In a piece for Educational Leadership, professor of English Mark Bauerlein describes the importance of text complexity and the dispositions students will need if they are going to be successful with this outcome. These include
- A Willingness to Probe
- The Capacity for Uninterrupted Thinking
- A Receptivity to Deep Thinking
Bauerlein moves the reader through the research governing the inclusion of text complexity in the Common Core before writing
Complex texts can be lengthy and opaque, the product of careful thought and studied composition. To address them, readers may need to sit down with them for several hours of concentration. Readers need to be patient enough to ponder a single sentence for a few minutes, because many complex texts aren’t just purveyors of information, but expressions of value and perspective.
…the comprehension of complex texts depends on a receptive posture in readers. They have to finish the labor of understanding before they talk back…
You can read Bauerlein’s entire article here.
About Aaron Grossman
I am a 5th grade teacher at Roy Gomm Elementary in Reno, Nevada. I started working with elementary students as part of the Montana Reads program and AmeriCorps. In 2001, after graduating from the University of Montana and moving to Reno, Nevada, I student taught at Rita Cannan Elementary before receiving a 6th grade position at Veterans Elementary. I moved out of the classroom to be a Literacy Coordinator, then an Instructional Coach, and finally a School Improvement Program Coordinator. In 2011, I began working on the Nevada Academic Content Standards in the district’s Curriculum & Instruction Department. I returned to the classroom for the 2015-2016 school year to teach 4th grade at Huffaker Elementary.
Before returning to the classroom, I helped develop the Core Task Project that has been featured by National Public Radio, the Gates Foundation, American Radio Works, Eduwonk, the Fordham Institute, Vox, and the Center for American Progress. In 2014, I received the Leader to Learn From Award for my teacher-centered initiative and work to bring college, career, and civics ready outcomes into Northern Nevada classrooms (here).
In 2015, I was appointed by Governor Sandoval serve on the Statewide RPDP Council. The same year, Nevada’s State Superintendent of Public Instruction Steve Canavero placed me on the state’s State Improvement Team. This year I will be part of the National Council on Teacher Quality’s Teacher Advisory Group. I am Google Certified Educator and a Nevada Teacher Ambassador.
I believe strongly that teaching content is teaching reading and I make sure my students have ample opportunities to work with social studies, history, science and art outcomes. I do what I can to blend the learning for my students and this blog is part of that effort. You can contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org