Students in art classes often no longer paint or draw - they read complex texts about art and write argumentative essays about what they've read.
Students in career and technical education classes often no longer work in their chosen vocation - instead they read complex texts about that vocation and write argumentative essays about what they've read.
This is the magic of the Common Core as practiced in many schools these days - with nearly every class turned into the worst English Language Arts class you can imagine, with students "challenged" to read complex texts with words and terms they don't understand about subjects they don't care about because the powers that be have decided that the only knowledge of value is that which is complex, abstruse and arcane.
And now they've come for physical education classes - only this time, it's math that's being pushed along with physical activity:
When Judy Schmid, a gym teacher at Jacobsville Elementary School in Pasadena, Md., teaches her students how to bowl, she has them score games manually, even though most modern bowling alleys have automatic scoring. Kids count fallen pins, show their calculations on worksheets, play number games, and by the end of one 30-minute gym class, they’ve done a lot more than knock down a few pins—they’ve knocked off several Common Core math skills too.
Hey - when do the kids just get to play a freaking game?
Seriously - why does physical activity have to be combined with Common Core math skills?
The above excerpt comes from a Slate article that's pro-CCSS - it criticizes only when physical education teachers aren't "trained" to implement Common Core properly into gym class, not the underlying absurdity of turning PE into math too:
Peter Terbuska, a veteran phys-ed teacher in Wyoming, N.Y., initially had mixed feelings about teaching the Common Core in his classes. He wanted the best for his students academically, but he didn’t want to cut down on time they spent being active. Also, “there was no preparation for it whatsoever.” Slowly, though, after talking with other teachers and learning what kids were doing in other subjects, Terbuska came around to the idea.
Since students were studying multiplication tables in math, Terbuska started asking them to count by twos or threes while stretching in gym. “At first it was like pulling teeth,” he said. Now, though, the kids are used to it and even excited about leading the group stretch.
Hey - you know what's a great skill for students to learn?
How to focus on one activity for a set period of time.
Like if they're doing some stretches, how about they just stretch?
If they're playing basketball in the gym, how about they just, you know, play basketball, instead of having to count the lines in the gym floor as they play?
We live in a culture that promotes distraction - nobody ever in one place doing one thing anymore.
In many schools, administrators are running around with their hair on fire, screaming at teachers to make art class into ELA class, writing teachers up for not having complex text or math skills being taught alongside the CTE content.
And now PE has turned into PE-Math.
The damage that is being done to children in the name of Common Core cannot be overstated.
A culture already infected with the disease of distraction imposes even more of it on children in school.
And they wonder why everybody's on ADHD medication these days.
Can't wait to see how they implement Common Core into the meditation period.