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Standards Are Not Curriculum

I am still surprised how many people mistakenly believe that the Common Core Standards and the State’s Common Core Curriculum are the same thing; they are not.  The State has provided a curriculum guideline that may be followed to help children reach the standards.  Districts may or may not decide to use these curricula material; it is completely a local decision.  Mineola has used a combination of State materials and our own teacher created materials.  

 

I analogize the standards and curriculum to Equestrian show jumping.  In show jumping the course is comprised of a set of obstacles that every horse must complete; the obstacles are not moved, lowered or changed to accommodate the horse.  The common core standards were created with the same premise; a universal set of requirements that every student should meet.  Obviously there are many other factors that determine whether those standards are met.

 

The most important ingredient to successful show jumping is the horse, followed quickly by the rider.  Not every horse can be a show jumper.  You wouldn’t ask a Clydesdale to jump fences (although some do in commercials).  Grooming and training the right horse to jump is critical to successful completion of the course.  In teaching, the horse is the curriculum, and the rider is the teacher.

 

Not only do you need the right horse you need significant time to develop the relationship between the rider and the horse.  The most successful equestrians have a symbiotic relationship between rider and horse, each knowing how the other will react to a given obstacle.  Teachers and the curriculum are no different.  Teachers need to be comfortable in the content they are teaching- but more importantly need to know if the curriculum is meeting the standards.  

 

Sometimes, no matter how well trained, a rider can be thrown by a horse.  The horse believes that the obstacle is too hard to overcome.  In these cases the rider’s patience and experience is most crucial.   It is imperative that our curricula address the students that may have difficulty meeting the standards.  In these cases our teachers are the most important.  We need to develop appropriate materials that enable our student to progress and exceed the standards.

 

Starting now and continuing throughout the summer we will provide time and opportunities for teachers to work with his/her grade level curriculum.  We are committed to making sure the materials we teach are engaging and appropriate.  Most importantly we want our daily assessments to measure standards and track student growth in the standards.  We have helped develop a software program that will allow us to do this electronically.  

 

We are convinced that all our students can meet the standards.  We will continue to modify and refine our curriculum to make sure our students are properly prepared. Our teachers and administrators will continue to be a vital part of developing curricula that is appropriate and challenging to help students meet and exceed the standards.  I am confident that our teachers and administrators are up for this task.  

This column previously appeared on “Nagler’s Notions” at blog.mineola.k12.ny.us/?p=1626


News

The Mineola Fire Department will kick off its Operation Santa program on Friday, Dec. 12.  Santa and his helpers will be visiting homes in Mineola until Dec. 23.  Santa will start his rounds each night at approximately 7 p.m.

 

If you would like Santa to stop by your home and visit your children, please call Ex-Chief Gary Mazur at 516-746-6583 and he will return your call as soon as possible to arrange a visit for you.  Please leave your cell and home numbers and call early as dates fill up fast.


Audience members were treated to an evening of incredible singing by 10 extremely talented Wheatley students during the Tri-M Music Honor Society’s Wheatley Idol X on Friday, Nov. 7, in the packed Wheatley auditorium.

 

Nada Al-Okla, sang “Titanium” by David Guetta, Michaela Balboni sang “Safe and Sound” by Capital Cities, Alex Boubour sang “Love Song” by The Cure, Melanie Esquilin sang “At Last” by Etta James, Tessa Karikas sang “The Climb” by Miley Cyrus, Ben Lee sang “Sunday Morning” by Maroon 5, Lauren Levine sang “Drops of Jupiter” by Train, Ally Levy sang “A

Drop in the Ocean” by Ron Pope, Juliana Luber sang “Reflection” by Alan Menken and Morgan Misk sang “Valerie” by Amy Winehouse.


Sports

Mineola High School student Mary Elizabeth Smith signed her letter of intent to attend Stetson University in the fall. She is receiving a partial athletic scholarship and will be a member of the Stetson Rowing team.  

 

Smith is an accomplished rower who has trained locally and competed nationally. She began her rowing career as a 10th grader and ranks 53 in her rowing classification. 


 

In their semifinals home playoff game, the 9-year-old Mineola Chiefs (7-2) shut out perennial power Seaford Broncos 21-0. 

 

The Chiefs defense, the strength of the team, was lights out, making gang tackles all over the field. The defensive line of Charlie Villa, Luigi Kaloudis, Michael Nygaard, Luke Ruiz, John Jochym, Zachary Bohringer, Johnny Kessler, Zakria Zulfiqar and Jack McCormack kept the pressure on Seaford’s offense all game long. The Linebackers John Viggiani and Nick Rios attacked the runners and finished off the Broncos.


Calendar

Rockinghams - November 29

Village Green Tree Lighting - December 2

Village Meeting - December 3 


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com