Anchor Standards for Reading K- 12

  • CCR_Anchor Standards for READING K-12

    The K–12 standards define what students should understand and be able to do by the end of each grade. They correspond to the College and Career Readiness (CCR) anchor standards below by number.

    The CCR and grade-specific standards are necessary complements—the former providing
    broad standards, the latter providing additional specificity—that together define the skills and understandings that all students must demonstrate.

    Key Ideas and Details

    1.    Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.

    2.    Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.

    3.    Identify key steps in a text’s description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).

    Craft and Structure

    4.    Determine the meaning of words and phrases as they are used in a text, including vocabulary specific to domains related to history/social studies.

    5.    Describe how a text presents information (e.g., sequentially, comparatively, causally).

    6.    Identify aspects of a text that reveal an author’s point of view or purpose (e.g., loaded language, inclusion or avoidance of particular facts).

    Integration of Knowledge and Ideas

    7.    Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

    8.    Distinguish among fact, opinion, and reasoned judgment in a text.

    9.    Analyze the relationship between a primary and secondary source on the same topic.

    Range of Reading and Level of Text Complexity

    10.    By the end of grade 8, read and comprehend history/social studies texts in the grades 6–8 text complexity band independently and proficiently.

    Responding to Literature

    11. Respond to literature by employing knowledge of literary language, textual features, and forms to read and comprehend, reflect upon, and interpret literary texts from a variety of genres and a wide spectrum of American and world cultures.


    Text Complexity

    The Common Core wisely emphasizes the need for readers to progress up a stairway of increasingly difficulty texts, ensuring that every reader has the extensive time reading just-right texts that he or she needs in order to progress towards more challenging texts.

    These standards are structured in such a way to clarify the learning pathways along which a learner progresses. A teacher can look ahead to understand the big goal that fuels and enlarges any grade-specific goal, and to see what the real work of that goal involves, allowing the teacher to craft instruction towards goals that have heft and significance. The teacher can also look towards earlier grade-level iterations of a specific goal, understanding the pathway that learners might take to enable him or her to do what the CCS hope will eventually be grade-appropriate work. This allows a teacher to study what his or her students can do, and to adapt his or her teaching to meet students where they are and take them as far as possible along a learning pathway. The CCS thus support differentiated and adaptive instruction.

    The CCS are written in such a fashion that they can encourage teachers across a grade level to align their individual units of study, and to provide students with a spiral curriculum that revisits essential skills at increasingly challenging levels.

    Levels of Text

    The CCS chose lexile as the measuring device for text complexity, a tool that measured college text books and income tax forms as well as the books kindergarten students read.

    Lexile-levels, alone, are often problematic because they do not take meaning into account, and therefore will end up suggesting that The Grapes of Wrath (and A Wrinkle in Time) is a second grade level text!

    Teachers of K-7 students are lucky to be able to rely on Fountas and Pinnel’s text levels—these do attend not only to sentence length and complexity but also to levels of meaning.

    Determining a text’s level of complexity is not a precise science, but that we are wise to work towards understanding this source of reading challenge and towards helping readers become progressively better able to read more challenging texts. It is not holding harder books that is good for kids—it’s reading them!