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Common Core: New Opportunities
for Deeper Learning
Leinda Peterman, Laura Sampson and
Nevin Katz
ETLO Staff
Common Core + Deeper Learning
“Rigorous: The standards include high-level
cognitive demands by asking students to
demonstrate deep conceptual understanding
through the application of content knowledge
and skills to new situations.
High-level cognitive demand includes reasoning,
justification, synthesis, analysis, and problemsolving.”
- Common Core State Standards Initiative Standards-Setting Criteria
The Common Core State Standards
• Aligned with college and work expectations,
regardless of where students live – consistent
curriculum across states
• Include rigorous content and application of
knowledge through high-order skills
• Based on evidence and research
• Describe what students should understand and
be able to do
• call for more skilled and knowledgeable instruction
but do not prescribe how to teach.
Key Instructional Shifts - ELA
ELA standards focus on
– Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction and
informational texts
– Reading and writing grounded in evidence in the text
– Regular practice with complex text and its academic
vocabulary ; growing complexity of texts across grades
Literacy standards are:
• an interdisciplinary approach to literacy
• designed to embed high-quality reading and writing
expectations in history, social studies, the sciences, careertechnical education and other areas.
Key Instructional Shifts - Math
• Focus strongly where standards focus
– Narrow and deeper; no more mile-wide, inch-deep
• Coherence: think across grades, link to major
topics within
– Connect learning within and across grades
• Rigor
– require conceptual understanding
– procedural skill and fluency
– application with intensity.
Implementing Common Core State
First step, “unpack” or “disaggregate” the
Standards. Professional development needed!
Teaching to a standard requires that teachers:
• identify the skills that need to be mastered
and the key concepts to be taught
• write essential questions
• determine appropriate pacing.
Common Core State Standards
• curriculum
• how teachers are to teach
• a huge need for curriculum materials
• a huge need for teacher professional
• Common Core State Standards Initiative Standards-Setting
Criteria http://www.corestandards.org/resources
• Common Core State Standards Implementation: Rubric And
Self-assessment Tool
• Common Core State Standards Webinar
Rationale Behind the ELA Standards
• David Coleman: The US has doubled the amount of money
invested in education in the past 40 years, but we’ve seen no
changes, no advances in testing data.
• There is a discrepancy among state exams: one student can
proficiently pass the state exam in New York and another can
pass the state exam in Texas, yet these two students will score
very differently on national tests.
• The goal is to be college and/or workforce ready.
• Emphasis on high-order skills and rigorous content.
Main Shifts in ELA
1 A shift in the earliest grades (K-5) where 80% of
classroom time was focused on literature to now focus
on general knowledge for students to acquire
background knowledge. 50% of texts need to be
2 The broad base for literacy extends in grades 6-12, so
the standards are more interdisciplinary: Literacy is a
fundamental part of science, history and the arts.
3 Text complexity is important (See Appendix B:
http://www.corestandards.org/assets/Appendix_B.pdf )
Main Shifts in ELA
4 A focus on questions about literature that force you to pay
attention to the text, rather than student feelings or student
personal reactions about the text.
5 A focus away from Personal Writing to Argument/Opinion
and Research Writing. (See Appendix C:
http://www.corestandards.org/assets/Appendix_C.pdf )
6 Academic Vocabulary instead of Literary Terms as a focus.
(See Appendix A:
http://www.corestandards.org/assets/Appendix_A.pdf )
How we address the CCSS
So now what?
Focus on fewer standards, rather than many
Don’t teach the standards
Include readings and some of the support documents to illustrate the
standards in use
Still use research-based and evidence-based materials, do not need only
CCSS-titled materials.
Increase discussion around the issues close and important to the
Common Core
What does student mastery of a standard actually look like?
Focus on Fewer Standards
Use Non-CCSS Resources
Updating the Content Focus
Deep Discussion and Reflection
CCSS ELA Resources
ELA Curriculum Exemplars: http://engageny.org/resource/curriculumexemplars/
Common Core Video Series: http://engageny.org/resource/commoncore-video-series/
Sample Common Core Implementation Timeline for NY:
Math CCSS Standards
Areas of Instructional Emphasis
– Applying math skills to specific tasks; ex. Solve word
problems that call for addition of three whole
numbers whose sum is less than or equal to 20 (Gr. 1,
– Building math understanding and skills in a coherent
way through grade levels
– Analysis of complex real-life scenarios and data sets
There are 8 Standards for Mathematical
Practice that span all grade levels.
Make sense of standards and persevere in solving them.
Reason abstractly and quantitatively.
Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others.
Model with mathematics.
Use appropriate tools strategically.
Attend to precision.
Look to and make use of structure.
Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning.
Supporting the Common Core through
Online Instruction
Goal: To train educators to support students in
achieving proficiency at the grade-appropriate math
competencies outlined by the common core.
Challenge: Teachers are likely to have a curriculum
that is already in place, and constrained by existing
tests. It can be difficult for some to integrate
lessons that support the CCSS standards that are
very specific and may not fit into their curriculum.
How Math Content Standards are Organized:
Grade Level > Domain > Group > Standards
CCSS Chart from Details Page of Virtual
Manipulatives Course
 Make educators aware of the common core at their
grade level.
 Walk educators through student tasks that address
Common Core standards.
 In courses we design for students, provide common-core
aligned activities that stress application of CCSS.
 Provide suggestions for how teachers can enrich their
existing lessons with common core-aligned activities
without having to rewrite their curriculum.
CCSS Standards: Interpreting Data
S-ID.2. Use statistics appropriate to the shape of the data distribution to compare
center (median, mean) and spread (interquartile range, standard deviation) of two
or more different data sets.
This standard is supported in The Mean and Standard Deviation Geogebra Applet,
which was used in a statistics online course for students.
CCSS Standards: Interpreting Data
S-ID.7. Interpret the slope (rate of change) and the intercept (constant term) of a
linear model in the context of the data.
This standard is supported in the same course with The Party Game, challenges
students to match the correct graph to each situation on the screen.
CCSS Standards: Interpreting Data
S-ID.3. Interpret differences in shape, center, and spread in the context of the data
sets, accounting for possible effects of extreme data points (outliers).
This standard is supported in the same course with Ecostat Explorer, a game that
explores how statistics is applied to scientific field studies.
CCSS Standards: Geometry
S-ID.3. Give an informal argument using Cavalieri’s principle for the formulas for
the volume of a sphere and other solid figures.
This standard is supported in a Geometry Course for teachers with an embedded
web comic that illustrates how one could explain this concept to students.
CCSS Math Resources
Common Core Standards for Mathematical
Common Core Exemplars (scroll down for
Mathematics Appendix
Thank you!
 Leinda Peterman: [email protected]
 Laura Sampson: [email protected]
 Nevin Katz: [email protected]

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