Testimony from all over the country…
When the Common Core State Standards were introduced in Louisiana, they represented an opportunity for me to grow as an instructor and impact student learning in a way that few may have anticipated. As a high school choir director, I have sat through my share of staff development meetings on topics ranging from “how to incorporate math into an English lesson” to “how to write a multiple choice question.” None of these developments have applied to me.
Now, with Common Core, we have, professional development opportunities that are applicable to all classes, not only the core classes (or as I like to refer to them, the “non-elective” classes). In Professional Learning Communities (PLCs), teachers focus on student data and literacy-based instruction for all classes. This allows differentiated professional development to support teachers as they implement the new standards in the most fitting way for their subject matter and individual students.
Implementing the CCSS in my choir room has allowed me to influence my students’ overall academic achievement more than I ever anticipated. You may not recognize the connection between choir and an English essay or a math problem, but I assure you, it’s there.