AIOU Solved Assignments code 838Autumn & Spring 2020 Assignment 1& 2 Course: Curriculum Development and Instruction (838) Spring 2021. AIOU past papers
ASSIGNMENT No: 1& 2
Curriculum Development and Instruction (838) Semester
Autumn & Spring 2020
AIOU Solved Assignment 1& 2 Code 838 Autumn & Spring 2020
An organized developmental scope and sequence outlines what the early childhood curriculum focuses on and how the plans and materials support children at different stages of development. The scope refers to the areas of development addressed by the curriculum. Scope includes both the breadth (the curriculum addresses development across all of the Head Start Early Learning Outcomes Framework (ELOF) domains) and depth (curriculum content addresses specific developmental goals within each sub-domain). A content-rich curriculum ensures that this scope is sufficiently deep that it engages and sustains children’s interests across multiple learning experiences. The sequence includes plans and materials for learning experiences to support and extend children’s learning at various levels of development. A sequence of learning experiences progress from less to more complex, with the goal of supporting children as they move through the developmental progressions.
An organized developmental scope and sequence:
- Helps education staff support children’s development of skills, behavior, and knowledge described in the ELOF and a state’s early learning and development standards
- Includes examples of materials, teaching practices, and learning experiences that support children at different levels of development
- Allows flexibility to respond to the needs of individual children, including dual or tribal language learners and children with disabilities (or those suspected of having delays) and other special needs
- Provides information to education staff that helps them plan and communicate with families and other education partners
To be effective, curricula must be comprehensive in scope and provide learning experiences specifically designed to support children at various levels of development. A scope and sequence can be a helpful tool that education staff use to plan learning experiences tailored to children’s ages and developmental levels. It helps staff look ahead to see where development is going, and intentionally scaffold their learning. It also helps education staff implement research-based teaching practices that support children as they move through the developmental progressions, including those described in the ELOF. Elmwood Head Start education staff review their curriculum in the area of mathematics development. The scope of the curriculum includes number sense, operations and algebra, measurement, and geometry. The materials and plans for learning experiences are organized around a sequence designed to support children at various levels of development. The curriculum offers multiple learning opportunities that support children as they learn to understand simple patterns.
For example, the curriculum includes learning experiences that invite children to experience patterns through movement (e.g., tap-clap-tap-clap) and to describe patterns while playing with colored blocks. Children are encouraged to say the pattern aloud as a group (e.g., red-blue-red-blue) or to fill in the missing element in a pattern (e.g., red-blue-red-). The curriculum also includes learning experiences that invite children to copy simple patterns (e.g., with stringing beads). At a more advanced level, the curriculum provides learning experiences in which children, with teacher guidance, can create and extend patterns using objects, movements, or sounds.
The lesson plans within each of these learning opportunities describe how education staff can scaffold children’s learning and development at various levels (e.g., asking a child earlier in the developmental progression to identify what would come next in a simple pattern, and asking a child later in the developmental progression to describe a pattern the child has created). This sequence of learning experiences supports children as they move along the developmental progression of understanding patterns.
AIOU Solved Assignment 1& 2 Code 838 Autumn & Spring 2020
Based upon fundamental beliefs that arise from one’s philosophy of Education, curricular decisions involve consideration of several topics and issues. Precisely for this reason, we consider philosophy one of the major foundation areas in curriculum. In this section, we shall explore several different philosophies of education that influence curricular decisions.
Philosophy and Curriculum
Studying philosophy helps us deal with our own personal systems of beliefs and values, i.e., the way we perceive the world around us and how we define what is important to us. As philosophical issues have always influenced society and institutions of learning, a study of the philosophy of education in terms of Curriculum development is essential.
In essence, a philosophy of education influences, and to a large extent determines, our educational decisions and alternatives. Those who are responsible for curricular decisions, therefore, should be clear about what they believe. If we are unclear or confused about our own beliefs, then our curricular plans are bound to be unclear and confusing. One important step in developing a personal philosophy of education is to understand the various alternatives that others have developed over the years. Here we shall look into the following four major philosophical positions that have, hitherto, influenced curriculum development.
i ) Idealism
i ) Idealism
The doctrine of idealism suggests that matter is an illusion and that reality is that which exists mentally. It emphasizes moral and spiritual reality as the chief explanation of the world and considers moral values absolute, timeless and universal.
