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How the Common Core Teaches Kids to Love History

How the Common Core Teaches Kids to Love History

Since the Common Core State Standards were introduced in 2009, they have inspired controversy and backlash from teachers and parents alike. But the standards have also inspired something else—children's passion for reading about history.

Because the Common Core places an emphasis on non-fiction literature, children learning under the standards are more exposed to texts focusing on "history, science and real life, called informational texts in 'core' language," according to a recent CNN article.

"Years of reading fiction—which often has more dialogue and less complicated sentence structure than nonfiction—have left middle and high school students ill-prepared to read the texts necessary to research and write longer term papers, says Kathleen Odean, an expert on Common Core nonfiction and young adult literature."

Non-fiction texts like the "Who Was?"  and "Where Is?" series have been increasingly gaining popularity since 2009—the publishers told CNN that their sales have risen 500% from 2009 to 2014 alone despite having been created in 2002.

Without a doubt, the creators behind the "Who Was?" and "Where Is?" series have it figured out. As opposed to teaching kids about history through dry and unanimated text books, the "Who Was?" series teaches kids about history through exciting illustrations and engaging background detail.

"Children can get excited about history if you show them the excitement and uncertainty and danger around something like the Declaration of Independence, says 'Who Was?' series creator Jane O'Connor, a vice president and editor at large at Grosset & Dunlap, a Penguin Young Readers imprint," according to CNN.

And because of the new emphasis in non-fiction, students all over the country are able to find this excitement as more and more teachers begin to integrate books like those in the "Who Was?" series into the classroom.

Read the full story here and comment with your thoughts below.

Article by Nicole Gorman, Education World Contributor

08/05/2015

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