FWSU teachers have been preparing for full implementation of the Math Common Core State Standards (CCSS). They have been meeting quarterly by grade level to plan their curriculum and instruction to align with the CCSS. This summer FWSU will offer a course designed to provide teachers with strategies to do more challenging work and yet reach all students in the math classroom. Next year all teachers will fully implement the Math Common Core.
What does this mean for students?
Teachers will narrow and deepen their focus on key math concepts at their grade level. Students will learn fewer concepts but will need to understand and explain the concepts in greater detail than in the past, and those concepts will be connected throughout the year. Students will need to do more than know the trick to get the right answer; they will need to understand and explain their math reasoning to others. As in the past, student will be expected to develop speed and accuracy with simple calculations; they will still have to know their math facts. And finally, students will be expected to use math and apply the appropriate math concepts in real world problem-solving – when they are engineering cars for the STEM Fair or calculating the average temperature for a winter that will never end.
What will parents see?
The teacher will no longer work page-to-page in the math textbook. Expect students to skip pages, do writing and draw models in mathematics. Students’ math assignments will go beyond the worksheet or the word problem that the teacher might have assigned in the past. Parents can help students develop patience in solving difficult problems and encourage them to solve problems in multiple ways – “Can you do this in another way?” Some parents may have to bite their tongues and ask questions, not provide answers. Adults can help students by asking them explain their thinking. They should expect to hear math language when talking with students.
The Common Core demands a revised mathematics curriculum and renewed teacher planning. By next fall, teachers will be using an FWSU Math Curriculum that fully aligns with the CCSS.
If you are curious and would like to see what is coming, please check the resources below:
- Common Core State Standards – Math [Revised CCSS website] – Note grade level standards and the new section “WHAT PARENTS SHOULD KNOW”
- PTA Parent Guide to Student Success [CCSS Parent Resource Sheet] – Brief, concise summary of grade level expectations of CCSS mathematics
- CCSS Math Fluency Requirements by Grade Level [Computation Goals] – Note that fluency means “quickly and accurately”
- Math Progression Documents – Outlines the progression of learning by concept and grade level. Much more in-depth resource for understanding the conceptual progression of mathematics. Click on the GO TO RESOURCE button for each concept area