Comments about ‘Critical thinking a hallmark of Common Core class’

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Published: Tuesday, Dec. 31 2013 4:50 p.m. MST

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Utah Teacher
Orem, UT

I have been totally amazed at how a few extremists have totally misconstrued what the common core is. It has gotten so far out of whack that it is now laughable to hear what these people are saying. Just watch some of the comments that will be posted below mine.

It isn't some conspiracy to brainwash your kids. I just read a long rant by a lady of Facebook about how evil the common core is and how it is socialist propaganda!

I literally laughed out loud.

The common core is simply a set of standards we want all children to achieve. Of course they won't all get there but the hope is still there. It doesn't tell a teacher how to teach or what material to use. It is simply a set of standards. By third grade we want johnny to be able to __________. That is it.

I read another rant about how a common core book was teaching left wing ideals. LOL again because there is no "common core book". Teachers can use whatever they want to help the kids meet the standards.

Tyler D
Meridian, ID

I know very little about Common Core but vividly remember the frustrations of learning subjects (mainly math) where memorization was the primary method. Teachers rarely took the time to properly explain concepts but instead would often extol me to “just keep doing problems.”

Having been out of school now for a number of years I can say without a doubt that the workplace is filled with smart, college educated professionals who have little understanding of why they do things, yet are technically proficient in doing the task – they are excellent time tellers but poor clock builders.

Since more and more “doing” will become automated in the future, the most valuable currency our children will possess is the ability to think, analyze, create… understand.

If Common Core will shift that focus even a little, society in the long run will be better for it.

Mcallen, TX

For a few, it's critical thinking.

For the rest, you lose your thoughts, and ideas to conform. Part of the collective.

Champions run alone.

South Jordan, UT

I love the joy of teaching and am frustrated by some of the content in Common Core especially in Math. I find a lot of ambiguity, gobbledygook, and unnecessary pages and pages of explanation of a simple concept and strategy!

Mostly I don't like the government control on this and so many other areas of our lives now. I teach the love our country and what it means to be a patriot and a real American. I have to fill in the holes of information now left out in the new curriculum on the Founding Fathers, history of our great country, and the Constitution, etc. Teaching values are important to me as well as content.

Pleasant Grove, UT

I am a Republican, a father, and I support common core as a way to enhance our children's education. This is not some left wing propaganda. Many opponents only get their research on the subject from biased sources and not from objective sources. BTW, my wife is also an educator and she is very supportive of common core as well.

Lone Eagle
Aurora, CO

An expert is a "has-been" under pressure.

There are no right or wrong answers for a math problem? But there is a correct answer? This is common core?

Here's one question I have in the common core debate: How are gifted students kept challenged? What about those who are slower (or incapable) at getting the concepts? Is the whole class slowed down to accommodate them?

Yes, students should explain their answers so corrections can be applied as needed. To categorically state that there are no "right or wrong answers" for math problems is doing a disservice to the students. Will you be comfortable with an engineer who provides an answer to a bridging problem who was trained to think there are no right or wrong answers in math in elementary school?

I am for increasing the learning in our children. Is this the best way? Nationalized standards? But then, I have been looking a clear explanation of just what Common Core really is and have been unable to find a clear answer.

Teacher: LOL?

Keep in mind that the author of the article (opinion masquerading as news?) works for a propaganda arm of the democrat party (AP).

Mainly Me
Werribee, 00

Do you know what another hallmark is? Socialism.

Saratoga Springs, UT

Was critical thinking not a part of our education before Common Core?

It's a good thing we have the government to help us learn how to critically think. What would we do without their great example? Because they certainly are right about everything.

Highland, UT

"At the core of the standards is a reduced emphasis on memorization. Students now have to connect the dots and apply critical thinking."

This is nonsense. Utah schools were not focused on memorization prior to Common Core. In fact for years in Alpine School District, they practically banned teachers from having students memorize the times tables or learn long division. That was Investigations math. Common Core is now statewide investigations-style constructivist math. The implementation of Common Core math is going to cause math performance in Utah to decrease. It is not more rigorous. Under our A- rated 2007 math standards, most children would have completed algebra in 8th grade and could take calculus by 12th. Under Common Core, we now SLOW DOWN math and complete algebra by 9th grade so most students will only get to pre-calculus by 12th grade. It's not more rigorous unless you want to imply rigor mortis from students reading EPA reports instead of classic literature. By 12th grade 70% of English reading is supposed to be informational, not literature analysis that teaches culture and critical thinking. The problem with Common Core isn't just the standards, it's the whole agenda coming with it.

Salt Lake City, Utah

Its funny to read these opinions and the complaints about the government control of education, and yet you are perfectly fine with the Utah state legislature introducing over 200 bills each and every year that deal with education and further micromanage and control the education in this state. So I guess I should take it that it is not ok to have national standards and national government management, but it is ok to to have state micromanagement of education because that is being done by the far right.

Big C
Murray, UT

As a new parent, I haven't paid much attention to Common Core and the surrounding hoopla. A co-worker of mine recently talked to me about it. Or rather, went on a tirade about how my toddler will be brainwashed by the government in the giant conspiracy once my toddler enters school. I paid no mind to this tirade other than thinking I better educate myself on Common Core so I know what to expect in a few years. So, I educated myself (a common theme in my life) about the standards. I ignored opinions from both sides, didn't read biased articles about it, and oh my goodness... formed my OWN opinion about it. Come to find out, the standards are just that - standards. There is no evil agenda or ridiculous conspiracy behind it. The people having a fit about it should pause long enough to read about it themselves from legitimate and unbiased sources.

A Man, Not a Male
Syracuse, UT

Wow...obviously the way I and generations of folks where taught wrong....wait...if the people that are coming up with common-core where taught wrong...how do we know their "right" this time! It's like the loop in the time space continuum. By the way, I've never considered my kids "common". The "social engineering" aspect of this is amazingly SAD!

Orem, UT

I think it's impossible to form an opinion about Common Core without hearing opinions from both sides because then you aren't really seeing the truth of the issue just what people want you to see. To really SEE the truth of Common Core I had to talk to people on both sides and more importantly experience what REALLY goes on in the class room. MY findings are that this country is headed towards Socialism especially in the Education Department. Believe it or not, like it or not, our children are being taught (indoctrinated) by the Federal Government. For the future of our children and our Country please wake up Parents and take responsibility for educating your children, YOUR CHILDREN, not the governments. Common Core is only the beginning. There is only the truth and lies and you either accept the truth or all that garbage that they are trying to pass off as the truth. I think many parents really are good parents and just accept what they are told about this issue with out truly finding out for themselves because if they really knew the truth I know they would be appalled.

A Man, Not a Male
Syracuse, UT

How old school does it: 29+17 = 46 common core: 29 = 20+9 17 = 10+7 so now take 9+7=16.... and 16= 10+6 So 20+10+10 (from the 16) = 40....plus the 6 left over = 46... I can't wait to see what they do with calculus!

Northern Utah, UT

As an educator, I like a lot of the new standards that common core has implemented. However, I don't feel that old methods of memorizing are outdated. (China and India don't teach these new methods, and they outperform our students! With that being said, I feel our state is lacking what Texas and other states have done in accountability. In Texas, students must pass off a certain set of these standards to move up a grade. In Texas, students are expected to graduate with a certain knowledge base. In our state, if a student is behind, they move up to the next grade regardless. They don't really need to know their times tables in 3rd because it would be "too hurtful" of a child's self esteem to hold them back or hold them accountable, for that matter. The whole reason Utah children fare as well as they do on government testing is because of the high number of two parent households, and the prominent values of this state.

Grandma Char
Kaysville, UT

This part of the article is untrue: " The standards are not a curriculum, despite the opponents' claims." If the standards don't come with curriculum to meet the standards, then why is a Utah studies teacher teaching about global warming and telling his class "I don't agree with this, but I have to teach it."

Mcallen, TX

Many government programs have been used for education.

Now, half our people are on welfare, and must be fed by the feds. We have become dependent on skilled workers from other countries.

The term critical thinking has been over used, and our education is a flop.

Common Core is just another expensive program that won't work.

An example.--Has Head Start reduced the amount of people living in poverty? It's an expensive baby sitting program.

Let local areas do their own education. Government can't even balance a budget, let alone be responsible for teaching math to students.

principles over emotion

Those who have done their due-diligence know the real issues with Common Core are not as much about the standards, as the intent of the outcome and the connections. People who think for themselves, understand local control is threatened. They don't believe that all teachers, parents and administration should be forbidden to see any of the questions or the answers of their own students on computer adaptive tests. Thinkers do not want their personal identifiable information to be gathered and shared with the NSA. Thinkers understand that Common Core critical thinking is like telling someone to think, without giving them something to think about. Real thinkers want their children to be truly educated, not just socially engineered and prepared to get the job that a few big businesses have designed for them. They want their children to be free, self reliant and thinking citizens, who understand the free-enterprise system and the miracle of America! Ask questions! Find evidence!
Don't just trust, VERIFY!

Gertrude in Utah
Salt Lake City, UT

I've spent a lot of time in my 1st grader's classroom. I've noticed that the math and LA lessons are scripted--now seriously, how is that teaching? Kids are individuals, not little robots. I also observed that the teachers do not have time to go back and reteach a student who is struggling. How can this be good for the kids? My own daughter struggled with the math. She would come home completely lost, and I would have to reteach her the entire lesson. I fail to see the point of sending her to school anymore if I'm going to have to spend most of the evening reteaching her the material.

Salt Lake, UT

" students are being asked to think more critically " - This does not bode well for religion. But it is fantastic for our future.

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