Wednesday, April 10, 2013
Goodbye Creativity and Imagination, Hello Common Core Writing!
The presenter showed screen after screen of what is expected of us next year when we implement the Common Core writing standards.
My mind wandered to the soldiers in North Korea, all marching to the same beat, the same cadence. Not a skip, hop, or jump, no one out of place. That's what the Core reminds me of.
The presenter continued, "And in 2nd grade they have to know, and in 5th grade they have to..." I wanted to ask what if they don't get it in 2nd grade, then what happens in 5th grade? But I already know the answer to that question.
But what jolted me out of my state of emotional apathy was when the presenter began showing, and reading, to us the slide on what type of writing we are expected to cover in certain grades. Our presenter said, " If you notice, it's only 20% Narrative in the 5th grade. That's because in the real world, in a college and career ready world, students write using argumentative and informational essays."
SCREECH!...I woke up. In the real world?
Does she mean the real world where there are authors who write fiction? The real world of playwrights, screenwriters, people who create commercials? The list is endless. The number of people who have careers that use narrative writing is endless.
And more importantly, I can only imagine the horror of being in a classroom where only 20% of the writing is Narrative. I have many students who thrive in the narrative format, and struggle horribly in others. What do I tell them, sorry we have reached our quota of narrative writing for the year? And how does one determine 20% Is there some rubric I will be forced to follow?
I love the activity in the picture above. Tons of creativity and imagination are required. But I guess if I'm going to implement it next year, it better not be before I go over my 20%!