What the Experts Have to Say About Curriculum<br />Aleasha Lewis CUIN 587 September 16, 2010<br />
2<br />What purposes should the educational institution seek to accomplish?<br />How can learning accomplish these purposes?<br />How can learning experiences be organized for effective instruction?<br />How can the effectiveness of learning experiences be evaluated? <br />(Tyler, 1949)<br />
3<br />How Do You Define Curriculum?<br />According to Janet Benincosa, Curriculum Specialist, Harrison County (West Virginia) Public Schools a curriculum is “a plan which outlines a structured series of learning objectives and outcomes for a given content area.” (J. Benincosa, personal communication, September 10, 2010)<br />Dennis Burstein, Curriculum Specialist for Health & Physical Education, Alexandria (Virginia) Public Schools, states that a curriculum is a “document that defines what should be learned, how it is to be taught and the plan for teaching and assessing the learning.” (D. Burstein, personal communication, September 10, 2010)<br />Michelle Benson, Resource Teacher, Baltimore County (Maryland) Public Schools, defines a curriculum as a “roadmap for methods and procedures for implementing and evaluating learning.” (M. Benson, personal communication, September 10, 2010)<br />
4<br />The experts says it is necessary to understand curriculum in order to:<br />Meet the cognitive, linguistic, psycho-social, moral/affective and professional/vocational development of the learner (in line with the expectations of community and society) (Benson)<br />Assure that what is being taught is what is required to be taught (and learned) according to standards, and that it is articulated laterally and vertically (Burstein)<br />Facilitate learning that will inspire, challenge and prepare learners for the future (in the areas of communication, language, literacy, creativity, mathematics, knowledge and understanding of the world, and physical, personal, emotional and social development) (Benincosa)<br />
5<br />Approaches to Curriculum<br />(Benincosa, Benson, Burstein)<br />
Seeking Breadth and Depth in the Curriculum<br />7<br />Learning to learn and gaining deep understanding depends on <br />broad knowledge. But not just any knowledge will suffice.<br /><ul><li> Ideological /political stands replace thought and ends investigation. Examples: “reading wars” (phonics v. whole language), memorization of mathematical formulas v. use of calculators.
Acquisition of knowledge depends upon the knowledge one already possesses.
The best way to learn is through variety of diverse general domains (broad knowledge), then an ample number of varied examples that illustrate those principles (deep knowledge).
Rote learning of mere facts does not produce deep understanding.
A curriculum should deliver a specific sequence of topics at each grade level in preparation for learning what the next grade will offer (articulation).
Curriculums should present diverse, multicultural content in a coherent and cumulative way that enhances student achievement and which has the greatest potential for developing general competence, while instilling interest and competence.
An outside curriculum can be used, or faculty can collaborate on curriculum development and delivery, often resulting in increased collegiality and morale.</li></ul>(Hirsch, Jr., 2001)<br />
8<br />References<br />Hirsch, Jr., E. (2001). Seeking breadth and depth in the <br /> curriculum. Educational Leadership, 59(2), 22-25.<br />Tyler, R.W. (1949). Basic Principles of Curriculum and Instruction,<br /> Chicago: University of Chicago Press.<br />