June 19, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

On Common Core | Content Over Coverage

One of the most common complaints about state or local curriculum standards is that they focus on covering a range of topics while sacrificing depth of understanding. Chances are you’ve heard your colleagues bemoan that these standards are “a mile long and an inch deep.” Are the Common Core State Standards any different?

A Match Well Made: The standards’ emphasis on information aligns with librarians’ skills | On Common Core

I grew up on the ’60’s outside New York, where there were racial riots and free love. The Beatles boomed from boxes and people sang about clouds, vanity, and love. Today we are largely beyond racial riots, love is cheap, and music still booms in ear pieces playing tunes of confusion, vanity, and love. Transformation has occurred, but there are timeless elements. Information is one—valuable and priceless, but packaged differently today than it was 25, 50, or 100 […]

The Question of Text Complexity: Reader and task trump traditional measures | On Common Core

Complexity is a watchword of the Common Core State Standards. The clearly stated expectation is that students will be able to read increasingly complex texts as they move up through the grades. Aside from that, students will be required to complete more complex thinking tasks involving those same texts.

Making the Parent Connection | On Common Core

As the mom of a now-first-grader, my parenting world is colliding with my professional world. Last year, I eagerly brought my daughter to kindergarten geared not to be one of “those” meddling parents, micromanaging the teachers and hovering over projects. However, I soon realized it was going to be very difficult to keep my professional experiences and opinions to myself when it came to the Common Core. Then again, should I?

Is a Picture Worth $2,500?: Understanding Facts Visually | On Common Core

The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) ask students to research to build and present knowledge. For years, this knowledge was shared in written form—reports, essays, projects, and concluding paragraphs. Then came technology. The written format was then superseded by interviews, moviemaker clips, wikis, blogs, Animoto flashy packaged images, Vokis, Crazytalk movies, PowerPoints, Museum Boxes, Prezi’s, and more. We have mapped knowledge, created knowledge products, and delivered other educational messages with engaging technology and Web tools.

A Sticker Won’t Do the Job: We need appealing nonfiction that will engage students and build rigor | On Common Core

It is natural for librarians to compile lists, curate resources, and gather texts to fit Common Core.

The New Standards Dovetail Elegantly with Inquiry, and We Know Inquiry | On Common Core

This is the worst time to be a school librarian and the best time to be one. Our profession is under daily threat of extinction, yet the implementation of the Common Core Standards affords incredible opportunity to make the strongest case for the importance of librarians and libraries in schools. Together we must commit to gaining a deep understanding of these new standards and determine to be at the fore of the Common Core conversations taking place in our buildings. We are uniquely suited for this because the Common Core Standards dovetail elegantly with inquiry, and we know inquiry.