What are the Key Changes?

English Language Arts
What may be different in your child's classroom...

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for English language arts describe the expertise students will develop in reading, writing, speaking and listening, and language. Students will use and strengthen these skills in other subjects, such as social studies, science and technical subjects.

    •   Include more informational text: Students will still read fiction and literary classics, and will also be asked to read and understand non-fiction informational texts like the Gettysburg Address in English or history class or a scientific article in biology or chemistry class. The majority of required reading in college and the workplace is non-fiction informational text, so this change will help prepare students for the next step.

    •   Focus on literacy in all content areas: All teachers of specific content areas, such as history or science, are expected to instruct students on how to be master readers in their subject. This is also called "disciplinary literacy."

    •   Expose students to more complex texts: A student's ability to read complex text determines his/her college readiness more than any other factor.

    •   Develop evidence-based, opinion and argumentative writing: Students will be able to write in a clear, concise, and compelling manner, just as they will in college and the workplace. 


 
Mathematics
What may be different in your child's classroom...

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for math­ematics include two types of standards: one for math­ematical practice (how students are able to apply and extend math principles) and one for mathematical content (what students know about math). The two are linked together while students are learning.

•   Greater Focus: Common Core dives deeper into key concepts, such as fractions and proportions, to ensure students establish a strong foundation before moving to the next level of difficulty. More focus allows students to apply what they are learning to real-world math problems.

•   Coherence: Common Core asks students to connect back to learning they have previously mastered in order to reinforce concepts and see mathematics as a subject that makes sense.

•   Rigor: Common Core requires a balance of conceptual understanding, procedural skill and fluency, and real-world application. Although memorization is required, students will also be asked to work beyond memorization and communicate the thinking behind answers.

 

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