Florida

Putting Education Reform To The Test

Three Questions For Teachers About Common Core Standards, Part 2

Alexis Hill teaches at Thomas P. Corr Elementary in Hillsborough County.

John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

Alexis Hill teaches at Thomas P. Corr Elementary in Hillsborough County.

As we’ve attended summer training sessions for teachers on new Common Core State Standards, we’ve been asking teachers the same three questions.

Florida is one of 45 states to fully adopt the Common Core State Standards, which outline what students are expected to know in math and English at the end of each grade. Every grade in Florida is scheduled to use the standards beginning next school year.

Yesterday we published the answers of two teachers. Here’s what another two teachers think about Common Core.

Name: Alexis Hill

School: Thomas P. Corr Elementary in Hillsborough County

Teaches: 2nd grade

Experience: 7 years

Q: How well prepared do you feel for the switch to Common Core?

A: It’s going to be new this year for second grade, so it will definitely still be new ideas and new standards and things are changing – but they constantly change in education. It’s different, but I still feel like we are getting trainings. It started throughout last school year and then the opportunity for the summer trainings have been tremendous. There’s been lots of availabilities for you to come in. And just today I walked in and they found a training for me. The opportunity is there for us. It’ll be new, but I feel like we’ve been prepared.

Q: Do you think the standards are an improvement?

A: Yes, I do. It’s asking the kids to do so much more than what they were doing before. And it asks teachers to do more as well, but just kind of in a different way where the students have more control of the classroom and the teaching part. And we’re kind of stepping back and letting them take control. I think that it requires more from the students and makes them think more.  And having them think about strategies, share their strategies more than just a one-number answer.

Q: How will Common Core change the way you do your job?

A: It makes us have to really think about the process of them solving the problems and the strategies versus just kind of finding the end result and how many kids got this right. It’s more about how they got their answer. I know in my school we plan with our team, so that we’re not all coming up with these questions ourselves. It’s higher-order thinking questions that we’re coming up together with our teammates and getting new questions, or sharing the responsibilities. So it kind of helps us to work as a team better as well.

Name: Ann Jeffords

School: Blanche H. Daughtrey Preparatory School of Arts and Sciences in Manatee County

Teaches: Second grade

Experience: 16 years

 

Q:  How well-prepared do you feel for the switch to Common Core?

A: I’ve been reading a lot about it this summer — this is my first year teaching second grade. So I feel very good about what I’ve done on my own. This training is just making it more concrete for me and I’m understanding it a little bit better.

Q: Do you think the standards are an improvement?

A: I do. I think they’re really going to help the student really know the math that we’re teaching them. And by the time they leave second grade they’ll be ready for third grade Common Core.

Q: How will Common Core change the way you teach?

A: I will probably make sure that the students really know what they’re learning – or what they’re supposed to be learning. I think it will help me discover their weaknesses quicker and I’ll be able to remediate better.

 

 

Comments

  • tabbyloowho

    I think it takes a while and a lot of repetitive training but those teachers that are willing to put in the time up front will do a great job of implementing CCSS. The trainings I attended this summer finally brought it full circle showing how the CCSS was related to the Sunshine State Standards as well as the dreaded Marzano domains. I feel more prepared but the first year will be the hardest as I have to create new lessons. I teach American History, grade 8.

  • Michael Weston

    So – from your sample, 100% of teachers support common-core. Not likely.

    • StateImpactJOC

      We’re not presenting it as a scientific poll.

      • Edumom

        Then present the other side; be balanced in your reporting.

        • StateImpactJOC

          We’ve covered the opposition plenty. If Florida teachers want to criticize the standards, we’ll publish that too.

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