In 2010, North Carolina adopted the Common Core State Standards for K-12 English Language Arts and Mathematics. According to the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, these standards will be used for teaching and assessment beginning in the 2012-2013 academic year. The text of the standards is available here.
So what are these standards about anyway?
The Common Core State Standards Initiative is a state-led effort coordinated by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO). The standards were developed in collaboration with teachers, school administrators, and experts, to provide a clear and consistent framework to prepare our children for college and the workforce.
The standards are informed by the highest, most effective models from states across the country and countries around the world, and provide teachers and parents with a common understanding of what students are expected to learn. Consistent standards will provide appropriate benchmarks for all students, regardless of where they live.
These standards define the knowledge and skills students should have within their K-12 education careers so that they will graduate high school able to succeed in entry-level, credit-bearing academic college courses and in workforce training programs. The standards:
- Are aligned with college and work expectations;
- Are clear, understandable and consistent;
- Include rigorous content and application of knowledge through high-order skills;
- Build upon strengths and lessons of current state standards;
- Are informed by other top performing countries, so that all students are prepared to succeed in our global economy and society; and
- Are evidence-based.
Our state, as well as many others have adopted these standards. These changes can be overwhelming, but Common Core State Standards has many resources to help us navigate the changes successfully. Common Core State Standards has just released their First Grade Common Core Workbook. It includes the largest collection of worksheets and activities for teaching the First Grade Common Core State Standards. The workbook includes over 550 pages of Worksheets, Activity Centers, and Posters that teach all the First Grade English Language Arts Common Core Standards and all the First Grade Mathematics Common Core Standards!
Additional resources for other grade levels are available on their website. Be sure to check it out and use it as a great tool for posturing your child for academic excellence!