What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale
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What should your child learn in the sixth grade? How can you help him or her at home? This book answers these important questions and more, offering the specific shared knowledge that thousands of parents and teachers across the nation have agreed upon for American sixth graders. Featuring sixteen pages of full-color illustrations, a bolder, easier-to-follow format, and a thoroughly updated curriculum, What Your Sixth Grader Needs to Know, Revised Edition, is designed for parents and teachers to enjoy with children. Hundreds of thousands of children have benefited from the Core Knowledge Series. This revised edition gives a new generation of sixth graders the advantage they need to make progress in school today, and to establish an approach to learning that will last a lifetime. Discover:

• Favorite Poems—old and new, from Edgar Allan Poe’s classic “The Raven” to Maya Angelou’s “Woman Work”

• Literature—from around the world, including Homer’s epics the Iliad and the Odyssey, Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar, and Mark Twain’s The Prince and the Pauper

• Learning About Language—he rules of written English, including the four kinds of sentences, common English sayings and phrases, plus an introduction to Greek and Latin roots

• History and Geography—world history from ancient Greece and the fall of the Roman Empire to the Enlightenment and the French Revolution; American history of the post—Civil War era, including the Industrial Revolution, immigration, urbanization, and reform

• Visual Arts—a brief history of art, stretching from the classical period through the Renaissance, Baroque, and Romantic periods all the way to the age of realism, with full-color reproductions and discussions of great works by artists such as El Greco, Rembrandt, and Winslow Homer

• Music—understanding and appreciating music, including musical notation, chords, and scales—plus biographies of great composers such as Handel, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, and Chopin

• Math—challenging lessons, ranging from probability and statistics, geometry, ratios and proportions to basic pre-algebra

• Science—fascinating discussions of plate tectonics, oceans, astronomy, the environment, the human body, and the immune system—plus short biographies of great scientists such as Marie Curie

About the Author

E. D. Hirsch, Jr., is a professor of English at the University of Virginia and the author of The Schools We Need, The Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, and the bestselling Cultural Literacy. He lives in Charlottesville, Virginia.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.

General Introduction to the Core Knowledge Series


I. WHAT IS YOUR CHILD LEARNING IN SCHOOL?


A parent of identical twins sent me a letter in which she expressed concern that her children, who are in the same grade in the same school, are being taught completely different things. How can this be? Because they are in different classrooms; because the teachers in these classrooms have only the vaguest guidelines to follow; in short, because the school, like many in the United States, lacks a definite, specific curriculum.

Many parents would be surprised if they were to examine the curriculum of their child’s elementary school. Ask to see your school’s curriculum. Does it spell out, in clear and concrete terms, a core of specific content and skills all children at a particular grade level are expected to learn by the end of the school year?

Many curricula speak in general terms of vaguely defined skills, processes, and attitudes, often in an abstract, pseudo-technical language that calls, for example, for children to “analyze patterns and data,” or “investigate the structure and dynamics of living systems,” or “work cooperatively in a group.” Such vagueness evades the central question: what is your child learning in school? It places unreasonable demands upon teachers and often results in years of schooling marred by repetitions and gaps. Yet another unit on dinosaurs or “pioneer days.” Charlotte’s Web for the third time. “You’ve never heard of the Bill of Rights?” “You’ve never been taught how to add two fractions with unlike denominators?”

When identical twins in two classrooms of the same school have few academic experiences in common, that is cause for concern. When teachers in that school do not know what children in other classrooms are learning on the same grade level, much less in earlier and later grades, they cannot reliably predict that children will come prepared with a shared core of knowledge and skills. For an elementary school to be successful, teachers need a common vision of what they want their students to know and be able to do. They need to have clear, specific learning goals, as well as the sense of mutual accountability that comes from shared commitment to helping all children achieve those goals. Lacking both specific goals and mutual accountability, too many schools exist in a state of curricular incoherence, one result of which is that they fall far short of developing the full potential of our children.

To address this problem, I started the nonprofit Core Knowledge Foundation in 1986. This book and its companion volumes in the Core Knowledge Series are designed to give parents, teachers—and through them, children—clearly defined learning goals in the form of a carefully sequenced body of knowledge, based upon the specific content guidelines developed by the Core Knowledge Foundation.

Core Knowledge is an attempt to define, in a coherent and sequential way, a body of knowledge taken for granted by competent writers and speakers in the United States. Because this knowledge is taken for granted rather than explained when used, it forms a necessary foundation for the higher-order reading, writing, and thinking skills that children need for academic and vocational success. The universal attainment of such knowledge should be a central aim of curricula in our elementary schools, just as it is currently the aim in all world-class educational systems. For reasons explained in the next section, making sure that all young children in the United States possess a core of shared knowledge is a necessary step in developing a first-rate educational system.

II. WHY CORE KNOWLEDGE IS NEEDED


Learning builds on learning: children (and adults) gain new knowledge only by building on what they already know. It is essential to begin building solid foundations of knowledge in the early grades when children are most receptive because, for the vast majority of children, academic deficiencies from the first six grades can permanently impair the success of later learning. Poor performance of American students in middle and high school can be traced to shortcomings inherited from elementary schools that have not imparted to children the knowledge and skills they need for further learning.

All of the highest-achieving and most egalitarian elementary school systems in the world (such as those in Sweden, France, and Japan) teach their children a specific core of knowledge in each of the grades, thus enabling all children to enter each new grade with a secure foundation for further learning. It is time American schools did so as well, for the following reasons:

(1) Commonly shared knowledge makes schooling more effective. We know that the one-on-one tutorial is the most effective form of schooling, in part because a parent or teacher can provide tailor-made instruction for the individual child. But in a non-tutorial situation—in, for example, a typical classroom with twenty-five or more students—the instructor cannot effectively impart new knowledge to all the students unless each one shares the background knowledge that the lesson is being built upon.

Consider this scenario: in third grade, Ms. Franklin is about to begin a unit on early explorers: Columbus, Magellan, and others. In her class, she has some students who were in Mr. Washington’s second-grade class last year and some students who were in Ms. Johnson’s class. She also has a few students who moved in from other towns. As Ms. Franklin begins the unit, she asks the children to look at a globe and use their fingers to trace a route across the Atlantic Ocean from Europe to North America. The students who had Mr. Washington look blankly at her: they didn’t learn that last year. The students who had Ms. Johnson, however, eagerly point to the proper places on the globe, while two of the students who came from other towns pipe up and say, “Columbus and Magellan
again? We did that last year.” When all the students in a class do share the relevant background knowledge, a classroom can begin to approach the effectiveness of a tutorial. Even when some children in a class do not have elements of the knowledge they were supposed to acquire in previous grades, the existence of a specifically defined core makes it possible for the teacher or parent to identify and fill in the gaps, thus giving all students a chance to fulfill their potential in later grades.

(2) Commonly shared knowledge makes schooling more fair and democratic. When all the children who enter a grade can be assumed to share some of the same building blocks of knowledge, and when the teacher knows exactly what those building blocks are, then all the students are empowered to learn. In our current system, children from disadvantaged backgrounds too often suffer from unmerited low expectations that translate into watered-down curricula. But if we specify the core of knowledge that all children should share, then we can guarantee equal access to that knowledge and compensate for the academic advantages some students are offered at home. In a Core Knowledge school, all children enjoy the benefits of important, challenging knowledge that will provide the foundation for successful later learning.

(3) Commonly shared knowledge helps create cooperation and solidarity in our schools and nation. Diversity is a hallmark and strength of our nation. American classrooms are often, and increasingly, made up of students from a variety of cultural backgrounds, and those different cultures should be honored by all students. At the same time, education should create a school-based culture that is common and welcoming to all because it includes knowledge of many cultures and gives all students, no matter what their background, a common foundation for understanding our cultural diversity.

III. THE CONSENSUS BEHIND THE CORE KNOWLEDGE SEQUENCE


The content in this and other volumes in the Core Knowledge Series is based on a document called the Core Knowledge Sequence, a grade-by-grade sequence of specific content guidelines in English, history, geography, mathematics, science, art, and music. The Sequence is not meant to outline the whole of the school curriculum; rather, it offers specific guidelines to knowledge that can reasonably be expected to make up about half of any school’s curriculum, or perhaps a little more, thus leaving ample room for local requirements and emphases. Teaching a common core of knowledge, such as that articulated in the Core Knowledge Sequence, is compatible with a variety of instructional
methods and additional subject matters.

