Teachers approach curriculum in purposeful and intentional ways, designing learning experiences that are relevant, meaningful and support students to acquire the knowledge, skills and competencies necessary to prepare them for their futures.
The curriculum establishes the foundation of what students are expected to know, do and understand through their educational experiences. Teachers apply learning standards to engage students in flexible and relevant learning experiences that encourage them to pursue their passions while building a sense of personal identity. The ultimate goal for curriculum design is to deepen learning and support students in gaining important core competencies such as critical and creative thinking, skillful communication, and demonstrating care for self and others.
Principles of Curriculum Design
- Provincial curriculum includes the following elements – Big Ideas, Core Competencies, Curricular Competencies and Content.
- Content is the vehicle used to access the curricular competencies. It details the essential topics and knowledge at each grade level (Know).
- Curricular competencies are the skills, strategies and processes that students develop over time. They are the ‘doing’ part of the curriculum (Do).
- Big ideas are generalizations and principles that students are able to discover through the content and the curricular competencies. They are inherent understandings that reflect important concepts and competencies (Understand).
- Core competencies are embedded within the curricular competencies and include communication, creative and critical thinking, positive personal and cultural identity, personal awareness and responsibility, and social responsibility.
- Academic disciplines contain important, specific, integral knowledge, skills, processes and ways of thinking. Each discipline pays attention to, and incorporates the First Peoples Principles of Learning.
- Curriculum embraces depth not breadth, and provides multiple opportunities for interdisciplinary/multidisciplinary connections.
- Connections to local and global communities are an important aspect of curriculum design.
- Embedded formative assessment is foundational to curriculum design.
Curriculum Design in the Classroom
- Teachers create the conditions necessary for curriculum to be enacted effectively in a variety of different learning environments.
- Teachers attend to the social aspects of learning while creating environments that encourage students to take risks and express different viewpoints/perspectives.
- Teachers make professional judgments about curriculum design in order to be responsive to students’ needs, interests, background, curiosities, and passions.
- Teachers ensure that learning experiences are meaningful and relevant.
- Teachers understand the progression of learning in order to make effective decisions, bridge transitions, scaffold and support each student toward success.
- Teachers craft learning intentions incorporating student voice, choice and flexibility.
- Teachers allow students to access curriculum through independent, small group, large group and flexible groupings.
- Teachers use curriculum planning to structure appropriate levels of challenge and multiple entry points which allow all students to develop their skills, understandings and knowledge.
- Teachers co-construct curriculum with students and colleagues, working collaboratively to maximize expertise.