This is the second in a series of posts dedicated to helping teachers understand specific changes the Common Core requires them to make in their instruction and sharing how StarrMatica’s content can help facilitate that transition.  The first post can be viewed here.

A major focus of the Common Core is requiring students to give evidence directly from the text to support their responses.  An opinion given in a response is valid only if the argument can be supported with details from the text.

Here is an example of a Smarter Balanced Assessment item which requires text evidence:  “What does Naomi learn about Grandma Ruth? Use details from the text to support your answer.”

As we prepare our students not only for the Common Core, but for life beyond school,  it is important that any answer a student gives, we require them to justify that answer with evidence.  If a student is describing the traits of a character, have them support their answer with evidence from the story where a character is demonstrating those traits.  If a student is stating an opinion that recycling should be mandatory, have them justify that opinion with facts from the text.  

If you make citing text evidence a daily follow up question, the students will come to understand that it is a requirement and will eventually offer text evidence before they are even asked.