The Core Knowledge Sequence is the result of a long process of research and consensus building undertaken by the Core Knowledge Foundation. Here is how we achieved the consensus behind the Core Knowledge Sequence. First we analyzed the many reports issued by state departments of education and by professional organizations—such as the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics and the American Association for the Advancement of Science—that recommend general outcomes for elementary and secondary education. We also tabulated the knowledge and skills through grade six specified in the successful educational systems of several other countries, including France, Japan, Sweden, and West Germany. In addition, we formed an advisory board on multiculturalism that proposed specific knowledge of diverse cultural traditions that American children should all share as part of their school-based common culture. We sent the resulting materials to three independent groups of teachers, scholars, and scientists around the country, asking them to
create a master list of the knowledge children should have by the end of grade six. About 150 teachers (including college professors, scientists, and administrators) were involved in this initial step.

These items were amalgamated into a master plan, and further groups of teachers and specialists were asked to agree on a grade-by-grade sequence of the items. That sequence was then sent to some 100 educators and specialists who participated in a national conference that was called to hammer out a working agreement on an appropriate core of knowledge for the first six grades.

This important meeting took place in March 1990. The conferees were elementary school teachers, curriculum specialists, scientists, science writers, officers of national organizations, representatives of ethnic groups, district superintendents, and school principals from across the country. A total of twenty-four working groups decided on revisions in the Core Knowledge Sequence. The resulting provisional Sequence was further fine-tuned during a year of implementation at a pioneering school, Three Oaks Elementary in Lee County, Florida.

In only a few years many more schools—urban and rural, rich and poor, public and private—joined in the effort to teach Core Knowledge. Based largely on suggestions from these schools, the Core Knowledge Sequence has been significantly revised: it was extended to seventh and eighth grades; separate guidelines were added for kindergarten; and a few topics in other grades were added, omitted, or moved from one grade to another, in order to create an even more coherent sequence for learning. A Core Knowledge Preschool Sequence was first published in 1997. The revised edition of this and other books in the Core Knowledge Series reflect the revisions in the Sequence. Current editions of the Core Knowledge Sequence and the Core Knowledge Preschool Sequence may be ordered from the Core Knowledge Foundation.

IV. THE NATURE OF THIS SERIES


The books in this series are designed to give a convenient and engaging introduction to the knowledge specified in the Core Knowledge Sequence. These are not textbooks; they are resource books, addressed primarily to parents, but which we hope will be useful tools for teachers, too. These books are not intended to replace the local curriculum or school textbooks, but rather to serve as aids to help children gain some of the important knowledge they will need to make progress in school and be effective in society.

Although we have made these books as accessible and useful as we can, parents and teachers should understand that they are not the only means by which the Core Knowledge Sequence can be imparted. The books represent a single version of the possibilities inherent in the Sequence. We hope that publishers will be stimulated to offer educational videos, computer software, games, alternative books, websites, and other imaginative vehicles based on the Core Knowledge Sequence.

Although sixth graders should be able to read this book on their own, you may also wish to read some passages aloud. You and your child can read the sections of this book in any order, depending on your child’s interests or depending on the topics your child is studying in school. You can skip from section to section and reread as much as your child likes.

We encourage you to think of this book as a guidebook that opens the way to many paths you and your child can explore. These paths may lead to the library, to many other good books, and, if possible, to plays, museums, concerts, and other opportunities for knowledge and enrichment. In short, this guidebook recommends places to visit and describes what is important in those places, but only you and your child can make the actual visit, travel the streets, and climb the steps.

V. WHAT YOU CAN DOTO HELP IMPROVE AMERICAN EDUCATION


The first step for parents and teachers who are committed to reform is to be skeptical about oversimplified slogans like “critical thinking” and “learning to learn.” Such slogans are everywhere, and unfortunately for our schools, their partial insights have been elevated to the level of universal truths. For example: “What students learn is not important; rather, we must teach students to learn how to learn.” “The child, not the academic subject, is the true focus of education.” “Do not impose knowledge on children before they are developmentally ready to receive it.” “Do not bog children down in mere facts, but rather, teach critical-thinking skills.”

