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Placing Public Libraries at the Common Core


Everyone is buzzing about the Common Core, but are public libraries joining the Common Core conversation?  Reading is at the center of this discussion – creating a powerful opportunity for libraries to demonstrate their valuable role and contributions. 

How does the Common Core work for reading?  In brief, the Common Core assigns Lexile ranges as targeted reading levels for students at each grade level.  For students graduating high school to be “college and career ready,” the target is to be reading books at the 1450 Lexile score level.  For younger students, here are K-12 Common Core grade levels and Lexile reading level target ranges.  You can look up Lexile scores of specific books online using a “Quick Book Search,” or search by Lexile score to find recommended books in a variety of subject categories.

This brings up the question – are we tracking the data that would show funders and government officials how our public libraries are supporting the Common Core?  For example – does your library track data showing Lexile ranges of books checked out from the juvenile collection during a summer reading program, or other data that shows how the library supports public schools teaching the Common Core?  Is there other data we should be tracking to help better make our case about how libraries support teachers, schools, students, and Common Core reading goals?  Would love to hear your thoughts and ideas about this! 

– Lorri Mon, Associate Professor at Florida State University, for iMapLibraries

(For more about the Common Core, see Paige Jaeger’s blog post on Lexiles & Readability; you can also download Common Core language arts and math quick reference apps for Android and iPhone/iPad)

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