Common Core standards, testing, and materials have become the topic of conversation in numerous public meetings around the state. A lot of parents, students and teachers are upset. What's the fuss about? I thought a simple comparison of "then" and "now" might be helpful.
On the left is the table of contents from "Making Arithmetic Work" Silver-Burdett Company 1952 edition, an 8th Grade math textbook, editions of which were commonly used in the Utica area throughout the 1950's. Flipping through the book, the "Money and Interest" chapter describes family budgeting, what money and thrift are, what banks do, various kinds of checks, and paying for use of money (interest). "Sharing Risks and Benefits" explains the purpose of fire, auto, hospitalization, accident, and life insurance and how they work. It also describes different kinds of taxes and common terminology in working with them. Other chapters to note are "Earning a Living" and "Borrowing and Investing Money."
On the right are the Common Core grade 8 math standards. (I was unable to find a textbook for them.) In a nutshell it is all mathematical theory. Searching through CC standards for other grades I was unable to find where the useful practical information from the 60 year old book above are addressed.
An Eighth Grade Education used to be generally accepted as being prepared for everyday life. That is clearly reflected in "Making Arithmetic Work"'s contents. It's not clear what these Common Core standards prepare students for, although it is proclaimed that they make students "college and career ready."
What happened to being life ready?