Common Core is the newest education trend in the United States – the product of combining popular and successful education systems to help young Americans advance more efficiently than their peers. However, this plan has severely backfired, causing an outrage among students, teachers and parents alike.
As an AP English student, I was shocked to find how similar my year three class was to a year one Standard class. My fellow AP students and a ninth grade standard class were both discussing the same novel, Of Mice and Men by John Steinbeck, and writing an eerily similar paper. I went to my teacher with my concerns only to find that this is a frequent occurrence. Common Core created a curriculum that not only stereotypes kids to all being on the same education level, but this program forces them to repeat the same ideas in their heads for years without any new material.
Put simply, nearly all the work is the same and the grading level seems to line up as well. This may seem like a good thing, but I guarantee you it is not. Our challenge level system is failing. A Standard student should not be subjected to the same level of work as an AP student, or vice versa. Without the system of having standard, honors, and AP there is little chance to grow and challenge oneself academically. With an education style that proves to the student that they are “a dime a dozen” teaches collectivism, an ideology that has no place in our American schools. Our country suffered and fought for independence, and the right to preserve it. A student should grow as an individual throughout their educational experience, not be forced to be grouped together only to drone on about the same works of literature for years to come.
The methods used to teach the material are far worse than anything I’ve ever seen. These processes are most easily seen via math problems, especially in elementary school levels. Several of these problems have gone viral to show parents just how insanely redundant Common Core is. The “Letter to Jack” has taken the internet by storm, showing a college educated father trying to solve a simple math problem the Common Core way (read what the father did, it’s priceless). A college student made a video showing the difference in processes to find the answer to another simple math problem, and this juxtaposition is scary. It is crazy that adults can not work out these problems the CC way after multiple hours, but yet our children are expected to do so quickly and later successfully test on the subject.
You might be thinking that it only effects the elementary school levels. Well, sadly you are incorrect. I have learned math “the old way” up until my eighth grade year. Our teacher tried and tried to make our transition an easy one, but alas, when we took a practice End Of Grade test on our new “Liberal Mathematics” around 20 honors level kids failed. This has continued on into high school, where I have seen the valedictorian of class of 2014 go and pray for the curve before an exam. But here is the strange thing. Everyone would pass, regardless of how much we did or didn’t know on the test. A young man who had a 14 as his pre-exam grade took the exam and received a 90. How is this possible? A gracious academic phenomena that occurs when the teaching was bad and the students have no hope, also known as the result of Common Core.
These ideals are just another way to set everyone “equal”, even though we are the exact opposite of that. No child learns the same. No child is on the same level, and we shouldn’t bring them all down to make them that way. I fear that with this system children will not only receive knowledge they do not fully comprehend, but also lower their self esteem. Our education system has taught collectivist thoughts for a long time, but finally, children are going to catch on that our government wants them to be robots, perfect, obedient robots.
What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below OR write a letter to the editor!