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January 19, 2014

A big problem of Common Core

NORMAN — Editor, The Transcript:

Farmer Brown has some chickens and some sheep, a total of 10 animals. He counts the legs of the animals and gets 28. How many chickens and how many sheep does he have?

If you are an adult, I’ll give you 60 seconds to solve the problem ... Time’s up.

This problem appeared as part of a Common Core test or standards to first graders. Yes, first graders! Can your 5- or 6-year-old solve it? Even know where to begin? For that matter, would you? Would a first grade teacher know how to teach a 6-year-old how to solve problems like this?

My point? Common Core may be another example of big government promulgating something they haven’t thought through. How does our government expect trust when they don’t bother to analyze and review their edicts? Everything about Common Core should have been reviewed by a group of kindergarten teachers, a group of first grade teachers, a group of second grade teachers, etc.

Our federal government comes up with a new imposition to fix our education system every few years (No Child Left Behind, Race to the Top, Common Core) and further reduces their credibility.

A good start would be to eliminate the Department of Education. Turn it all back over to the states, counties, cities. At least, that way, if a mistake is made it won’t affect all students. And, there will be hundreds of jurisdictions trying different approaches which should produce many good ideas.

CHARLIE TAYLOR

Norman

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