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Showing posts with label Common Core. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Common Core. Show all posts

ALEC wants our Schools


I discovered a copy of ALEC's Report Card book v18

The general academic feeling is the report card fails.  I think they missed the point of the publication. That happens when you are an academic and still believe order and reason are viable goals.

It is fitting that ALEC begins the v17 version with this paragraph:
In World War II, Great Britain suffered a series of crushing defeats. From the conquest of her continental allies and an ignominious evacuation at Dunkirk to the loss of Singapore in the east, Great Britain was under attack. Germany stood as a colossus with its boot on the throat of Europe. Under the assumption there was no way to win, “realistic” members of the British aristocracy advised reaching an accommodation with Germany. Winston Churchill refused to surrender while the Royal Air Force successfully fought off the German Luftwaffe over the skies of England, deterring a German invasion.
Yeah, WWII, the days of Hitler and the Big Lie. Perfect.
"All this was inspired by the principle—which is quite true within itself—that in the big lie there is always a certain force of credibility; because the broad masses of a nation are always more easily corrupted in the deeper strata of their emotional nature than consciously or voluntarily; and thus in the primitive simplicity of their minds they more readily fall victims to the big lie than the small lie, since they themselves often tell small lies in little matters but would be ashamed to resort to large-scale falsehoods. It would never come into their heads to fabricate colossal untruths, and they would not believe that others could have the impudence to distort the truth so infamously. Even though the facts which prove this to be so may be brought clearly to their minds, they will still doubt and waver and will continue to think that there may be some other explanation. For the grossly impudent lie always leaves traces behind it, even after it has been nailed down, a fact which is known to all expert liars in this world and to all who conspire together in the art of lying."
—Adolf Hitler, Mein Kampf, vol. I, ch. X[1]
All too true. It never occurs to us regular folk that someone would actually -- and on purpose -- tell moutain size lies which fabricate whole political systems. Not only tell them. but then go to the trouble of making several web sites and then writing a full book on the subject. It boggles the mind.

And then we see what Larry Krieger did last year with AP History. The whole thing was a swindle -- so he could get his book business back. Not a single thing he said had an ounce of truth to it, except when he would admit that there was nothing wrong with the AP History course.

As I went through the pages of this ALEC "report card", I found myself making little notes in the margins about the Aggressive Persuasion tactics that were both being described, and being used by the manual. It is a marvelous example of how to acquire people to spread your propaganda, and train them at the same time. It is poetry in motion to be honest.

ALEC has an Education Task Force. They have nine of these "task forces" that are staffed with Think Tanks, such as the American Principles Project, and the Heartland Institute (both highly recommended propaganda outfits by the way. The cigarette companies give them great reviews) who hire people like James Milgram, Sandra Stotsky and Jane Robbins. You'll recall the three of them from the Math Wars days and also how the created the turmoil around Larry Krieger's  AP History swindle last year. They didn't really care about Larry, or the AP. They were after David Coleman, the main guy with Common Core. ALEC doesn't like Common Core. It stands in the way of taking apart the Education System and then making a profit off the parents.

The Review of 2013's Version had this to say:
The 18th edition of the American Legislative Exchange Council’s (ALEC) Report Card on American Education: Ranking State K-12 Performance, Progress, and Reform draws on ratings from market-oriented advocacy groups to grade states in areas such as support for charter schools, availability of vouchers, and permissiveness for homeschooling. The authors contend that these grades are based on “high quality” research demonstrating that the policies for which they award high grades will improve education for all students. This review finds that, contrary to these claims, ALEC’s grades draw selectively from these advocacy groups to make claims that are not supported in the wider, peer-reviewed literature. In fact, the research ALEC highlights is quite shoddy and is unsuitable for supporting its recommendations. The authors’ claims of “a growing body of research” lacks citations; their grading system contradicts the testing data that they report; and their data on alternative teacher research is simply wrong. Overall, ALEC’s Report Card is grounded less in research than in ideological tenets, as reflected in the high grades it assigns to states with unproven and even disproven market-based policies. The report’s purpose appears to be more about shifting control of education to private interests than in improving education.
Sigh. Of course it is moving control over to the private interests. There is money to be made there, and we got to get rid of Common Core as well. A system that will give any lame, poor, backwater school system better educational materials than private schools can afford has to go.

