Common Core Teachers and Teaching

Nancy Bailey: Don’t Fall for Common Core Infomercials

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Nancy Bailey did not like Dana Goldstein’s article in the New York Times About teaching writing. It sounded to her like an infomercial for the Common Core. In this post, she offers 15 experienced-based ways to help children learn to write and express themselves.

“New York Times journalist Dana Goldstein, who isn’t a teacher but likes to write about them, recently wrote “Why Kids Can’t Write,” an infomercial for Common Core.

“A takeaway from the article is that Common Core may not be working to teach writing, but it’s the teacher’s fault. The real danger here, however, is the idea that student words don’t matter–that writing instruction is only about mechanics.

“Goldstein highlights Dr. Judith C. Hochman who founded a nonprofit called The Writing Revolution. Hochman believes in teaching children writing mechanics and she poo poos student self-expression. She just doesn’t think it’s necessary.

“If that sounds eerily like the College Board’s David Coleman, chief in charge of Common Core, who said no one gives a “shit” about what students write, well, surprise! Coleman sits on The Writing Revolution’s Board of Trustees.

“Goldstein has gotten pushback by Furman education professor P.L Thomas in “Why Journalists Shouldn’t Write About Education,” and Jim Horn’s “Bad Writer? Blame a Teacher, Says Goldstein.” Those authors especially note the disgraceful way Goldstein slams teachers.

“Kate Walsh, who also doesn’t like teachers or student self-expression, is mentioned in the article. Walsh is with the National Council of Teacher Quality (NCTQ), highlighted in Goldstein’s article. This is a group supported by Bill Gates that pretends to know what makes good teachers.

“I have known many career English teachers. I don’t remember one of them not being confident in their ability to teach writing.”

If you want some sound ideas about teaching writing, read Bailey’s post.

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