Blog: The Educated Reporter

Keeping Up With Common Core: Will Learning Soar or Stall?

Is it better to teach fractions to elementary school students using a cut-up pie or a number line?

As 45 states plus the District of Columbia roll out the new Common Core State Standards in mathematics and English, teachers, parents, students and reporters will encounter a new set of practices many scholars say are necessary to improve K-12 learning across the country.

These common signposts are expected to greatly alter the education landscape.

This week experts on the new standards weighed in on how instruction will change as states fully implement  the new standards during an Education Writers Association webinar.

Many of the changes are subtle, such as what gets taught when and which conceptual devices best relay the subjects covered in the Common Core. The standards aren’t just limited to English and math. Science and social science teachers will contribute, by assigning informational material that eases students into the specific vocabulary and terms used in those subjects. Words like “hypothesize” and “predict” that have a specific meaning will be practiced so students can understand more complex material in the later grades. 

Here’s a summary of what the experts said; there’s much more information in the actual webinar (see power point slides).