SL.CCR.2 — that’s the 2nd College and Career Readiness anchor standard within the Speaking and Listening strand of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) for ELA/Literacy — reads as follows:
Integrate and evaluate information presented in diverse media and formats, including visually, quantitatively, and orally.
This one took me a minute, because it doesn’t seem to have much to do with speaking, and the only mention it makes of listening is in the word “orally.”
However, after doing a bit more reading (especially of the more specific 11-12 grade version of this standard, SL.11-12.2), I think I’ve got a basic handle on what this anchor standard is aiming at.
Grapple with info overload
The 21st century presents the high school graduate with exponentially increasing amounts of information. SL.CCR.2 calls students to the task of dealing with it in collaboration with others.
- How do we make sense of the myriad sources of information that we take in each day?
- How do we differentiate and evaluate this information?
- How do we make order of this info?
- Most importantly, how do we use this information to make good decisions and solve real problems?
Make informed decisions/solve problems
This is the final goal of SL.CCR.2 — using the terabytes of information available to us for the sake of making good decisions. And this is where the speaking and listening come in:
- How do we talk about so much information?
- How do we handle situations where my evaluation of an information source differs from a peers?
- How do we work together to use varied information sources to solve problems that don’t seem solvable?
There’s lots of wiggle room in SL.CCR.2 and, as a teacher who values autonomy, I am A-okay with that.
Speaking of wiggle room, I began working with my freshmen students on note-taking recently, and from what I can tell, taking notes on non-textual sources (e.g., videos, lectures, discussions) isn’t explicitly included anywhere in the standards, yet it’s obviously croosch for (at least) college and (I would argue) career.
Am I missing a note-taking standard?
If I’m not, no me importa: remember, the CCSS at their best are a tool for equalizing access to an excellent education designed to promote human flourishing in our current world (i.e., a place where it’s pretty baller to know how to read, write, talk, and listen). With that being said, they are just a framework, and they were intentionally designed to leave room for a few locally-determined skills.