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Summer professional development focuses on Common Core

Many teachers will spend this summer learning classroom strategies to best align with upcoming Common Core standards.

Common Core is the topic teachers have requested most for summer professional development, says Karen Beerer, Discovery Education’s vice president of professional development for Common Core State Standards. “Contrary to popular belief, the standards are not one size fits all,” she says.

Beerer will lead 32 Common Core Academies nationwide. The two-day Discovery Education courses will give educators a better understanding of how to implement key standards when teaching math, literacy, and special education. Lesson plan development, incorporating technology into the classroom, and delivering assessment also will be taught.

Knowledge Delivery Systems (KDS) offers several online Common Core courses for teachers and administrators. “Some studies show educators have only some understanding of Common Core, and need help making the transition,” says Alvin Crawford, CEO of KDS. The courses, available for individual teachers or districtwide, cover Common Core math and literacy for grades 3 through 8. Educators will learn to create stronger assessments and more in-depth lesson plans.

“Common Core is not a small thing and it means different things for every district,” says Crawford. “Teachers are being asked to encourage student collaboration, rather than simply handing out assignments. We’re looking at creating a very different classroom.” —L.W.