If we apply this view to education what would be the implications for the role of teachers and curriculum in education?
Obviously, teachers would act as role models of enduring values. And the school must be highly structured and ought to advocate only those ideas that demonstrate enduring values. The materials used for instructions, therefore, would centre on broad ideas particularly those contained in great works of literature and/or scriptures. Since it is based on broad ideas and concepts, idealism is not in line with the beliefs of those who equate learning with acquisition of specific facts from various Proponents of realism view the world in terms of objects and matter. They believe that human behavior is rational when it conforms to the laws of nature and is governed by social laws. Applied to education, those ideas begin to reveal a second possible philosophy of education.
What kind of philosophy will that be? ‘Realists’ consider Education a matter of reality rather than speculation. Application, The paramount responsibility of the teacher, then, is to impart to learners the knowledge about the world they live in. What scholars of various disciplines have discovered about the world constitutes this knowledge. However, like the idealists, the realists too stress that education should reflect permanent and enduring values that have been handed down through generations, but only to the extent that they do not interfere with the study of particular disciplines. Clearly, unlike the idealists who consider classics ideal subject matter for studies, the realists view the subject expert as the source and authority for determining the curriculum.
In contrast to the traditional philosophies, i.e., idealism and realism, Pragmatism gives importance to change, processes and relativity, as it suggests that the value of an idea lies in its actual consequences. The actual consequences are related to those aims that focus on practical aspects in teaching and learning (Nash, 1995).
According to pragmatists, learning occurs as the person engages in transacting with the environment. Basic to this interaction is the nature of change. In this sense, whatever values and ideas are upheld currently would be considered tentative since further social development must refine or change them. For instance, at a particular period of time it was generally believed that the earth was flat which was subsequently disproved through scientific research.
To consider, therefore, what is changeless (idealism) and inherited the perceived universe (rea1ism) and to discard social and/or perceptual change is detrimental to the overall development and growth of children. You can now visualize how pragmatism would have influenced the framing of curriculum.
Curriculum, according to the pragmatists, should be so planned that it teaches the learner how to think critically rather than what to think. Teaching should, therefore, be more exploratory in nature than explanatory. And, learning takes place in an active way as learners solve problems which help them widen the horizons of their knowledge and reconstruct their experiences in consonance with the changing world. What then might be the role of the teacher? The role is not simply to disseminate information but to construct situations that involve both direct experience with the world of the learner and opportunities to understand these experiences.
Having seen three basic philosophical positions that have influenced curriculum development, let us now look at the fourth one.
This doctrine emphasizes that there are no values outside human beings, and thus, suggests that human beings should have the freedom to make choices and then be responsible for the consequences of those choices.
According to this philosophy, learners should be put into a number of choice-making situations, i.e., learners should be given freedom to choose what to study. It emphasizes that education must centre on the perceptions and feelings of the individual in order to facilitate understanding of personal reactions or responses to life situations. Of primary concern in this process is the individual. Since life is based upon personal meanings, the nature of education, the existentialists would argue, should be largely determined by the learner. Individual learners should not be forced into pre-determined programmes of study. Whatever the learner feels he/she must learn should be respected and facilitated by the system. An existentialist curriculum, therefore, would consist of experiences and subjects that lend themselves to philosophical dialogue and acts of making choices, stressing self-expressive activities and media that illustrate emotions and insights. The teacher, then, takes on a non-directive role. The tender is viewed as a partner in the process of learning. As a professional, the teacher serves as a resource facilitating the individual’s search for personal meaning rather than imposing some predetermined values or interests on learners.
Existentialism has gained greater popularity in recent years. Today, many educationists talk about focusing on the individual, promoting diversity in the curriculum and emphasizing the personal needs and interests of learners. Here, perhaps, we can recall the philosophy that underlies the open distance education system. Learner-autonomy, which the existentialists seem to suggest, has been and remains the prime characteristic feature of the distance mode of teaching-learning. Because of the explosion in knowledge and tremendous growth in information technology, the curriculum of the past seems to be obsolete.
