Reading Response #5

How is Curriculum Made?

Reflecting back on what I have learnt so far about the curriculum, I believe that the curriculum is created by the “dominant” race (white people), and people who are seen as higher up in the status quo. I believe that the curriculum is created by higher authorities; predominantly white males. These males have a background education; they are seen as intelligent. I also believe that some curriculum designers have a background in teaching, which helps them when creating the curriculum.

After reading the article “Curriculum Policy and the Politics of What Should be Learned in Schools” by Ben Levin, I learnt that school curricula is developed and implemented by a group of people. According to Levin (2007), “Curriculum politics involve a wide range of participants” (p.15). Governments have a person in the cabinet whose responsibility is education. School curriculum is mostly developed by the government, with very little input from the districts and schools themselves. According to Levin (2007); “Curriculum decision processes depend on governance systems” (p.17). The final decisions on school curricula rest with the government.

School curriculum is implemented by school divisions, principals, and educators. Educators follow the curriculum when teaching, to ensure that their students are learning what they need to know. School curriculum is “an official statement of what students are expected to know and be able to do” (Levin, 2007, p. 8). Courses taught in school have objectives that students should achieve by the end of the school year, and it is our jobs as educators to makes sure those objectives are being met.

Some new information that I learnt about the curriculum is the different roles that people play in creating and implementing school curricula. Curriculum policies are developed by the government and then implemented by school divisions, and taught by educators. One thing that surprised me at the beginning of the article was how the “Ontario curriculum for Grades 1 to 8 contains more than 3700 specific and general expectations for teachers and students to cover” (Levin, 2007, p. 7). I was shocked when I read this cause that is a large number of objectives to cover in such a short period of time. As educators we need to understand that the curriculum is a guide to follow, and in a case like this all of the course objectives will not always be met. As educators we should not stress if not all the course objectives are met, we should rather focus on making sure that our students are understating all of the content being taught rather than rushing what we need to teach, just to meet all of the course objectives.

 

References

Levin, B. (2007, September 19). Curriculum policy and the politics of what should be taught in    schools. Retrieved February 2, 2019, from      https://www.corwin.com/sites/default/files/upm-binaries/16905_Chapter_1.pdf

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One thought on “Reading Response #5

  1. Maureen Tazzioli says:

    Jaimie, I enjoyed reading your response and agree that the dominant discourse of white people, predominantly male, became the only perspective (voice) represented when the curriculum was being created many years ago. Since the developmental process of the curriculum today, which includes a group of people mandated by governmental officials, policy-makers and subsequent regulations, still represent the dominant white discourse, it is important to note that we must strive to have as many perspectives (voices) involved in the developmental process in the near future, so to capture a greater representation of student needs. I also appreciated your insights into how, as teachers, we should remain focused on ensuring our students understand the content versus trying to meet every objective written within the curriculum. To me, education, and the use of the curriculum, should remain student-focused, not task focused and that is what I discovered from your submission. GREAT JOB!

    Like

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