linkKindergarten has come a long way, baby — too far, some say.
Way beyond the ABCs, crayons and building blocks, the city Department of Education now wants 4- and 5-year-olds to write “informative/explanatory reports” and demonstrate “algebraic thinking.”
Children who barely know how to write the alphabet or add 2 and 2 are expected to write topic sentences and use diagrams to illustrate math equations.
“For the most part, it’s way over their heads,” a Brooklyn teacher said. “It’s too much for them. They’re babies!”
The city has adopted national standards called the Common Core, which dramatically raise the bar on what kids in grades K through 12 should know.
The jargon is new, too. Teachers rate each student’s performance as “novice,” “apprentice,” “practitioner” or “expert.”
Kindergartners are introduced to “informational texts” read aloud, such as “Garden Helpers,” a National Geographic tale about useful pests.
After three weeks, kids have to “write a book about what they’ve learned,” with a drawing and sentences explaining the topic.
In math, kids tackle concepts like “tally chart,” “combination,” and “commutative property,” DOE records show.
The big test: “Miguel has two shelves. Miguel has six books . . . How many different ways can Miguel put books on the two shelves? Show and tell how you know.”
An “expert” would draw a diagram with a key, show all five combinations, write number sentences for each equation, and explain his or her conclusions using math terms, the DOE says.
Gee; how could this happen? The WaPo did some research and found:
Derp!We reviewed the makeup of the committees that wrote and reviewed the Common Core Standards. In all, there were 135 people on those panels. Not a single one of them was a K-3 classroom teacher or early childhood professional.