Your ears may have been ringing as I am find myself quoting posts from the blog-a-thon continuously, “…that Fran McVeigh post, wow it got me thinking….”.
All of this got me thinking, so I’m trying a little experiment here…
Whenever I present at speaking engagements I bring research, my firsthand experience in classrooms, and the ideas of fellow educators I talk and work alongside. Over the next few weeks I have several large keynotes coming up (dates are at the end of this post) talking Common Core State Standards myths and opportunities.
In each of these I plan to bring what I always bring, but I am thinking I would love to bring bits of your experiences, too.
Educators in the MENA region (Middle East and North Africa), for example, will largely attend from American curriculum schools. They are brand new to looking at the CCSS and also not held by the testing machine we have here. What would you tell them about the pitfalls to avoid or the joyful teaching you are doing?
At UW-Madison, anyone anywhere will tune in because it will be live and live-streamed. What do you want to tell the public about the changes in your school, both the overwhelming and the fascinating?
This is completely an experiment, usually everything I gather is from face-to-face with kids and educators, but twitter and our blog-a-thon has changed my sense of what is possible when educators are connected. I’d like to bring your knowledge and experiences to others.
So here’s my pitch:
With your permission, I’d love to include some of your voices in these upcoming speaking engagements. Send your anecdotes, links, images, that you would like me to consider sharing in a few ways: as comments on this post, via my twitter handle, or to this email: iChrisLehman(at)gmail with the subject line “Talking Common Core”. For student work or photos you would like to send, I will send you a parent/guardian permission slip to be completed before use.
I’m especially collecting experiences around three themes:
- “We are tired…” take this as either physically/emotionally tired because of X, Y, Z or action-oriented as “I am tired of being told…. when actually my students…. see look!” These could be bashing or supportive or somewhere in the middle. Such as “I am tired of everyone saying students can’t write, when my team and I studied the CCSS together and really made an effort to teach skills not just assign work we found…” or “I am tired of being told some texts are worthy and others are not, I find in my classroom that…”
- “There is no one way…” I think it’s important to both critique those promising the “ANSWER TO EVERYTHING” comes from the CCSS and to critique those comparing it to “THE END OF DAYS.” One essential point I continue to raise is that everyone’s experience with “implementation” is not the same. Yes, there are classrooms that are forced into a one-size-fits-all approach (please share those stories) but there are equally classrooms and schools that are using the standards as a study while still holding onto the practices they love and work well for students (share those, too).
- “Our students are our curriculum…” What are ways you are helping your students drive your instruction? This could be “data” in an overwhelming way, or inventions you and your colleagues are making to gather usable assessments, or ways you continue to reach beyond the standards, or anything else.
- Your inspiration, challenges, solutions, and so on!
So again, if any ideas speak to you I’d love anecdotes, links, anything that you would share with other educators about your experiences. I’ll weave many into these upcoming speaking engagements.
It would be great to see you in person at any of these events as well. Also, the UW-Madison event is free and streamed-live, registration is at the link below.
October 25, Cleveland, OH. Invited Keynote. Cleveland State University’s Annual Reading Conference: “Growing Literacy from the Core.” Register: here.
November 1-2, Dubai, UAE. “MENA Common Core Conference.” Invited Keynote and Session Speaker. Register:here.
November 5-6, New Orleans, LA. The Leadership and Learning Center’s “Common Core State Standards Summit 2.0: Getting Ready for the Next Generation Assessments,” Invited Keynote and Panelist. Register:here.
November 20, Madison, WI. Evening Invited Keynote during the University Wisconsin-Madison’s American Educators Week. FREE registration to attend live or online: here.