Also, the teachers have to actually be teachers if the CCSS is in place and ALEC wants anyone "who feels the calling" to be able to be a teacher -- at minimum wage -- with no union of course.

I've been looking for versions 19 and 20. The propaganda resources alone are worth any purchase price. This is a whole National level disinformation and confusion campaign -- all planned and explained for you. I have some good tactics myself but ... I guess when you have a team of "think tanks" and a million to put into the effort, you can get more done.




Role of the Federal Government in Public Education

I was asked some questions about the Federal Involvement with local schools. through the form I have. This was a few days ago, but there was a lot of ground to cover. First off, after checking through pile after pile of data, the Common Core has absolutely no effect on the Federal involvement with the schools except to give them "less" reason for interacting. This report about Oklahoma (a news report) gave the indication that since they dropped CCSS, the Federal Government had more reason to be involved. I have a letter to a few to state school board members asking for a clarification on that statement, and I'll post that here as soon as I get an answer.



That's a messed up story. Everyone wanted the CCSS after experiencing it, and the state law makers took it anyway. Now they have no standards, the state is out a huge amount of money, plus the money they have to expend to create their own standards. And are any of those people who talked the state gov in to giving them up around to help out Nope. What a pointless waist of money and opportunity.

I did find plenty involvement from Federal with the states and the school systems however, and it is likely that what OK was talking about in that vid is within these laws, but as I explained in the email, I'm not sure I found all of them.

Who the Hell are All of these Experts?

I was just reading over a story on Democracy Now! about the sudden flood of Terrorist Experts hitting the Media after the attack in Paris.

How to Be a Terror "Expert": Ignore Facts, Blame Muslims, Trumpet U.S. Propaganda

Who are the so-called terrorism experts? In the wake of the Paris attacks, the corporate media has once again flooded its news programs with pundits claiming authority on terrorism, foreign policy and world events. (read the story if interested)

I reflected that this was much the same situation we have with US Education, Common Core, Teachers and what Data should be collected, and why. To be an Education Expert, apparently all that is required is to stand up and start proclaiming you are one. No credentials, experience level, or history of success in the field is required. Also, no references are needed either.
  • Dr. Sandra Stotsky: No educational experience of any merit. No degree in education, zero history of success, no peer references.
  • Dr. James Milgram:  No educational experience of any merit. No degree in education, zero history of success, no peer references (in fact most professors who have worked with him give negative reviews in the are of professionalism)
  • Jane Robbins:  An attorney employed by APP (a propaganda machine) with vague ties to the EPA -- surface background check suggests her name at one time could have been Jane Scott-Smith, but in fact doesn't show an Internet footprint at all before 2009. This is a very unlikely result, even from a surface scan, which suggests that Jane Robbins is a character played by someone else -- as in having even less credentials to discuss the validity or effectiveness of a an educational proposal. 
I would gladly put my name up on this list, since I'm basically as qualified as these three are -- and I'm a real person. But I've yet to introduce myself as someone qualified  to make statements on the validity of particular methods or standards for education. All I do, and all I'll ever do, is to check the claims given, point out the tactics of propaganda being used, if any, and background check the claims of those giving these judgements on Common Core.

And in those areas I am highly qualified and if you have questions about the core you would like to receive information on, just ask.

It is Not that We Can't Be Like Finland
....well... that's not really ... um...



So I'm out on the Web looking for the Finnish Education Standards for 6th Grade Math -- why? Well, because Finnland is the number one country in the world in the area of Education. And, they kick the hell out of the US -- we're like 23 or 27 or something (32). Right? So, this guy, Milgram is going around saying that the CCSS Math (which he helped write) isn't good enough to accept as a school standard. He likes to point at 6th grade. So, I'm out looking for Finnland's 6th grade Standards -- which are written in Finnish *sigh*
There has to be a copy somewhere in English.

So, anyway, I found out some cool stuff about this International Rockstar in of Education.

It is a Trait,
Not A Skill

I admit with open arms that I might not get everything right. That's why I have all of these notes, and make links to everything and make sure I have citations. And-- if it a complicated issue with mashing journal papers... I write and wait a day. There's hardly ever anything "Breaking" in the blog world. A day between often shows things in a different light. Put it this way-- I've never thought it was a waste to wait.

But I don't lie and I pray I don't hold on to false beliefs.

