A. The Curriculum: Orientation

Meaning of Curriculum .

and so forth. a teacher’s guide which contains suggestions for instructional objectives. Later it was defined as subject matter. methods of evaluation. reference materials. . At one time it meant the subjects taught in school. At another time it was used to refer to the course of study.The term “curriculum” has been defined in various ways. the time frame for finishing teaching units. instructional materials. teaching and learning activities.

. an example of which is the “curriculum” for a given college degree program where the various subjects or courses to be taken in the first and second semesters of the first curriculum year and those for succeeding curriculum years are listed.The term has also been used in reference to the program of the study.

the term was taken to mean the planned learning outcomes which the teacher seeks to attain through instruction. Here the ends are the goals and objectives which education in general and the schools in particular intend to accomplish. pertains to the resources. . on the other hand.Subsequently. meaning that the curriculum is a calculation of the means and ends of the education. both human and physical. This means. Still another meaning used is that the curriculum is a strategy. needed to accomplish goals and objectives.

techniques. generalizations and along with the factual material needed to develop them.Another view of curriculum is that it consists of two sets of elements. themes. The methodological elements include the modes. . and processes of inquiry that are useful in developing a curriculum. concept clusters. The substantive elements include the key concepts.

Spalding (1958) views the curriculum as the strategy by which schools attempt to fulfill the goals of education. He elaborates on this view as follows: .

is a strategy to borrow a term from the language of the military. . as it exists. As it is now used.The curriculum. it means a sound calculation and coordination of the ends and the means. A curriculum is a sound calculation of the means and the ends of education. means “the art of the general”. in its original and literary sense. This term.

Decisions which relate solely to aims. .A strategy is subordinate to the policy of the organized society in war or in education. purposes. and ends are policy decisions and are never made by the expert alone.

community. equipments and supplies. texts. Success in educational planning lies in the closeness of one’s approximation to the truth. extending the ends. but it does so through artful bringing the ends nearer to the means. school buildings. .According to Spalding. a strategy requires calculation of resources to be used in attaining goals. This is especially evident when we examine the resources to be used in an educational plan – teachers. Education is not yet science. pupils. Educational planning must take account of these resources. and by giving high value to the means.

choices must be made both as to the extent of the immediate goal and of the resources to be used to attain it. In each such situation.Spalding adds that a strategy anticipates specific situations in which means must be used to attain immediate objectives which must be achieved if ultimate ends are to be reached. .

Specific engagements may appear to be primarily intellectual. experiences cannot be observed and to some extent controlled. According to this definition. The method or procedure of teaching followed may be patterned according to the nature of engagement in numerous ways. and with subject matter. or symbols. (Socrates.Another definition views the curriculum as the learner’s engagements with various aspects of the environment which have been planned under the direction of the school. ideas. classmates. 1977) . what he attends to or there can be engagement with teachers. or manipulative. emotional. The term engagement is used to mean what the leaner meets face-to-face. or other with physical factors such as materials and facilities.

. inside or outside of the classroom or school. the curriculum consists of all those activities (or experiences). which are under the jurisdiction and responsibility of the school and are planned and directed or carried out for the purpose of promoting the growth and development of the learner.One of the most quoted definitions of the curriculum is that it is all of the planned experiences of the learners. curricular or co-curricular. whether in school or out of school. for which the school is responsible. Under this definition.

This definition appears to be a more elaborate extension of the definition immediately preceding.A more comprehensive definition is that given by Oliver (1969). the curriculum is. The curriculum includes all of the experiences of the learners for which the school should accept responsibility. To Oliver. basically. . what happens to students as a result of what teachers do. It is the program used by the school as a means of accomplishing its purposes.

in the like manner. 1969) . School services – such as libraries. Even the climate of interpersonal relationships prevailing in a school at a given time is a part of the curriculum since it is an important conditioning factor in the learning and adjustment of the learners for which the school should accept responsibility. guidance and counseling.Direct teaching in the classroom is a part of the curriculum since these presumably have been planned by the school to help achieve certain educational objectives. health services. – are. In short. etc. the curriculum is the total environment planned by the school (Oliver. parts of the curriculum.

