Hello Colleagues, Over the next two weeks you are invited to an in depth conversation with national coaches to learn about the CCRS English Language Arts (ELA) and Math professional development materials available in the LINCS resource collection.
This week (April 6-12) our focus is "A Deep Dive: What’s Behind the New Professional Development Materials for ELA/Literacy CCR Standards?"
A warm welcome to national coaches Meesha Brown, Rachel Etienne, and Jane Roy who will lead our discussion. The purpose for our discussion is to support administrators, professional development staff and all those who are implementing the standards to:
- Learn how the activities embedded within the four professional development units lead to “light bulb” moments. For example, realizing the importance of text complexity or how to craft quality writing prompts.
- Discover how to organize or amend the delivery of the the professional development units or ideas to fit the particulars of a local context.
Please join the conversation to pose your questions and share your experiences thus far with implementing the standards in your practice. We are fortunate to have access to these national experts and a forum where we can support one another as we move forward in this important work.
You can locate the professional development Materials CCR Standards: The Instructional Advances in English Language Arts/Literacy, Units 1–4 here:
Next week's (April 13-19) discussion will focus on math and be led by Kaye Forgione and Fabio Milner. The math professional development units are available at the links below.
CCR Standards: The Instructional Advances in Mathematics, Units 1–4 http://lincs.ed.gov/professional-development/resource-collections/profile-778
Looking forward to our learning together!
Cheers, Susan Finn Miller
Moderator, CCR Community of Practice
Thanks for the warm welcome, Susan!
Meesha, Rachel, and I are pleased to join the discussion group this week and answer any questions the community has on the CCR ELA/literacy professional development (PD) materials.
We hope that you have all had the opportunity to look at the materials. They were originally presented at the three CCR Standards for Adult Education Implementation Institutes held in 2014. The materials can be found here: http://lincs.ed.gov/programs/ccr/ela
Participants in the PD materials will receive a practical, transferable understanding of the fundamental advances in instruction embedded in the CCR Standards, which are crucial to preparing adult students to meet the real-world demands of college and careers. Engagement in the four units of activities will enable adult educators to identify the most significant elements of the CCR Standards for English Language Arts/Literacy and to determine how best to integrate them in instruction and curriculum.
Unit 1, Connecting CCR Standards to Key Advances, explores the fundamental elements, structure, and meaning of the CCR Standards.
Unit 2, Selecting Texts Worth Reading, introduces text complexity, the central role it plays in the CCR Standards, and the complex texts students need to read.
Unit 3, Identifying Questions Worth Answering, focuses on the value of building students' ability to draw evidence from texts and teachers' ability to use text-based questions.
Unit 4, Creating High Quality Prompts, focuses on teaching instructors how to build a culminating writing assignment that assesses student knowledge.
Each ready-to-use unit contains all the materials required to facilitate these training activities, including a facilitator's guide, an annotated PowerPoint presentation, and a packet of participant materials.
These four units should be worked through sequentially. The units can be facilitated during a single daylong training or in multiple trainings over several weeks or months. Designed primarily for group use, these units also support independent study.
We look forward to working with you all this week and answering any questions you may have on the materials.
Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education
I would like to recommend these courses to the adjunct faculty development team as a PD to introduce the adj.faculty to the CCR standards and their connections to the Lower Division Academic Course Guide Student Learning Outcomes for Developmental Ed., and Non course Base options for lower level and upper exit level .learners.
Will pds for science standards be developed?
I'm glad you find the materials useful for your adjunct faculty development team. In answer to your question, PD materials have been developed for the CCR Standards for ELA/Literacy and the CCR Standards for Mathematics. You can find the PD materials for the CCR Standards for Mathematics at http://lincs.ed.gov/programs/ccr/math.
There aren’t any specific CCR science standards for adult education. The CCR ELA/literacy standards do have some level-specific reading standards that relate to scientific and technical text. These particular standards are annotated as “RST” for reading scientific and technical text. In the CCR ELA/literacy level-specific writing standards, “WHST” indicates writing for history/social studies, scientific, and technical subjects.
I hope this helps.
JaneJane Roy StandardsWork, Inc. ELA/Literacy Coach Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education firstname.lastname@example.org
In Vermont we have made some headway here. I will summarize what we did, the feedback from teachers on the experience so that it might help others in their planning, and some resources for your comments.
We held a series of three 5-hour professional development opportunities spaced 6 weeks apart each. We had 42 participants (teachers and directors across programs) and 6 table coaches. When I was trained in these innovations, Meesha as my table coach was so invaluable to my learning experience that I knew we had to include coaches in our state’s training model. The table coaches were a mix of people with experience working with Common Core or our former content standards, from adult ed, and literacy coaches recruited from area elementary and secondary schools. I briefed all coaches on the materials, and adult ed context if needed. No remarks on the evals against coaches for not being from an adult ed background; a few criticisms of coaches who talked too much!