To plug the gap between the needs of the learner, the society and the curriculum content, rethinking in the area of curriculum development appears to be unavoidable. What might have been relevant in a particular situation need not necessarily always be so. In essence, social changes demand changes in the existing pattern of education. The inherent potentiality of the system of distance education enables it to accommodate and cater to these changes. It should be clear from the above discussion that by and large, in operational terms, both pragmatism and existentialism find ample expression in open distance education.
Each of the four major philosophies just described begins with a particular view of human nature and of values and truths, and then proceeds to suggest what such a view implies for curriculum development. Before we conclude our discussion on the philosophical foundations of curriculum, we should make note of a few educational philosophies in order to reinforce what has been said so far.
Although aspects of educational philosophy can be derived from the roots of idealism, realism, pragmatism and existentialism, a common approach is to provide a pattern of educational philosophies which derives from the major schools of philosophy some of which have been touched upon above. Here, we shall be looking into the following four educational philosophies for their implications in the area of curriculum development.
iii) Essentialism, and
Let us discuss each one of these in this very order.
It advocates the permanency of knowledge that has stood the test of time and values that have moral and spiritual bases. The underlying idea is that education is constant, absolute and universal. Obviously, “perennialism” in education is born of “idealism” in general philosophy.
The curriculum of the perennialist is subject-centered. It draws heavily on defined disciplines or logically organised bodies of content, but it emphasizes teaching leaming of languages, literature, sciences and arts. The teacher is viewed as an authority in a particular discipline and teaching is considered an art of imparting inforrnation knowledge and stimulating discussion. In such a scheme of things, students are regarded immature as they lack the judgement required to determine what should be studied, and also that their interests demand little attention as far as curriculum development is concerned.
There is usually only one common curriculum for all students with little room for elective subjects. According to this point of view putting some students through an academic curriculum and others through a vocational curriculum is to deny the latter genuine equality of educational opportunity. Such views appeal to those educators who stress intellectual meritocracy. Their emphasis is on testing students, enforcing tougher academic standards/programmes, and on identifying and encouraging talented students.
This emerged as a protest against perennialist thinking in education. It was considered a contemporary reformist movement in educational, social and political affairs during the 1920’s and 30’s. According to progressivist thought, the skills and tools of learning include problem solving methods and scientific inquiry. In addition, learning experiences should include cooperative behaviour and self- discipline, both of which are important for democratic living. The curriculum, thus, was interdisciplinary in nature and the teacher was seen as a guide for students in their problem-solving and scientific projects.
Although the progressive movement in education encompassed many different theories and practices, it was united in its opposition to the following traditional attributes and practices: the authoritarian teacher; excessive dependence on textbook methods; memorization of factual data and learning by excessive drilling; static aims and materials that reject the notion of a changing world; and attempts to isolate education from individual experiences and social reality.
Although the major thrust of progressive education waned in the 1950’s with the advent of “essentialism”, the philosophy has left its imprint on education and educational practices of today. Contemporary progressivism is expressed in several movements including those for a socially relevant curriculum, i.e., a match between subjects taught and student needs which is one of the theoretical bases of distance education.
This philosophy, rooted partly in idealism and partly in realism, evolved mainly as a critique of progressive thought in education. Yet, the proponents of essentialism do not totally reject progressive methods as they do believe that education should prepare the learner to adjust to a changing society. Thus, in essentialism learning should consist in mastering the subject matter that reflects currently available knowledge in various disciplines. Teachers play a highly directive role by disseminating information to students. According to this viewpoint, the main arms of the institution (be it a school or a college) get sidetracked, when, at the expense of cognitive needs, it attempts to pay greater attention to the social and psychological problems of students.
In recent years, the essentialist position has been stated vociferously by critics who claim that educational standards softened during the 1960s and early 1970s. The most notable achievements of the essentialists have been the widespread implementation of competency based programmes, the establishment of grade-level achievement standards, and the movement to reemphasize academic subjects in schools/colleges. In many ways, the ideas of essentialism lie behind attacks on the quality of education by the media and by local pressure groups, which includes, to a good extent, attaces on distance education.
