Utah Writes Their Own Common Core Textbooks

With Major Publishers Coming Up Short, States Are Writing Their Own Common Core Standards Aligned Math Textbooks. Get This Lesson Idea and Others from Utah’s New E-Textbook

common core standards aligned math textbooks

By Cameron Pipkin

As we predicted, many of the Common Core Standards aligned math textbooks currently being produced for classrooms aren’t meeting teachers’ needs. To date, only a couple of states are doing anything about this, but, rest assured, this will change. Among the states currently pioneering their own Common Core math textbooks is Utah (my home state, as I never fail to mention).

Education Week reports the following:

“Concerned about what they see as a dearth of [Common Core Standards aligned math textbook], several educators in Utah, with support from state office of education, are taking matters into their own hands. They’re in the early stages of developing a set of e-textbooks for high school math that will be freely available.

’There was not a textbook out there that we felt reflected the common core,’ said Janet M. Sutorius, a math teacher at Juab High School in Nephi Utah, who is a co-author [of the Common Core Standards aligned math textbook]. ‘We just felt like the textbook companies were just reorganizing the chapters of their old books.’”

Cut to October of 2012, and Utah has designed it’s own set of Common Core Standards aligned math textbooks. About one quarter of Utah’s 41 school systems are currently using the e-textbook.

The image you see at the top of this page is a page straight out of that textbook, and provides an excellent, visual teaching resource for teaching arithmetic and geometric sequences.

“Everybody kind of has a picture in their mind of what a textbook is: some explanatory text, some problems, some homework,” said [Diana Suddreth, the STEM director for Utah’s state education agency]. “We’ve replaced the explanation text with math tasks….The book is really a guide to help teachers take students through learning experiences.”

To learn more about Utah’s new Common Core Standards aligned math textbooks, click here.