Core Curriculum Standards

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Core Curriculum Standards

The new Common Core State Standards initiative has been adopted by 38 states across the country in an effort to ensure consistency and quality throughout our educational system.

Core Curriculum Standards

These standards were developed by the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) and assessed by teachers and other education experts.

The standards primarily focus on the core elements of language arts and mathematics, which are believed to be the fundamentals of a well-rounded educational experience.

Mathematics Standards

The Common Core State Standards offer a hierarchy of skills that students accumulate gradually throughout the K-12 years. By the end of high school, students that have completed the standards are prepared to succeed in post-secondary education or professional career training.

The criteria for the math standards include:

  • A basic understanding of numbers in kindergarten that involve the relationship between numbers and quantity and early additional and subtraction concepts

  • A solid foundation in regards to whole numbers, addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, decimals and fractions, beginning in the early years of school

  • An emphasis on conceptual understanding, as well as procedural skill, to ensure students acquire the necessary knowledge to continue to progress in mathematics

  • Assistance for teachers in presenting potentially difficult concepts like fractions, geometry and negative numbers

  • Algebra readiness by 8th grade, through a comprehensive curriculum of geometry, algebra, statistics and probability

  • Middle school skills that will adequately prepare students for high school mathematics

  • The ability for high school students to apply math concepts to real world problems

  • Both career and college readiness in basic mathematics skills by the end of high school

  • Application of mathematics principles to empirical situations to improve analytical and decision-making skills

Language Arts Standards

The art of communication in both written and oral form is a key component of a successful life after high school. To help students achieve the necessary skills in reading, writing and speaking by the end of their secondary academic career, the Common Core State Standards include these criteria:

  • A hierarchy of complexity for reading skills that allow students to gradually work up to reading at a high school level and beyond

  • The incorporation of a variety of literature and non-fiction reading materials to help students broaden their knowledge base and gain perspective on the world around them

  • Inclusion of many types of reading material, including notable U.S. documents, American and international literature and mythology

  • The ability to write sound arguments based on substantive claims and sound reasoning

  • The ability to learn and present information through a variety of mediums

  • Vocabulary growth through conversations, indirect instruction and readings

  • The ability to use formal English, as well as other styles of communication, in both written and spoken form

  • The integration of media to better prepare students for work and study in the 21st century

These Common Core State Standards are not mandatory, but many states have already begun implementing them through their own boards of education or state legislatures. With clear benchmarks and a higher standard of learning, Common Core State Standards present the necessary consistency and quality that is lacking in portions of our education system today.

Core Curriculum Standards



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