Below is an edited version of the Preschool Team Goal for SY11/12, designed to provide an overview of our curriculum and the philosophy behind our planning and program.
A Question: Is it possible for teachers at all grade levels to plan their lessons/ classroom experiences based on an emergent/ negotiated curriculum?
AN EMERGENT/ NEGOTIATED CURRICULUM DEFINED
- Observe children’s interests, needs, abilities as they play/ inquire/ interact
- Interpret individually and collaboratively what information this tells us about students
- Use this information to plan experiences/ activities for individuals and/or the class
- Prepare materials/ resources/ space to facilitate the activity/ experience
- Reflect on the activity/ experience and further possibilities for individuals/ the class
** NB This order is flexible and inter-changeable – ie observations may follow with reflections/ evaluations, then spontaneous enacting of another experience, then planning of further activities…what is important is that all of these elements work in collaboration with each other to inform the ‘emergent/ negotiated’ component of the Preschool Program.
- Children learn best when encouraged to take some control over the directions of their learning.
- Each child is a confident and capable learner, entering each grade level with rich knowledge, skills and strengths.
- The program focuses on education for meaning, connections and understanding.
- The curriculum is founded upon developing key concepts/ life skills, and achieving this goal will look as unique as each class of students each year.
- How do students have some input/ control over the direction of their learning?
- How do teachers support meaningful learning and connections with students in their class?
- How do we make the emergent/negotiated learning experience component of the curriculum the focus student’s classroom experience?
Assessment of Goal: An observer will see;
- Child initiated learning experiences
- Teacher scaffolding/ extension of children’s interests
- Developmentally appropriate, differentiated learning experiences for all students
- Documentation/ classroom sessions that inform the planning of new/ extension experiences.
- Documentation/ classroom sessions that reflect the interests, needs and knowledge of individual students.
- Documentation/ classroom sessions founded upon quality play based programs.
- An archive of emergent/ negotiated experiences that support the development of key concepts/ life skills.
- A classroom environment that fosters multiple opportunities for differentiated, meaningful, student centered learning.
- Teachers being responsive to the interests, ideas, needs and challenges of the classroom.
- Teachers observing students, joining play and providing meaningful scaffolding as appropriate.