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The Nuts and Bolts of the Shifts for the Common Core/New State Content Standards

Pat Ciccantelli. November 14. th. , 2013. Aurora City Schools. The Common Core Standards are intended to be:. Aligned with college and work expectations for ELA and Math.. Focused and Coherent. Include rigorous content and application of knowledge through higher order thinking..

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The Nuts and Bolts of the Shifts for the Common Core/New State Content Standards

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The Nuts and Bolts of the Shifts for the Common Core/New State Content Standards

Pat Ciccantelli

November 14


, 2013

Aurora City SchoolsSlide2

The Common Core Standards are intended to be:

Aligned with college and work expectations for ELA and Math.

Focused and Coherent

Include rigorous content and application of knowledge through higher order thinking.

Build upon strengths of current state standards.

Internationally Benchmarked.

Based on evidence and research.

State led.Slide3

The Standards are not a “National Curriculum”

The Common Core curriculum includes standards for Language Arts and Math.

States voluntarily adopted the common core standards and have the option to add to the standards.

Local districts will decide how (the instructional strategies) and what (selection of resources, literature, etc.) they teach.Slide4

Common Core Process

CCSSO and NGA’s Center for Best Practices

Advisory Groups- Achieve, ACT, College Board, NASBE and SHEEO

49 states signed MOU

Two rounds of public review

Final documents released in June 2010

No federal dollars for developmentSlide5

Forty-five states, have adopted the Common Core State Standards.Slide6

Why did we shift to the new standards?

40% of the students in the U.S. need to take a remedial class to attend college.

The United States used to be #1 in the world in college completion and now is #12.

Academically top performing countries have higher and fewer standards than we had (Internationally Benchmarked). Slide7

What is the Shift?

From a curriculum that requires a

Minimum Competency

(NCLB) to one that will develop a “College and Career Ready” student.

It is a purposeful increase in the rigor and expectations for the application of learning.Slide8

Support for the Standards

“These standards are built for American students, based on the evidence of the best standards in this country and around the world. For years, national reports have called for us to abandon our mile-wide, inch-deep approach…. Research on high performing countries shows that teachers tend to focus on fewer topics in each grade, teach them to greater mastery, and build on them the next year in a coherent sequence of topics.

Bill McCallum- Primary author of Common Core (Math)Slide9

Are Ohio Students Ready for College?

Percent of Ohio Students Ready For:

College Biology:

College Algebra:

College Social Studies:

College English Composition:





Source: ACT, “The Conditions of College & Career Readiness, Class of 2011: Ohio.”Slide10

Number of ACT Exams-AHSSlide11

ACT Composite Mean-AHSSlide12

Common Core Implementation

There will be a significant downward trend in the achievement of all students beginning next year (2014-15). There are two major reasons:

The rigor of the assessments will increase dramatically due to the shift to the Next Generation assessments.

The cut scores will be increased to insure that all students are College and Career Ready, not just meeting the minimum criteria of NCLB.Slide13

OAA Reading Cut Scores


Performance Level























































Advantages to a Common Curriculum

Helps reduce/eliminate the educational lottery.

Teachers can collaborate nationally on resources and pedagogical strategies.

Students who move from state to state can continue in the curriculum without gaps.

Colleges can expect a common, specific set of skills from all students.Slide15

It’s Working Harder and Smarter

Tennessee saw the largest increase in their NAEP test scores recently; In

2009, with its own new standards and tougher new tests, and again in July 2010, when it adopted the common standards.

The state commissioner

pointed to the state’s weeklong intensive trainings for teachers on the common core, and the instructional feedback its teachers receive as part of the state’s revamped teacher-evaluation system


These things are not magic, but they’re hard work,” he said. “They’re hard to implement, and there’s a lot of push back associated with raising standards. It’s


easy, but it’s not


Tennessee Commissioner of Education Kevin S. HuffmanSlide16


PARCC’s Fundamental Advance

The PARCC assessments are designed to reward quality instruction aligned to the Standards, so the assessment is worthy of preparation rather than a distraction from good work.Slide18

The Instructional Shift

Evidence Centered Design- What do students look like, sound like and act like if they are:

Building understanding through deeper learning and applying knowledge across disciplines.

Crafting responses based on evidence including: demonstrate, understand, explain, reason and justify a position.

Using technology appropriately, strategically and ethically in academic and real-world settings.Slide19

The Instructional Shift

The Common Core standards define what all students are expected to know and be able to do, not how teachers should teach.

Lessons will be designed to allow students more time to practice and explore new knowledge/skills (less breadth/more depth).

Students will have opportunities to apply their knowledge to “real-world” problems.Slide20

The Instructional Shift

Lessons will focus on being able to read more complex materials; both fiction and informational text.

Assignments will focus on writing argumentatively using text based evidence to support ideas

across all content areas

(there should be research done each quarter).

Reading will also center on building vocabulary in context.Slide21

The Instructional Shift

There will be a balance of learning content and learning thinking skills (problem solving, modeling, analyzing, and questioning skills).

