Friday, December 17, 2010

ACT and The CCSS Report

A "first Look" - the ACT CCSS report on the College and Career Readiness of current HS students for the expectations and rigor of the CCSS that will be tested starting in 2014. The report reflects the 2010 testing results of 256,765 11th grade students in Mathematics and ELA. The overall results reveal that across all of the Domains, strands and clusters of the Common Core - only about 1/3 - 1/2 of the students are reaching the college and Career readiness expectations. And the results of performance in Number Sense (only 34% passing) indicate a lot of work ahead. Paradoxically enough, one of the reasons that students in 11th grade perform so poorly in this cluster, is due to their lack of understanding number sense. Procedural knowledge would be enhanced if and when the "understanding standards" of the common core become part of our K-12 mathematics curriculum.

In the ACT Mathematics report - one of the primary recommendations:

Greater understanding of mathematical processes and practices is needed.

For each of the Common Core Mathematical Practices standards, only about

one-third of students reached the college- and career-ready level. States and

districts must ensure that conceptual understanding is emphasized for all

students in mathematics.

More specifically, students at all grade levels need

to be:

working and solving challenging nonroutine problems;

explaining methods and justifying conclusions;

predicting and conjecturing about things like unknown numbers,

measurements, quantitative relations, the behavior of functions, how well a

model fits reality, the effectiveness of different solution methods, and the way

probabilistic events occur; and

looking for patterns and structure in places like diagrams, equations, number

systems, proofs, problems, tables, graphs, and real-world objects. (p.7)

These ACT Results verify the need for significant reform in the way we teach high School Mathematics as a more Student Engaged Learning Experience. For the "First Look" Full Report and all of its recommendations - click here.

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