Historical Roots and the Curriculum

Over the past century, Curriculum has changed drastically but also has stayed very similar to the past. In order to understand why the curriculum is how it is today, we need to understand the historical roots of curriculum. In an article by Peter Seixas, A Model of Historical Thinking, it talks about the different countries that influenced the curriculum of what History teachers were told to teach at different times. The article breaks down curriculum influences from Britain, Germany, The U.S. and Canada.

When talking about the different countries, the article talks about how each country affects the other countries in terms of the curriculum they believed was important to teach about in History classes. They are all interrelated with the beliefs and the curriculum taught at the times. One section of the article titled Historical Significance talks about how people choose what to teach and learn from all of history. Who deems what is important and what is not? What events are deemed historically significant? These are questions that Peter Seixas talks about in his article A Model of Historical Thinking.

In this first assignment, I am going to look more about the Historical Roots and the Curriculum and go deeper into what those are and what people thought were important to teach students. I also want to research if the way that curriculum was taught back then is still relevant to today and if not what we can do to make curriculum better.

Peter Seixas (2017) A Model of Historical Thinking, Educational Philosophy and Theory, 49:6, 593-605, DOI: 10.1080/00131857.2015.1101363

ECS 210 Blog Post #2- Ralph Tyler

According to Tyler’s Theory, if you know the end result, everything else will be fine. He wanted a practical approach to school and curriculum and the end result for all students to be the same. During my school years, I have noticed Tyler’s approach without knowing who he was and why the schooling was how it was. Throughout my schooling, everyone was taught the same thing and as a student who wasn’t always the fastest learning, I had to get some extra practice and stay inside at recess to finish up some work. The main subjects taught were English, Math and Science with little emphasis on Art and Music. Art was a elective you could take in the upper years but there were no music classes in high school. During school, they wanted everyone to think the same way and if someone had other opinions or if they couldn’t learn as “fast” as others they would get into trouble. Teachers were focused on the end result more on how children learned. My schooling taught me that teachers really take the curriculum seriously and don’t venture outside the curriculum. Tyler had such a huge effect on the curriculum that his theories are still used today.

The Problem of Common Sense Response

How does Kumashiro define ‘commonsense?’ Why is it so important to pay attention to the ‘commonsense’?

Kumashiro defines “common sense” as the idea that people “understand the way things are supposed to be, not the way they could be.” It is the values and beliefs that people are taught at a young age and are supposed to stick to those values and beliefs and if someone doesn’t know what those are they don’t have “common sense”. Common Sense is also described as “the unspoken expectations and assumptions of a society”.

It is important to pay attention to common sense because it is important to understand how other people in different countries are taught and what they believe in. Everyone’s idea of common sense is different than someone else’s so it is important to know that and to know that if someone doesn’t have your idea of common sense that doesn’t mean they are stupid or naive, they just have a different understanding of common sense. 

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