It views education as a means of reconstructing society. The reconstructionists believe that as school/college is attended by virtually all youth, it must be used as a means to shape the attitudes and values of each generation. As a result, when the youth become adults they will share certain common values, and thus the society will have reshaped itself.
As for the curriculum, it must promote new social, economic and political education. The subject matter is to be used as a vehicle for studying social problems which must serve as the focus of the curriculum. The following gives you a view of the reconstructionist programme of education: critical examination of the cultural heritage of a society as well as the entire civilization; scrutiny of controversial issues; commitment to bring about social and constructive change; cultivation of a planning-in-advance attitude that considers the realities of the world we live in; and enhancement of cultural renewal and internationalism.
Stemming from this view, reconstruction expands the field of curriculum to include intuitive, personal, mystical, linguistic, political and social systems of theorizing. In general, the curriculum advocated by reconstructionists emphasizes the social sciences-history, political science, economics, sociology, psychology and philosophy-and not the pure sciences. The thrust is on developing individual self-realization and freedom through cognitive and intellectual activities, and thus, on liberating people from the restrictions, limitations and controls of society. The idea is that we have had enough of discipline-based education and narrow specialization, and that we don’t need more specialists now, we need more “good” people if we want to survive.
Before we proceed further, let us ask ourselves a question. What insights do we gain from the discussion on the philosophical foundations of curriculum’? Foundations of Curriculum Ideas about curriculum and teaching do not arise in a vacuum. As curriculum development is heavily influenced by philosophy, those involved in such planning should be clear about contemporary, dominant philosophy.
If we are unclear about our philosophy of education,our curriculum plans and teaching procedures will tend to be inconsistent and confused. This being so, we should be aware of the fact that development and awareness of a personal philosophy of education is a crucial professional responsibility. Further, we need to be constantly open to new ideas and insights that may lead to a revision or refinement of our philosophies. Our position should be that no single philosophy, old or new, should serve as the exclusive guide for making decisions about curriculum. What we, as curriculum specialists, need to do, is to adopt an eclectic approach, in which there is no emphasis on the extremes of subject matter or socio-psychological development, excellence or quality. In essence, what we need is a prudent philosophy-one that is politically and economically feasible and that serves the needs of students and society. It is here that open distance education comes forth with its promises for the future.
AIOU Solved Assignment 1& 2 Code 838 Autumn & Spring 2020
There are two primary types of evaluations — formative and summative — that assess academic curriculum for effectiveness. Within each major category, you’ll find different models that guide the assessment process when it comes to information that you need and how to gather it.
A formative type of evaluation assesses the curriculum as it is used. Instead of waiting until the end of the school year to look back on how well the curriculum worked, using a formative evaluation allows you to get feedback on a consistent basis, according to the Carnegie Mellon University. This type of assessment allows educators and administrators to make changes as the school year progresses and adapt the curriculum for different learning styles. Methods for formative evaluation may include collecting student reflection papers after lessons, midterm course evaluations or reviewing summaries that the students write on instructional units.
Unlike formative evaluations that take place on a consistent basis, giving ongoing feedback, the summative type is done at the end of a course or school year or through standardized assessment testing. Summative evaluations measure curricular success by reviewing the outcomes against benchmark standards. These are evaluations of learning for accountability and are not necessarily used to boost the educational process, according to educational consultant and learning specialist Judith Dodge on the website Scholastic Teachers. Educational Evaluations in US visit here
Methods and Models
Within both formative and summative evaluations, there are models that inform how you conduct the individual assessments. Based on educational research and theory, evaluation models not only guide the process of the assessment but also provide a framework for it. For example, the objectives-centered model — created by theorist Ralph Tyler — is a systematic type of evaluation that starts with setting behavioral objectives that include both the curricular content as well as learning behaviors. In this model, the evaluator chooses and uses several assessment tools and compares the results. In contrast, a goal-free model places the evaluator as an unbiased observer who creates a need profile. The assessment then compares the effects of the curriculum to the students’ needs.
