Face to face with Common Core-Part II

Posted by Non_mooching_artist 5 years, 5 months ago to Education
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Dear Representative -----

I am writing to you out of deep concern regarding the Common Core curriculum, specifically related to math that is being taught in my daughter's school.

At the parent/teacher conference I had with my daughter's 8th grade math teacher, he expressed to me the dismay he feels about something that he was being compelled to teach to prepare his students for an upcoming test this Friday, April 4, 2014. He said he is required to teach them about baseball, and the parts of a stadium, and positions. I asked if it was about the geometry of a baseball diamond, or statistics. He answered, no, that it was only about the elements of the stadium and positions. I asked him if this was Common Core curriculum, to which he answered yes, and then further said he was not allowed to discuss it. My head nearly spun! This is my daughter's education, he is her teacher, and as a parent, I want to know what is being taught in my daughter's classrooms.

Today, I have had the chance to ask my daughter about her math class, to follow up on what she was going to learn. The following is some of what she was "taught" in her math class today;

1. They had to learn what each section of seats is called, such as bleachers and box seats.
2. The bases, and then two photographs were presented of home plate, shown from above and then from the side. They had to identify if this was the same place on the field or not.
3. They had to learn each of the positions of the players, and the name of the part of the field their position is in.
4. On more than one question, the students were "led" to answer a certain way. One of the questions was, "What makes a good baseball player?". The instruction to the teacher was, "Make sure the students answer "Know what each part of the field is called", and, "He can throw the ball". Besides which, this is purely subjective.
5. The instructions to the teacher stated that only on some questions were students "permitted" to ask questions.
6. They had to learn about the "fundamentals of baseball', such as what a season ticket holder is, what are errors and home runs, the object of the game, and how you win.
7. Questions were repeated, but worded slightly differently. For example, "What are errors and home runs, and what do they do in a game?". The next question asked, "How do errors and home runs effect the game?".

I have been trying to unravel the mystery of Common Core for several years, and have come to the conclusion it is strictly a tool with which to control the population. The fact that creative writing and literature is going to be slashed to a mere 30% of High School English curriculum, in favor of argumentative writing and textbooks about HVAC is alarming. And that students are being guided to answer and think like lemmings, and not independently is an unacceptable direction in which public schools are headed.

I am a concerned parent who feels that the time for silence has passed, and these laws which are getting passed with no discourse must come to light. The stifling of parental involvement, and open dialogue with teachers is unacceptable.

Thank you for your time, and I truly hope to hear from you regarding this important issue.

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  • Posted by johnpe1 5 years, 5 months ago
    this common core business is like obamacare -- fundamentally evil -- and pulling it out "by the roots" is the only safe course of action. Thanks!
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  • Posted by  $  amiga 5 years, 5 months ago
    Commie Core is an amalgam of the worst of John Dewey's Progressive Education, Joseph Goebbels' Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Saul Alinsky's Rules for Radicals. It's simply the logical descendant of The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America as described by Charlotte Iserbyt.
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  • Posted by j_IR1776wg 5 years, 5 months ago
    Non_Mooch I've wracked my brain to find a way for we in the Gulch to collectively express our distaste of CC and have come up with this idea: If we could come up with an email that clearly explains our demand that CC be eliminated and have it signed by thousands of us and sent to our reps in State and Federal government, it would have a greater impact than each of us acting on our own.
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    • Posted by 5 years, 5 months ago
      That would be impressive indeed, and definitely carry more weight behind it. Hmm. Maybe include each "signer's" email?
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      • Posted by lmarrott 5 years, 5 months ago
        I'm behind this idea but I have a question. Will most "state" representatives care about signatures from out of their state?

        I think this is one of the shady things about Common Core. We still think of education at the state level, but this was implemented above states with the curriculum being pushed down on them. But there isn't an obvious "common core" organization you can go against or contact.