Definition of Curriculum Planning .

First. Socrates and Michaelis et. in the definition by Bernardino and Freszosa. The definition by Agoncillo also includes planning as an aspect of curriculum development. al. “planning the experiences to be utilized” is one of three kinds of activities involved in curriculum development. the other two being “organizing them into a program” and “evaluating the curriculum thus developed”. likewise view planning as part of the curriculum development process. .

curriculum improvement is a process that involves. Ragan conceptualizes curriculum improvement in terms of activities which contribute to the attainment of an end – namely. . look at it as a process which suggests a continues study of programs with the end in view of improving such programs. “the objective identification and systematic study of problems. Stratemayer et. among other things.As regards curriculum improvement. al.” and the ultimate beneficiary is the learner. the improvement of living and learning in the classroom. To Oliver.

pertains to the resources. the term was taken to mean the planned learning outcomes which the teacher seeks to attain through instruction.Subsequently. meaning that the curriculum is a calculation of the means and ends of the curriculum. Here the ends are the goals and objectives which education in general and the schools in particular intend to accomplish. This means. Still another meaning used is that the curriculum is a strategy. on the other hand. needed to accomplish goals and objectives. . both human and physical.

broadening and enriching. “improving curriculum” means developing and nurturing. and uplifting and revitalizing the lives and minds of those who implement curriculum and instructional decisions everyday.Frymier and Hawn view curriculum improvement as a “people problem” in that people intimately and extensively involved in it. altering and adding. . To these two authors.

and classroom level – and that all these levels.Let us now take a look at the conceptualization given by Michaelis and his associates. in the first chapter of their book New Designs for Elementary Curriculum and Instruction (1975). Interestingly. . school/grade/subject area/cross-grade/ level. the authors state: “This chapter reviews the curriculum planning process presented in the model outlined in Chapter 1. the following sequence of procedures “provides a means for effective curriculum development”. In the same chapter they state that planning of the total elementary curriculum is done on several levels – district level.

Formulation of broad goals and specific objectives. Planning and organization of curriculum content. Assessment of conditions in foundation areas as a basis for generating goals. instructional strategies. 2. 3.1. adaptation of “outside” programs and materials. provision for continuous evaluation of instructional outcomes. and media. .

utilization of support services. In short the “curriculum planning process” that Michaelis and his associates speak of refers to none other than “curriculum development. carrying out instructional strategies.” . Evaluation. feedback. utilization of facilities and equipment.4. Implementation of curriculum designs: teacher preparation. and 5. and modification of curriculum design.

“planning covers not only formulating ideas and plans but also getting them done and seeing how well they are done. . according to Reyes.Another point equally worth taking note of is the fact that.” (emphasis added).

and improving the curriculum. developing. which is the total environment planned by the school. . planning. the following definition of curriculum planning is proposed.On the basis of the foregoing considerations. Curriculum planning is a continuous process which involves activities characterized by interrelationships among individuals and groups as they work together in studying.

and pupil evaluation to meet these goals and specific objectives based on an assessment of conditions in foundation areas. strategies. curriculum planning includes the identification or formulation of broad goals and specific objectives based on an assessment of conditions in foundation areas. .Essentially. the implementation of curriculum designs. and pupil evaluation to meet these goals and objectives. with attention given to analysis and adaptation to curriculum plans or materials developed outside the school or school system. the planning of content. the planning of content. and the evaluation and modification of curriculum designs. strategies.

developing a functional philosophy. studying learners and their environment.In going through these basic processes. studying ways to improve instruction . participants in curriculum planning get involved in a variety of activities such as discussing common problems. and carrying on research and evaluation. making decisions. keeping up to date with knowledge. .

. valuing. to solve instructional problems.The fundamental purposes of curriculum planning are to meet cultural demands. and doing. and to improve students’ experiences. to change people’s ways of behaving in terms of knowing.

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