Connecticut Core Standards

Presentation Materials - School and District Leaders

Communicating the Common Core

  • Why the Common Core? How these Standards are Different- Facilitator’s Guide, PowerPoint Presentation, Reflecting on Common Core Shifts, Reflecting on Actions (
  • Talking to Parents about the Common Core (
  • Common Core Math − A Grade-by-Grade View for Parents K-12 – This document provides a grade-by grade CCSS overview, followed by example activities, a discussion of the Big Picture of Common Core Math, General Tips for Parents, tasks on and a reference link to the Progressions Documents. This document was designed with events such as curriculum nights or parent-teacher conferences in mind. (Developed by Tricia Bevans and Dev Sinha of the University of Oregon Department of Mathematics)   
  • Common Core Video Series—a video series designed to educate parents on the Common Core State Standards and empower them to support the transition at school and at home  (
  • The Structure is in the Standards (Grades K through High School) – An essay by CCSSM lead writers Phil Daro, William McCallum, and Jason Zimba that describes the importance of the structure of the Standards and cautions against fragmenting the Standards or taking them out of context. (

Professional Development for Staff

  • The Key to Success? Grit – A Ted Talks Education by Angela Lee Duckworth - Leaving a high-flying job in consulting, Angela Lee Duckworth took a job teaching math to seventh graders in a New York public school. She quickly realized that IQ wasn’t the only thing separating the successful students from those who struggled. Here, she explains her theory of “grit” as a predictor of success. ( 
  • EQuIP e-Learning Modules - The purpose of this e-Learning module is to develop the learner's knowledge and understanding of the EQuIP Quality Review Process, which is designed to increase the ability of educators – and educational leaders – to identify and create quality instructional materials aligned to the Common Core State Standards. Specifically, learners will explore what effective observations and criterion-based feedback look like and experience the process of reviewing instructional materials using the EQuIP Quality Review criteria, rating scales, and rating descriptors. ( 
  • The EQuIP Student Work Protocol is designed to establish or articulate the relationship between student work and the quality and alignment of instructional materials that previously have been reviewed using the EQuIP quality review process. Focusing on this relationship enables educators to develop a common understanding of the challenging work required by the CCSS. ( 
  • Reflections on Practice & Growth – This video showcases National Teachers of the Year reflecting on teaching and learning. (   
  • What Makes Instruction Aligned - The Instructional Practice Guide suite of tools focus not on every pedagogical move in the classroom, but on the specific actions teachers and students take to address the Key Shifts required by the Standards. To understand aligned practice, you must first understand the Key Shifts. ( 
  • VISIBLE THINKING This website is for teachers, school leaders and administrators in K-12 schools who want to encourage the development of a culture of thinking. Many resources for classroom use are described in detail. (
  • Best Foot Forward: Video Observation Toolkit - provides practical guidance for education practitioners on using video observations to help teachers accelerate their development. Adaptable tools for implementation are provided. (Center for Education Policy Research at Harvard University)     
  • Common Core Knowledge and Practice Survey – A tool for educators/PLCs in grades k-12 to reflect on their instructional practice and understanding of the Common Core. The survey is designed for use in a school-based setting to identify areas for growth and offer concrete ways for teams of teachers to continue to align their classroom practice to the Common Core.(Student Achievement Partners)  
  • Common Core Video ExemplarsThis video collection is designed to help K-12 educators implement the instructional shifts required by the Common Core State Standards. The lessons have been reviewed and annotated using the Instructional Practice Guide which aligns with the Connecticut Core Standards Classroom “Look Fors” document. Each classroom video has student work samples, class materials and interviews from educators. Showing all or parts of the video could be useful in a professional development setting. (    
  • Professional Learning Packs are collections of materials designed for self-study, small group professional development, or large group professional development. Several topics are covered including: Culture of Change, Coaching for Change, Helping All Learners, Collaborative Culture, and Supporting Ells.  (EL Education)
  • Illuminating Standards Video Series – What would it look like if standards were met with depth, and imagination? The Illuminating Standards Project, a collaborative project of Expeditionary Learning and the Harvard Graduate School of Education, showcases a video collection of long-term, interdisciplinary, arts-infused, community-connected projects illustrating how to make standards come alive in project-based learning. The videos could be used in a professional development setting to have staff examine the relationship between meeting the demands of state standards and the creation of powerful learning experiences for students.  (
  • Professional Development Modules - professional development modules designed to support district and school leadership in their transition to the Common Core (Student Achievement Partners)
  • NEA - How Educators Can Advocate for English Language Learners: ALL IN! 2015 Advocacy Guide ( and  
  • CCSS and the Transformation of Professional Development—A brief that defines and illustrates specific supports and learning opportunities for educators along with a series of policy changes that state and local leaders can consider. (
  • Establishing Time for Professional Learning — This workbook is designed to guide districts and schools as they develop recommendations for increasing collaborative learning time for educators and evaluate the effectiveness of the change. (     
  • Text Set Project: Building Knowledge and Vocabulary- This professional development module from Student Achievement Partners focuses on the Text Set Project: Designing and Integrating Expert Packs. The training is for teachers, those who support teachers, librarians, and media specialists to build understanding and experience with Common Core State Standards (CCSS)-aligned instruction and materials. Within the module, there are materials, activities and discussions to enable participants to begin creating and using Expert Packs to support students in building knowledge, vocabulary and the capacity to read independently. (
  • Vocabulary and the Common CoreThis research paper includes 4 practice exercises for teachers, coaches, and school leaders to use in PD or self-teaching on vocabulary instruction with the Common Core. (
  • Making Challenging Texts Accessible: Putting the Common Core into Practice — Each of the four segments in this series (see links below) provide a 30-minute stand-alone session appropriate for K-12 professional development in all content areas. (Georgia Public Broadcasting)
  • Facilitating Student-Led Discussions: Putting the Common Core into Practice — Each of the four segments in this series (see links below) provide a 30-minute stand-alone session appropriate for K-12 professional development in all content areas. Although Part 3 provides a kindergarten example and Part 4 a high school example, it is suggested that teachers view both to see the learning progression that takes place. (Georgia Public Broadcasting)
  • CCSS-CTE Task Alignment Workshop Planning Tools—This website provides the materials to host a workshop with mathematics and CTE educators to create or improve instructional materials to ensure their alignment to the Common Core State Standards.( 
  • Seizing the Moment--State Lessons for Transforming Professional Learning (
  • Video Library-- instructional videos to support professional development (
  • Video Library  (The Teaching Channel)
  • Relationships and Convergences—a Venn Diagram which shows how the practice standards overlap in Math, Language Arts, and Science (


