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Making Common Core Standards Achievable

Making Common Core State Standards

Achievable

for ALL Learners

 

As a teacher of students with learning disabilities, CCSS can seem overwhelming and unachievable for our students.  However, the format of the standards can work to our advantage to modify curriculum and help our students meet those standards.

 

Below is the eighth grade Reading Informational standard under the cross grade level concept of KEY IDEAS AND DETAILS.

Key Ideas and Details:

 

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.8.1

Cite the textual evidence that most strongly supports an analysisof what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

 

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.8.2

Determine a central idea of a text and analyzeits development over the course of the text, including its relationship to supporting ideas; provide an objective summary of the text.

 

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.8.3

Analyzehow a text makes connections among and distinctions between individuals, ideas, or events (e.g., through comparisons, analogies, or categories).

All of these standards build on the previous grade’s standards, adding to and usually including a higher level of thinking.  Here you notice all of the standards include some form of analysis.  To analyzemeans to take a concepts, break it down, identify and understand its connections to other concepts. This is a somewhat complicated task, and in eighth grade only one part of each standard is targeted.

So given this information, what do we do to support ALL students? 

Use the format of CCSS standards to “task analyze” grade level standards.  Because grade levels share the same conceptual heading (ie Key Ideas and Details) you can slide down to another grade level and see how the concept builds.

Let’s take RI8.1 and see what this looks like in 6th grade, and 4th grade.

Key Ideas and Details: 8th grade

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.8.1

Key Ideas and Details: 6th grade

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.6.1

Key Ideas and Details: 4th grade

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RI.4.1

Cite the textual evidence that most strongly supports an analysisof what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

Cite textual evidence to support analysis of what the text says explicitly as well as inferences drawn from the text.

Refer to details and examples in a text when explaining what the text says explicitly and when drawing inferences from the text.

 

 

So for a student that has difficulty with the process necessary to analyze, we can use the information in the 4th grade standard to modify (i.e. explain rather than analyze).

We can then bridge the 4th grade and 6th grade standards, by intentionally teaching the skills necessary to analyze: break down the information and find connections to other information. Thisstrategy for modification can be used with all standards.

I have found, as an RSP teacher, that students can achieve CCSS; however, educators must familiarize themselves with the format and then modify/scaffold as necessary to ensure success.

 

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