Pennsylvania has begun adopting a set of learning standards that have been adopted in almost every state in the US. Theses Common Core Standards lay the groundwork for increasing the rigor and expectations for student learning across the state. These standards exist in English/Language Arts, Math, Science and Social Studies. All children in grades Kindergarten through 12th grade will be expected to learn and do more than ever before.
Characteristics of the English/Language Arts PA Common Core Standards:
A high degree of rigor and student collaboration
An emphasis on reading; especially non-fiction
Specific speaking and listening skills
Daily academic writing
In reading class, students will read text closely, make logical inferences and cite evidence from the text. They will analyze the structure of text, evaluate arguments and interpret words and phrases to gain a deep understanding of the text.
Characteristics of the Math PA Common Core Standards:
The PA Common Core Standards for Math have a dual focus--what the children need to know and do, and to what extent they can do it. There is a shift away from procedures, to children learning to apply their knowledge in meaningful and multiple ways. These standards are focused, coherent and rigorous. Students need to know and do math more deeply and robustly. The PA Common Core Math Standards also include a set of eight (8) Standards of Practice that will guide teaching and learning. They are:
Make sense of problems and persevere in solving them
Reason abstractly and quantitatively
Construct viable arguments and critique the reasoning of others
Model with mathematics
Use appropriate tools strategically
Attend to precision
Look for and make use of structure
Look for and express regularity in repeated reasoning
Characteristics of the Social Studies PA Common Core Standards:
Based on the new PA Common Core Standards in Social Studies, a link will be created between Reading and Social Studies, and Writing and Social Studies. The purpose is to develop students' knowledge about the world through the use of informational text. Students will be asked to use and interpret text evidence, construct meaning from the text, and support their reasoning with evidence from the text.
Additionally, in Social Studies students will write. They will write from sources, write arguments focused on content, and write informative/explanatory pieces. Most importantly, they will read for information, make assertions, and use evidence from the text to support their assertions.
Characteristics of the Science PA Common Core Standards:
The PA Common Core Standards also generate an important link between Science and Reading, and Science and Writing. Elementary students will engage in focused reading related to science content. They will study text components such as headings, figures, bold words and morphology. The text will get more complex through the grades. They will participate in purposeful reading.