Myths of Common Core debunked by Tim Shanahan
There is a great article on Common Core myths debunked by Chicago-based Tim Shanahan. Link is: http://www.ascd.org/publications/educational-leadership/dec12/vol70/num04/The-Common-Core-Ate-My-Baby-and-Other-Urban-Legends.aspx
Tim provides great insights for educators and parents.
An example is:
Legend 2: Teachers are no longer required to teach phonological awareness, phonics, or fluency.
The 1990s were riven by the Reading Wars, those bitter arguments over how to teach beginning reading (see Stanovich, 2000; Taylor, 1998). Arguments raged about which approach was best—the popular whole-language approach or one that emphasized phonics and other basic skills. Convinced that the phonics approach was superior, many states began changing their policies during the 1990s to ensure that teachers taught basic skills explicitly.
The issue was eventually settled by a major review of research, the Report of the National Reading Panel(National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, 2000), which became the basis of U.S. education policy. Subsequently, No Child Left Behind (NCLB) became the law of the land, which included support for programs like Reading First and Early Reading First that emphasized phonological awareness, phonics, and fluency.
I would add that there are also terrific technology-based products such as Scientific Learning’s Reading Assistant. The data on Reading Assistant are staggeringly good. The product provides 1/1 guided reading, words correct per minute, fluency, comprehension, and vocab. building and builds running records through automation. Link to info on Reading Assistant is: http://www.scilearn.com/products/reading-assistant/
If our treatment of fluency is the lightest and weakest, in the work on all Literacy Strands, we must strengthen this area of practice, especially as the rigors of Common Core are before us. And, since Fluency drives Comprehension, we must become much more effective in our treatment of Fluency among our kids.