Smith 2000: Curriculum theory and practice

Four Models of curriculum described in the article are:

  1. Curriculum as a body of knowledge to be transmitted.
  2. Curriculum as an attempt to achieve certain ends in students – product.
  3. Curriculum as process.
  4. Curriculum as praxis.

In my experience, I would say that all of these models of curriculum were present during my youth in schools.  From the beginning, curriculum has always been looked at as what we are going to learn throughout the year as students. Which is true, but this idea can be expanded, and that is where the product and process approach come into play. Thankfully, growing up in sports teams environment I already had a good understanding of the difference between product and process approach. In simple terms, product approach means that the educator only looks at the final outcome of the student that he/she is teaching. Whereas the process approach has a strong focus on HOW the knowledge is being passed down, so basically the events leading up to the final product. Unfortunately, the product approach was prominent in my own schooling experience. I can think of countless times where I was given an assignment and a due date with absolutely no explanation or guidance in the assignment. This type of thing has its place but I would argue that it is taken advantage of too much. Luckily, I was able to get by with these methods as a student, but these types of assignments are based under the impression that every student can receive and retain information at the same pace. In other words, slower learners were either behind the due date or the assignment was not up to standard. This type of learning makes it impossible for the slower learners or students with disabilities to complete the assignment up to standard. However, it does teach the student independence through figuring things out on they’re own. For those reasons I much prefer the process approach in a classroom setting, especially for younger years. I also prefer the process of learning much more because it gives the student the ability to go at a pace in which is more suitable for them. This will allow the student to understand the material much stronger. Not only will the student understand material stronger but he/she will also get the opportunity to learn more than just what the teacher is telling them

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