I’ve had a LOT of traffic on a Google Document that I created last year while exploring the Common Core State Standards. At the time I created it I was looking for a way to impress upon the teachers in my district that technology standards are now for the first time being embedded within the content standards (at least here in Michigan). Previously, the technology standards were published by the state separately from the core content areas, which created a convenient excuse for many teachers to basically say “well, they aren’t my concern, because they aren’t in my standards.”
Walking carefully away from that statement (which I know is far over-generalized), I wanted a positive way to show the teachers I work with where technology is being asked to be integrated within their instructional practice. For better or worse, all educators at the K-12 level are now responsible for ensuring that technological tools, student publishing and collaboration via the web, and many other technology-based instructional practices happen within every classroom.
I decided to start by pulling every single Common Core Standard related to technology (including the College Readiness and ELA in Science, History, and Technical Subjects standards) from the 180+ pages of the Common Core that have been published. You can find the link to those below, but what was more fun was taking a bird’s eye view of the Common Core standards using Wordle, which I posted last school year. I present them again below without any markup or annotations.
High Frequency Words in the Common Core State Standards
High Frequency Words in the Common Core State Standards related to Technology
While this is certainly not a definitive look at how we should be using technology throughout our instructional practice, it is interesting to note that the words “produce, publish, writing, and collaboration” are quite prominent in the Common Core standards related to technology. This could suggest the shift towards a growing acceptance that students should be narrating and sharing their learning with forms of media beyond just pencil and paper. The internet, computing devices (including graphing calculators and other technological aides), and various forms of collaborative software are now being expected to be a regular part of a teacher’s “toolbox” for instructional activities.
For the production and distribution of writing alone, every level of K-12 is mandated by the College and Career Readiness Anchor Standards to do the following:
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
That one simple line is listed for both the K-5 and the 6-12 levels, and is one of the most straight forward guidelines for what teachers should be doing, as a bare minimum, with student writing. More specific requirements of that standard are repeated in the Writing Standards for each grade level starting in grade 3, as well as the Writing standards for Literacy in History, Social Studies, Science, and Technical Subjects at the 6-12 levels. I won’t even get started with all of the technology related standards found deeply embedded within the Math standards. It’s not about just using technology and the internet as a resource anymore, it’s about adapting, infusing, and transforming instructional practice at every grade level to acknowledge that digital tools and the internet are here to stay as an integral part of student learning.
If you’d like to explore the list of technology related standards in the Common Core documents, feel free to click the link below to view the Google Document I created, and please share with others!