Implementing the Primary Curriculum: A Teacher's Guide

Implementing the Primary Curriculum: A Teacher's Guide

Implementing the Primary Curriculum: A Teacher's Guide

Implementing the Primary Curriculum: A Teacher's Guide

Synopsis

The editors of this text provide practical examples for implementing new requirements into primary teachers' daily schedules and enourage reflection on teachers' own practice.

Excerpt

To many people outside education, and perhaps yourself if you are just about to begin your course of initial teacher training, the terms the primary school curriculum and the National Curriculum for primary schools mean the same thing. However, to people more closely involved with schools the two terms are, for a number of reasons, quite distinct. In focusing on the primary school curriculum (sometimes called the whole curriculum), rather than the National Curriculum, one purpose for this chapter is to make explicit the differences that exist between the two. In doing so, this book should serve not only as a guide to the major features and key ideas underpinning the (whole) primary curriculum but also as a guide to how each subject comprising the National Curriculum may be implemented in a typical primary school classroom.

The nature of the primary school curriculum and the climate in which schools function changed quite dramatically following the passing of the Education Reform Act in 1988. Not only was the National Curriculum introduced by this Act but schools became much more publicly accountable for their actions and for the ways in which they have deployed the resources made available to them; for example, the governing body of a school and the parents of the pupils attending that school were given increased rights and responsibilities regarding the curriculum. You might like to compile a more comprehensive list of the changes that have occurred since the passing of the 1988 Act and the ways in which schools have changed to accommodate these new circumstances (the implications of these changes are considered more fully in a later enquiry task in this chapter, see p. 8). Because of all the changes that have occurred to the educational system and the impact these have had on schools, this book should prove to be essential reading not only for anyone who is new to teaching but also for anyone who is returning to teaching after a break away from a primary school classroom.

We suspect that most people are aware that schools are required by law to teach the National Curriculum. However, the National Curriculum is not the only component of the curriculum which all publicly funded (often referred to as maintained) primary schools have to include as part of the education they offer. Providing some form of religious education has been a legal requirement of all maintained schools

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