Curriculum development is constantly changing and developing. Students continue to take core classes such as math, reading, science, and social studies; however, now many students have a variety of electives available for them to take. Some curriculum models are simply trends that have been set, attempted, and not implement permanently. Alternatively, some curriculum models that have been and are currently being tried and implemented are student-centered, activity-centered, humanistic, alternative, and valued centered curriculum (Ornstein, Levine, Gutek, and Vsocke, 2011).
The common trend in all new curriculum models is that they are student-centered. The new models are making efforts to make the curriculum relevant, relatable, purposeful, and cater to students’ needs and interests. A teacher’s goal for a student is for them to learn, think critically, and develop problem solving skills. When curriculum is student-centered, teachers are better able to accomplish these goals because they can cater to the student’s needs and abilities (Ornstein et al., 2011).
Personally, I feel that a combination of all of these new curriculum developments would ensure all students’ success. Teachers are trying to deliver the curriculum in ways that are life-like and relevant. They attempt to do so by creating purposeful activities and lessons. Some instructional approaches that help students to become successful are cooperative learning and the jigsaw strategy. These strategies encourage cooperative learning while challenging students to be teachers and become experts in the field they are studying (Ornstein et al., 2011).
Student-centered curriculum can sometimes be difficult to assess. Often standardized assessments do not accurately represent what students know and understand. Presentations, peer teaching, and writing assessments are authentic assessments that could be used to test students’ knowledge of the content area, rather than standardized tests. Overall, curriculum must continue to evolve in order to serve our ever changing society. Sometimes strategies will be successful and sometimes they will not. If we don’t continue to create and develop new curriculum models, our educational system will not serve our democratic and evolving society of learners (Ornstein et al., 2011).
Ornstein, A., Levine, D., Gutek, G., & Vocke, D. (2011). Foundations of Education, (11th
ed). Belmont, CA: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.