Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts and Content Literacy: The Key Shifts
The Common Core Requires Three Shifts in ELA/Literacy 1. Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction 2. Reading, writing and speaking grounded in evidence from text, both literary and informational 3. Regular practice with complex text and its academic language 3
Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction: Why? Much of knowledge base comes from informational text Makes up vast majority of required reading in college/workplace (80%) Informational text is harder for students to comprehend than narrative text and yet students are asked to read very little of it in elementary and middle school (7% to 15%) Common Core moves percentages to 50:50 at elementary level and 75:25 at secondary level
Building knowledge systematically is like giving children various pieces of a puzzle in each grade that, over time, will form one big picture.
SHIFT TWO: Reading, writing and speaking grounded in evidence from text, both literary and informational 6
Reading, Writing and Speaking Grounded in Evidence from Text: Why? Most college and workplace writing requires evidence. Ability to cite evidence differentiates strong from weak student performance on NAEP Evidence is a major emphasis of the ELA Standards: Reading Standard 1, Writing Standard 9, Speaking and Listening standards 2, 3 and 4, all focus on the gathering, evaluating and presenting of evidence from text. Being able to locate and deploy evidence are hallmarks of strong readers and writers 7
Shift Three: Regular practice with complex text and its academic language 8
Regular practice with complex text and its academic language: Why? Gap between complexity of college and high school texts is huge. What students can read, in terms of complexity is greatest predictor of success in college (ACT study). Too many students are reading at too low a level. (<50% of graduates can read sufficiently complex texts). Standards include a staircase of increasing text complexity from elementary through high school. Standards also focus on building general academic vocabulary so critical to comprehension. 9
Two Components of the Common Core »Anchor Standards indicate the knowledge and skills students must acquire by the end of high school. »Grade by grade standards outline what students must do grade by grade in order to meet the anchor standards.
College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards for Reading
Four Main Areas for Both Literature and Informational Text Key ideas and details Craft and structure Integration of knowledge and ideas Reading of reading and text complexity
Key Ideas and Details 1.Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text. 2.Determine central ideas or themes of a text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas. 3.Analyze how and why individuals, events, and ideas develop and interact over the course of a text. 13
Craft and Structure 4.Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone. 5.Analyze the structure of texts, including how specific sentences, paragraphs, and larger portions of the text (e.g., a section, chapter, scene, or stanza) relate to each other and the whole. 6.Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a text. 14
Integration of Knowledge and Ideas 7.Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse media and formats, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.* 8.Delineate and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, including the validity of the reasoning as well as the relevance and sufficiency of the evidence. 9.Analyze how two or more texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take. 15
Anchor Standards for Foundational Skills Print concepts Phonological awareness Phonics and word recognition Fluency
College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards for Writing
Four Main Areas of Writing Text types and purposes Production and distribution of writing Research to build and present knowledge Range of writing
Text types and purposes 1.Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of substantive topics of texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence 2.Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content 3.Write narratives to develop real or imagined experiences or events using effective techniques, well-chosen details, and well-structured event sequences.
Production and Distribution of Writing 4.Produce clear and coherent writing in which the development, organization, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. 5.Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach. 6.Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
Research to Build and Present Knowledge 7.Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject matter under investigation 8.Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism. 9.Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
Range of Writing 10. 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 tasks, purposes, and audiences.
Two Main Areas for Speaking and Listening Comprehension and collaboration Presentation of knowledge and ideas
Comprehension and collaboration 1.Prepare for and participate effectively in a range of conversations and collaborations with diverse partners, building on others’ ideas and expressing their own clearly and persuasively. 2.Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally. 3.Evaluate a speaker’s point of view, reasoning, and use of evidence and rhetoric.
Presentation of Knowledge and Ideas 4.Present information, findings, and supporting evidence such that listeners can follow the line of reasoning and the organization, development, and style are appropriate to task, purpose, and audience. 5.Make strategic use of digital media and visual displays of data to express information and to enhance understanding of presentations. 6.Adapt speech to a variety of contexts and communicative tasks, demonstrating full command of formal English when indicated or appropriate.
A Close Look at Close Reading Key ideas and details – Read closely to determine what the text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from text
Levels of Meaning Level 1: Literal or concrete meaning, factual, narrative, descriptive—Answers who, what, where, when (explicitly state in the lines of the text) Level 2: Interpretive meaning, illustrated, represents, compares, implied—answers how and why (inferred; implied between the lines) Level 3: Super-Abstract, Reaches beyond the text; search for theme, meaning, universal truth (What does this say about human beings? What is important in my life?) Answers are found beyond the lines.
Close Reading CCSS states that students who meet the standards readily undertake the close attentive reading that is at the heart of understanding and enjoying complex works of literature. – Comprehend and evaluate complex texts across a range of types and disciplines – Appreciate nuances—how connotations of words affect meaning – Word diligently to understand precisely what an author is saying or author’s message – Cite specific evidence in oral and written interpretation – Evaluate other points of view critically and constructively – Approach language as a matter of author’s/speaker’s craft
Close Reading Close reading is not about assessing reading comprehension. It is about developing analytical skills. Close reading is a teaching tool or strategy used to guide students through the process of learning particular elements or devices Close reading is the reader actually having a conversation with the text.
Close Reading Close reading is developed by having students analyze a specific passage from the text in fine detail as if with a magnifying glass (zoom in) Ensure that interpretation is first and foremost on the meaning of the words in the passage – Move from the word/evidence out to the big ideas (zoom out) – Reading use evidence to infer between the lines, gradually moving beyond the text
Close Analytic Reading Requires prompting students with questions to unpack unique complexity of any text so students learn to read complex text independently and proficiently. Virtually every standard is activated during the course of every close analytic reading exemplar through the use of text dependent questions. Text dependent questions require text-based answers – evidence. 34
Thinking about Questions to Support Close Reading
Reading, writing and speaking grounded in evidence from text, both literary and informational 36 In “Casey at the Bat,” Casey strikes out. Describe a time when you failed at something. In “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” Dr. King discusses nonviolent protest. Discuss, in writing, a time when you wanted to fight against something that you felt was unfair. In “The Gettysburg Address” Lincoln says the nation is dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal. Why is equality an important value to promote? “The Gettysburg Address” mentions the year 1776. According to Lincoln’s speech, why is this year significant to the events described in the speech? Not Text-DependentText-Dependent Text-Dependent Questions What makes Casey’s experiences at bat humorous? What can you infer from King’s response about the letter that he received ?
Scaffolding Complex Text The standards require that students read appropriately complex text at each grade level – independently (Standard 10). However there are many ways to scaffold student learning as they meet the standard: Multiple readings Read Aloud Chunking text (a little at a time) Provide support while reading, rather than before. 37