New Arizona school standards take effect this school year

PHOENIX - With the start of the school year comes the end of the AIMS testing standards.
 
The Arizona College and Career Readiness Standards will take its place.  
 
The standards are more rigorous and are aimed at teaching more critical thinking.
 
Knox Gifted Academy in Chandler has been teaching to those kinds of standards for years. 
 
Fifth grade teacher Jennifer Nussbaum explains that lessons provide more practical application that helps kids understand and retain better.
 
Using an example of a set of problems where kids would have to find the area of an object.  In the older standards it might have been taught with only a worksheet.  In Nussbaum’s class the kids then develop plans and build something with the objects on paper. In this case, her students built a miniature golf course.
 
Writing and spelling isn't always grammar lessons and spelling tests but those topics are evaluated based on projects for example where kids would have to write proposals.  That is where the spelling and grammar becomes critical for them to express their ideas.
 
Nussbaum said your kids may get several approaches to solving a problem so it is important that parents are open to the process the kids are going through even if it is different than the way they were taught.
 
For schools that are just starting these standards, Nussbaum said there may be challenges.
 
"Resistance," she said.  "Teachers and parents but the ones who will get this are the kids."

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