Deceit is a trait, not a skill. People put it down as a skill, or an event, or a necessity of a moment, but it isn't. It is a trait. If you do it, and do it often, you have ... done it before and often as well.

The Standard Stotsky Built

What You Really Need To Know

I could tell it was there, just couldn't put my finger on it. Sandra Stotsky begins her bio on her Univeristy of Arkansas Professor page with this:
Sandra Stotsky is credited with developing one of the country’s strongest sets of academic standards for K-12 students as well as the strongest academic standards and licensure tests for prospective teachers while serving as Senior Associate Commissioner in the Massachusetts Department of Education from 1999-2003. 
Both the current and the archived frameworks show this isn't the case. The archive was created in 1997, two years before she arrives. The present is a hybrid with Common Core. No mention of her helping with either of the projects she claims is anywhere on the Edu websites. Emails requesting clarification are not responded to. 

More and More Benchmarking

It is not possible! It is Not Possible! It is Madness! It's Gates! It's Gates I tell you! He's The Devil!


Um... we'll get back to the raving maniac in a bit... just try to ... just don't make eye-contact.

I keep finding more documented benchmarking. It is getting to be a little tiresome actually. I'm wondering if we left anyone out? I'm sure we did. Why benchmark against countries whose idea of rapid math is counting the flies on a dead yak?

This one is kind of a cool find though. It is sort of a closer between Australia and the US. Recall from an earlier post that Micheal Watt pulled up a chair between 2007 and 2009, to watch two countries plan, develop, innovate and benchmark their way through creating Core Standards. He noted in detail the marked similarities and differences between the two teams, and how they proceeded from step to step. He did this across the Internet, as each team would announce their next goal, then publish methods, then publish International Benchmark information that was relevant, and then publish innovations to adapt and utilize, followed by publishing testing, then outcome.

On the Threshold of
Public Debunk
Thugs Choose Violence

The "Expert" the group calling themselves "Citizens for Sound Academic Standards" has chosen to champion for them against Common Core, Dr. James Milgram, is an unstable man. Professors at Stanford report him as unprofessional, and dangerous. http://l.h4s.club/1BE0O0S
AND http://stanford.edu/~joboaler/


Currently, the FBI is looking into his possible use of children in a research project, possibly breaking the laws we have against using children in experiments.

At a Nevada Symposium, where Nevada educators were invited to debate with James Milgram, the teachers were met with violence. Propagandist have been quick to decry this claim by saying that the teachers were not invited to "speak" and that the symposium, despite the meaning of the word "symposium" was always intended to be a lecture instead.

This propaganda claim is shown to be exactly what it is -- a cover-up -- by the efforts of this propagandist group itself,  -- placing an ad on the Nevada Trends Website which expressly challenges the Nevada educators to a debate. And calling the Nevada Journal to tell them of this challenge back on the 7th

After researching this expert of theirs, however, who it appears was "asked to leave" the Validation of Common Core because of his unprofessional actions and disruptive behavior, the reports from those who have worked with him in the past, lead me to believe that it may have been a good thing that the Teachers of Nevada were not allowed to speak at the public debate -- No telling how this Milgram person may have reacted.

It is clear, however, that this group is not an education movement, they are thugs.

Pony Show Drops Its Mask.
The Ugly Face of Propaganda

I've already read the Propagandist Cover up on this -- They are putting out the message that the Teachers were not invited to talk.. when in fact.. on Jan 07th, the Group that was organizing this made a really big deal about this being a discussion.

http://nevadajournal.com/2015/01/08/expert-critics-common-core-face-nde-officials-unique-public-events/

So then today, The Newsrelease is this:

Open/Edu Continues
to Grow

Open Education Taking Whole Cities at a Time

Discouraged with the Texas State School Board, and their Indoctrination Curriculum, and the only available school books being erroneous (at best), El Paso schools knew they had to do something to protect their students. What? And How? were the issues though.

How could they supply, with the little budget they were given, materials, lessons and books for the whole city? Where would they get them? It really didn't look good. Even if they were willing to accept used books that were out of date, they couldn't find the quantity they needed in time. Then they discovered cK-12, an OpenEdu collective and repository. cK-12 supplied them with full curriculum, books, materials and a huge repository of lesson plans, all fully Core compliant. cK-12 also introduced them to the vast resources that OpenEdu could offer them, and showed them the level of development these resources offered.

