Thursday, April 3, 2014

C is for..........Common Core

April is a big month for me, and I'm not just talking about A-Z. April is the month we take our standardized tests here in Arizona. The results of these tests have become the primary evaluation of a teacher's skills, so whether I like it or not, and I most definitely do not, they're a big deal.

Next year, everything is going to change. We will still be taking standardized tests, but instead of each state using their own tests, most of the country will be using a test based on the Common Core.

The Common Core is basically a national education curriculum, and the PARCC (Partnership for Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers) is the standardized test that accompanies it. States have been given the choice of adopting Common Core and PARCC. Arizona is currently one of the states to buy in, so we have been preparing here for implementation next year. I've even gone so far as to install a Common Core app on my phone. That's dedication my friends.

However, nothing is set in stone. New York has already used the PARCC and the results were a nightmare. Scores dropped dramatically in both math and reading, challenging the validity of the test. Liberals and conservatives alike are mounting protests.

Common Core is coming. For how long, I have no idea. How will it affect my job? Who knows. As a teacher, I've learned to roll with the punches. I'm like the penguins in Madagascar: Smile and wave boys, smile and wave.

How bout you? Any thoughts on Common Core?


  1. I have read a great deal about Common Core and none of it is good. Makes me glad I don't teach, don't have kids, and am not a kid. I think of Common Core as one more step toward the dumbing down of America. Fasten your seat belts, everyone, we are in for a rough ride!

  2. I was a librarian, not a teacher, before retiring but my attitude about life in general is similar to yours. You gotta learn to roll with the punches. Unless you can't anymore Then you gotta step out of your comfort zone and do something else. Stopping by from the A-Z, and a new follower. Visit me at

  3. One of my current professors loves Common Core.

    One day in class, a senior girl was complaining about the new stuff they had to do because of Common Core. She was glad that she'd be graduating and it wouldn't be an issue for her anymore. She thought it might be nice for the current middle schoolers as they didn't know any different.

  4. Common core is giving many people here nightmares. Some children come home in tears every night. As one little boy said, "Mom, two and two aren't four any more!" as he dried over his homework.

  5. There is nothing inherently evil about Common Core State Standards. There are,however, gaps in the ELA standards--at least at the 11-12 level. Having taught 33 years, I can honestly say CCSS has made no real difference in how I teach (or what), and I write lesson plans aligned to it every day (I'm part of the NEA Better Lesson Master Teacher Project. Lessons are available on the BL website and all are CCSS aligned).

    The biggest concern I have w/ CCSS is testing. It's out of control. No teaching should be in service to a test. We're in SBAC, and I can tell you w/out hesitation that that test has many problems; I've been administering the ELA activity this week. It's horrible. Who to blame? Teachers hired to write the test--and others.

  6. I agree with Robin that common core takes us in the wrong direction: further into a vision of education that is based on industrial models. Children are not products.