Choosing a specific type of evaluation means reviewing the many different models. Teachers and evaluators may have personal preferences or policy requirements, or they may choose a type based on the most current research. Other considerations may include the process, cost-effectiveness or the actual propose of the evaluation. For example, if you want to evaluate how a new science curriculum is helping students learn through a child-centered process, you may want a formative assessment. By contrast, if you want to evaluate the overall outcome of your mathematics curriculum based on state standardized tests, you would use a summative assessment.
This module is organized in three activities:
- Curriculum evaluation. The participant is guided through an analytical schema to plan the evaluation of curricula.
- Student assessment. Participants examine considerations about student assessment that are regularly included in curriculum materials.
- Assessment of learning outcomes in specific content areas. Strategies and special modalities for the assessment of learning outcomes are analyzed for content areas recently included in curricula.
Following these activities is a “Resources” section which contains a list of discussion papers and other resources referred to in the activities, and a series of additional reading materials.
Curriculum evaluation is a necessary and important aspect of any national education system. It provides the basis for curriculum policy decisions, for feedback on continuous curriculum adjustments and processes of curriculum implementation.
The fundamental concerns of curriculum evaluation relate to:
- Effectiveness and efficiency of translating government education policy into educational practice;
- Status of curriculum contents and practices in the contexts of global, national and local concerns;
- The achievement of the goals and aims of educational programmes.
Student assessment is an important aspect of curriculum evaluation which helps to facilitate the understanding of the impact and outcome of education programmes. A fundamental measure of the success of any curriculum is the quality of student learning. Knowing the extent to which students have achieved the outcomes specified in the curriculum is fundamental to both improving teaching and evaluating the curriculum.
The term “evaluation” generally applies to the process of making a value judgment. In education, the term “evaluation” is used in reference to operations associated with curricula, programs, interventions, methods of teaching and organizational factors. Curriculum evaluation aims to examine the impact of implemented curriculum on student (learning) achievement so that the official curriculum can be revised if necessary and to review teaching and learning processes in the classroom. Curriculum evaluation establishes:
- Specific strengths and weaknesses of a curriculum and its implementation;
- Critical information for strategic changes and policy decisions;
- Inputs needed for improved learning and teaching;
- Indicators for monitoring.
Curriculum evaluation may be an internal activity and process conducted by the various units within the education system for their own respective purposes. These units may include national Ministries of Education, regional education authorities, institutional supervision and reporting systems, departments of education, schools and communities.
Curriculum evaluation may also be external or commissioned review processes. These may be undertaken regularly by special committees or task forces on the curriculum, or they may be research-based studies on the state and effectiveness of various aspects of the curriculum and its implementation. These processes might examine, for example, the effectiveness of curriculum content, existing pedagogies and instructional approaches, teacher training and textbooks and instructional materials.
The ultimate goal of curriculum evaluation is to ensure that the curriculum is effective in promoting improved quality of student learning. Student assessment therefore connotes assessment of student learning. Assessment of student learning has always been a powerful influence on how and what teachers teach and is thus an important source of feedback on the appropriateness implementation of curriculum content.
Fulfilling the diverse objectives of diagnosis, certification and accountability requires different kinds of assessment instruments and strategies selected to achieve specific purposes. Assessment of student learning could be summative or formative, and there are various types of tests to address different needs such as standardized tests, performance-based tests, ability tests, aptitude tests and intelligence tests.
AIOU Solved Assignment 1& 2 Code 838 Autumn & Spring 2020
Cooperative learning is a technique that allows students to learn from each other and gain important interpersonal skills. Learn more about the benefits, strategies, and techniques involved in cooperative learning.
Cooperative Learning Definition
Have you ever participated in a group project or on a committee to achieve some task? If so, you probably shared some knowledge with others in the group, and you may have learned something from others, as well. This is the essence of a cooperative learning group in a classroom.
Cooperative learning is an organized and structured way to use small groups to enhance student learning and interdependence. Students are given a task, better known as an assignment, and they work together to accomplish this task. Each individual has responsibilities and is held accountable for aiding in the completion of the assignment; therefore, success is dependent on the work of everyone in the group.
In addition to learning from each other, students also learn how to work as part of a team and have others depend on them.
Benefits in the Classroom
There are many benefits that can result from using cooperative learning strategies. Here are benefits you might notice after implementing cooperative learning tasks in your classroom:
- Cooperative learning is fun, so students enjoy it and are more motivated.