No International Benchmark?
No Valid Source of Credibility?

Is That what he told you?

The Movement for National Academic Standards: A Comparison of the Common Core State Standards Initiative in the USA and the National Curriculum in Australia
Watt, Michael, Oct 2-4, 2009 ERIC Number: ED506524
http://eric.ed.gov/?id=ED506524
Benchmarking standards against state, national and international standards, using a research-based process for decision making, reviewing successive drafts by stakeholders, and conducting an independent validation characterise the Common Core State Standards Initiative. Specifying plans and guidelines, inventing and refining standards, using a consensus-building process for decision making, and reviewing successive drafts by stakeholders characterise the national curriculum initiative in Australia.

Jason Zimba reports (in the New England Journal of Public Policy)
http://hub.mspnet.org/index.cfm/27851
... there were fifty-one people in the Mathematics Work Team, twenty-two people in the Mathematics Feedback Group, and twenty-nine people on the Validation Committee. The project lead for mathematics was William McCallum, a mathematician and University Distinguished Professor at the University of Arizona. Zimba himself is a Mathematical Physicist, or was at the time. So there is a lot of people involved with the math standards in 2009, all the way through 2011.

2007 Susan Pimentel started with the International Reading Association and published a book with them , "Teaching reading well: A synthesis of the International Reading Association's research on teacher preparation for reading instruction." This was basically her "understanding" being peer reviewed before she started with the project.
http://www.reading.org/Libraries/reports-and-standards/teaching_reading_well.pdf

And here I find that under the leadership of Dr. P. David Pearson, PhD, of the University of California at Berkeley,(Who is, by the way, the acknowledged, absolute authority on Comprehension -- how we learn stuff) the International Reading Association (IRA) created the Literacy Research Panel (LRP) to respond to critical literacy issues facing policymakers, school administrators, teacher educators, classroom teachers, parents and the general public. So not only are Coleman and Pimentel benchmarking, they've pulled together a large team of many levels and view points to make the standards.

And this is a fully Independent International Benchmarking of CCSS done without anyone knowing about it until it was over, by sneeky researchers at Michigan State.
Curricular Coherence and the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics 
 William H. Schmidt1 Richard T. Houang11 Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 
  Educational Researcher November 2012 41: 294-308, 
doi: 10.3102/0013189X12464517 EDUCATIONAL RESEARCHER November 2012 vol. 41 no. 8 294-308 
http://edr.sagepub.com/content/41/8/294

As a point of Interest it is also listed as one of the most read documents in 2014 -- so it has been very deeply peer reviewed.
http://edr.sagepub.com/reports/most-read

What have I told you about listening to strangers? Check the Primary Source, not the idiot on stage.

Stress?

Common elementary math textbooks in the U.S. cover almost twice as many topics per grade as do Singapore’s. As a result, math textbooks in Singapore expect students to complete about one thorough lesson on a single topic per week, while U.S. students are expected to complete about one lesson on a narrowly focused topic each day.

Everyday stress after stress after stress.
                     -or-
Four High Stress Tests a Year

Hey, I'm still good with the Opt-Out.

In Singapore, schools use a national examination to identify upper elementary grade students who are having difficulty in math. Those students then receive
special instruction based on an adapted curriculum framework taught by trained Mathematics Support Teachers. Importantly, they also receive about 30 percent more math instruction than their peers so that they can cover the same rigorous content, only at a slower pace.

Common Core Demagoguery Has Breached

I really thought we were done with this. The ones to blame however are not the Republicans or the BATs -- but those who run CCSS, and the Dept of Education for not running an Education and Awareness campaign a year ago, or in October -- to educate the public about Common Core, what it is, what it isn't and remove the opposition's ability to just step back into the misinformation spewing.

What a year though, huh?

Teachers faced scrutiny in 2014 as never before, thanks to a landmark legal case dismantling teacher tenure in California, which sparked copycats lawsuits across the country. If you aren't familiar with this - it was a lawsuit brought against the school teachers/unions dealing with the Tenure of teachers which allowed bad teachers to not be identified and fired. Or at least that was the Press. The students felt that they were not given an education, which should have been expected. Yes, it should have been expected. When you have the high percent of students coming out of High School that we had, who had a diploma, but were not qualified to move on to college, it should be expected that one or nine of them are going to say, "Hey, WTF?"  And they sued for Failure to fulfill the expected obligations of an education system.

