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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Standards Made Easy for Teaching, partnership

Standards Made Easy for Teaching, partnership

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Do you feel like a deer caught in the headlights when it comes to teaching a standards based curriculum mandated by your State or local school board? A collaborative partnership of more than 1,000 classroom teachers in Colorado have contributed to a partnership internet site that has been made by-teachers-for-teachers to help do two things: 1) 'add value to a teacher's time'; 2) 'add value to a mandated standards-based curriculum'. The site is full of resources to help individual classroom teachers in grades Pre-K through grade 12 teach standards easier in reading, writing, math, and science. There are also great resources in social studies. Over the past 12 years,the teachers have interconnected four (4) vital resources: 1) aligned curriculum both vertically and horizontally; 2) done longitudinal test data analysis of State test results for 12 consecutive years; 3) identified the 'highest-point, highest-value' test items that tend to keep coming up year after year on the State's mandated test; 4) attached specific, world-class, relevant resources to each specific high-point, high value ciritical, essential learning target and attached sample test items to each critical learning target. This is an awesome resource for classroom teachers. If you want a free tour of the site go to www.smetpartnership.org or contact me for a courtesy log-in and password -- be sure to put the word SMET in the email title. wpowell955@aol.com

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Brenda Nance's picture

Teachers in public schools are just a tool to get higher test scores from their students. The days where teachers were able to spend individual time with students is gone. Today classrooms are like as assembly line, if a student gets behind they stay behind. Not all children learn at the same pace and we need to remember this and stop pushing them. We need to take the pressure off them and show them that learning can be fun, they are after all children not adults.

John Whiting's picture
John Whiting
Student Teacher, 3rd Grade, Shapleigh, Maine

I must respectfully disagree. Yes, in some cases, teachers are pressured to teach primarily to the tests and kids may feel pressured to perform well on these; but in my neck of the woods a standards-based, highly-differentiated approach prevails. Kids are individuals and each possesses a unique collection of skills, challenges, interests, and styles - all of which can be (and are)successfully harnessed to help every student aspire to and achieve their potential. Learning can be inherently fun, especially when students believe they are as capable of learning as any one of their classmates AND are encouraged to do so in a way that feels most intriguing and fulfilling to them.

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