Education buzzwords—whole language, multiple intelligences—come and go, but 45 states chose to adopt the Common Core Learning Standards. The questions educators now face are what types of instruction help students develop these skills? And how do librarians insert themselves into these critical discussions?
As librarians, our role is often one of instructional coach. We are called on to help teachers and students find solutions to challenges. Recently, a teacher asked for assistance in locating 35 iPads for a great lesson idea she had. She teaches Read 180, a class dedicated to helping struggling readers improve their literacy skills. She and two of her colleagues who teach our English Language Learners wanted to use the new app from Apple, iBooks Author, which allows you to create interactive, multi-touch books that incorporate captions, links, and even video. It’s a great tool, but we had a major problem—we don’t have any iPads.
By the time students reach grade 12, the Common Core State Standards require that 70% of their reading should be nonfiction. In order to fulfill this requirement in content area subjects, students will need to read more than their textbooks. Luckily, nonfiction writers for teens continue to create amazing narrative nonfiction that supports science and social studies, and that our kids will want to read.
In adopting the Common Core State Standards, U. S. educators are part of a larger educational reform movement. From England to Japan countries around the world are debating a national curricula. Why are so many nations considering one? And where does the impetus to do so come from? Marc Aronson ponders these questions in his latest Consider the Source column.
Can kids garner a passion for literature without Shakespeare, Silverstein, Salinger, or Sendak? Not in the opinion of the “lead architect of the Common Core Standards Initiative.” In celebration of National Poetry Month, we offer three titles that illuminate the intersection between the study of poetry and the goals of the CCSS.
It may start this way: you’ve just finished the first lunch period, and because of today’s snow, there are massive amounts of students in your library—and a surprising number of them are on task. You’re just now welcoming a social studies class that’s here to work on a research project and use the laptop cart and many of your book club students are bursting through the door excitedly.
Earlier this month, Prince George’s County (MD) Board of Education made waves when it proposed a copyright policy that aimed to grant the district sweeping copyrights to works produced by staff and students, including lesson plans and digital apps. The proposal reignited widespread debate about the fairness of copyright guidelines in the K–12 arena. We caught up with Carrie Russell, the ALA’s copyright expert, to learn how educators can help preserve the rights of content creators in their own districts.