They won.  -- that, wasn't, actually expected...

Never thought I'd Say this Again



As I shuffle from one level of insanity to another I wonder how these people think this stuff up? It's hard to ask, because there is this thing that is common among the Anti-Core websites -- they don't have comment sections with their articles. There is no way to ask them-- um.. what? And there are a number of questions I have- like the Opt-Out.

From what I gather, people wish to Opt their child Out of Common Core teaching, and have them be taught in ... special ed classes ... under a standard that what? What they were being taught before? So, the parent is saying,
"I don't want my little girl to be subjected to college and career-level teaching. Teach her that stuff from 1998. It was good enough then, it is good enough now." -- Mississippi Parent of three beautiful children.
And you know what? I'm cool with that option. Sure. Let's all stop this bickering and everyone push for the Opt-Out Special Edu for those who want it. Problem solved.

Teachers on CCSS English



Find more Lessons, Activites and Information 

Who is this Diane Ravitch Person?
And Why Do I Care?

Diane Ravitch is like the Rush Limbaugh of Education. She is very popular with the BATs (Badass Teacher's Association.... yes I know that the acronym should then be BTA.. but .. I guess it's a teacher thing). She blogs on the New York Times site. Not sure if she is paid for that or not, but she often has a new post there. Her bio says she "...is a historian of education, an educational policy analyst, and a research professor at New York University's Steinhardt School of Culture, Education, and Human Development." More on her extensive background in Education can be found on Wikipedia

Ravitch was, from many accounts a highly motivated and active Educator. Her early books show sharp logic, informed views and enlightened foresight which very often prove to be true. Over the years, this changes and you can follow the changes through her prolific writing. Her vocabulary becomes harsher, her vision narrows and soon there are no stars in the sky, only black and white. There are now only two sides to an area which as become not simpler but more complex.

Honestly, I really wish the Ravitch who wrote The Great School Wars, New York City, 1805-1973 would step back up to the podium. But as she became sharper, her popularity grew, and more people listen to her now than ever before. But these are no longer the people who use to listen to her in years past. These are angry crowds who love her anger, not her once clear sight. Now she works for the think tanks. It is unfair to compare her to Rush, because she actually did something with her life, and doesn't get caught taking oxies in Florida. However, today she has no concern for any other view of reality than her own. I respect who she was, but I can't offer the same to who she is now. Not when the stakes are so high.

(mis)Information ® Expert Dr. Stotsky

Grossly Misinforms on Common Core

Refuting Dr. Sandra Stotsky  and those like her
The only true failure in the development and design of Common Core was the estimation of opposition, and the appreciation of a politician's lack of conscience and total disregard for loyalty. Because of this failure of estimation -- the preparation for opposition was wholly entrusted to a)the writing of a FAQ, and then b) adding to that a Myths and Facts page on the Common Core website. The creators unwisely believed that if people had questions about Common Core, they would go to the web site and discover the answers for themselves. This is laughable, and wholly naive of course.
People rarely do anything to educate themselves. This is a well known fact in marketing and it is a crucial cornerstone in propaganda.

For propaganda to be fully effective, it must be believed by those who hear it - or at least not fully discounted, and it must be made at a time where discovery of the information which could discredit the propagandic statements is either not available, or the listeners are deterred from investigation.

Let's Fight -- Koch vs Gates

After reading what amounts to the silliest article I have ever come across which attempted to Pro the Koch involvement in Public Education, I have the following to say...

Let's see here...


Koch is pushing libertarianism (which is one step away from anarchy, and yes, their idea that raising minimum wage will lead to Nazism is so far out there it could be considered a horror) Advancing Liberty is good? You must be stuck with the Patriotic sense of the word Liberty, rather than what it really means.

The Koch have a definite idea what Liberty means with clear goals on achieving it, such as, getting rid of public education, the Dept of Health, Welfare, Social Security, ripping apart business oversight, doing away with worker safety (OSHA), EPA, highway systems... it gets sillier from this point.

The point is, that their only involvement in the Schools is to bring them down, and diminish their ability to succeed. Cherry pick information all you want. That is their publicly stated goal -- the removal of the public education system.