        However we can hope that state reps will listen and one by one get rid of it.
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  • Posted by  $  Thoritsu 5 years, 5 months ago
    Both my parents are retired teachers. My father complained about this sort of thing all the way back to 1987, just three years after he lit a piece of paper on fire with a Tesla coil in class to get a wayward student to start taking notes. He even complained about teachers who would "teach the best and shoot the rest". Not to bring down the average, but as the responsibility of a teacher. He has to be turning over in his grave about this load of Ebonics.
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  • Posted by asmsage 5 years, 5 months ago
    Statistics are involved in many item in life especially baseball, think about it with los Vagas betting etc. the real question to ask the teacher is, where can you see a copy of the core curriculum standards and who has it. who wrote it and how is it handed down to the teachers(he should know or he is trying to keep it a secret) if you don't get an answer, then go to the principal, if no answer there then go to a member of the board of education. attend a board meeting and talk to one of them after the meeting, it takes a while to get answers but there is a way if you are patient. You will eventually find out and you can tell this forum what your findings are. As well as knowing your self and getting to the bottom of this mystery.
    good luck! and god bless you for being a good parent.
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    • Posted by  $  DARdaughter 5 years, 5 months ago
      asmsage: You are missing the point. Not only are they teaching children to obey orders and assess their "values", CC does the same to the teacher. If you don't comply, you are ostracized and brow-beaten into compliance. New teachers are the most vulnerable because they've been taught to comply in order to get their degree. It's the older teachers that are being run out with tactics like undermining tenure.
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  • Posted by UncommonSense 5 years, 5 months ago
    Great letter, hopefully your Representative has the guts to take this issue seriously & ask the right questions to the right people.

    So, they're teaching the basics on baseball (something most 8th graders should already know) in math class? I know the meaning of "assume", but I'm going to do it anyway: I assume they'll teach math lessons in Physical Ed (Gym class)?
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    • Posted by 5 years, 5 months ago
      Haha, probably, and English will be the forum for dissections.

      My rep is VERY proactive regarding CC, among other things. I had received an email from her a few weeks back about a hearing w/the CT Dept. of Ed, and how she wanted people to show up to speak out against common core. She was trying to arrange it so the meeting would be in the evening so parents and teachers could attend. Instead, it was "conveniently" held at noon. :-(
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      • Posted by  $  Snezzy 5 years, 5 months ago
        We had teachers good enough, umpty years ago, that:
        1. The biology teacher taught that dissection was pronounced dih-section, not dye-section.
        2. The phys ed teacher put us to work writing out the states and their capitals, when for some reason (weather, maybe?) we could not hold the regular class. Most of us used his dictionary to look up the correct capitals. The lazy kids thought they knew that NYC was the capital of NY, Chicago of Illinois, etc. Coach Freddy (the teacher) of course knew the capitals, and any we got wrong had to be written out ten times.

        I never really understood baseball, but I sure know my mathematics. As for geography, my immigrant grandfather could name all 48 states and the contiguous states for each one. Pop quiz: Of the "lower 48" states, which one is contiguous with only one other state?

        Somewhere on the Internet you can find examples of 8th-grade graduation exams from around 1900. Try to find a college grad (even you and me) who can pass one of them!
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  • Posted by gonzo309 5 years, 5 months ago
    I just received an email you'd be interested in about Common Core:

    "Grassroots conservatives are fighting to stop Common Core.

    Thanks to the hard work of activists like you, Senator Pat Roberts introduced S. 1974. This bill will make it illegal for the federal government to blackmail states into accepting dangerous education schemes like Common Core by threatening other funding.

    This is a great opportunity to take control of our children’s education.

    Call your Senators and tell them to co-sponsor S. 1974 and stop future attacks on local education!

    It’s going to be a hard fight to pass S. 1974. That’s why we need your help today.

    Call your Senators. Make sure they co-sponsor this bill.

    You and I can make a difference and protect our children. Make the call today.

