Tip #3 for Implementing the Common Core State Standards in Your ELA Curriculum

Align your lessons with the Common Core Standards.

If you teach in one of the 48 states that has adopted the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), chances are you've been looking for resources to help ensure your students are practicing the essential skills to meet the standards. And chances are you haven't found much for grades 6-12. I'd like to offer some tips that I learned as I went through this process during the 2010-2011 school year. You can find my previous tips here and here.


3. The various strands of the standards work with one another, so many reading activities will cover not just the reading strand, but perhaps the writing and language strands, as well. To demonstrate this, look at the following sixth grade writing standard:
The ELA strands work with one another; use resources that will, too.
W.6.9. Draw evidence from literary or informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
  • Apply grade 6 Reading standards to literature (e.g., “Compare and contrast texts in different forms or genres [e.g., stories and poems; historical novels and fantasy stories] in terms of their approaches to similar themes and topics”).
  • Apply grade 6 Reading standards to literary nonfiction (e.g., “Trace and evaluate the argument and specific claims in a text, distinguishing claims that are supported by reasons and evidence from claims that are not”).

It would be impossible to implement this standard independently from the reading standards. They work together. Therefore, many of the resources that would cover RL.6.8 and RI.6.8 are the opening act for the writing activity. After you have students make those comparisons or arguments for the reading activity, have them put it in essay format. They already have the outline done if they utilized a good reading resource for standard 8.
My reading graphic organizers can serve as writing outlines, as well.
You don't have to waste your time or money finding separate resources for each of the strands in the standards. Plus, after your students spend time delineating the reading material, they will have a better understanding of what is expected in their own writing pieces.

You can try out some of my free resources in my teacher store:

My Common Core reading graphic organizers can be found here: Grades 6, 7, 8Grades 9-10Grades 11-12

• If you are a pin-head like me (aka Pinterest Addict), check out my Common Core resources board:
Common Core Resources for English/Language Arts

• I belong to group boards, where you can find resources from various teachers and websites:
Common Core Ideas
The Ultimate Common Core ELA Products - Must Have

• You can also find resources through Charity Preston's Common Core Reading Lessons website. Just click on the specific grade level you are looking for.

The Common Core State Standards were posted under the public license:
The NGA Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) and the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO) hereby grant a limited, non-exclusive, royalty-free license to copy, publish, distribute, and display the Common Core State Standards for purposes that support the Common Core State Standards Initiative. These uses may involve the Common Core State Standards as a whole or selected excerpts or portions.

NGA Center/CCSSO are the sole owners and developers of the Common Core State Standards.

© Copyright 2010. National Governors Association Center for Best Practices and Council of Chief State School Officers. All rights reserved.

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