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December 9, 2012

I have been attending conferences the past two weeks and want to make a post about what I am continually hearing through so many voices at the National and State level. Under Common Core State Standards the area that is being called to attention in education is COLLABORATION. The curriculum is set, the assessment will soon be complete so the best thing schools can do to prepare is to create time for teachers to collaborate. During collaboration time teachers should focus on instruction. Teachers should work together using resources such as the progression documents to understand CCSS at a deep level. Then they should come to an agreement on the best practices for which to deliver the content. The cognitive rigor of a problem should be assessed so to ensure that students are being asked both low and high cognitive level questions. The Cognitive Rigor Matrix (Hess) is a great resource and has been adopted by Smarter Balanced as a defining tool for the level of each assessment problem. While CPM is stronger at Level 3 and 4 questions that many mathematics curricula there is still room for additional Level 4 questions/problems. One set of Algebra teachers I know is adding in Projects this year and that is raising the cognitive demand of their classes. Check it out!

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