Day 1 we did Units 1 and 2; Day 2 was for Unit 3; Day 3 for Unit 4. We chose full-day formats to allow for a lot of discussion time, and we had such an expert lead facilitator/ trainer that I wanted her to have sufficient time as well. I wanted to minimize the needs to rush through the exercises and cut off related conversations. Still, we could have used more time, in my estimation 1 or 1.5 more hours for each day.
Some resounding mid-way feedback that we were able to address (as an augmentation to the PD materials) was this: “What do these shifts look like? Pick some videos. I think I understand but what does it look like in a classroom?” We had time to stream some videos and discuss them. I think it was important to have time for this need to surface and to be able to watch some practices together. If I could go back, or the next time I do this, I would include a video to watch and discuss in each session. There are not adult ed specific videos (yet?)-- of course there are many K-12 at http://www.teachingthecore.org/ and other sites.
We also started a list of sources of texts, and there was a lot of resource-sharing across tables.
One area that is particularly sparse is sources of adult-interest texts at Levels A and B (K-3). Here is what we have http://www.scoop.it/t/adult-interest-reading-for-levels-a-b , and please feel free to add or comment back so we can have a better list.
Thanks, all, Kate Nicolet, PD coordinator, Vermont Agency of Education
Kate, thank you for sharing the professional development model your team implemented. By planning six weeks between each of the sessions, your teachers and directors were provided with valuable time to process and experiment with the key advances of the CCR standards back in their own classrooms and programs. What are Vermont’s next steps for professional development and engaging teachers with the CCR standards?
The resources you shared certainly begin to help answer the question, “What do the key advances of the CCR standards look like in both curriculum resources and classroom instruction?” In fact, we are currently identifying and reviewing exemplary online resources to assist adult educators in implementing CCR standards and offering CCR aligned instruction. It is a work in progress and will be available in the LINCS Resource Collection later this year. Please do continue to share other resources that you find useful.
Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education
Kate, Thank you so much for sharing Vermont's progress to date. This is hugely helpful to states and programs that are still planning their implementation. I appreciate your mentioning the value of videos. I agree that using videos is so helpful in demonstrating what standards-based instruction actually looks like in a classroom. It will be wonderful to have adult learners featured in more videos, but K12 videos can also be immensely useful.
Could we create a list of useful videos that feature specific aspects of the standards to share in our community? What videos have members found most relevant? Please post a message with the links here!
Looking forward to hearing from others who are engaged in this work and from those who are still planning. Your questions are most welcome!
Moderator, CCR COP
Each day this week we will highlight one of the four units included in the professional development materials, CCR Standards: The Instructional Advances in English Language Arts/Literacy, Units 1–4.
Unit 1: Connecting the CCR Standards to the Key Advances
“This unit will introduce participants to the CCR Standards for each of the five levels (A-E) and their links to the CCR Anchor Standards in each strand. During the first part of this unit (Naming the Standards), participants will closely read the ELA/Literacy Anchor Standards to identify and name their content. This exercise will give participants an opportunity to become familiar with the range of demands of the standards. Participants will record their work on the Naming the Standards worksheet.
Once the essence of each Anchor Standard has been identified, Part Two of this unit (Connecting the Standards to the Key Advances) will ask participants to work to connect the content of each Anchor Standard to one (or more) of the three key advances.
Participants will then reflect on how the college- and career-ready skills embedded within the four different strands of the CCR Standards (Reading, Writing, Speaking and Listening, and Language) connect to one another and to each of the three advances.”
I found this unit to be a perfect first step for those who are beginning to develop their knowledge of the CCR standards. The “Naming the Standards” activity proved to be an effective gateway into the standards and increased participants’ comfort levels enormously. “Connecting the Standards to the Key Advances” provided a clear summary of what is new and different about these CCR Standards. The unit created a common language and understanding among everyone and participants took some ownership of the standards and the advances once this activity was completed. The stage was set for deepening understanding.
Has anyone implemented Unit 1 in your program or state? Tell us about your experience.
Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education
Today we will highlight the second of four units included in the professional development materials, CCR Standards: The Instructional Advances in English Language Arts/Literacy, Units 1–4
Unit 2: Selecting Texts worth Reading
“This unit will allow participants to investigate in depth Key Advance 1 embedded within the standards—the demand for greater complexity in the texts students read. Participants will build a basic understanding of text complexity initially through a brief presentation on its quantitative and qualitative elements. They will learn how to determine levels of text complexity and become acquainted with tools to perform complexity analyses of texts. They also will examine the features of text that are the major sources of complexity and learn why they pose particular challenges to readers.
In the hands-on activity, participants will learn how to use the Quantitative Analysis Chart for Determining Text Complexity to determine in which level a text belongs. They will spend time analyzing the qualitative features of an excerpt from The Words We Live By: Your Annotated Guide to the Constitution to determine which elements of the text are slightly, moderately, very, or exceedingly complex. This will help them make a link between text features and the instructional materials that need to be developed to ensure students are able to successfully comprehend complex text. A supplemental text and a second text evaluation activity, based on a speech by Eleanor Roosevelt, accompany this unit for further practice or when more than 120 minutes can be devoted to training.”