Who has not heard these sentiments, so admirable and humane, and—up to a point—so true? But these positive sentiments in favor of “thinking skills” and “higher understanding” have been turned into negative sentiments against the teaching of important knowledge. Those who have entered the teaching profession over the past 40 years have been taught to scorn important knowledge as “mere facts” and to see the imparting of this knowledge as somehow injurious to children. Thus it has come about that many educators, armed with partially true slogans, have seemingly taken leave of common sense.

Many parents and teachers have come to the conclusion that elementary education must strike a better balance between the development of the whole child and the more limited but fundamental duty of the school to ensure that all children master a core of knowledge and skills essential to their competence as learners in later grades. But these parents and teachers cannot act on their convictions without an agreed-upon, concrete sequence of knowledge. Our main motivation in developing the Core Knowledge Sequence and this book series has been to give parents and teachers something concrete to work with.

It has been encouraging to see how many teachers have responded to the Core Knowledge reform effort. If you would like more information about the growing network of Core Knowledge schools, please call or write the Core Knowledge Foundation at the address given on p. xvii.

Parents and teachers are urged to join in a grass-roots effort to strengthen our elementary schools. Start in your own school and district. Insist that your school clearly state the core of specific knowledge and skills that each child in a grade must learn. Whether your school’s core corresponds exactly to the Core Knowledge model is less important than the existence of some core—which, we hope, will be as solid, coherent, and challenging as the Core Knowledge Sequence has proven to be. Inform members of your community about the need for such a specific curriculum, and help make sure that your local school board members are independent-minded people who will insist that children have the benefit of a solid, specific, world-class curriculum in each grade.

Share the knowledge!

E. D. Hirsch, Jr., Chairman
Core Knowledge Foundation

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4.7 out of 54.7 out of 5
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Top reviews from the United States

Brandiwhyne
2.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Looks are deceiving, especially titles.
Reviewed in the United States on May 8, 2020
Disappointed. I thought, because of the title, that it would show me what my 6th grader needed to know.....according to school requirements. No, it''s basically their, the writer''s, idea of what they believe. It has poems, and stories, etc. A lil something for each... See more
Disappointed. I thought, because of the title, that it would show me what my 6th grader needed to know.....according to school requirements. No, it''s basically their, the writer''s, idea of what they believe. It has poems, and stories, etc. A lil something for each subject. No, not useful at all. Waste of money.
9 people found this helpful
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Kim
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Great book for teachers and parents
Reviewed in the United States on August 7, 2016
I bought this book to study for my CSET multiple subjects and I wish I bought it sooner! I bought this originally for the History/Social Science and Literature section, but if I would''ve known earlier that it had EVERY subject, then I would''ve used this, along with the 5th... See more
I bought this book to study for my CSET multiple subjects and I wish I bought it sooner! I bought this originally for the History/Social Science and Literature section, but if I would''ve known earlier that it had EVERY subject, then I would''ve used this, along with the 5th grade book in this series, to study for my CSET. This is a great guide for teachers and parents to teach their kids what they need to know for the school year. I would highly recommend this book. It''s easy to follow and understand, and a 6th grader could read this book on his or her own and comprehend the topics with ease!
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DisneyDenizenTop Contributor: Harry Potter
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
ESSENTIAL FOR YOUR HOMESCHOOL LIBRARY
Reviewed in the United States on February 29, 2020
I had the original but purchased these revised and expanded editions. They are really fundamental to a good homeschool education. Keeps you on track and helps you make sure you covered the basics.
4 people found this helpful
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KW
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Guide
Reviewed in the United States on January 8, 2018
I use this book as a guide for my sixth grader. The ideas presented are easy to understand and she enjoys reading the book on her own. If she is interested in a story we go to the library and get the book. If she is interested in a particular topic we go to the library and... See more
I use this book as a guide for my sixth grader. The ideas presented are easy to understand and she enjoys reading the book on her own. If she is interested in a story we go to the library and get the book. If she is interested in a particular topic we go to the library and do some research. I own the entire series. This is the last book in the series. I don''t know which guide I am going to use when she goes to the seventh grade.
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B. Bintrim
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Useful resource for homeschooling
Reviewed in the United States on April 28, 2009
My oldest daughter is finishing fifth grade, and we have used The Core Knowledge books for every year up to this point. Because we are homeschooling, we feel that reading through these books gives us confidence that we are keeping up with what might be expected of a... See more
My oldest daughter is finishing fifth grade, and we have used The Core Knowledge books for every year up to this point. Because we are homeschooling, we feel that reading through these books gives us confidence that we are keeping up with what might be expected of a student of a particular grade.