- Cooperative learning is interactive, so students are engaged, active participants in the learning.
- Cooperative learning allows discussion and critical thinking, so students learn more and remember what they’ve learned for a longer period of time.
- Cooperative learning requires students to learn to work together, which is an important skill for their futures.
How to Group Students
Cooperative learning takes some time to get used to for both the instructor and students. It may take several tries and the willingness to make adjustments before you are comfortable with this approach to teaching and learning. Let’s explore a few techniques for organizing groups.
Cooperative groups are generally comprised of a mix of students based on ability level. Additionally, diverse groups are created based on the skill level of the students. For example, groups may be comprised of four to five students, which include two or three average students, one below average student, and one student who is above average.
In most cases, students should not form their own groups or have the option of changing groups. Once groups have been assigned, you may want to set your classroom up with desks grouped in sets of four or five. Groups should change approximately every two months.
If possible, students should only work together with the same students once a year, but class size is a factor. To ease assignment tasks, students can be numbered one, two, three, and four and keep the same number for all assignments, or numbers can be drawn before each assignment. A simple number system can lessen confusion and help determine student roles for any given task.
Now that we’ve explored how to group students, let’s discuss strategies for developing assignments. For a class discussion assignment that uses cooperative learning, you may try the think-pair-share approach. With this approach, students are posed a question or problem that needs to be evaluated. First, the instructor gives time for students to think about the question and write down a couple ideas or their thoughts on the topic. Next, students are asked to turn to their group members in order to share and discuss the initial thoughts they had on the question. Last might be a whole class discussion or reflection.
An example with a writing component might look like this: list two times you have used fractions outside math class. Write your own ideas first. Once everyone in the group has written down their ideas, they can pass their paper to the left or right and then discuss all the ideas. This assures that every student has a voice in the group discussion.
For a specific group lab assignment that uses cooperative learning, tasks can be assigned by student number in which each member becomes an ‘expert’ in their assigned task. This use of cooperative learning is often referred to as the jigsaw approach. For example, in the lab assignment, you would assign a number to each step in the process. For example, student one might prepare/gather the supplies. Student two might add chemical one to the Petri dish. Student three adds chemical two to the Petri dish. Student four stirs the chemicals.
Cooperative Learning helps to:
- Raise achievement of students.
- Build positive relationships among students – important for creating a learning community that values diversity.
- Provide experiences that develop both good learning skills and social skills.
Research shows cooperative learning helps to produce:
- Higher achievement.
- Increased retention.
- More positive relationships and a wider circle of friends.
- Greater intrinsic motivation.
- Higher self-esteem.
- Greater social support.
- More on-task behavior.
- Better attitudes toward teachers.
- Better attitudes toward school.
Hopefully you have already had some successful experiences with cooperative learning and you can relate to many of the benefits listed above. If you haven’t had any experiences with team or group work, or if you have only had bad experiences, don’t worry! Becoming skilled in cooperative learning takes time, patience, and persistence. The more you learn about cooperative learning and the more you practice your skills, the better you will become and the more benefits you will experience. It takes time.
Here are some additional benefits of cooperative learning.
- When students are working toward a common goal, academic work becomes an activity valued by peers.
- Students are motivated to help one another learn.
- Students are able to translate the teacher’s language into “student language” for one another.
- Students who explain to one another strengthen their own learning.
- When students need to organize their thoughts in order to explain them to teammates, they must engage in thinking that builds on other ideas (cognitive elaboration) which greatly enhances their own understanding.
- Teammates can provide individual attention and assistance to one another.
- Regular and constructive collaborative study groups can assist you with mastery of material, exam preparation, and better performance on tests.
AIOU Solved Assignment 1& 2 Code 838 Autumn & Spring 2020
The term curriculum is viewed in two different ways: the micro and the macro. The micro curriculum refers to subjects while the macro curriculum refers to curricular programs. For example, the subject biology is a micro curriculum while BS in Civil Engineering is a macro curriculum.
What do the micro and the macro curriculum contain? The following criteria discusses the content of these two levels of the curriculum.
