Archive for the ‘flawed standards’ Tag

A Literacy Expert Opposes the Common Core Standards   1 comment

A Literacy Expert Opposes the Common Core Standards.

Diane Ravitch has posted this information, given by a USC linguistics professor, Stephen Krashen, a literacy expert.

He writes that Common Core’s excessive detail will:

(1) dictate the order of presentation of aspects of literacy
(2) encourage a direct teaching, skill-building approach to teaching.
Both of these consequences run counter to a massive amount of research and experience.

There is very good evidence from both first and second language acquisition that aspects of language and literacy are naturally acquired in a specific order that cannot be altered by instruction (C. Chomsky, 1969, The Acquisition of Syntax in Children from 5 to 10. Cambridge: MIT Press; Krashen, S. 1981, Second Language Acquisition and Second Language Learning, Pergamon Press, available at http://www.sdkrashen.com).

There is also very good evidence that we acquire language and literacy best not through direct instruction but via “comprehensible input” – for literacy, this means reading, especially reading that the reader finds truly interesting, or “compelling.” (Krashen, S. 2010.The Goodman/Smith Hypothesis, the Input Hypothesis, the Comprehension Hypothesis, and the (Even Stronger) Case for Free Voluntary Reading. In: Defying Convention, Inventing the Future in Literacy Research and Practice: Essays in Tribute to Ken and Yetta Goodman. P. Anders (Ed.) New York: Routledge. 2010. pp. 46-60. Available at http://www.sdkrashen.com)

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As has often been noted:  the wonderfully informative insights about the flaws of Common Core are so important, but not nearly so important as the fact that Common Core puts into cement teaching philosophies that cannot be altered by the people using them.

There is no voice and no vote. Teachers and citizens have nothing to do with what will be decided upon to be taught. Only the central planners can alter or amend the standards.  That’s the NGA/CCSSO:  National Governor’s Association and Council of Chief State School Officers.  Nobody else.  Does that sound constitutional to you?

Sandra Stotsky on Common Core’s confusing way of teaching writing skills   1 comment

Remember Sandra Stotsky?  She’s the brilliant Arkansas professor with the courage to stand up and say no to the common core standards, when she served on the official Common Core Validation Committee and she realized they were not, in fact, going to prepare children legitimately for college.  She is also the wonderful woman who offered to work with the state of Utah (for free!) to help write legitimate, high educational standards rather than to see us remain on the faulty Common Core bandwagon.  (Our state leaders have not taken her up on this generous offer.)
This brand new Sandra Stotsky article is highly recommended:
http://inpolicy.org/2012/12/common-core-standards-which-way-for-indiana/

In it, Sandra Stotsky explains in detail,  looking at individual standards at a time, exactly how confusing the teaching and learning process becomes, as outlined by common core writing standards. She shows that concepts are expected to be used in essays to be written by sixth graders, for example, but the concepts were never previously introduced or taught.

This is forcing teachers to invent worksheets and writing samples to quickly scaffold students to the missing concepts without having allotted space and time to do so. It also leaves the slower learners at a disadvantage.

Additionally, Stotsky makes the point that there is no way for the flaws in common core to be altered by a vote or by a locality.  Neither those flaws which are now known nor  those yet to be discovered can be changed except by the central planners who copyrighted the standards: the NGA/CCSSO (National Governors’ Association and Council of Chief State School Officers).  —Who are not, by the way, teachers.

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