Common Core Standards

Michigan unanimously adopted the Common Core Standards on June 15, 2010. Students will officially begin to be assessed on the comprehensive standards in 2014; however, Rochester Schools is working to currently implement the new standards in our curriculum at all levels. Below is information about the various English standards for grades 9-10:

Reading Literature

Reading Informational Texts

Writing

Speaking and Listening

Language

Table of Sample Texts of Appropriate Complexity by Grade Level

Tenth Grade Writing Samples (Scroll to pages 65-69)

Below is an excerpt on Myths/Facts about English Language Arts Standards taken from the Common Core Website. For more information about the standards, you can visit the Website at www.corestandards.org.

Myths About Content and Quality: English-language arts

Myth: The standards suggest teaching Grapes of Wrath to 2nd graders.

Fact: The ELA Standards suggest Grapes of Wrath as a text that would be appropriate for 9th or 10th grade readers. Evidence shows that the complexity of texts students are reading today does not match what is demanded in college and the workplace, creating a gap between what high school students can do and what they need to be able to do. The Common Core State Standards create a staircase of increasing text complexity, so that students are expected to both develop their skills and apply them to more and more complex texts.

Myth: The standards are just vague descriptions of skills; they don’t include a reading list or any other similar reference to content.

Fact: The standards do include sample texts that demonstrate the level of text complexity appropriate for the grade level and compatible with the learning demands set out in the standards. The exemplars of high quality texts at each grade level provide a rich set of possibilities and have been very well received. This provides teachers with the flexibility to make their own decisions about what texts to use – while providing an excellent reference point when selecting their texts.

Myth: English teachers will be asked to teach science and social studies reading materials.

Fact: With the Common Core ELA Standards, English teachers will still teach their students literature as well as literary non-fiction. However, because college and career readiness overwhelmingly focuses on complex texts outside of literature, these standards also ensure students are being prepared to read, write, and research across the curriculum, including in history and science. These goals can be achieved by ensuring that teachers in other disciplines are also focusing on reading and writing to build knowledge within their subject areas.

Myth: The standards don’t have enough emphasis on fiction/literature.

Fact: The standards require certain critical content for all students, including: classic myths and stories from around the world, America’s Founding Documents, foundational American literature, and Shakespeare. Appropriately, the remaining crucial decisions about what content should be taught are left to state and local determination. In addition to content coverage, the standards require that students systematically acquire knowledge in literature and other disciplines through reading, writing, speaking, and listening.

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