Table of Contents
- Seven Criteria for the Selection of Subject-matter or Content of the Curriculum
SEVEN CRITERIA FOR THE SELECTION OF SUBJECT-MATTER OR CONTENT OF THE CURRICULUM
The selection of subject matter for micro curriculum employs the seven criteria below. For the macro curriculum, the subjects needed for the curricular program or course.
To help learners attain maximum self-sufficiency in the most economical manner is the main guiding principle of subject matter or content selection (Scheffler, 1970) as cited by Bilbao et al. (2008). Although the economy of learning implies less teaching effort and less use of educational resources, students gain more results. They can cope up with the learning outcomes effectively.
This criterion means that students should be given a chance to experiment, observe, and do field study. This system allows them to learn independently.
With this principle in mind, I suggest that for a high school curriculum or preparatory year, there should be a one-day independent learning activity each week. However, this should be carefully planned by the teacher. When the students return, they should present outputs from the activity.
The subject matter or content is significant if it is selected and organized for the development of learning activities, skills, processes, and attitude. It also develops the three domains of learning namely the cognitive, affective and psychomotor skills and considers the cultural aspects of the learners. Particularly, if your students come from different cultural backgrounds and races, the subject matter must be culture-sensitive.
In short, select content or subject matter that can achieve the overall aim of the curriculum.
Validity refers to the authenticity of the subject matter or content you selected. Make sure that the topics are not obsolete.
For example, do not include typewriting as a skill to be learned by college students. It should be about the computer or Information Technology (IT).
Thus, there is a need to check regularly the subject matter or contents of the curriculum, and replace it if necessary. Do not wait for another 5 years to change it.
Modern curriculum experts are after current trends, relevance and authenticity of the curriculum; otherwise, the school or the country becomes obsolete.
This criterion is true to the learner-centered curriculum. Students learn best if the subject matter is meaningful to them. It becomes meaningful if they are interested in it. However, if the curriculum is subject-centered, teachers have no choice but to finish the pacing schedule religiously and only teach what is in the book. This approach explains why many fail in the subject.
Another criterion is the usefulness of the content or subject matter. Students think that a subject matter or some subjects are not important to them. They view it useless. As a result, they do not study.
Here are the questions that students often ask: Will I need the subject in my job? Will it give meaning to my life? Will it develop my potentials? Will it solve my problem? Will it be part of the test? Will I have a passing mark if I learn it?
Students only value the subject matter or content if it is useful to them.
The subject matter or content must be within the schema of the learners. It should be within their experiences. Teachers should apply theories in the psychology of learning to know how subjects are presented, sequenced, and organized to maximize the learning capacity of the students.
Feasibility means full implementation of the subject matter. It should consider the real situation of the school, the government, and the society, in general. Students must learn within the allowable time and the use of resources available. Do not give them a topic that is impossible to finish.
For example, you have only one week left to finish the unit but then, the activities may take a month for the students to complete. Thus, this requirement is not feasible.
Do not offer a computer subject if there is no even electricity in the area, or there are no computers at all.
Further, feasibility means that there should be teachers who are experts in that area. For example, do not offer English for Business Communication if there is no teacher to handle it.
Also, there is a need to consider the nature of the learners. The organization and design of the subject matter or content must be appropriate to the nature of students.
So, it would be better if students in a subject-centered curriculum (with pacing schedule that must be religiously implemented every week) shall be grouped homogeneously; otherwise, many will flunk in that subject.
In conclusion, teachers in elementary and high school are not directly involved in the selection of subject-matter because there are already lesson plans made by the Department of Education. All they have to do is to follow it. However, they can also customize the lessons if their department heads or principals allows them.
As regards macro curriculum, the Commission on Higher Education sets guidelines and policies on what subjects to offer as minimum requirements for the course. Then, the Curriculum Development Committee will takes charge of the selection, organization and implementation of the curriculum with the approval of the Academic Council.
The Curriculum Development Committee headed by the Director of Curriculum Development sees to it that the selection of the subject-matter and the subjects for a curricular program be examined and scrutinized using the 7 criteria mentioned above.
But, this is not the end of the process yet! The selection of the subject matter or content of the micro and macro curriculum is only one of the considerations in designing the curriculum.