS mandates that by the end of high school, 70% of what students read should be informational texts -- specifically, complex and non-narrative literary nonfiction. Furthermore, students should be able to identify central ideas and articulate their development, summarize, analyze, draw inferences, identify an author's purpose, evaluate the effectiveness of rhetorical features, and figure out the meaning of words. In short, the CCSS has reclaimed a technique popular in the 1940s, close reading, or sustained interpretation of, in particular, the wording of a text.

Deb Gardner's insight:

Several suggestions for scaffolding included. 

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Ted Caron's comment, February 14, 2013 8:46 AM
good article, although I would argue that videos, simulations, photos, etc. are not just important to capture students' interest, but also to build some limited background knowledge about the text. Background knowledge that doesn't undercut the reading experience!
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Informational Text, the Common Core, and the Library of Congress: A Resource Center Rich with Primary Sources and Teacher Tools | Teaching with the Library of Congress

Informational Text, the Common Core, and the Library of Congress: A Resource Center Rich with Primary Sources and Teacher Tools | Teaching with the Library of Congress | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it
Informational text is more important to teachers than ever before, especially with the rise of the Common Core standards. The Library of Congress is an excellent resource for finding and using texts to build students' reading skills.
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ReadWorks Offers New Common Core-aligned Science Articles for High School Students

ReadWorks Offers New Common Core-aligned Science Articles for High School Students | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

ReadWorks is a great non-profit service that offers hundreds of lesson plans and more than two thousand reading non-fiction and fiction passages aligned to Common Core standards. Recently, ReadWorks added a new batch of science passages with accompanying question sets to use in high school classrooms. 

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The Solution to Reading Comprehension

The Solution to Reading Comprehension | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

We’re excited to share our 40 newest kindergarten through 5th grade reading passages.>>

 

Read articles about subjects ranging from the ways glaciers have shaped our landscape to where chocolate comes from. 

All ReadWorks passages and question sets are based on the highest quality research on reading comprehension and can help you meet state and Common Core standards. ReadWorks is completely free, so please remember to tell every educator you know to register.

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Passages for Building Reading Stamina

Passages for Building Reading Stamina | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Stamina is crucial in becoming a strong reader. Students need to read longer texts, and students need longer texts read to them, so they can develop the stamina they need to become successful independent readers.

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Cansu Kutlu's curator insight, November 25, 3:24 AM

You can use these passages in your lessons to increase your students reading skills.

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Road Maps to the Common Core | Vicki Cobb

Road Maps to the Common Core | Vicki Cobb | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

After decades of imposing rules and packaged lesson plans on teachers, of bashing teachers as the primary problem with education, of sucking the joy of learning out of the classroom, and of attempting to standardize teaching as if children were widgets in a factory, some of us see the CCSS as an opportunity to bring creativity, collaboration, and autonomy back to the teaching profession.

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Shanahan on Literacy: Close Reading of Informational Text

Shanahan on Literacy: Close Reading of Informational Text | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

     "Close reading" is a colloquial term used by scholars in several fields of study. Prior to its re-emergence as a big idea since Common Core has lionized it, Cyndie Shanahan and I did a study with mathematicians, historians, and chemists. Several of these disciplinary experts mentioned close reading, though they clearly didn't all mean the same thing. Only in literature or, more exactly, literary criticism, is close reading used as a term of art.

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Newsela for Informational Text

Newsela for Informational Text | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Newsela is an innovative way for students to build reading comprehension with nonfiction that's always relevant: daily news.

Deb Gardner's insight:

After putzing around with this a bit it appears that the quiz option may work much like the PARCC exams' technology enhanced questions. Yes they are multiple choice but students must substatiate their answers with evidence from the text.

 

Newslea allows teachers to print the articles and the Lexile reading level is also provided. Teachers can search on anchor standards or topics (health, science, money, law, war and peace, etc.)

 

Newslea is currently offered free (registrationr required) and in beta now with several features forthcoming.

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Common Core expects English teachers to spend half of their reading time at every grade on informational texts, says opponent. TRUE or FALSE?

Common Core expects English teachers to spend half of their reading time at every grade on informational texts, says opponent. TRUE or FALSE? | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

With full implementation of the Common Core State Standards just a year away, Florida is taking last-minute feedback from supporters and critics alike.


Gov. Rick Scott, whose tea party base has been among the most vocal critics, called for three public hearings in October to garner input. Education officials have said that the comments could be used to "tweak" the standards, which already are being used in the state’s schools.


