Monday, June 18, 2012

Support for Teachers Implementing Common Core Standards in Mainstream Classes With ELLs

As teachers prepare for the "unknown", the anxiety builds as they wonder if they will need to start from zero in creating lessons, planning instructional units, designing assessments, etc.  It is my hope that the links I have included here will ease some concerns on this matter.

TAKING THE FEAR OUT OF IMPLEMENTING COMMON CORE  (Mike Fisher) offers a very practical look at how the new common core will affect classroom practice.  Mr. Fisher is an instructional coach whose job is to support teachers in making the transition.  As you watch the video, note how he demonstrates that the changes being called for are not overwhelming.  He pulls out some pre-common core standards and with highlighting pens shows what is being kept, what is being dropped, and what is being studied on a deeper level.  For teachers concerned over the new workload in making the transition, they need not panic.  In addition, the same approach is called for in reviewing assignments, projects, assessments, etc.  Keep what works and provide more activities to delve deeper (focus of common core). 

Further, teachers will not need to cover a novel every 6 weeks.  With the addition of non-fiction/information reading materials, teachers will have more time to fully explore concepts touched on in novels.  So, for example, if students are reading TO KILL A MOCKINGBIRD, they can explore Dr. Martin Luther King's "Letter from a Birmingham Jail."  They might also read newspaper coverage of police brutality in the south during the Civil Rights Movement.  Then there is the internet---why not a webquest on discrimination in today's world?  There are so many activties that are possible.

Last, but not least, is an overview on quick tips for teachers to work with the new common core from Katie McKnight, Ph.D.  Short and to the point.  This is also very teacher friendly in layout. 


I hope this information continues to lower any anxiety:)



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