Shrinking Curriculum<br />Less Can Be More<br />By Sarah Nehmer<br />
Right now our students are required to master a high number of objectives in each grade level.<br />This high-content type...
An overworked mind<br />
In the past, states and districts have directed what should be taught in each grade level.<br />Common Core Standards have...
DEPTH<br />Less content<br />Studied for longer periods of time<br />Aim is greater understanding<br />BREADTH<br />More c...
Depth-teaching encourages higher-level thinking skills.  <br />Should you keep moving on with the pacing guide when childr...
Essentialists like “the basics” in the classroom- reading, writing, arithmetic.<br />Education is meant to help one become...
How might Essentialists view this problem?<br />As essentialists are in favor of returning to “basic” core curriculum (rea...
Possible Solutions<br />Big Ideas and Essentials<br />Curriculum Compacting	<br />Using pre-tests to determine what your s...
More Possible Solutions<br />Mastery Teaching<br />Involves short teaching period (brief)<br />Assessing for mastery<br />...
Cushman, K. (1994). Less is more: the secret of being essential. http://www.essentialschools.org/resources/34.<br />"Curri...
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Shrinking curriculum

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Shrinking curriculum

  1. 1. Shrinking Curriculum<br />Less Can Be More<br />By Sarah Nehmer<br />
  2. 2. Right now our students are required to master a high number of objectives in each grade level.<br />This high-content type of curriculum creates some big problems:<br />Shallow learning of many concepts<br />Lack of mastery <br />Overwhelmed students and teachers<br />The Problem<br />
  3. 3. An overworked mind<br />
  4. 4. In the past, states and districts have directed what should be taught in each grade level.<br />Common Core Standards have been released.<br />These are not curriculum mandates but recommendations for a more unified education system in America.<br />States still leave the decision of how curriculum is taught to districts and teachers. <br />Background of Curriculum<br />
  5. 5. DEPTH<br />Less content<br />Studied for longer periods of time<br />Aim is greater understanding<br />BREADTH<br />More content<br />Shorter periods of study<br />Aim is learning more<br />Depth vs. Breadth<br />
  6. 6. Depth-teaching encourages higher-level thinking skills. <br />Should you keep moving on with the pacing guide when children don’t understand? That is like pulling a sinking swimmer halfway to shore then leaving them.<br />Why Teach for Depth?<br />
  7. 7. Essentialists like “the basics” in the classroom- reading, writing, arithmetic.<br />Education is meant to help one become able to function normally in society and in the job world.<br />Competency is determined (usually) through standardized testing that reflects the curriculum that society has deemed important. <br />Enter the Philosophy of Essentialism<br />
  8. 8. How might Essentialists view this problem?<br />As essentialists are in favor of returning to “basic” core curriculum (reading, writing, and arithmetic), they probably would support the argument for deeper learning with less objectives.<br />Essential Schools are in favor of teaching for depth rather than teaching as much as possible.<br />
  9. 9. Possible Solutions<br />Big Ideas and Essentials<br />Curriculum Compacting <br />Using pre-tests to determine what your students already know, eliminate unnecessary parts of the curriculum from your instruction. This is also a wonderful way to differentiate (“Curriculum Compacting”).<br />The “Big Idea” of a curriculum strand includes the main concepts that are necessary (essential) for learning in that core area. For example, it may not be critical to learn specifically how to multiply two four-digit numbers, but it is imperative to learn different ways to multiply multi-digit numbers. This could change a whole chapter on multiplication into a few lessons.<br />
  10. 10. More Possible Solutions<br />Mastery Teaching<br />Involves short teaching period (brief)<br />Assessing for mastery<br />If it was mastered, the student moves on to enrichment. If not, they are retaught until it is mastered.<br />Student mastery of concepts is the goal. <br />Allows those who understand the basics of the content to enhance their learning through the different intelligences.<br />
  11. 11. Cushman, K. (1994). Less is more: the secret of being essential. http://www.essentialschools.org/resources/34.<br />"Curriculum Compacting." Teacher Professional Development Sourcebook. Vol. 02. Editorial Projects in Education, Inc., 2008. 22. Academic OneFile. Web. 1 Oct. 2011.<br />References<br />

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