Education Commissioner Pam Stewart listened during the first hearing on Oct. 15 in Tampa as dozens of people spoke. The first speaker was Sandra Stotsky, an education professor at the University of Arkansas and staunch critic of the Common Core.


One of Stotsky’s complaints was that literature and fiction would be replaced with nonfiction informational texts.

Deb Gardner's insight:

And the bottom line from the article is:

Our ruling

Stotsky stated that the Common Core expects English teachers to spend at least half of their reading instructional time at every grade level on informational texts. The Common Core does emphasize informational texts. But it specifically counts reading informational texts in science, math or history classes, and it says that English classes must focus on literature as well as literary nonfiction. Most of the decision-making about what students read in English classes is left to the local and state levels. We find this statement False.


Editor's note: This report has been updated to include Stotsky's comments, which we received after our initial publication. The ruling is unchanged.

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Elaine Roberts, Ph.D's curator insight, October 24, 2013 10:41 PM

So disheartened that people refuse to read the Standards, refuse to listen carefully or think critically.

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Core2Class: 50/50

Core2Class: 50/50 | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Those of us following the Common Core debate have heard a lot about the 50/50 split that K-5 teachers and curriculum directors should be adhering to when apportioning the time in which to teach literary and informational texts.  Frankly, I think assigning percentages for this kind of thing is silly.  First of all, it can lead to a false impression that as long as my school’s curriculum reflects these percentages, we can say we are meeting one of the key components of Common Core.  (In fact, the Common Core authors’ inclusion of specific percentages is a treat for textbook companies who use these percentages as a way to market their new ELA series as “Common Core aligned.”)  But teaching something more often doesn’t mean I’m teaching it better, right? 


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I Teach Bay: How To Use Informational Text In Your Classroom

I Teach Bay: How To Use Informational Text In Your Classroom | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Ohio's New Learning Standards for ELA/Literacy, drawing from the Common Core ELA Standards for Literacy, include the use of informational text in all grades and content areas as a way for students to gather and build knowledge.  Another way of looking at this it to consider yourself a teacher of the language of your content area.  What skills do students need to be able to read and write like a scientist, a historian or an artist? What strategies might you help them learn to access features of informational text - like charts, infographics, maps, diagrams, tags, interactive data tables?

Deb Gardner's insight:

Excellent read on the use and benefits of including a healthy mix of informational text in your teaching.

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Deconstructing Nonfiction | On Common Core | School Library Journal

Deconstructing Nonfiction | On Common Core | School Library Journal | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

Time and time again, we hear that children do not know how to read nonfiction as well as fiction. It isn’t that nonfiction is inherently more difficult than fiction. It’s often that students do not have exposure to regular and steady doses of a wide variety of nonfiction texts.

Deb Gardner's insight:

Suggested titles for beach reading over spring break?


Teaching with Text Sets, Cappiello and Dawes


Good Choices for Best Learning, Bamford and Kristo

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ReadWorks.org

ReadWorks.org | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it
Free, research-based K-6 reading comprehension lesson plans and non-fiction reading passages & question sets. Common Core aligned, teacher & principal endorsed.
Deb Gardner's insight:

Plenty of sources for informational text here!  Articles can be downloaded in PDF format and printed.


Or better yet, share them with students in digital format on your LMS or Google Drive to acclimate students to reading digital texts in preparation for PARCC and SBAC.


Consider teaching students how to MUTT (Mark Up The Text) using digital tools like these.

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lymari's curator insight, February 17, 2013 11:43 AM

add your insight...

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TeachersFirst: Moving Forward with Informational Text

TeachersFirst: Moving Forward with Informational Text | CCSS News Curated by Core2Class | Scoop.it

To promote their understanding of increasingly more complex texts we need to help students adopt a metacognitive stance, step back, look at a given text as a whole,  and analyze its individual parts to discover how they are related and how they contribute to the whole. 


That is the intent of the Common Core's College and Career Readiness Anchor Standard #5 for Reading, which deals with text structure.   Similarly, the Common Core requires students to write informative/explanatory pieces, so to continue moving forward with the reading and writing of informational text, this month we will take a closer look at how you can explicitly teach organizational patterns in reading and have students apply these patterns in their writing.

Deb Gardner's insight:

Reference the bottom of the webpage where a mini-lesson on teaching text structures is provided.

  • Introduction
  • Informational Text Structures
  • Teaching Guidelines
  • The Five Common Structures
  • Applying Structures
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