Libraries and the Common Core Learning Standards

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The New York State P-12 Common Core Learning Standards are designed to be robust and relevant to the real world. The library fosters a community of inquiry and literacy that leads to high academic achievement, independent reading and learning, and collaborative efforts throughout a school and a student’s life that align with the goals of the Common Core.

  • The Common Core is best supported by children reading more and being engaged by what they read. Libraries provide the variety of reading materials and expert advice that can do just that.
  • Inquiry and inquiry-based learning are embedded throughout the Common Core and form the foundation of the type of learning libraries support best: thinking creatively, problem solving, information searching, and the use of technology.
  • Librarians are the teacher’s best educational resource. They can help teachers re-design how they teach a subject so students will problem solve and delve deeply into the topic.
  • Librarians develop a balanced collection of literary and informational texts - databases, magazine and newspaper articles, books, primary documents, internet resources – that expose children to multiple perspectives.
  • Librarians can work “behind the scenes” to ensure that children and teachers are aligning their reading choices and mathematical practices with the objectives of the Common Core Learning Standards.
  • Librarians help meet the needs of each student and teacher by providing access to multiple texts with multiple perspectives that meet the text complexity needs for an individual student as well as a class.
  • Library collections hold a variety of resources to inspire children to read with care so they can develop global understanding.
  • Librarians are a primary conduit for exposing children to exciting ideas and information for short as well as more sustained research projects demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • Librarians are the best resource for teaching children and teachers how to navigate the route to information retrieval and learn how to assess the credibility and accuracy of each source – from books, articles, primary documents, internet search engines and databases.
  • The Common Core encourages flexible communication and collaboration. Libraries are the ideal vehicle for this as they connect communities – children, teachers, parents.
  • Libraries provide time and space to allow for one-on-one, small-group, and whole class discussions and formal presentations to answer questions, build understanding, and solve problems.

The Empire State Information Fluency Continuum benchmarks skills for information and inquiry and directly aligns with the Common Core.  Developed by the New York City School Library System, the Continuum has been endorsed by the School Library Systems Association, Inc., the New York Library Association and the New York State Library.

Last Updated: June 14, 2013 -- asm