Bill Gates has pledged to give half of his worth to education, and other charities. So far, he hasn't pushed his ideals into curriculum (no CCSS is not curriculum, go read it). He has the experts, and means to do so, but refrains.

Gates has written quite a bit about education and his opinions on the subject, and has attended many forums, studies and gatherings, but leaves schools -- such as the NYC system where he dumped over $50million -- to their own experts.

Gates does not choose teachers, books, methods, or pressure one subject above another like Koch always does when they get involved with any college, university, or public school (t in fact they demand their direct involvement as the price of their financial backing).

Gates has engaged the OpenSource community -- and that Koch lover, is the best move he could have made -- because public schools and full education is fairly safe now. Another two years, and OpenSource will be so ingrained in the public school systems, nine-year-old kids will be able to take apart articles like the one the Federalist published, and leave them as the piles of crap they are.

There is no comparison between the goals of those two. They are not even in the same universe.

Offer to Every Teacher

For the last ten years, maybe a little longer, just after the first eye-opening year of No Child Left Behind you could hear in every break room, every teacher's lounge, every coffee shop, and even while they paced in their living-rooms, "If they would just give us a list of what needed to be taught, and then left us alone, it would be fine. I'm a teacher! I have a degree and everything! I know my kids, and I know what works!"

So, you are an 8th Grade English teacher? How about this for what we need to know in Writing:

Text Types and Purposes:

Write arguments to support claims with clear reasons and relevant evidence
  • Introduce claim(s), acknowledge and distinguish the claim(s) from alternate or opposing claims, and organize the reasons and evidence logically.
  • Support claim(s) with logical reasoning and relevant evidence, using accurate, credible sources and demonstrating an understanding of the topic or text.
  • Use words, phrases, and clauses to create cohesion and clarify the relationships among claim(s), counterclaims, reasons, and evidence.
  • Establish and maintain a formal style.
  • Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the argument presented.
Write informative/explanatory texts to examine a topic and convey ideas, concepts, and information through the selection, organization, and analysis of relevant content.
  • Introduce a topic clearly, previewing what is to follow; organize ideas, concepts, and information into broader categories; include formatting (e.g., headings), graphics (e.g., charts, tables), and multimedia when useful to aiding comprehension.
  • Develop the topic with relevant, well-chosen facts, definitions, concrete details, quotations, or other information and examples.
  • Use appropriate and varied transitions to create cohesion and clarify the relationships among ideas and concepts.
  • Use precise language and domain-specific vocabulary to inform about or explain the topic.
  • Establish and maintain a formal style.
  • Provide a concluding statement or section that follows from and supports the information or explanation presented.
Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective technique, relevant descriptive details, and well-structured event sequences.
  • Engage and orient the reader by establishing a context and point of view and introducing a narrator and/or characters; organize an event sequence that unfolds naturally and logically.
  • Use narrative techniques, such as dialogue, pacing, description, and reflection, to develop experiences, events, and/or characters.
  • Use a variety of transition words, phrases, and clauses to convey sequence, signal shifts from one time frame or setting to another, and show the relationships among experiences and events.
  • Use precise words and phrases, relevant descriptive details, and sensory language to capture the action and convey experiences and events.
  • Provide a conclusion that follows from and reflects on the narrated experiences or events.

Production and Distribution of Writing:


  • Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. (Grade-specific expectations for writing types are defined in standards 1-3 above.)
  • With some guidance and support from peers and adults, develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach, focusing on how well purpose and audience have been addressed. (Editing for conventions should demonstrate command of Language standards 1-3 up to and including grade 8 here.)
  • Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas efficiently as well as to interact and collaborate with others.

Research to Build and Present Knowledge:


  • Conduct short research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question), drawing on several sources and generating additional related, focused questions that allow for multiple avenues of exploration.
  • Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, using search terms effectively; assess the credibility and accuracy of each source; and quote or paraphrase the data and conclusions of others while avoiding plagiarism and following a standard format for citation.
  • Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
  • Apply grade 8 Reading standards to literature (e.g., "Analyze how a modern work of fiction draws on themes, patterns of events, or character types from myths, traditional stories, or religious works such as the Bible, including describing how the material is rendered new").
  • Apply grade 8 Reading standards to literary nonfiction (e.g., "Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, assessing whether the reasoning is sound and the evidence is relevant and sufficient; recognize when irrelevant evidence is introduced").

