Sunday, January 5, 2014

Filling Gaps In Common Core and an Economics FREEBIE!

     I support the Common Core, in fact I have seen the difference it has made in student growth and performance when everyone has high expectations, but I am not a huge fan of the gaps that have had to be filled.  Have you had to do some gap filling?
      I have had the opportunity to work in two different schools that have gone through the transition to the Common Core.  When working in NC we were a little ahead of the district I am in in Ohio.  We went through that transition time where certain concepts changed grade levels in which they were taught or to the extent at which they were taught.  Have you experienced this? So, now that I am in Ohio I am experiencing this again.  This time though it is a little more complicated because I am teaching a tested grade level. 
     This year is the first full year of implementation of Common Core in my new school and the end of grade test our students will have to take will focus on anything in this 3rd Grade Common Core as well as anything students would have learned in common core in second grade.  One of the gaps we have this year is money.  Our social studies standards cover economics but the 3rd grade CC does not include money, they should have learned it in 2nd.  This being said, about half of our kiddos can count money and make change, while about half cannot.  
     Thus gap filling has to begin!  We were already doing our economics/persuasive writing unit and one of my teammates came up with a way to include our money instruction for those that needed it and fill that gap.  This week half of my students will go through direct instruction of identifying coins, counting coins, adding money, and making change.  While they are learning the basics, the students who already have mastered those skills will work start on a project where they invent a new product for sale.  They will explain what the product is used for or does and then create reasons why someone should purchase their product.  They will create a "commercial" to advertise their product and try to convince the students to purchase their product instead of someone else's.  At the end of the week, the students studying money will be given $10 in fake money to purchase the items from the students.  My teammate did this the week before break and said it went really well and the kids LOVED it!  Hopefully it goes well for me, too!  
     I am sharing the sheet that my students will use to organizer their ideas and begin creating their commercials.  Click HERE to grab your freebie!
     Also, if you are working on money with your kiddos, you can grab a copy of my new math packet that is on TpT.  It is an integrated packet of math and literacy.  It goes along with three books, covering time, money, and multiplication, so check it out! Click below on the picture to head over to my TpT site.

     Today is my LAST day of vacation, unless we get the snow and cold weather that is supposed to come, so I am soaking it up.  It has been a great break and I feel ready to head back!  If you are heading back tomorrow, too, have a great week back!

- Michelle

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