LDC's innovative task template collections enable teachers to move the CCRS from policy into classroom practice. Using the LDC task templatets, teachers merge CCRS literacy standards with important subject area standards, fostering coherence in teaching both. LDC teaching templates lay out the literacy design first and then enable teachers to “push” their preferred content through this solid literacy foundation.
When teachers select a template within the Argumentation, Informational or Explanatory, or Narrative modes, they are selecting a set of “hardwired” CCRS literacy anchor standards they want to teach or emphasize. We call these the “Built-In” standards, recursive reading and writing standards that are addressed by the templates themselves.
As teachers design a teaching task using the template, they are invited to deepen the alignment to the CCRS. Each template category includes “When Appropriate” CCRS anchor standards that the templates lend themselves to but that are dependent on the choices the teachers make when they customize their teaching task. For example, some teaching tasks call for students to read information using diverse formats (CCRS Reading 6) and others do not; module authors decide whether that standard is appropriate for each task they develop.
LDC also acknowledges distinctive literacy work in each discipline. For example, reading, writing, and thinking about science requires strategies and competencies that are different from those needed for history, which are different from the ones required for studying literature and English language arts. LDC encourages teachers to think through the grade-level CCRS standards in their content area (as well as the state or district content standards) and select those they seek to address through their LDC teaching task.
Click here to see the College and Career Readiness anchor standards addressed by each LDC writing type.
The College and Career Readiness (CCRS) give literacy a sharp new focus. Commonly held literacy demands across classrooms, districts, and now even state lines offer incredible possibilities for collegial work.
The CCRS outline literacy “anchor standards” students need to master, and then work back to specify skills students will need to attain at each grade to finish high school at the college and career readiness level. These skills are not pie-in-the-sky intellectual exercises. They are real literacy demands that today’s students will find in tomorrow’s college campus classrooms and the workplace.
The CCRS call for dramatic classroom changes, particularly at the secondary level. New expectations for student literacy cannot be met if they are taught only in English Language Arts classrooms. The work to change student performance must occur in the core subjects of ELA, social studies, and science, no matter what grade level.
For more about the College and Career Readiness standards for literacy, check out this Teaching Channel video.
LDC is aligned to the CCRS in a number of ways. First, all LDC tools hardwire the cognitive demands and writing modes of the CCRS Anchor Standards into the teaching tasks (or assignments) that teachers create. Check out How LDC Works: Modules: What Task? for further information about which CCRS are built in to the design, how teachers can select additional CCRS to teach, and opportunities for incorporating grade-level standards into a LDC teaching assignment. Additionally, LDC rubrics for scoring student work have been developed by SCALE at Stanford University and Measured Progress, Inc., to ensure alignment with CCRS demands.
How does LDC help me make the instructional shifts required by the College and Career Readiness Standards?
LDC doesn’t provide pre-packaged sets of curricula for teachers to simply implement. Instead, the long-term goal of LDC is to help teachers continually hone their skills and grow professionally by developing, adopting, or adapting CCRS-aligned materials using LDC tools. The intent of the LDC Framework is to scaffold this process for teachers and connect them with other colleagues dedicated to this work for teacher-led sharing, feedback, and problem solving. Using LDC over time helps teachers internalize the major instructional shifts required by the CCRS.
Boiled down to the few key points, here’s how LDC addresses the three major instructional shifts of the CCRS as identified by Student Achievement Partners.
- Building knowledge through content-rich non-fiction and informational texts: LDC tools help teachers create tasks focused on students researching or reading different types of informational and nonfiction texts. In fact, CCRS Anchor Standard 10—“Read and comprehend complex literary and informational texts independently and proficiently”—is built into all LDC templates for task design. Additionally, LDC tools engage teachers in designing an instructional plan to teach students the skills for reading informational texts and building content knowledge from the texts.
- Reading and writing grounded in evidence from the text: LDC Informational and Argumentation module tools connect reading and writing both in the teaching task and in the instructional plan so that teachers teach students to use text-based evidence in their written product to inform or make an argument. Many teacher-designed exemplary LDC modules also incorporate student speaking and listening “mini-tasks” that engage students in conversations in which they use evidence from their reading to support their ideas.
- Regular practice with complex text and its academic vocabulary: LDC tools enable teachers to identify and select texts from various genres and at various reading levels. Additionally, LDC mini-task examples provide instructional strategies for engaging students in developing their academic vocabulary.
The LDC Framework comes hardwired with the CCRS literacy standards embedded in each task template. Teachers, in turn, are expected to overlay their disciplinary content and specific state or CCRS content standards. Additionally, teachers can identify the grade-level literacy standards their modules and/or mini-tasks address.