Many educators across the country have been, are, or will be busy reading, dissecting, evaluating, and debating the Common Core State Standards as a new guide to developing benchmarks, lessons, and assessments across K-12 curricula.
The development of higher order thinking – as reflected in reading and writing, analysis and creation – is at the core of the CCSS. As one reads through the standards, it is clear that the development of a framework for evaluating and creating media – whether print or non-print – is at the core of the skills highlighted in the standards. These skills are the cornerstones to every chapter in Moving Images, and this should be seen as welcome news by the National Association of Media Literacy Education and other groups that have developed standards for media literacy based on higher-order skills.
Specifically, in the Anchor Standards, media educators must note a standard listed under “Integration of Knowledge and Ideas”: “(7) Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse formats and media, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.” In addition, the use of technology is noted in numerous anchor standards, particularly “digital sources,” and comparison and contrast with visual media is noted in multiple anchor standards. In the Speaking and Listening Standards, under the section of “Comprehension and Collaboration” students are asked to “(2) Integrate multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media (e.g. visually, quantitatively, orally) in order to make informed decisions and solve problems, evaluating the credibility and accuracy of each source and noting any discrepancies among the data.” This mirrors common media literacy education standards such as those established by NAMLE, and these goals reflect many of the essential questions posed in Moving Images, such as those investigated in Chapters 1, 5, and 6.
There are clearly countless questions and challenges that exist and will arise for educators as they wrestle with this major new mandate. In particular, the stress on non-fiction texts already has many English teachers concerned about the effects of implementing these goals on the study of literature, and the lack of effective integration of creativity in these goals is also a source of profound frustration for many educators.
Update 2: Here is a more recent blog post about the CCSS for a presentation I made at the 2013 Northeast Media Literacy Conference.
Update 3: Here are resources by PBS’s LearningMedia initiative that provide information and materials related to media literacy and implementing the Common Core.