A Common Core/College and Career Readiness night was held March 28 at the Fulton Junior High School, lead by English teachers Michelle Klatt and Jenn Meloling and guidance counselor Kelly Rickert.
The evening outlined the changes in standards in ELA, and provided ideas as to what parents can do to support their child’s learning. Rickert explained how the FJHS is setting students up to be college and career ready.
Parents were guided through what their children have been learning, and how the content differs from years prior. The Common Core ELA standards have been adapted at the junior high.
In a given year there are four ten-week modules. The chosen text aligns with a focus question.
For instance, in eighth grade students are reading Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird.
Taking a stand is the theme of this particular module.
Students under the Common Core are still working with the same skill set, but are encouraged to think at a higher level. Students are required to read more nonfiction, learn about the world through reading and read challenging texts very closely.
Students follow a CEI model (Claim, Evidence, and Interpretation) when picking apart a text. After a reading passage, students should be able to claim a statement that needs to be proven, analyze quotes to show understanding of the text and interpret the text in their own words.
On state exams, reading passages are based on close reading.
Parents can help by encouraging their children to read at home, and asking for evidence in everyday discussions, debates and disagreements.
Teachers from all subject areas are supporting students by using the same Tier 2 vocabulary. Tier 2 words are words like, “justify” and “convey” that have a high utility across a wide range of topics and contexts.
The conversation then carried onto College and Career Readiness.
To be college and career ready means that a graduate has the English and math skills needed to qualify for and succeed in post-secondary job training or education necessary for their chosen career.