Monday, September 1, 2014

CCSS and What?

So like many of you, I am one of many special education teachers across the U.S. trying to navigate the jungle that is known as CCSS. When I first learned about CCSS several years ago and the move toward a more cohesive standards approach, I was overwhelmed to say the least. Three years later, not much has changed.

While I've learned a bit more about the CCSS and how it directly affects my students with special needs, I still see a huge gap between what the school district's expect with implementation of CCSS and the realities of implementing such in a special education classroom. Has anybody else come to the same realization?

We began implementing CCSS in my classroom last year and have slowly been finding ways to modify what is expected into something more tangible and realistic for my kiddos.

This year, I started something new - posting CCSS objectives on my front board and discussing our learning objectives in kid-friendly language. I found some objectives headers on Teachers Pay Teachers (which I cannot find now that I wanna share them!)  I posted the headers on my front board, along with some sheet protectors. Inside the sheet protectors, I've placed "kid-friendly" learning objectives for the day/week. Next to the objectives, I have pocket charts with the Common Core standards for both my 2nd and 3rd grade students.

My students have enjoyed reading the objectives and learning about what they're going to be working on each week. We review these objectives each morning during calendar routine and throughout the day - specifically when we get into our small group centers. I try to bring back each activity we do and tie it into an objective.

I hope that the kids get something out of this (and get excited about learning!) and that they might take a little bit of this knowledge home with them. And maybe it will bring us a little closer to meeting those standards in the classroom.

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