I'm sure by now you have heard the term Common Core, but do you really know what it is? Don't feel bad if you don't, we are all learning about it. So let me see if I can shed some light on the mystery for you.

Here's what I know: 
1. Common Core was an initiative developed by a group of experts to help place an emphasis what all students should know by the time they graduate high school. 
2. Common Core has been adopted by 45 states. Florida is one of the states who has adopted Common Core. 
3. The Common Core standards have a focus on English (across all subjects) and Mathematics. I know more about the English standards, but the Math standards are very com
4. Common Core standards help bring critical thinking into all subject areas and have a heavy emphasis on writing, justifying, and analyzing many types of text including fiction stories and non-fiction (or informational) texts. 
5. Compared with the Florida Next Generation Sunshine State Standards for the subject of Social Studies, which is comprised of 85 individual standards, there are 10 Common Core standards. The difference is the NGSSS standards focus on content students should know, while CC standards focus on how students should be able to read and write with regards to that content. 

I think you will find that for all the issues that the media and other organizations can have with Common Core, you really won't see them in action. As sixth graders it is important to start to look at material given to you and start to analyze it. You should be looking for unfamiliar vocabulary and questioning main ideas. You should also be able to write a summary about any reading and provide justification (or citations) from the reading to support your own interpretations. 

Every day in our classes we will address the NGSSS standards as well as CC standards and we will have a great time doing it. Make sure you stock up on paper! Let's get to writing! 

To learn more about Common Core standards visit their website.