What are the Common Core State Standards?..The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are new learning
targets for students in English Language Arts and Mathematics.
The standards provide educators, students, and families consistent,
clear statements of what students need to learn to be prepared for
college and career – to be successfully prepared for their futures!
The CCSS were developed with input from teachers, parents, school
administrators, college educators, and content experts from around
the country under the leadership of the nation’s governors and state education leaders. They have been voluntarily adopted by 45 states including Washington which will
raise academic standards across our country and allow comparison of student performance state to state. See more information at this video.
Why are the CCSS important to my student?By mastering the CCSS, students will be prepared to enter credit-bearing classes at 2- and 4-year colleges, without having to complete remedial courses, costing extra money and time. This means students will also be prepared to enter workforce training programs that lead to family-wage-earning jobs. The new standards are generally recognized as more rigorous than our current learning goals and require a clear grade-level to grade-level increase in complexity. By putting in the focus and study necessary to develop the skills of reading, writing, language, speaking and listening, and mathematics outlined in the CCSS, students will be maximizing their options for a bright, productive future.How will testing change?Quick Links
What is Common Core?
Washington Overview in:
PTA Parent Guides to the CCSS
by Grade Level (K-HS)
Parent Roadmaps by Grade Level
(K-HS) for English Language ArtsParent Roadmaps by Grade Level
(K-HS) for MathematicsThese tests will replace the MSP reading, writing, and math portions in grades 3-8 and will likely be provided through the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium. (The science portion in grades 5 and 8 will remain the same.) 11th graders will take the high school level of the new Smarter Balanced tests, but meeting standard on the tests is not a graduation requirement until the Class of 2019.
Take a Practice Test (open in Firefox, scroll down)Smarter Balanced Parents' FactsheetTesting students in Washington StateWhat can parents do?In the more rigorous CCSS there are three key “shifts” happening in each of the major subject areas of English language arts and mathematics. This table summarizes the shifts in each content area along with the corresponding ways parents can help support these new practices:
- Student scores will be reported on a career and college readiness trajectory, with 3rd through 11th grade scores on one scale, showing growth from year to year.
- Online test items will be adaptive, meaning they will adjust in difficulty depending on students' success with given items.
- Online testing will take advantage of current technology with animations, drag-and-drop items, limited web interface, and a variety of electronic tools for students to use while testing.
- In addition to multiple choice, selected response, and short-answer items, assessments will include "Performance Tasks" – multi-day activities that allow students to apply their mathematics, reading, writing, speaking, and listening skills in the context of real-world scenarios.
ENGLISH LANGUAGE ARTS (ELA) STUDENTS MUST ... PARENTS CAN ...Read more nonfiction to build
knowledge of the world
- Read more nonfiction texts aloud or with your child – books, newspaper articles, magazines
- Provide or read different types of multiple texts on the same subject
- Read aloud or with your child, connecting your thinking to specific parts of the text
- Talk about the text you read, making connections to your home, culture, or community
- Ask for evidence in every day discussions, moving beyond just opinions
- Write with your child, using evidence and details from what you read
- Provide texts your child wants to read and can read comfortable AND provide challenging text, too
- Show your child that it is worth sticking with and figuring out challenging reading
- Talk, read, listen, sing, and play games with your child
- Start a family vocabulary box or jar – have everyone write down new words they discover, add them to the box, and use the words in conversation
Read, write, and speak using
evidence from reading to form
judgments, make arguments,
and communicate ideas
Practice reading regularly with
challenging text and learn the
words they will use in college
MATHEMATICS STUDENTS MUST ... PARENTS CAN ...Focus strongly where the
- Know what the critical areas of focus are for your child at their grade level
- Ask the teacher how your child is doing on these important topics
- Have your child talk about their mathematical thinking and explain why they know math works
- Ask your child why they know the answer is what it is
- Help your child learn the math facts appropriate to their grade-level
- Provide time for your child to work hard on math at home
- Ask your child to do the math that comes up in your daily life ... cooking, shopping, traveling...
- Talk about how you use math in your daily life at home or work
Make connections in their math
learning grade to grade and
topic to topic
Understand math concepts,
know procedures and facts,
and apply math in real world
Last Modified on February 29, 2016