Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Great News About the Common Core!

There is so much negative media about the Common Core, I thought it would be nice to shed some light on what I view as a real strength to these benchmarks, especially during reading month.  There's a shift in required reading across all grade levels to what is referred to as informational text.  What is it?  Informational or expository texts main purpose is to inform or instruct the reader in some way.  There is often specialized vocabulary, and many times diagrams or charts, photos or illustrations that aide in the delivery of the information.

Why is this a 'good thing'?  The reading materials associated with informational texts are providing real and true information.  There's a shift to reading based on interest.  We know that if our children (or students) are interested in a topic, then they will be engaged.  Give them a book on how a shark really lives (especially during Shark Week!), with photographs, as opposed to a story about a shark and there will probably be increased desire to read.  There's a book referenced in a link I'll share with you about children of the wild west.  If your child has an interest in that time period and growing up in the era, his/her drive to learn will be self-motivated, and this book is a great resource.

I believe we will see boys reading more.  The books available in classroom libraries will shift from stories to informational texts.  Stories are still very relevant, but there will be a better balance. What do you have at home?  I've attached a book list generated by Judy Freeman.  They are her picks of the top non-fiction books of the century.  These are just a sampling of what is available.

Some Great Non-Fiction Picks for Children

Remember, this is a change brought forth by the Common Core.  Next time you feel frustrated by it's math methods, take a moment and think about the wonderful shift it's trying to bring about with reading.  Then go get a book.

I've added one last video from author and historian Marc Aronson.  Take a moment to watch.

Keep It Simple...and have patience with the Common Core ♥ D

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