    In Liberty,

    Whitney Neal
    Director of Grassroots, FreedomWorks"
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  • Posted by  $  DARdaughter 5 years, 5 months ago
    Parents need to demand that every classroom have a web cam they can log into anytime of the day, in order to keep tabs on what's going on with their children. DON'T ASK, DEMAND!
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  • Posted by  $  DARdaughter 5 years, 5 months ago
    Parents in every State are being duped into believing that the "implementation" problems of Common Core are local and only in their own district. Every school that signs up for CC is experiencing the same push-back from parents. The schools keep it quiet on purpose. NEVER EVER go into a "private" meeting about your child and CC. Bring it directly to public school board meetings. You will get NOWHERE with principals or superintendents, they've already swallowed the kool-aid and sold their souls for the money that CC brings.
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  • Posted by amagi 5 years, 5 months ago
    Great letter, N-M-A, which reminds one of O's pal,
    Van Jones line "upside-down, inside-out" as well as the story of an American teacher, well educated
    and professional, who in the mid 60's moved to
    Norway to teach English. However, the Dept. of
    Ed. would not let her do that; Instead they wanted her to teach physics, which she had not studied and knew next to nothing about. They gave her a book to teach from, and she tried by
    reading just a page or two ahead of the students, but they did not want her ,nor did she want them. She quit and has since made her
    living from her arts, which she is very good at,
    and which the Dept. of Ed. would not let her
    teach either. We are slightly behind the Norwegian, but CC is helping us catch up.
    Insanity rules.
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  • Posted by brs02 5 years, 5 months ago
    Several years? I thought it was rushed in over the past 2 years? Kam dealing with it for he first time at the 1st grade level. I understand what the are trying with some of the math, but a most of it is nonsense. My daughter is beyond most of it.
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  • Posted by XenokRoy 5 years, 5 months ago
    common core should force us all to spend more time with our kids and explain why the way they are being educated is not good, and what they should be thinking about. Keep them educated. I do not like it and will not support it, but treat it as an opportunity to really educate your kid about the way the other side works and why they do things they do. This is an exercise in teaching kids to be lemmings, and nothing more, expose it to your kids everyone.


    Above link is a group I belong to in Utah, they have some great articles and videos around common core. If you in Utah join up, if not find or create something like it where you are....
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  • Posted by Eyecu2 5 years, 5 months ago
    I think that this lesson would be perfectly acceptable, were this being taught in PE on a day that they are unable to go outside and actually play baseball but this is completely unacceptable to be taught in a math class.
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  • Posted by  $  sjatkins 5 years, 5 months ago
    Are you serious? Why would anyone ask anyone to teach something so bizarre and irrelevant to math? The 8th grade was when (long time ago alas) I first learned algebra. It was one of the high points of my schooling. Why on earth would you waste the time of 8th graders in a math class with this drivel?
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  • Posted by mckenziecalhoun 5 years, 5 months ago
    I help home schooling parents with curriculum and emphasize the use of formal logic and a wide variety of literature.
    Every state to some degree seeks to create "good citizens".
    Every state to some degree seeks to create "independent thinkers free from oppression".

    We need both. We need that balance.
    Is the Common Core balanced?
    Frankly, not in my experience - not from what I have read of it.

    I utterly oppose the Federal power grab it represents and see no reason not to oppose it in every legal and ethical way possible.

    HOWEVER, baseball isn't even in the Common Core for math The man has mistaken the curriculum standards for the actual curriculum chosen by his district in response.

    The baseball framework was probably chosen as a background for discussing the mathematics of hits, runs, and other statistical data within the game, and they are probably trying to be sure the children all have the basic knowledge of the game before getting into the mathematics.

    I'm no apologist for the Common Core. It has to go - the Federal government has NO place in our schools. We need to kick the school lunch plan out (used as a club - do as the Feds want or they threaten your lunch program - welfare used as a weapon at it's worst).

    But thought I'd point out that a search of the Common Core shows nothing about baseball in the Math section (I didn't check any other section). Truth comes first.
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    • Posted by 5 years, 5 months ago
      There was no discussion of statistics or any other aspect which could be construed as math. I will ask for a copy of what he used.
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      • Posted by mckenziecalhoun 5 years, 5 months ago
        And check to see if it was in the Common Core or District decision.
        AND be sure not to let up the pressure against the Common Core. We just can't afford false facts to undermine the effort. It's not like it doesn't have plenty of flaws in addition to the fact that it's a Federal grab for power that is specifically restricted in the Constitution.

        We'll see how serious they are about it when some of the states say, "No".
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