Do you live in Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, New York, Nevada, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, U.S. Virgin Islands, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, or Wyoming? If so, you are fully aware that your state or territory has signed on to adopt the Common Core State Standards (CCSS). Eventually all school districts encompassed in this list will be in full adoption of the CCSS.
The summer offered a scope of professional development institutes for English Language Arts teachers depending where in the adoption stage participants might have been. Kentucky, for example, is holding itself accountable to the standards in the 2011-2012 academic school year while other states, like Indiana, are gradually transitioning. Indiana is teaching the CCSS in the 2011-2012 academic year but will not entirely convert from the state standards until the 2014-2015 academic year.
Whether you are developing or implementing CCSS curriculum maps, consider purchasing the Common Core Curriculum Maps in English Language Arts. The maps are compiled into Grades K-5, 6-8, and 9-12. These maps are created by teachers, for teachers, to provide guidance for teaching the CCSS using research-based curriculum maps. The thematic units include focus standards, suggested texts (a balance of informational and literary), sample activities and assessments, and lesson plans that are rigorously aligned to meet every standard in the CCSS. Other strengths of the units are their purposeful connections to math, science, social studies, and the arts. For example, a seventh grade unit is “Literature Reflects Life: Making Sense of Our World”. Within this unit, students might engage with an HBO documentary, a speech by Winston Churchill, a map of 1944 Europe under Nazi occupation, a collection of war poems, and a photo montage of Anne Frank.
Although the units are thorough, the day to day instruction is still left to the teacher in the crafting of details lesson plans and the delivery. The maps simply provide a plan for teachers, departments, and districts while carefully adhering to the CCSS.