Exploring and Developing Content Area Knowledge and Skills
The English Language Arts (ELA) standards define what students should know about language and be able to do with language. The ultimate purpose of the ELA Common Core Georgia Performance Standards (CCGPS) is to ensure that all students are offered the opportunities, encouragement, and vision to develop the language skills they need to pursue life’s goals, including personal enrichment and participation as informed members of our society. Although standards are focused primarily on content, it is important to consider the acquisition of learning that is undergone by students. Therefore, as a teacher it is important that I consider the questions of why, when, and how my students grow and develop as language users. It is also important to note that ELA CCGP standards are merely guidelines that provide ample room for the innovation and creativity that are essential to teaching and learning. The organizational piece of the ELA content area is also important to consider. Each of these standards is tied to the others in both obvious and subtle ways—with overlap occurring as well.
As a teacher of the twenty first century, I think that it is important to “buy-in” the interest of student learning. The learning process is more effective when students understand why they are learning specific content and when that content is presented in a relevant manner. I have communicated to students the importance of mastering ELA content area by drawing a connection between the standards and their ability to read or write their own name or even read text presented electronically (e.g. on iPads, iPhones, television, etc.). It is important to prepare students for the literacy demands of today and tomorrow. Literacy expectations are likely to accelerate in the coming decades. To engage fully in society and the work place now and in the future, students will need powerful literacy abilities. My students will also need to...
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