For this entry under “Would You Believe It Wednesday”, we’re looking at Common Core Standards as if we are considering our evening meal choice…ordering ‘delivery’ or ‘dining in’…
Just announced yesterday via an email I received, Amplify now offers Common Core Standard aligned lessons, assessments on the go! Yes, as in, on your mobile device. In other words, ‘delivery’. Just ‘order’ what you want to learn & Boom..instant delivery..minus tipping your delivery driver. How fast, how “I can learn anywhere!”, ‘how indoctrinated’.. “Dining in”, of course is the more traditional school setting. But, according to the advertising, we’re can have our ‘food’ either way. Oh, the price of this ‘delivery learning’…at least $359.00 to get you the first year’s worth of ‘food’ and a handy dandy ‘fork’ to eat it with (a pre-loaded tablet). Then, after that year expires, any other ‘deliveries’ you order are $60.00 annually. Pretty expensive meal, don’t you think? Last note to make, it’s geared more for teachers.
Not much variety or choices here, all Common Core Standard aligned (see: http://www.amplify.com/curriculum)! It’s all the same thing, every day, delivered in the same manner. If I can ‘learn anywhere’, why can’t I exercise my God-given freedom to choose ‘how I learn everyday’? Millions of teachers & students accomplish this now and are blossoming. The difference? They are not stuck on a bland diet of the same thing, every day for their learning. Yes, I’m oversimplifying this, but its to make a basic point. There are so many different, exciting, and proven successful ways to learn, we shouldn’t be restricting ourselves to one way. That’s like telling your child, “I’m sorry, honey, but from now on Mom’s only serving spaghetti for every meal and you have no other choice, I’ve already bought all the ingredients.” Now, if your child is like mine, for a couple of days, the concept of spaghetti all the time sounds fun, or at least intriguing. But, think ahead, what happens in a couple of weeks? In a month? They won’t only be dreading the concept, they’ll more than likely be seeking invitations to a friend’s house for meals. We won’t even discuss what happens if my child is allergic to what the spaghetti’s made of.
Since Amplify is geared toward teachers, look at how much control is in the teachers hands. (http://www.amplify.com/tablet/mdm) Now, do not misunderstand me, I know teachers have a lot keep up with. However, I do not think this much management, access, etc. is the way to go. Especially when you factor in all the others who have access to the same information or God forbid, data breaches.
Your Restaurant Owner:
As far as the ‘restaurant’..Amplify Company. Let’s take a look at them, after all, if I’m going to be on their delivery list, I need to know who’s cooking the meal I’m about to ingest. Amplify is an independent portion of News Corporation. (Think a chain restaurant, one head office, many independent branches). As far as the owner, News Corporation is a global mass media company founded by Rupert Murdock. (see the companies News Corporation owns, http://newscorp.com/about/our-businesses/) News Corporation states is has, through it’s philanthropy, impacted over 55,000 students world-wide. Through Amplify, the company supports STEM and other 21st Century education initiatives. Diane Ravitch’s shared on her blog, Murdock won a hefty contract in relationship with Common Core & Amplify (see: http://dianeravitch.net/2013/03/17/rupert-murdoch-wins-contract-to-develop-common-core-tests/) Michelle Malkin’s post has another viewpoint about Murdock & Common Core (see: http://www.nationalreview.com/articles/343040/common-core-trojan-horse-michelle-malkin)
No article about Common Core would be complete without assessments. Amplify has you more than covered there. (See: http://www.amplify.com/assessment) Before I sign off for today, let’s review: Amplify is being sold to teachers, parents, and students with the following catch phrases, “ease of implementation”; ‘easy and affordable’; “vetted content”, ‘tech support’; “active learning”. It’s owned and operated by a well identified Common Core Supporter with access to data on a world wide basis. As we’ve discovered in other data related Common Core stories around the nation, education data mining is one of the hottest businesses on the market.
Being the savvy consumers we are, we now know, this menu, dietary selection, and restaurant owner do NOT satisfy our discerning taste buds.