1st Edition

It's Not What You Teach But How 7 Insights to Making the CCSS Work for You

By Nancy Sulla Copyright 2015
    160 Pages
    by Eye On Education

    160 Pages
    by Eye On Education

    How do we prepare students to become problem-finders, innovators, and entrepreneurs who can thrive in a global society? The Common Core charts a pathway to success, yet we know that checking off each standard one by one will not achieve the kind of results we want. This powerful book by bestselling author Nancy Sulla has the answers. She explains how teachers can bring students to deeper levels of learning by shifting from the what to the how of the CCSS. She offers seven insights that you can use to teach the standards in a more meaningful way, to bring all of your students to true understanding and application.

    You’ll uncover how to…

    • Incorporate ends-based teaching to ensure that the instructional focus is on the ultimate goal of each standard and not just on the basic skills;
    • Encourage grappling with content through structured techniques such as problem-based learning, questioning, and simulations;
    • Use cognitive progression, by understanding how the brain learns, to produce real results.
    • Harness the power of language in all disciplines, not just in English language arts;
    • Build executive function in the brain rather than focusing on academic function alone;
    • Increase retention by using learning and practice activities in different ways and by differentiating instruction; and
    • Become a true facilitator, not just a responder to students’ questions.

    Throughout the book, you’ll find a variety of practical examples from across the curriculum, as well as "Your Turn" opportunities to help you try the ideas in your own classroom.

    The future may not be easily defined, but it can be shaped by teachers who are right now preparing the next generation of world citizens.

    1. Teach with Intent 2. The First Key: Narrow Your Focus 3. The Second Key: Build Understanding Through Grappling 4. The Third Key: Leverage Cognitive Progression 5. The Fourth Key: Harness the Power of Language 6. The Fifth Key: Teach a Student, Not a Lesson 7. The Sixth Key: Design for a Purposeful Instruction 8. The Seventh Key: Facilitate Towards Application 9. The Learner-Active, Technology-Infused Classroom


    Nancy Sulla is the founder and President of IDE Corp. (Innovative Designs for Education), a consulting company specializing in instructional and organizational design. She is also the author of Students Taking Charge: Inside the Learner-Active, Technology-Infused Classroom (Routledge, 2011).

    "Nancy Sulla’s seven insights will truly transform your thinking on leveraging learning opportunities to achieve mastery of the Common Core. Filled with strategies and examples, this well-crafted book is a much needed resource for any educator. It’s Not What You Teach But How delivers both sense and meaning around "how" to create conditions that will truly impact student learning."

    --Lauren T. Burdick, STEAM Program Coordinator, Pasco County Schools, Land O' Lakes, FL


    "For anyone who is confused or who is struggling to navigate in this new era of Common Core and high standards, this book is an invaluable resource. Getting our students to reach high levels of understanding is a complex task and Dr. Sulla is able to break it down into powerful components for teachers to implement. The" teacher as bridge builder" is a perfect metaphor and what is needed in today's classrooms."

    --Roy R. Montesano, Ed.D., Superintendent of Schools, Hastings-on-Hudson School District, Greenburgh, NY


    "The educational landscape has changed. As Dr. Sulla writes, "Children can be taught to be problem finders," but how do we give them the tools to be problem solvers? Dr. Sulla answers these questions through the scope of the CCSS in a clear and inspiring way."

    -Mr. Michael Burke, Superintendent, Cresskill Public School District, Cresskill, NJ