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Curriculum Information

Common Core | 21st Century Skills | Letterland


Common Core
These resources can help families understand the Common Core curriculum.

WCPSS Elementary School Programs

2012-13 NFP Results

Common Core Assessments


Fostering Level 4 Thinking


21st Century Skills 21st century diagram

Skills for 21st Century Learners

16 Habits of Mind

21st Century Learners: What does it really mean?

21st Century Learners and global competitiveness are new terms that are shaping public education. These terms are included in the North Carolina State Board of Education’s mission statement, the WCPSS Board of Education’s goal, our Superintendent’s mission statement and the North Forest Pines School Improvement Plan. This alignment from the State Board down to our classrooms indicates the importance that 21st Century learning plays in education today. So, what do the terms mean for you as a parent and more importantly what is North Forest Pines (NFP) doing to ensure that your child is acquiring 21st Century Learning Skills to prepare for global competitiveness? The answer lies in how we are working together to prepare our children for a
future we cannot clearly predict or define.

The Partnership of 21st Century Skills breaks 21st Century Student Outcomes into four elements: Core Subjects and 21st Century Themes; Learning and Innovation Skills; Life and Career Skills; and Information, Media and
Technology Skills. Let’s focus on Learning and Innovation Skills. This element focuses on creativity, innovation, critical thinking, problem solving, communication and collaboration. The ability to think critically
and problem solve are essential skills for students to acquire. After all, we are preparing them for 21st century careers that do not yet exist. Collaborating with others is also a key skill. Collaboration affords students the opportunity to work respectfully with diverse teams, reach compromises, and share responsibility for
outcomes. Teachers at NFP are involved in a year-long book study of “Classroom Instruction that Works: Research-Based Strategies for Increasing Student Achievement” by Robert Marzano. One of the strategies identified in the book is cooperative learning. Cooperative learning is a teaching strategy that exposes students to the collaborative process and cultivates communication and shared responsibility among students.

Another of Marzano’s strategies is generating and testing a hypothesis. This strategy fosters innovation, critical thinking and problem solving. Students are encouraged to apply knowledge to generate a hypothesis and test the hypothesis. In order to create a hypothesis students must problem solve to identify obstacles, explore different approaches/perspectives, and possibly create a new product. Most often we associate hypotheses with science exploration; however this skill can be integrated across curriculums. Activities requiring students to evaluate parts of a system (i.e. the school’s cafeteria) and predict changes if a part of the system was altered is a great activity not involving science. Historical investigations lend the perfect learning activity for students to create reasonable scenarios of past or present events and explore the various outcomes.

As educators we continue to develop our skills so that we may provide the best instructional strategies to promote 21st century skills. It is our responsibility to prepare them for a world we may never experience.

By: Syreeta Smith, NFP Principal

(Kindergarten and 1st Grade Students)

WCPSS has provided Letterland as the vehicle for teaching English Language Arts as it aligns with best practices in reading research. Parents can learn more by accessing the resources below.

Why Letterland? (You Tube Video)

Letterland Correlation to Kindergarten Common Core Standards

Letterland Correlation to 1st Grade Common Core Standards

Coming soon: Wake County children and families can visit Letterland at Pullen Park on Saturday, May 17 from 10 am - 9 pm




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