COR is the ongoing assessment system that is used with the HighScope philosophy. We use COR as it lays out every area of development in tiny steps that help us assist children with their development. By using COR correctly, you will be able to understand what level each child is currently at, the next step in their development, and it will help you to plan your lessons on a developmentally appropriate level. 

Understanding COR:

Each COR item is broken down into 8 steps (with 0 being the first step). The numbers next to the step does not correspond to the child's age, but rather are used for tracking. Steps should be done in order to make sure each child is developing each of the skills prior to mastery. 

The 7th level in COR is where each child should be at the end of kindergarten, however, some children will achieve these when they are younger. 

Remember that your job is to help children reach the next level in COR during each COR lesson.

COR lessons:

Each week you will plan 4 COR lessons. Prior to planning the lesson follow these steps:

  1. Read through the COR areas

    1. Think about the children in your class. For your children who are at a lower developmental level, pick the level that you think they are currently at. This is level is the EARLY level on your lesson plan.

    2. Think about the children who are at the highest stage of developmental levels in your class. Find which area they are currently at. This is the LATER level on your lesson plan.

    3. Pick a middle level for the middle part of your lesson plan.

    4. Remember, these numbers do not have to be in order. Meaning, you may skip a number or level on your lesson plan. 

  2. Think about every level of COR that your children are at. Your lesson must include a way to teach all of these (see example below). If you need help planning a lesson that encompasses all of these levels, please see Michael​

Teaching a COR lesson:

  1. Gather all materials prior to lesson being taught. Make sure you have your COR sheet-pre-filled out with the children's names. 

  2. Review the COR levels you are trying to accomplish.

  3. Present the lesson to the children, expand, etc. 

  4. Observe children while you are helping. 

  5. Write the level next to each child's name while doing the lesson or right after the lesson is done. 

  6. Make sure your COR sheet is completely filled out prior to turning in on FRIDAYS. 


If a child is absent for 1 day, make up the COR (during work/choice time) the following day. 

If a child is absent for the entire week or most of the week, you do not need to make it up at this time. 

If a child will not participate in the activity, find a way to work with them during work or choice time in order to assess their current level. This may be done with a different activity. 

Don't forget to read the entire COR description-including all levels prior to writing your lesson. 


COR area C-Reflection

Contrary to popular belief, this COR area has nothing to do with looking in a mirror. 

C. Reflection

0. Child returns his or her attention to an object or event of interest.

1. Child indicates he or she wants something to happen again.

2. Child returns to where something he or she wants or has played with is located.

3. Child says one thing he or she did soon after the event.

4. Child recalls three or more things that he or she did and/or the details of something that happened.

5. Child recalls, without prompting, the sequence of three or more things he or she did or that happened.

6. Child says the reason why an experience happened to him or her as it did and what he or she would do the same or differently next time.

7. Child recalls another person’s experience and uses what he or she observed in a similar situation

Planning the lesson:

  1. First you read through all the COR levels for reflection

    1. Child at earliest developmental level can indicate that they want something to happen again. Usually they laugh, point or cry. Level 1

    2. Children with latest developmental levels can recall three or more things they did at work time and can say details about what they did. Level 4

    3. Most other children in the class are able to say one thing that they did during work time during recall. Level 3

  2. We next need to plan a lesson that encompasses all of these levels. We will do this during recall time when the teacher will ask the children what they did at work time. 

  3. For the lower level learner, they are non-verbal and do not talk. This child will be asked to point at what they did. They will be encouraged to talk. 

  4. For the middle learners, the teacher will ask them what they did and try to engage them in conversation in order to expand their learning and bump them up a level. 

  5. For later learners, the teacher will work to have them say three things they did in order. If they can do that, the teacher will ask them why an experienced happened to them and what they would do different next time. 

  6. Teacher will note all current levels.

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GG. Geography

0. Child gazes at an object in a fixed location.

1. Child moves one object to gain access to another object.

2. Child shows where objects belong or where events happen in the immediate environment.

3. Child uses symbols to help retrieve or put away materials or to identify the actual location of interest areas.

4. Child reads a simple familiar map, such as a map of the classroom.

5. Child knows how to navigate around a familiar building.

6. Child describes the location of familiar landmarks.

7. Child interprets a map of an unfamiliar location.