Common Core, Content Creation, and Curriculum

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This edition of the column includes a number of Common Core resources for you and your colleagues. In addition, there are some good content-creation tools and curriculum-oriented sites.

As always, I encourage you to be intentional about your manner of sharing these resources. Have you started a Pearltree for Common Core ideas? What about a Symbaloo page for each content area? Have you been intentional about sharing the Common Core resources with your administrators, literacy coaches, and other multiple-classroom teachers?

Begin exploring Common Core standards resources via a Pinterest board (http://pinterest.com/cwiseok/eommon-core-ccss/), developed by an Oklahoma elementary teacher librarian. Here are myriad resources for teaching informational texts, curating resources, critical thinking skills, and more. At the time this column was written, there were 280 pins on the board. Secondary educators will also find good resources for teaching reading and thinking skills. Be sure to check out the text features resources.

Once of the most complete LiveBinders (http://www.livebinders.com/play/play?id=518355) I've found is done by the Nespelem School District in Washington. As you peruse the options you will find a wealth of information. I would suggest beginning with the Edutopia resources showcased on the front page. The binder also provides quick access to ASCD resources, as well as Smarter Balanced and PARCC assessment sites. You might want to consider highlighting one resource found here every other week.

The NY Times Learning Network (http://learning.blogs.nytimes. com/category/lesson-plans/common-core/) has also joined the discussion of the Common Core standards. Every week you will find three lesson plans designed to help students gain the skills needed for Common Core assessments. The options are developed and tested by ninth-grade humanities teachers. However, the concepts easily transfer to other content areas, as the focus is on writing skills.

Designed for middle school students, this lesson, titled "Analyzing Text Structures," has a good structure that can easily be transferred to another text option. The Scholastic site (http://www. scholastic.com/teachers/top-teaching/2012/05/analyzing-textstructures) has many other lesson plan options. I would suggest that you spend some time perusing the Resources & Tools menu. There are many items here that help with the move to Common Core.

The Teaching Channel (https://www.teachingchannel.org/) proclaims that it is a video showcase of great teaching, and it lives up to this claim. Easy access via an index on the left side pulls up more than a hundred videos of Common Core lessons with a single click. The visual menu of the videos with time information makes browsing the choices much easier. These are great segments for quick PD sessions or for use by literacy instructors, math coaches, and administrators working with teachers. Teacher librarians will want to explore the digital literacy options.

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With a continuing emphasis on reading and writing skills, teacher librarians will want to inspect the list of fifty iPad apps for struggling readers and writers housed at TeachThought (http://www. …