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What does the term "curriculum development" mean for teachers?

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shewa55 | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted November 11, 2012 at 7:08 PM via web

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What does the term "curriculum development" mean for teachers?

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted November 11, 2012 at 7:41 PM (Answer #1)

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From the point of view of a teacher, curriculum development is the process of creating a course or a sequence of courses.  In this process, the teacher must lay out most of the details of the course.

In developing a curriculum, a teacher must decide what things are going to be taught in the course and the order in which they will be taught (scope and sequence).  This includes coming up with proper goals and objectives that students will learn.  The teacher must determine what types of assessments will be used to measure student learning.  The teacher must also decide what methods will be used to teach the various parts of the class. 

In short, curriculum development for an individual teacher consists of creating a rather detailed outline of exactly how to teach a class or a sequence of classes.

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dhollweg | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Adjunct Educator

Posted November 11, 2012 at 9:34 PM (Answer #2)

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The above answer is thorough. I will also add this: Keep in mind that in order to create Scope and Sequence, the designer of the curriculum must have a clear assessment established first.  A summative assessment at the end of a quarter (midterm for example) or a Final Exam summative assessment, which evaluates the skills the students have accrued over the course of the instruction, has to be designed. That is to say, what do you want the students to know?

This will then inform the teacher how to build the curriculum, what skills are necessary, what mini-tasks (lessons) are necessary to directly teach those skills (Direct Instruction), what Formative Assessments to design in the curriculum to guage the success or gaps of their students and determine what needs to be taught or re-taught.

So the "scaffolding" (backward design) is crucial for a strongly developed curriculum, along with embedding the literacy skills of the Common Core State Standards (adopted by 45 states and the district).

This is where the Literacy Design Collaborative (LDC) becomes useful for teachers who are in the midst of designing their curriculum.

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