  • How you can be good at math, and other surprising facts about learning – This TEDx Talk (May 22, 2016) by Stanford mathematics education professor Jo Boaler, shares the brain research showing that with the right teaching and messages, we can all be good at math. Not only that, our brains operate differently when we believe in ourselves. (you cubed) 
  • Progressions Documents for the Common Core Math Standards (
  • Learning Trajectories for interpreting the CCSS-M describe how concepts, and student understanding, develop over time. A structural overview with Standards and Descriptors show how the evolving concepts of the trajectories are linked to the standards with many clarifying illustrations and explanations. (
    • Professional Development: Introduction to the Math Shifts— a 1 to 4 hour module that provides you with an introduction to the key shifts required by the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.
    • Professional Development: Deep Dive into the Math Shifts— a 1 to 3 hour module for those who are already familiar with the shifts required by the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics.
    • Professional Development: Introduction to the Publishers' Criteria for Mathematics—a 1.5 hour module designed to support learning about the instructional Shifts required by the Common Core State Standards for Mathematics (CCSSM) and how the Shifts are reflected in aligned instructional materials.
    • The Coherence Map shows the connections between Common Core State Standards for mathematics. It illustrates how to build student understanding by linking together concepts within and across grades, identifies gaps in a student’s knowledge by tracing a standard back through its logical pre-requisites, and helps the teacher to visualize and understand how supporting standards relate to the major work of the grade. Standards are illustrated with tasks, lessons, and assessments, as well as excerpts from the Progressions documents.
  • Video--Professional Development on Mathematics—a professional development video for central office and school-based staff and teachers on the shifts in the Common Core in mathematics  (from The Council of the Great City Schools)
  • Illustrating Mathematical PracticesReady-to-use PD materials designed to help teachers understand the Standards for Mathematical Practice and implement them in their classrooms  (NCSM)
  • Mathematics Instructional Practice Guide: Coaching Tool – This guide is designed for teachers, and those who support teachers, to build understanding and experience with Common Core State Standards (CCSS) aligned instruction. The module also includes a review of the three instructional Shifts in mathematics. Within the module, there are activities and discussions based on the Core Actions that will prepare participants to use the Instructional Practice Guide. (Student Achievement Partners for Achieve the Core)
  • Collaborating Around Math: Before, During, and After Lessons—This  video series showcases elementary, middle school, and high school  teams of educators coming together to plan, teach, and reflect on student learning. (Developed by Illustrative Mathematics and Smarter Balanced Assessment Consortium with the Teaching Channel)  
  • Mathematics Performance Assessment Tasks—These CCSS aligned formative performance assessment tasks, with accompanying scoring rubrics and discussion of student work samples, are arranged by grade or mathematical strand. These tasks can be downloaded for professional development purposes without modifying the tasks. (The tasks for grades 3-12 were developed by the Mathematics Assessment Resource Service (MARS) of the Shell Centre for Mathematical Education, University of Nottingham, England. The tasks for grade 2 were developed by the Silicon Valley Mathematics Initiative’s Mathematics Assessment Collaborative (MAC). (
  • Math Leadership Presentations and Webinars (NCSM)
  • Tchrs' Voice, a Teaching Channel blog – Tests Without Grades: Learning MomentsThis blog showcases the value of students learning by mistakes. It also links directly to a 7 minute companion video, for Grades 6-12 Math, “Highlighting Mistakes: A Grading Policy” (teaching



