In 2009 I began my journey towards obtaining my Masters degree in education. As a kid I struggled to learn how to read, thus the desire to help strugglingling readers like myself emerged. I loved the concept of differentiated instruction, scaffolding, brain theory, and multiple intelligence. I absolutely adore the idea of teaching children where they are at. In the three years I have been out of the classroom so much has changed with the institution of common core. I have always felt the importance of raising the bar in regards to behavioral and educational expectations. When I read a primer from the last two centuries I am awed at the vocabulary and concepts used. It was a totally different way of speaking, almost more mature. With common core they are implementing rigorous goals and objectives in the areas of science, mathematics and language arts. I have no qualms of expecting more, however what happened to the concept off the unique and individual learner? I’ve said it before, education is not a one size fits all proposition.
In my son’s classroom he struggles with developmental issues in many areas, he learns at his own pace. He processes things in his own unique way. It makes me smile as I watch the gears move in his head, and it has taught me an infinite amount of patience in waiting for him to respond. Often waiting has been blessed by those special gems of expressions that we like too call “Chaseisms”. I am all for raising the bar for him and giving him something lofty too reach for, but not the same as every other child in his age bracket.
Next week he returns to school full time. He wants this, and maybe he should. I feel ambivalent, and more than a little sad that he will be losing his two hours of one on one instruction with his special ed teacher. I asked her at what age do they start title one tutoring, since he is not on grade level. I wanted to hug her when she said “Well, kids in my room don’t normally get the title 1 tutoring. I don’t care what grade they are in. I teach them at their current level. I know common core is much more rigorous, but I teach my kids where they are at.” I am so glad that she does does not expect them to be where common core expects them to be.