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The Inspired Writer Blog
By Suzanne Klein on 4/28/2014 10:48 AM
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We know that standards cannot impact student learning if they’re just sitting on the shelf. We need teachers who can teach them. Standards accomplish nothing alone. But many teachers have told us they still feel unprepared when it comes to the Common Core. Are you one of them?

As the clock ticks toward the transition from practice testing to the actual Common Core testing in 2015-2016, there are three things to think about:

1. The SIT & LISTEN model is not an effective way to train. Thanks to studies by The Consortium for Policy Research in Education, we have known this for a long time. Although districts continue to favor this passive, large-group model, it's clear that it doesn’t improve student learning.

2. The COACHING model works best.

  • Coaches take teachers to their growing edge by helping them to analyze their students’ work and devise plans to keep improving it.
  • Coaches respond to specific teacher questions with tips and feedback on instruction.
  • Coaches typically work with small teacher groups over a period of time.
  • Coaching taps into the collective wisdom of teachers and encourages sharing of successful practices within grade-level teams.

3. The biggest challenge in teaching the K-5 Common Core ELA Standards is WRITING. Even more than making the leap to reading complex texts, teachers are hard-pressed to meet the new writing standards without help.
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