  • The Five Tools and Processes for Translating the NGSS – The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) challenge teachers to think deeply about learning and teaching with the goal of developing a clear vision of science education that is coherent, focused, and rigorous. These tools are designed to help professional development leaders work with teachers on curriculum, instruction, and assessment.  (American Museum of Natural History in collaboration with BSCS and the K-12 Alliance at WestEd.) 
  • The NGSS EQuIP Professional Learning Facilitator’s Guide is a series of 10 modules that were designed to provide guidance on building the capacity of educators and education leaders to use the EQuIP Rubric for Science. Completing this professional learning will provide science educators and education leaders with the processes and procedures necessary to use the EQuIP Rubric to review science lessons and units, to provide effective feedback and suggestions for improvement to developers and users of these instructional materials, to identify model or exemplar lessons and units, and to inform the development of new instructional materials. (      
  • Building Towards NGSS Classroom Series - These Teaching Channel videos, developed in partnership with Achieve, help teachers transition classroom instruction to meet the goals of NGSS. The series includes: First Steps Towards Transitioning to the NGSS, Making Claims From Evidence, Energy & Matter Across Science Disciplines, and Working as a Team. (
  • Tools for Ambitious Science Teaching - This website offers strategies and tools for designing learning experiences that engage all students in meaningful forms of science learning. Materials support NGSS instructional strategies. (   
  • Talk Science Professional Development – This component of The Inquiry Project (TERC) is designed to increase the effectiveness of discourse in Grades 3 through 5 science classrooms. The focus is on meaning-making and strategies to support productive discussion. Video case studies are included. ( 
  • Talk Science Primer by Sarah Michaels and Cathy O’Connor - This site provides electronic access to a twenty-two page pdf explaining academically productive talk, why it is important, how to establish a culture of productive talk in the classroom and use “talk moves” to support it. ( 
  • Bozeman Science – Next Generation Science Standards Video Series covers the concepts contained within the K-12 Science Framework. The 60 videos contain: an NGSS overview, 8 practices, 7 crosscutting concepts, and 44 disciplinary core ideas.(  
  • Boeing and Teaching Channel Present: The Science and Innovation Series - This collection of videos shows engineering design in the classroom. Topics include: Composites (Gr. 4-5), Alternative Energy (Gr. 4-5), Mission to Mars (Gr. 4-5), Quieter Cabin (Gr. 4-6), CubeSats (Gr. 5-6), Soft Landing (5-6), Bolt Catcher (Gr. 5-6), Polymers for the Planet (Gr. 6-7), Spy Gliders (Gr. 7-8), Biosuits (Gr. 7-8). (