We have addressed this topic of common assessments in hundreds of ways over many years here. My thinking has evolved to keeping them separate from your CI instruction. Mixing the two doesn’t work. This is the opposite of the TPRS model.
My recommendation is to take the first half of class to teach and test the common assessment material in the traditional way and make sure the kids pass the common assessments with no problem. This gets your traditional colleagues off your back.
Of course, if you are all a totally CI department you are blessed – you don’t have to concern yourself with boring ways of teaching from the past that are proven not to work.
Then in the second half of class you can do CI. It doesn’t have to be half and half. Just do what they expect in the first part of class, which keeps you out of hot water, and then tell the kids that now that “the important stuff” is over, we can just talk in the language.
Keep your defensive colleagues happy. Ask them for advice on how to teach the common assessment lists. Put some of the responsibility on the kids by having them learn the required material at home by giving lots of daily quizzes to start class the next day.
You can’t just give the material in class and then expect them to pass the material on summative (common) tests, so you have to hold their feet to the fire on a daily basis w a quiz to start class.
It’s very important that on the first common exam your students do well, which will lower the hackles on your colleagues’ backs, and then after that if they don’t score so high (bc you are doing more CI) it won’t be so bad.
What most of our traditional colleagues want is dominance over us, so why start a fight? Wait them out. They’re fading fast. Their day, as the saying goes, is done.
Gradually over the years your classes will forget about the common assessments once your reputation and client happiness are established. Your upper level classes will be big and vibrant. But for now in your lower level classes you must teach that stuff.
Here is one way I do that, by giving the kids this list w summative assessments bolstered by daily quizzes.
I have this written text in digital audio form somewhere as well: