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21 August 2013 @ 04:22 pm
Upside down and inside out  
This posting raised by spirits which had been flagging a little when it comes to CCSS and all of the obfuscations of the truth about the standards and the assessments: http://www.sfgate.com/opinion/article/Common-Core-standards-are-curriculum-4739732.php?cmpid=twitter#page-1. Here is my favorite paragraph: "What's lost in Common Core is the human factor. Teachers, whose performance evaluations and salary are pegged to their students' test results, are deprived of the freedom and creativity that is the oxygen of learning. In an ever-changing world, common sense would propose a broad range of educational approaches rather than a single one designed to ready all students for college. In education, as in gardens, a monoculture is doomed to decay and eventual failure."

The HUMAN element is what is often lost when we focus on numbers and measures and other extraneous "data" (and CCSS is akin to a monster who feeds solely on data, crunching numbers 24/7). I often lose focus when I am working from home. Scout will come in to beg for a treat (or demand I surrender my chair to him for a nap), my BH will ask a question, or I will hear the familiar grinding of gears that means the UPS guy is on my street (and probably bringing me a box). It sometimes takes a while to get the focus back; occasionally I forget what it was I was supposed to do next (which is why I use lists constantly).

What if we lose focus of the kids, the HUMANS, in our pursuit of yet another data set? That human element is the reason that school was a place I loved to go. Even when home was crazy and demanding and even threatening, school was always a place where I counted. The focus was on ME and all the other MEs in my class. I know this is true for many kids, and I worry that if they lose yet another human connection, they will be lost. And then they will lose even more.


Let's keep our focus on what matters most, the HUMAN element.
 
 
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