I was preparing for a presentation to the faculty on instructional shifts for the Common Core by showing the slide show I created to my husband. Looking at slide one, he looked a little confused.
What is an instructional shift?” he asked.
I paused. What is meant by instructional shift? Why use the word “shift” at all?
Shift has different meanings. As a verb, shift means, “to move or cause to move from one place to another, esp. over a small distance.” One complementary meaning of shift as a noun is similar to the verb, ” slight change in position, direction, or tendency.” The other meaning of shift is unrelated, “one of two or more recurring periods in which different groups of workers do the same jobs in relay.”
Why use shift at all when “emphasis” is more accurate? Try using emphasis and say, “CCSS require emphasis” or that a “special importance, value, or prominence given to something.” Even the word “focus” is a better replacement, “the center of interest or activity.”
Shift is questionable…too close to “shifty.”