Backward Mapping the Standards, education begins at conception

By Greg Sampson
If there’s one thing we hear over and over about the Common Core, it’s
about the goal of having every child “college and career ready,” and that’s why
they mapped the standards backwards. That’s why they figured out what young
adults need to know when they go off to college and worked out what they needed
to learn at each grade level from 12 to 11 to 10 to … kindergarten.
That’s why we demand that kindergarten and first grade children solve
word problems in math before they have learned to read.
SCREEECH! I’m dragging the needle across the vinyl record to stop the
seductive siren song. (OK, I’m also revealing my age to a generation that only
knows music as one-song downloads to a smartphone. ‘Cause even the iPod is
ancient history to today’s children.)
Nope, the song continues in our heads because like the Muzak on the
elevator, we can’t turn it off.
So why stop at Kindergarten? Let’s backward map those standards into
Pre-K and younger. Let’s go all the way back. Education starts at conception.
What should pregnant women be reading to their wombs so that their children are
born college and career ready?!
Oh, I’m being ridiculous. I’ll accept the criticism in spite of my
satire because that means you admit there is a point where children aren’t able
to learn something beyond their stage of life.
We have to know where that point is.
Which is why educational standards should be built from the beginning
up, not the end down.
The Common Core is something in which to wrap last night’s fish dinner
remains and put into the trash.

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