The Common Core State Standards were developed by an independent coalition of education professionals to prepare students for a 21st century global workforce. The standards outline the skills that students should acquire at each grade level, and are specific to reading and math. The objective of Common Core State Standards is to create greater consistency among school districts, so that any two students in a grade level should have the same basic foundation for success.
Parents will have a significant role in helping their children meet those standards, which has created some anxiety because many parents feel the standards are more rigorous. According to a Gallup Poll conducted in April 2014, 35 percent of parents had a positive impression of the new standards and 28 percent of parents had a negative one. The remaining 37 percent didn't know what the Common Core State Standards were.
Because the Common Core State Standards are relatively new to everyone involved – students, parents, and teachers – there will be a learning curve. Parents must take an active approach in order to help their children with homework and learning skills at home. Here are several tips that will help parents to get started:
Review the Standards for Your Child's Grade Level: There are a number of different resources that provide easy-to-follow guides on the math and reading standards. The Common Core website is a good place to gain information. Here you will find the standards, links to each state's educational website, FAQs, a history of the standards, and more. The PTA website is another good resource for standards basics, and has several short guides specifically for parents who want to help their children at home.
Be Prepared: A key element of the Common Core State Standards is analysis. Students are not expected to simply know an answer; they should also be able to explain how they came to it. Some parents who are new to the Common Core State Standards may need to take extra time to review what their children are learning in order to help them succeed.
Seek Help when Necessary: A common misconception is that the standards are the curriculum. The standards are only goals, and how those goals are reached is determined at the local level. Therefore, parents should speak with their children's teachers in order to learn more about what is going on in the classroom and ways that they can help at home. In addition, extra help can be obtained through tutoring. A Huntington Learning Center tutor can develop a personalized lesson plan and monitor success through ongoing assessments to ensure that your child is making a smooth transition to the standards.
For more information on the Common Core State Standards, please contact us today at 1-800-CAN-LEARN or visit a Huntington Learning Center near you.