The new Common Core Standards, have recently been adopted by 46 of the 50 states and will begin to be implemented in Vermont and New Hampshire in the coming school year.
These standards, initiated by the National Governors Association and the Council of Chief State School Officers, are internationally benchmarked and intended to raise the level of our nation’s education system and to help students better meet the challenges that face them in college and in the work environment.
Last week, the New York Times‘ Opinionator blog featured an essay called “What Should Children Read?” by English teacher and writer Sarah Mosle. In the essay, Mosle highlights the new emphasis on nonfiction in the Common Core State Standards, “a set of national benchmarks, adopted by nearly every state, for the skills public school students should master in language arts and mathematics in grades K-12.”
According to Mosle, when the standards go into effect in 2014, 50 percent of all fourth-grade reading assignments will be nonfiction.