You can’t go anywhere in education nowadays without Common Core State Standards (CCSS) coming up in conversation. In Michigan they are to be fully implemented in fall 2012, consequently, a plethora of training sessions, professional learning community (PLC) conversations, and curriculum work centers around CCSS.
About two weeks ago, I was at one such meeting. We were talking about using guided highlighted reading as a tool to help students read closely and critically as called for in the CCSS. And really, close and critical reading is an essential life skill. At this meeting, someone made a comment, “the Common Core is all about empowering kids.”
That statement was transformative for me. With that statement, CCSS went from being a requirement to a moral imperative. We must empower students to take charge of their world so they can be the agents of change we so desperately need.