Common Core Training Day 2

      I survived a second day of Common Core training. We learned so much today, I think my head may explode. Our first topic of the day was Accountable Talk. Accountable Talk is talk that seriously responds to and further develops what others in the group have said. Students engaged in Accountable talk follow the following indicators: 

  • Students actively participate in classroom talk
  • Students listen attentively
  • Students elaborating and building on each other’s ideas
  • Students work to clarify or expand a proposition
  • Students support their ideas with evidence from the text

    A lesson with Accountable Talk would start with a close reading of a text. Then the teacher will pose a problem or question about the text. The students will then take over the conversation. The teacher would not share her opinion on the subject, they would only help continue the conversation by using Accountable Talk stems such as:

  • Could you clarify your statement…?
  • I do not understand, could you tell me more about…
  • My evidence is…
  • On page__, it says…
  • I can connect this to…
  • I want to add to…
  • I want to build upon…
  • I would like to tie into what______just said…
  • I want to respectfully disagree with_______…
  • I agree with______…
    I found an excellent video with an example of Accountable Talk in an 2nd grade classroom. The only thing I would have changed would be for each child to have a hard copy of the text to use during the discussion. The video has two minute intro before you see the classroom example.

      I hope this information is helpful. We covered other topics, but I thought it was way too much information for one blog entry. I have one more day of training this week, so I’ll be back tomorrow with more information.

Common Core Training Day 1

         Today, I started my first day of Common Core training for ELA. We focused a lot of our time on close reading. Close reading is when you give a student a text with a brief intro to the text. The intro does not contain any information that the student could obtain from reading the text. After the brief intro you ask the students to read the text to themselves. After the first reading you ask the students comprehension questions. The type of comprehension question is very important. We must move away from questions such as “how many houses are in the neighborhood?” Instead we should ask comprehension questions such as:

  • What is the text about? 
  • What are the big issues? 
  • Who is the speaker? 
  • What is the author’s purpose? 
  • Who is the audience?
  • What do we know about the speaker?
        The comprehension questions can be asked and answered individually and then have a group discussion or you can answer the questions as a group discussion. The student must provide textual evidence for each of their answers. If the answer can not be supported by text it is not correct. Next, the teacher or a student that has a good reading ability reads the text aloud. You may also choose to have the students read independently or in pairs/groups. After the second read you will have the students complete another task such as questions about the structure of the text, the speakers use of figurative language, or to make an inference. The process continues, read the text then complete a task, read the text then complete a task, and so on. 
       I continue my training tomorrow and will come back with more information. 

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