This unit was packed with hard work worth doing for all participants, but by the time the session was over, there was a collective understanding and embracing of the types of texts necessary for students to achieve the promise of the CCR standards. With that common understanding, participants were able to engage in discussions to explore the tremendous opportunities and plan for the potential challenges of implementing this key advance in classrooms and programs.
Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education
Rachel, Thank you for sharing Unit 2: Selecting Texts worth Reading. The informed, strategic conversations and decision educators make during and after this experience are well worth the time! These materials are designed to flexible and work well with any thoughtfully chosen set of texts.
Today we will highlight the third of four units included in the professional development materials, CCR Standards: The Instructional Advances in English Language Arts/Literacy, Units 1–4.
Unit 3: Identifying Questions worth Answering
This unit will allow participants to investigate in depth Key Advance 2: Drawing evidence from texts through sequences of text-dependent questions. Using the text they investigated previously for text complexity (The Words We Live By: Your Annotated Guide to the Constitution), participants will analyze a set of questions tied to that text by various criteria.
They will learn how to identify non-text-dependent questions from text-dependent questions. They also will learn how to identify text-dependent questions that are valuable and worth answering—questions that go beyond recall. Participants will learn the importance of text-dependent questions as a tool for developing students’ reading comprehension skills. This will help them make a direct link between text-dependent questions and the instructional scaffolding that such questions provide to students to successfully comprehend a text—especially students struggling with the complexity and nuances of a text. A supplemental text and a second “questions worth answering” activity, based on a speech by Eleanor Roosevelt, accompany this unit for further practice, or when more than 90 minutes can be devoted to training.
This unit builds on the deep understanding participants have of the texts they are working with after engaging in Unit 2. The activities in this unit help participants to recognize questions that require evidence from text and those that do not. Further, participants are immediately able to begin revising questions to make questions stronger and standards-aligned.
I agree, Meesha. The activities in Unit 3 build very effectively on the rewarding work completed in Unit 2. I think the activities incorporated in Units 2 and 3 provide a useful framework for teachers to use in developing effective instructional scaffolding. A qualitative analysis of text complexity, which was explored in Unit 2, determines features of a text which students may find challenging. These could include figurative language, implicit connections between ideas, academic and domain-specific vocabulary, or complex language. A qualitative text analysis helps teachers develop informed instructional strategies that scaffold student access to complex texts. Building on from this, the activities in Unit 3 make a direct link between text-dependent questions and the instructional scaffolding that such questions provide to students to successfully comprehend a text.Jane Roy StandardsWork, Inc. ELA/Literacy Coach Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education email@example.com
Today we will highlight the fourth of four units included in the professional development materials, CCR Standards: The Instructional Advances in English Language Arts/Literacy, Units 1–4.
Unit 4: Creating High-Quality Writing Assignments
This final unit targets the importance of Key Advance 3 by highlighting how students learn from what they read. In Part One of this unit (Identifying High-Quality Writing Prompts), participants will learn how to identify strong writing prompts that will help students collect and articulate their learning. Through a brief presentation, participants will build a basic understanding of the value of high-quality writing prompts. They will evaluate two writing prompts that pertain to the now-familiar excerpt from The Words We Live By: Your Annotated Guide to the Constitution to determine which writing prompt is aligned to the CCR Standards and would produce a richer and deeper response from students. They will also use the ELA/Literacy Anchor Standards to guide them in identifying which CCR Standards students would need to employ when responding to the prompt.
In Part Two of this unit (Generating a High-Quality Writing Prompt), participants will build a writing prompt tied to Eleanor Roosevelt’s Speech to the Members of the American Civil Liberties Union. From a set of previously identified high-quality, text-dependent questions, participants will be asked to pay close attention to the questions that would require students to go most deeply into Roosevelt’s speech to develop an answer. Again, participants will use the ELA/Literacy Anchor Standards to guide them in identifying which CCR Standards students would need to employ when responding to the prompt they are creating. This activity will help participants connect the earlier work of Unit 2 (Key Advance 1: Text Complexity) and Unit 3 (Key Advance 2: Evidence) to this culminating activity.
Has anyone had experience using this unit with educators?
Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education
Thank you to LINCS and Susan Finn Miller for hosting this week's discussion on the new professional development materials for ELA/Literacy CCR standards. Thanks to Kate and Peg for sharing experiences and resources that support the use of these professional development materials. It was our pleasure to share these resources on this forum. We look forward to educators in each state making use of them.
Kaye and Fabio are looking forward to joining you next week to discuss the PD materials for CCR math standards.Jane Roy ELA/Literacy Coach StandardsWork, Inc. Implementing CCR Standards in Adult Education firstname.lastname@example.org