Welcome to your 3-hour, self-guided tour (similar to a webquest) to the new Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC) Assessment. You will research general information, explore instructional shifts in the areas of Literacy and Math and then finally, identify connections between our Transdisciplinary Units of Instruction and the CCSS.

We have offered suggested time-allocations for all 6 parts of the presentation. Adherence to these guidelines will help ensure that you have the opportunity to explore and complete all of the activities.

Please know that today is designed to provide you with a very BASIC OVERVIEW of the new Standards. The district and our schools are in the midst of planning many additional professional learning opportunities to support our full transition to the CCSS and the new SBAC assessment in the academic year of 2014-15.

Please sit with your grade-level colleagues to collaborate, analyze and synthesize the information shared today.


1. Shifting to Common Core State Standards (CCSS)

We have provided two texts- 1 digital Prezi and 1 four-page word document- to provide you with a very brief "overview" of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and the Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC).

A. Prezi Presentation (about 10 minutes):

B. Four-page Word Document: CCSS Greenwich Overview Document (about 10 minutes)...


  • Key Areas to focus reading of 4-page GPS CCSS doc.:

    • DO NOT spend much time on the details of the ELA and Math Standards; you will have a chance to study these Standards in-depth later today.

    • SBAC Assessment:

      • The SBAC assessment will take the place of the CMTs and the CAPT in 2014-15.
      • There is a summative assessment which will take place in April/May and 2 interim assessments will be taken periodically throughout the year to benchmark progress toward the summative assessment.
      • The new SBAC assessment will have a Computer Adaptive Test (CAT) portion (see wikispaces- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computerized_adaptive_testing- for a brief overview of this type of assessment) and several performance tasks in the area of reading, writing and math.
      • Sample test items are currently be written and piloted by state-contracted vendors. Therefore, we still do not have actual "test samples" to share. However, based on numerous workshops/presentations, the Performance Task that you will take later today mirrors the expectations of the SBAC Performance Tasks.
    • Timeline:

      • Please note that many curricular areas have already begun to embed the Common Core State Standards into existing and newly written units of study. The CCSS are included in all Transdisciplinary units of study and the GPS Reading/Writing units. The new social studies curriculum is embedding the Standards into the new curriculum and the Science units have been aligned to the new Standards. A complete cross-walk and alignment has been conducted for the K-5 math program (see activity below).
      • District administrators (building and district) are collaborating to provide comprehensive and cohesive professional learning opportunities to support teachers in the implementation of "the instructional shifts" and the new Standards.

C. Pair-Share

  • Gather into groups of 2-3 when you are done reviewing the 2 documents. Chat with your colleagues...what questions do you have? What seems like the greatest "shift"? Be sure to capture this thinking during the "reflection" activity at the end of the day.

2. Introduction to Math Standards (45 minutes)

  • Standards overview for specific grade level & CT SDE transition plan (HANDOUT IN PACKET)
    • Make a visual representation of what the Operations and Algebraic Thinking domain would look like at their grade level. Put each team's poster up on a wall in grade level order and take a minute to look at the progression of the OAT domain across the grade levels.
    • Part 1: What do you notice about the progression of the OAT domain across the grade levels?
    • Part 2: Looking at the transition document, identify one “displaced objective” that you feel will have the greatest impact on your teaching and why you feel that way.
    • Part 3: Write a 3-2-1 sum (3 things you learned about CCSS-M, 2 things that surprised you about the changes at your grade level, 1 burning question about the CCSS shifts in mathematics).

3. Introduction to ELA Standards & Sample Performance Task (60-70 minutes)

1. K-5 ELA Standard Orientation/Exploration (10 minutes maximum)

We have designed 2 ways for you to briefly orient your self to and/or explore the K-5 ELA CCSS.
For both options, you will need to open a copy of the ELA CCSS open on your computer screen to reference as work through the activity (http://www.corestandards.org/assets/CCSSI_ELA%20Standards.pdf).
You can either review the organizational features of the document (see OPTION #1) or you can go to the Reading-LA GPS Wiki to explore with your colleagues how the CCSS are integrated into the units of study (see OPTION #2). Please choose only one Option for today...you will probably not have time to do both activities. You can always revisit one of the activities at a later date.

OPTION #1: "Explore the ELA Standards through the actual CCSS ELA Document"


OPTION #2: : "Explore the ELA Standards by reviewing some GPS Reading and Writing Units of Study "

  • Open a copy of the ELA Standards; go to: http://www.corestandards.org/assets/CCSSI_ELA%20Standards.pdf (pages 9-33 identify the K-5 ELA Standards)
  • Go to the Reading-LA Greenwich Wikispaces (http://reading-la.greenwich.wikispaces.net/)
    to explore some of your grade-level Reading & Writing Units of Study. Analyze how the student Learning Outcomes stem from the ELA CCSS. Then review some of the Unit of Study Teaching Points to find connections between the suggested Teaching Point and the desired Student Learning Outcomes.

2. Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium (SBAC): Sample Performance Task (Example Grade 3 Task, TCRWP; 45-60 minutes)...


FEEDBACK from 4/25/2012:

Many teachers did not have the time to completely explore the SBAC-like Performance Task. A professional learning experience will be designed to support this work in 2012-13.

  • As you learned in the first portion of this quest, one of the major ASSESSMENT shifts will be the inclusion of performance tasks in the area of literacy. To simulate what this experience will be like for students, please take the following sample performance task. Please note the emphasis on nonfiction literacy skills utilizing both digital and print resources. If you have time, discuss this process with your colleagues...and, review the rubric to assess your learning.

Sample Student Performance Task (Grade 3)

Article: The Dauphine Grill

4. Transdisciplinary Units - Overview and Self-Directed Exercise (30 minutes)

Access "Self-Directed" Resource for Transdisciplinary Units and follow the directions at:

5. Reflection (20 minutes)

Please post your answer to the following reflection questions to the Today's Meet(BackChannel - like Twitter) using your school name/last name when you join.

  • What is one thing you noticed about the connections between Common Core Standards, your current practice and the Transdisciplinary Units?
  • How will Common Core Standards impact your teaching?
  • What would you like/need for professional learning on Common Core as we plan next steps?
NOTE: Anyone who does not complete the reflection during the time allotted, may complete it and submit it by the end of the week.

6. Explore Wiki for General Resources/Websites related to Common Core Standards

If you have time, explore the other "pages" on this wiki to research new information to support your personal transition to the Common Core State Standards.