"Unwrapping" the Standards: A Simple Process to Make Standards Manageable
All 50 states and the District of Columbia have formally defined standards of what students are expected to know and be able to do at each grade level and in every content area. Because state assessments are to be aligned with state standards, the standards have naturally become the critical focus for achieving the results schools are expected to produce. To meet these rigorous demands, educators need practical strategies that will help ensure high achievement levels for students in every instructional program.
'Unwrapping' the academic content standards is a technique to help educators identify from the full text of the standards exactly what they need to teach their students. 'Unwrapped' standards provide clarity as to what students must know and be able to do. When teachers take the time to analyze each standard to identify its essential concepts and skills, the result is more effective instructional planning, assessment, and student learning. From the 'unwrapped' concepts and skills, educators next determine the 'Big Ideas,' or learning goals, they want their students to remember long after instruction ends, and then write 'Essential Questions' to guide their students toward the attainment of these Big Ideas.
The process you will learn in 'Unwrapping' the Standards is practical, it can be understood quickly, and perhaps best of all, it can be implemented immediately to improve both the quality of instruction and the achievement of all students.
In 'Unwrapping' the Standards, Larry Ainsworth guides educators through each phase of the 'unwrapping' standards process. By sharing the many success stories of K-12 educators across the country, Ainsworth explains how to identify the Big Ideas—what educators want their students to remember long after instruction ends—and how to formulate the Essential Questions. The final goal of 'unwrapping' standards is for students to be able to answer, in their own words, the Essential Questions with the Big Ideas.
Included in this book are more than 80 examples of 'unwrapped' standards from a variety of content areas and grade levels. Also included are ready-to-use checklists and templates to help educators immediately apply this simple, proven technique for making the standards manageable.