Range of Writing:

Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of discipline-specific tasks, purposes, and audiences.

I know it looks like a lot, but it is for the year and it really isn't that much.

We don't care how you teach it. You can use lectures, or video, or Socratic discussion or sing a little song. You are the teacher. You know your students better than we ever could. There are a bunch of resources though, and thousands of teachers who are doing the exact same things with their classes that we can put you in touch with to share ideas and get support. There are lessons that are aligned to these requests, already made by some of the best educators in the nation, or you can make your own and share them with the teacher community.

All up to you. Have fun this year.

Common Core.



Teachers and Parents need to Stop listening to Secondary Sources

Remember in school, when we learned the difference between Primary sources of information and Secondary sources of information -- and why the two are not the same? 
  1. primary source is a document or physical object which was written or created during the time under study. These sources were present during an experience or time period and offer an inside view of a particular event. Some types of primary sources include:
  2. Primary vs Secondary Sources

    www.princeton.edu/~refdesk/primary2.html
    Princeton University
A parent just asked me if I had answers for the problems with Common Core. Apparently the teachers in her district are looking for ways out of using CCSS. The problem is, the answers are in the Core. 

See, as soon as they succeed in removing CCSS from their school system, then life becomes seriously difficult, because as soon as Common Core is gone, then they are back to 10 years ago under ESEA and the No Child Left Behind hell of 2002. Since every school failed that impossible thing, and the 12 years are up, this means that the schools will be closed, until a new plan can be presented to the Dept of ED, and approved. Most of the teachers will be fired and likely the principal as well. Probably what will happen is the school will be sold to a charter corporation and then re-opned. ESEA and NCLB are laws, not suggestions. Moving into the Race to the TOP program using as a standard CCSS, allowed Obama to give your school an out, and get you from under that mess of a law, since Congress won't fix it.

Obama came up with the "patch" solution of Race to the Top, but to satisfy the requirements of ESEA and NCLB each state is required to have in place a set of standards which demonstrate an ability to "ready students for College ..."  The Gov.'s of each state, seeing that ESEA was going to cut their throats (the changes made by NCLB are simply impossible to achieve. They sounded good when they were adopted, even reasonable, but they didn't take into account the many realities of  education. Too many realities were ignored. In fact, so many that I do not believe a single public school district made the minimum goal once in the 12 year period given to them.) The Gov's came up with CCSS back in 2007, starting development in 2008. At 2010 they had it ready when Obama came up with his waivers and Race to the Top.

It is important to remember here that ESEA and NCLB are not policies or suggestions, they are laws. It falls to the Executive branch to enforce those two laws. Obama has no choice in this. But he also understood that it was impossible to achieve the dictates. 

NCLB -- since the schools were all at "Failure" for more than four years -- dictates that 1) all the teachers, plus the principal should now be fired and replaced with teachers capable of making the goals. (which is impossible for two reasons, 1) all of the teachers are fired, there are not enough to hire available and 2) all the goals are impossible to meet no matter who is teaching the kids) Next the State should take over the school directly OR the school should be sold to a private corporation -- wish I was making this up, but you can verify this here on my blog where I pulled out these amazingly daft dictates.

You'll notice this part --   Institute and fully implement a new curriculum, including providing appropriate professional development for all relevant staff, that is based on scientifically based research and offers substantial promise of improving educational achievement for low-achieving students and enabling the school to make adequate yearly progress.

That there is where Race to the Top comes in, and the need for a fully developed, heavily researched set of standards is needed to satisfy the law. The states had this, developed by the National Governors Association (NGA) The Dept of Education read over the CCSS, and gave their nod to Obama as being acceptable. 

That is and was Obama's only interaction with CCSS -- Simply to accept the DOE's assessment. I'll point out here too that it is against federal law for any Federal Office, including Obama as President, to involve itself with the schools directly at the local level... which is why he could not develop CCSS himself or have it created or suggest that it be created or anything else. The states had to do this themselves. 

So much for Federal plans of Indoctrination. All of this stuff about CCSS is BS. It is a very simple, unoffending, non-dictating set of standards. 


It is going to get Fakey this Year

This is a quote I found, I want to do some verification:  " On 7/31/2019 Trump has private meeting with Putin. On 8/3/2019, just three ...