Supporting Students in a Time of Core Standards: English Language Arts, Grades PreK-2
I strongly believe that interpreting standards based on the needs, knowledge, and communities of one’s own students is essential. . . . By telling our own teaching stories, we can empower each other to use standards as points of departure for integrating curriculum, supporting student inquiry, and teaching critically.
—Mary Cowhey, grade 2 teacher
It all boils down to knowing the standards and then finding ways of making them fit the situation that develops when you are following the children. . . . The children and I drive the standards rather than the standards driving us. It makes for a much happier and more enjoyable place!
—Freida Hammett, grades 1–3 multiage classroom teacher
From Mary’s second-grade classroom inquiries to Freida’s insect investigations, Carmen’s hand jive reading lessons, Nancy’s poetry through photography, Julia’s pláticas literarias (and more!), teachers in this book demonstrate great teaching that builds from knowledge of children and literacy education—addressing standards without being constrained by them.
The goal of the book is to provide insights and resources for teachers, administrators, and policymakers working with the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) by championing a critical perspective and teaching that promote students’ development as competent and critical problem solvers. Susi Long and colleagues begin with guiding principles for good teaching: starting with the child, developing caring relationships, understanding culturally responsive teaching, assessing to inform instruction, building professional knowledge, and advocating for equity and excellence.
From this foundation, the book provides an overview of the CCSS; addresses myths, questions, and concerns; and offers advice and resources. Then the attention turns to nine classroom vignettes that highlight teaching and learning moments, teachers’ strategies for negotiating beyond challenges, and connections to NCTE principles and to standards.
Finally, the book offers ideas on planning—for teaching, for sustaining professional learning communities, and for supporting teachers’ advocacy efforts.
136 pp. 2011. Grades PreK–2.