Curricula are employed for validating formal
Rather, strong curriculum design emphasizes interdisciplinary connections, integration, and authenticity in the relationship between learning in and out of school.These features not only make learning more challenging, exciting, and motivating, but also help students develop their abilities to make meaningful connections by applying and transferring knowledge from one problem context to another.The previous chapter describes seven principles that support learning with understanding.This chapter explores the implications of those principles for the intentional and systemic design of four key elements of the educational system—curriculum, instruction, assessment, and professional development—to promote learning with understanding within the context of advanced study.For example, textbooks are more likely to tell students how to do something than to help them understand the conditions under which doing it will be useful (Simon, 1980, p. Having students work in laboratory settings is a familiar strategy for helping them develop conditionalized knowledge that supports problem solving.
Curriculum for understanding provides ample opportunity for students to apply their knowledge in a variety of contexts and conditions.
The emphases of a curriculum for supporting learning with understanding are presented in Table 7-1.
Instruction in advanced courses in mathematics and science should engage students in a variety of learning activities that are purposefully designed to connect with what they already know and motivate them to work Example: A curriculum guide specifies that 8 percent of the advanced biology course should include topics related to cell energy, including cellular respiration and photosynthesis.
This helps them transfer their learning to new situations and better prepares them for future learning (Bransford and Schwartz, 2000).
Providing students with frequent opportunities to apply what they learn in multiple contexts requires a reallocation of instructional time.
Without such alignment and interdependence, deep conceptual understanding is more difficult to achieve.