The Common Core Standards are educational goals that were developed by a consortium of educators, parents, and state officials. The goal of the Common Core Standards is to have a common set of standards for English language arts (ELA) and mathematics that will ensure students across the United States have the skills necessary to be successful in higher education or beyond.
Goals instead of Curricula
Each state can choose whether or not to adopt the Common Core Standards. If a state has chosen to adopt the standards, they will then choose how to teach and assess the standards. The Common Core Standards are not curricula that require a particular method of teaching. Instead teachers choose the best methods for ensuring that their students learn the skills that will help them achieve the Common Core Standards.
Similarly to there being no single curriculum associated with Common Core, there is no one national assessment or test that states are required to use to test for achievement of the Common Core Standards. Instead, there are two consortiums, PARCC and Smarter Balanced, that are working to develop fair and thorough assessments. Most of the 42 states that have adopted the standards chose to use the assessments developed by one of these consortiums. The national PTA provides links to each state’s explanation of the assessment system they have chosen to implement.
Students will be tested from kindergarten through 12th grade to see how they are progressing in the development of their skills. There is no single exam that every student will face nationwide. No matter what assessment your school uses, you will be tested on skills that you will need to be successful in all areas of life. Rather than memorizing facts and formulas, you will be asked to use reasoning and critical thinking skills to solve real world problems.
Preparing for College and Career
Ultimately, the Common Core Standards are intended to help students graduate with what it takes to compete in college and in the workforce nationwide. The Common Core Standards will also prepare students to have the higher level thinking skills needed to be successful on exams like the SAT and ACT. The SAT in particular is changing to align itself with the Common Core Standards. As you face assessments and exams you will need to develop critical thinking skills, reading comprehension and problem solving skills. Preparing well for any assessments you face in school will enable you to achieve in the future.
San Carlos SAT Prep
Mr. Test Prep has been an active part of the San Carlos SAT Prep community for almost 20 years. As a dedicated educator, he helps San Carlos students navigate the sometimes confusing world of SAT Prep work. By marrying the best of the group testing environment with the best of private tutoring, he’s able to empower his students to reach their score potential.