Understanding How the New Standards Will Improve Students' Math Skills:
Math Common Core State Standards require greater focus by teachers and deeper knowledge by students than many previous state standards.
Students will need to accurately calculate equations, understand concepts not just memorize answers, and accurately select the best mathematical concept or equation to solve real-world problems, while demonstrating why the method or equation they selected is accurate.
The new standards make sure students are learning and absorbing the critical information they need to succeed at higher levels.
Here are just a few examples of standards in math at different grade levels:
By the end of third grade, students are expected to be able to “fluently multiply and divide within 100, using strategies such as the relationship between multiplication and division (e.g., knowing that 8 × 5 = 40, one knows 40 ÷ 5 = 8) or properties of operations. By the end of Grade 3, know from memory all products of two one-digit numbers.”
By the end of eighth grade, students should be able to “use square root and cube root symbols to represent solutions to equations of the form x2 = p and x3 = p, where p is a positive rational number. Evaluate square roots of small perfect squares and cube roots of small perfect cubes. Know that √2 is irrational.”
By the end of a high school geometry class, students should be able to “understand and apply the Law of Sines and the Law of Cosines to find unknown measurements in right and non-right triangles.”
Understanding How the New Standards Will Improve Reading Comprehension for Students:
The Common Core State Standards for English Language Arts are designed to ensure students fully understand what they read, and can effectively talk and write about it. These are the fundamental reading comprehension skills needed to succeed throughout elementary, middle and high school, college and beyond – regardless of career path.
While the old standards focused on simply expecting students to recite facts learned through reading textbook passages, the new standards expect students to read books and textbook passages that are more challenging than what was previously read in each grade level – including reading more original writings whenever possible, such as President Abraham Lincoln’s “The Gettysburg Address” or Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “Letter from Birmingham Jail.” Students are then asked to show a deeper understanding of this material than has previously been required of them, demonstrating greater critical thinking and analytic skills.
Here are just a few examples of standards in English language arts for different grade levels:
By the end of third grade, students are expected to be able to “explain the function of nouns, pronouns, verbs, adjectives, and adverbs in general and their functions in particular sentences.”
By the end of eighth grade, students should be able to “form and use verbs in the indicative, imperative, interrogative, conditional, and subjunctive mood.”
By 11-12 grades, depending on the English course, students should be able to “analyze the impact of the author’s choices regarding how to develop and relate elements of a story or drama (e.g., where a story is set, how the action is ordered, how the characters are introduced and developed).”