Noticing the Good about Common Core

CommonCore Pros from Amherst

I had the pleasure of leading a three hour workshop session yesterday around technology and the Common Core, and we began the day by talking about and examining some of the shifts of the Common Core, which is the heart of our new Massachusetts ELA Curriculum Frameworks. (The technology part of our workshop was mostly about digital storytelling, and how to expand the traditional definition of digital storytelling to fit a number of objectives across the content areas, such as explaining concepts in math and science, exploring archived materials in history, and more)

The participants did a bit of writing beforehand about what they knew about the Common Core, and this word cloud represents their thoughts about the pros, or positives, that they see in the new standards. We didn’t do the cons but we did talk about the things that worries them. In workshops, I try hard to remain neutral, and open, and let participants express their own views. I know, as a presenter, I must come across sometimes as an advocate of Common Core, but I am not necessarily that way. I can see the good, but I also have my own concerns, too.

By the way, the hands-on work around digital storytelling flowed from some discussions around the Common Core’s standards related to media literacy, using the Internet for research and publication, collaboration and synthesizing ideas, all using student voice and stance. When you think about it, digital storytelling as a concept has a lot of potential for learning in the new standards, but you have to revamp the traditional definition of personal narrative into something larger, I think.

While I did not have time to share this with the session yesterday, I did use it when I was at the school earlier in the spring. Here, I was trying to make connect connections between technology and the new standards.

Peace (in the sharing),


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