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Common Core State StandardS for enGLISH LanGUaGe artS & LIteraCy In HIStory/SoCIaL StUdIeS, SCIenCe, and teCHnICaL SUbjeCtS

distribution of Literary and Informational Passages by Grade in the 2009 naeP reading framework

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Grade Literary Informational

4 50% 50%

8 45% 55%

12 30% 70%

Source: National Assessment Governing Board. (2008). Reading framework for the 2009 National Assess- ment of Educational Progress. Washington, DC: U.S. Government Printing Office.

The Standards aim to align instruction with this framework so that many more students than at present can meet the requirements of college and career readiness. In K–5, the Standards follow NAEP’s lead in balancing the reading of literature with the reading of informational texts, including texts in history/ social studies, science, and technical subjects. In accord with NAEP’s growing emphasis on informational texts in the higher grades, the Standards demand that a significant amount of reading of informational texts take place in and outside the ELA classroom. Fulfilling the Standards for 6–12 ELA requires much greater attention to a specific category of informational text—literary nonfiction—than has been traditional. Because the ELA classroom must focus on literature (stories, drama, and poetry) as well as literary nonfiction, a great deal of informational reading in grades 6–12 must take place in other classes if the NAEP assessment framework is to be matched instructionally.1 To measure students’ growth toward college and career readiness, assessments aligned with the Standards should adhere to the distribution of texts across grades cited in the NAEP framework.

NAEP likewise outlines a distribution across the grades of the core purposes and types of student writing. The 2011 NAEP framework, like the Standards, cultivates the development of three mutually reinforcing writing capacities: writing to persuade, to explain, and to convey real or imagined experience. Evidence concerning the demands of college and career readiness gathered during development of the Standards concurs with NAEP’s shifting emphases: standards for grades 9–12 describe writing in all three forms, but, consistent with NAEP, the overwhelming focus of writing throughout high school should be on arguments and informative/explanatory texts.2

 

1The percentages on the table reflect the sum of student reading, not just reading in ELA settings. Teachers of senior English classes, for example, are not required to devote 70 percent of reading to informational texts. Rather, 70 percent of student reading across the grade should be informational. 2As with reading, the percentages in the table reflect the sum of student writing, not just writing in ELA settings.

distribution of Communicative Purposes by Grade in the 2011 naeP Writing framework

Grade To Persuade To Explain To Convey Experience

4 30% 35% 35%

8 35% 35% 30%

12 40% 40% 20%

Source: National Assessment Governing Board. (2007). Writing framework for the 2011 National Assessment of Educational Progress, pre-publication edition. Iowa City, IA: ACT, Inc.

It follows that writing assessments aligned with the Standards should adhere to the distribution of writing purposes across grades outlined by NAEP.

focus and coherence in instruction and assessment

While the Standards delineate specific expectations in reading, writing, speaking, listening, and language, each standard need not be a separate focus for instruction and assessment. Often, several standards can be addressed by a single rich task. For example, when editing writing, students address Writing standard 5 (“Develop and strengthen writing as needed by planning, revising, editing, rewriting, or trying a new approach”) as well as Language standards 1–3 (which deal with conventions of standard English and knowledge of language). When drawing evidence from literary and informational texts per Writing standard 9, students are also demonstrating their comprehension skill in relation to specific standards in Reading.  When discussing something they have read or written, students are also demonstrating their speaking and listening skills. The CCR anchor sta

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