David and Meredith Liben on addressing the shifts of the Common Core

 //  Aug 20, 2013

David and Meredith Liben on addressing the shifts of the Common Core

As part of our Teacher Appreciation Week programming here at Scholastic, David and Meredith Liben from Student Achievement Partners presented to an auditorium full of educators on “Putting the Pieces of the CCSS Together.” Here are some of my take-aways from their informative workshop. 

The Common Core State Standards bring three instructional shifts in ELA/Literacy:

  1. Building knowledge through content-rich nonfiction.
  2. Reading, writing, and speaking grounded in evidence from text, both literary and informational.
  3. Regular practice with complex text and its academic language.

How do educators address these shifts? Through:

  1. Close Reading. Support students in understanding complex text, which will build habit of mind. Focus on the close reading using text-dependent questions, breaking down complex sentences and syntax.
  2. Volume of Reading. After experiencing success through close reading, students are more willing to read independently. Through reading, students develop vocabulary and learn about the world.

The ability to read complex text independently and proficiently is the greatest predictor of college success. Thanks to the Libens for inspiring us to support students and teachers in this endeavor!

UPDATE: Meredith and David Liben's presentation deck has been posted to Scholastic's Common Core website, if you're interested in taking a look.


Yes, this presentation was

Yes, this presentation was meaty and inspirational. It was great how Meredith's message about viewing their work from a civil rights perspective resonated with Phyllis Hunter's earlier presentation--and her reiteration of her big message: Reading is a civil right.

Please explain to me how

Please explain to me how these concepts were not in place before the big push to Common Core? It appears to me that Common Core reformers are trying to take credit for concepts that most educators already have in place. These so-called "shifts" that Common Core supporters are trying to pass off as new and innovative, were in place when I was in school in the 70's and 80's!

I agree, these tried and true

I agree, these tried and true pedagogical concepts are coming to the forefront with Common Core. They’ve come from successful educators and classrooms, and they work!