Wanting to get a jump on the next level, my daughter read through What Your Sixth Grader Needs to Know over the past two weeks. You might want to be aware of some errors. In the math section on page 269, an addition problem is written with a minus sign, and the wrong answer is given in Step 2. At the top of page 271, we read, "In the following diagram line ZC is parallel to line TS, or line ZC is parallel to line TS." There is also an error in an illustration in the science section on page 328. Two cans of soda are pictured on scales with an earthly landscape behind each with a caption indicating that the can of soda would weigh less on the moon than it does on earth. We are missing a picture of a lighter can of soda with a moonscape behind it.

I don''t think the editing of this book is any worse than what we find typically in educational material, and the series is useful; but perhaps they ought to hire kids to proofread.:)
77 people found this helpful
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The Supers
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
and appears to provide a good foundation for all sixth graders
Reviewed in the United States on March 17, 2016
We use this book to supplement a homeschooling curriculum (SSAT prep) for a sixth grader who has been admitted to the top private school in the state. Because of how competitive it is to be admitted to this particular school, especially for a non-traditional student, this... See more
We use this book to supplement a homeschooling curriculum (SSAT prep) for a sixth grader who has been admitted to the top private school in the state. Because of how competitive it is to be admitted to this particular school, especially for a non-traditional student, this provides a starting point in his case. The book is well written and organized, and appears to provide a good foundation for all sixth graders.
5 people found this helpful
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Julia C Pena
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A MUST FOR EVERY PARENT
Reviewed in the United States on September 26, 2016
I did not know what to expect, or in what conditions the book would arrive . It was so very affordable. It arrived and it looks brand new. I''ve browsed through it and know that this will definitely help me help my granddaughter. But even I can learn and refresh my... See more
I did not know what to expect, or in what conditions the book would arrive . It was so very affordable. It arrived and it looks brand new. I''ve browsed through it and know that this will definitely help me help my granddaughter. But even I can learn and refresh my memory. The level of education today is far advanced from the 1950''s and now I can learn while helping my granddaughter. It is a beautiful book and I look forward to reading it just for the Art and Science taught. The Math is exactly touching upon what she is learning. When stumped, I have the resources to find the way to explain and understand what her homework is about. Love the conditions of book. I recommend for anyone with a child in 6th grade. And I just had the brainstorm to see if I could find this. If I had known, I would have ordered every grade and saved myself a lot of stress. Thanks, it''s a lifesaver.
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McBerg Prime
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Want to raise a wise child?
Reviewed in the United States on October 22, 2020
Poetry, plays, grammar, phrases, history, geography, visual arts, music, math, science... This book is FULL OF FACTS and easy to read. Excellent!! Now I know my 6th grader will be one of the wise ... as long as he is wise enough to study this great collection.
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Mrs. Susan Finnes
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
brilliant resource
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 9, 2011
this is an excellent book covers poetry, grammar, history, art science, maths, music. Wish i had had it when i was younger
this is an excellent book covers poetry, grammar, history, art science, maths, music. Wish i had had it when i was younger
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cosmos5
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
装丁をしっかりしてください。
Reviewed in Japan on February 13, 2013
1,2回読むだけで本がばらばらになってしまい、閉口しています。アメリカの本でよくあることです。何回読んでも装丁が崩れないようにしていただきたい。
1,2回読むだけで本がばらばらになってしまい、閉口しています。アメリカの本でよくあることです。何回読んでも装丁が崩れないようにしていただきたい。
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What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale

What Your new arrival Sixth Grader Needs to Know: Fundamentals of a Good Sixth-Grade Education, Revised Edition (The Core lowest Knowledge Series) outlet sale