Having kids in elementary school is overwhelming.
I mean really overwhelming.
Add one or two extra kids in the mix, and that means that you can multiply the amount of fliers, homework, projects, permission slips, forms, and extra-curricular activities exponentially.
So when the Common Core State Standards arrived hand in hand with PARCC assessments and a whole lot of other changes, I can only assume that the large majority of the parents out there did what I chose to do: skim papers, follow along a little, and hold on for the ride.
That was fine for the moment, but now that we all have had a bit more time to breathe, it’s time to get out of the fog.
We, as parents, need to know what the Common Core State Standards mean, why they matter, and how we can help our kids meet with success on these assessments.
Here’s the skinny. . .
Common Core 101–Everything Parents Need to Know to Prepare Their Kids and to Stay Sane:
But here’s the super short version:
What are the Common Core State Standards?
Common Core State Standards set clear, consistent guidelines for what students should know and be able to do at each grade level in math and English language arts.
Often you’ll see it written as CCSS–Common Core State Standards.
What is PARCC and Smarter Balanced?
Get ready for this. Lots of letters.
Two groups – the Partnership for the Assessment of Readiness for College and Careers (PARCC) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (Smarter Balanced) – worked closely with educators to develop new, computer-based assessments aligned to the Common Core.
Many states have chosen to administer either PARCC or Smarter Balanced assessments in the 2014-15 school year, and others are using assessments specific to their state.
When will my child take these tests?
The new assessments will replace existing end-of-year state assessments in math and English language arts.
And? They will provide a more accurate picture of what your child really knows instead of those old tests where kids were asked to pick the right answer from a multiple-choice question.
Why do I, as a parent, need to know this?
You guys. C’mon.
Parental support is critical to a child’s school success. You need to know this so that you can walk alongside your child for this journey. You got this! Really.
Who or what is Be A Learning Hero and why is Amy all over it today?
Ha. I love you guys. Really, I do.
Be A Learning Hero is a website for parents. It’s designed to provide straight answers and helpful resources on the Common Core State Standards. And it provides information on Common Core-aligned assessments like PARCC and Smarter Balanced. Everything on Be A Learning Hero help parents understand the new standards and assessments and support their children’s education at home.
And you know that I’m all about parents supporting their children’s education at home. Right? Right.
Who is behind Be A Learning Hero and how is it funded?
I wanted to know the same thing. For real.
Be A Learning Hero is a group of parents, educators, community leaders and members of the media who are dedicated to providing parents with the information and resources they need to support their children’s learning. The partner organizations supporting Be A Learning Hero include: Common Sense Media; Council of Great City Schools; Great Schools; National PTA; National Council of Teachers of Mathematics; and National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference (NHCLC).
Be A Learning Hero is a project of the New Venture Fund and is funded by a group of philanthropies who are investing in education, including the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Schusterman Foundation. The project also receives in-kind donations and support from other organizations working on a range of education issues, including: The Collaborative for Student Success; The College Board; The Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO); Nickelodeon; Scholastic; The Teaching Channel; and The US Chamber of Commerce Foundation.
Now, take a minute–or two–and visit BeALearningHero.org where things are explained much more clearly:
Friends. . . tell me:
- What questions do you have?
- What experiences have you had?
- What resources (videos, articles, etc.) have you seen that helped you better understand your state’s new test?
I’d love to know!
fyi: This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Be a Learning Hero. As always, the opinions and ideas are all my own, influenced only by my experience as a parent and educator. Comments submitted may be displayed on other websites owned by the sponsoring brand.
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Be a Learning Hero. The opinions and text are all mine.