Focusing on Balance
At Cavenur, we planned our unit of work in the curriculum with three things in mind:
- How is this significant for the children?
- What is the big understanding here?
- What values can we focus on?
Only after these questions have been answered do we consider the possibilities for helping children to reach certain specific subject-based (forms of expressions) outcomes. We do not start with outcomes. Outcomes mean what ‘come out’ at the end of a unit work. Our focus is how to teach children to become a responsible and effective human being to themselves, and to others as well as to other life forms that surround them. With this in mind, we then ensure that the planning of the curriculum, with concepts, understanding, skills and values, is balanced and meaningful to the child.
Developing Understanding of the Self and the World
The starting point for our planning is the content associated with the learning areas of science and social (self and social) and environmental education . The topics selected within these learning areas usually deal with real life experiences.
Forms of Expressions through Key Learning Areas
These refer to the learning areas through which children come to make sense of their world. For instance, it is through language, ability to do maths and arts that we are able to express ourselves, gather information, make inquiries, solve problems, and communicate our understanding. The science and social (self and social) and environmental education from which the contents for the curriculum are derived, will give substance and meaning to the forms of expression language & literacy, numeracy, motor development, aesthetic and creative expression.
Skills and Conventions
Within each forms of expression language & literacy, numeracy, environmental awareness, motor development, aesthetic and creative expression there are distinctive skills and conventions that children must master in order to be efficient learners. There are times these skills and conventions will be taught outside the integrated framework. Skills and conventions include the following:
These refer to “ways of knowing”. Basically they are strategies and techniques teachers use to teach and deliver the curriculum. Strategies and techniques use will be based on inquiry, reflection, cooperation, ongoing assessment and evaluation.