The use of technology to acquire knowledge (strong research skills), collaborate to build knowledge and to share knowledge (strong speaking/listening skills). Slide22

Demonstrate learning progressions across grades (



Pursuit of Conceptual Understanding, Fluency & Application


Rigor & Relevance


Show a reduction in the amount of topics to:

Be more manageable (



Promote greater depth of learning (




Math Standards


OAA Question-FractionsSlide24

Shift in Assessment Questions-Fractions

In this three-part task, students can solve the problem using a variety of approaches. Logical mathematical reasoning, rather than reliance on rules, leads to a solution. Slide25

Shift in Assessment Questions-FractionsSlide26

OAA Question-RoundingSlide27

Shift in Assessment Questions-Rounding

Students have developed their understanding of place value in previous grades. Fourth graders are expected to generalize this understanding of place value to multi-digit whole numbers. This three-part task calls for students to demonstrate reasoning skills and a deep conceptual knowledge of place value in atypical ways. This task uses the securely-held content of rounding to assess the Standards for Mathematical Practice—


: Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others and


: Attend to precision. Because these practices, and not the content, are the focus of the task, it is considered a “practice forward” task.Slide28

Shift in Assessment QuestionsSlide29

4th Grade OAA Question-VocabularySlide30

Shift in Assessment Questions-ELASlide31

OAA Sample Question-ELASlide32

Shift in Assessment Questions-ELASlide33

How do we make sure our students are prepared for the new assessments?

A Laser Focus on:

Increased strategic use of Formative Assessments (assessment FOR learning) to help us and our students monitor the progress towards meeting the "Claims".

More use of "Growth Measures" to gather evidence of where a student starts in their learning - and where they finish over a given period of time.

Technology based assessment tools - that allow for interactive questions, the use of simulations and modeling, built in testing accommodations and engaging questions.Slide35

How do we make sure our students are prepared for the new assessments?

Using your assessment results in a more timely and detailed manner- not always as an “autopsy”.

A balance of End of Course tests that measure content knowledge and performance tasks that measure mathematical and English "practices“. Also, how well a student can


knowledge to real world scenarios or problems.

We are not "Teaching to the Test", we are "Testing to the Teaching". Assessments that are truly aligned to the standards - so that a teacher who is teaching and assessing in a classroom aligned to the standards should not have to take "time out" to practice for the new assessments.Slide36

Ten Guiding Principles for ELA CC Instruction:

Make close reading of the texts central to the lesson.

Structure majority of instruction so

ALL students read grade level complex texts

(do critical reading and analysis of text).

Emphasize informational texts from earliest grades on (exposure and access).

Provide scaffolding that does not preempt or replace text.

Ask text-dependent questions.Slide37

What does Text Dependent look like in grade 6?

Text Dependent

Non-Text Dependent

Analyze in detail how the early years of Harriet Tubman (as related by author Ann


) contributed to her later becoming a conductor on the Underground Railroad, attending to how the author introduces, illustrates, and elaborates upon the events in Tubman’s life. [RI.6.3]


Create a story in which the main character is on the underground railroad. What would life be like for this character?


Ten Guiding Principles for ELA CC Instruction:


extensive research and writing

opportunities (claims, arguments and



Offer regular opportunities for students to share ideas,


, and


(prep, evidence, perspectives).

Offer systematic instruction in vocabulary.

Provide explicit instruction in grammar and conventions.

Cultivate students’ independence.

Sue Pimente, ODESlide39

Common Core Standards: English Language Arts

Shift in emphasis from

fiction to nonfiction

in reading and writing




Share of Literary Content

Share of Information Content










Distribution of Literary and Informational Passages by Grade in the 2009 NAEP Reading Framework

Based on Reading framework for the 2009 National Assessment of Educational Progress. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.Slide40

Writing Emphasis on ELA Assessments

Grades 3-5 Distribution

Grades 6-8 Distribution:

35% Narrative Writing


% Informational Writing


% Persuasive Writing to support opinions based on evaluation of


30% Narrative


35% Informational Writing

35% Persuasive Writing (arguments) to support claims about topics or texts

Grades 9-12 Distribution

40% Informational Writing

40% Writing reasoned arguments about a topic or in response to text(s) read

20% Narrative Writing (includes applying the use of narrative strategies to literary and workplaceSlide41

All Students Will…

Grades K-12:

Complete grade level performance tasks


grade level formative and summative assessments

to show progress toward mastery of standard.

National standardized readiness test


Grades 3-11:


summative assessments to show progress toward attainment of grade level knowledge and skills (includes computer adaptive assessments and performance tasks)



Performance exams in April, End of Course exams in MaySlide42

What can parents do- help build “habits of mind” (strategies, personal traits)?

Habits of Mind for ELA

Demonstrate independence as learners

Build strong content knowledge

Respond to the varying demands of audience, task, purpose and discipline

Comprehend as well as critique

Value evidence

Use technology and digital media strategically and capably

Come to understand other perspectives and culturesSlide43

What can parents do- help build “habits of mind” (strategies, personal traits)?

Habits of Mind for Math

Make sense of problems 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 for and make use of structure

Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning