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Saturday, October 26, 2013

Maya Angelou & Judy Blume Against Common Core State Standards in English/Language Arts

And they let the President know it. Well, that's my take on it. Read below and see what you think:




“All children must have the freedom to grow, to evolve, to develop,” explains acclaimed poet Maya Angelou, who spoke at President Obama's inauguration. “We parents, authors, illustrators are standing up for our children. We desperately need you and your administration to stand with us.”


More than 120 leading authors and illustrators of books for children, including several national award winners, are calling on President Obama to “...change the way we assess learning so that schools nurture creativity, exploration, and a love of literature.”  
 Yes, that is what I want for my kids, for all kids: creativity, exploration, and a love of literature. SOLD.

Their letter delivered to the White House states, “Our public schools spend far too much time preparing for reading tests and too little time curling up with books that fire their imaginations.”

I really love this part:
"We the undersigned children’s book authors and illustrators write to express our concern for our readers, their parents and teachers. We are alarmed at the negative impact of excessive school testing mandates, including your Administration’s own initiatives, on children’s love of reading and literature. Recent policy changes by your Administration have not lowered the stakes... We call on you to support authentic performance assessments, not simply computerized versions of multiple-choice exams. We also urge you to reverse the narrowing of curriculum that has resulted from a fixation on high-stakes testing.

There is a great idea. Let's have our local school districts design authentic performance assessments. And let's do it without hiring a single consultant. We can handle this, folks. Instead, let's buy lots of books & laptops for kids to read, to do research and to work on their assessments & presentations.




I couldn't have said this part better myself:

"Teachers, parents and students agree with British author Philip Pullman who said, 'We are creating a generation that hates reading and feels nothing but hostility for literature.' Students spend time on test practice instead of perusing books. Too many schools devote their library budgets to test-prep materials, depriving students of access to real literature. Without this access, children also lack exposure to our country’s rich cultural range."


 "This year has seen a growing national wave of protest against testing overuse and abuse. As the authors and illustrators of books for children, we feel a special responsibility to advocate for change."

 They want our children to develop "...a love of literature from the first day of school through high school graduation." So do I.



Check out the letter to President Obama & see the list of authors who signed it  here. Oh, and they cc'd Secretary of Education, Arne Duncan. Good idea.

Comment below or write me at daschwartz24@comcast.net if you want to come together in our district or form an alliance from anywhere around the world. Let's support one another as we speak up and demand that our kids deserve more than test prep.

 Let's start now.


 




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