The Curriculum – all that is taught and learnt…
Core and hidden…
Planned and received…
Formal and informal…

 

Can we have an informed debate please?

We find ourselves in an historic time when education is about to the redefined by the course of political determination, we would be well advised to be mindful of the purpose of education and how teaching and learning occurs. While the nature and content of learning experiences have already changed due to the technological revolution, for whatever reason and whatever political persuasion suits you or I, the presence and provision for a range of subjects and learning processes are possibly about to change through a course of action that will be described as progressive, radical, essential, urgent… or reactive, dangerous and without educational rationale – depending upon your perspective.

Would it not be prudent to be informed? Even if a radical reassessment is necessary, all parties would be better served through deep consideration and evidence-based understanding of the core issues. Vic Kelly understood the curriculum and engages us in a thorough consideration of the psychological, philosophical, political and operational drivers that form the learning culture of schools and colleges. Derived form a latin word referring to a race track, perhaps we should prefer curriculum is less of a race to acquire information, and more a consideration of “all that is taught and learnt”, built upon values as much as operational mechanics and transient values.

A.V.Kelly’s “The Curriculum: Theory and Practice” – click here.

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I was fortunate enough to find this marvellous video at howtopractice.com (great resource) today. Robert Duke is Professor in Music and Human Learning at the University of Texas. This video/lecture could not be more important to all educators and all learners – click here if the video is not visible (and thank you to Cornell University for distributing their resources so freely).

It seems that my work is mainly about helping students practice effectively. There’s not much to say except that if we are really serious, why not find out more about it!

Check out these indispensible web links for effective practice.
1) intentionalpractice.wordpress.com: Jonathan Harnum is a practicing musician (30+ years on trumpet, and others), and has published 3 previous music-related books. This site shares research from his current Ph.D research into practice.
2) www.howtopractice.com – website related to the above.
3) www.musiciansway.com/practice.shtml – excellent site about practice, related to the recent publication “The Musician’s Way”. See also this article about memorisation. musiciansway.com/blog/?p=2138

“Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe”, so said H. G. Wells.
Is Education no longer a human right, or a visible symptom of a mature society?

Do we want to see this?

In the face of impending and stringent cuts in education (as well as all public services), it is worth remembering that many people continue to believe that education is a human right, not a privilege:

“Education is a fundamental human right and essential for the exercise of all other human rights. It promotes individual freedom and empowerment and yields important development benefits. Yet millions of children and adults remain deprived of educational opportunities, many as a result of poverty... click here for more from the UNESCO website.

The UK Human Rights Act (1998) states:
Article 2
Right to education
“No person shall be denied the right to education. In the exercise of any functions which it assumes in relation to education and to teaching, the State shall respect the right of parents to ensure such education and teaching in conformity with their own religious and philosophical convictions.”
For more from the Office of Public Sector Information, click here

For the galling face of corporate of education, see the Guardian on May 18th…click here

See the Guardian, May 18th 2010

If you are interested in the value that great minds have placed on education, see some of these excerpts on this very accessible site, click here

First, God created idiots. That was just for practice. Then He created school boards. Mark Twain

Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself. John Dewey

I believe that education is the fundamental method of social progress and reform. John Dewey

Education is for improving the lives of others and for leaving your community and world better than you found it. Marion Wright Edelman

There is no greater crime than to stand between a man and his development; to take any law or institution and put it around him like a collar, and fasten it there, so that as he grows and enlarges, he presses against it till he suffocates and dies. Henry Ward Beecher

Remember that our nation’s first great leaders were also our first great scholars. John F Kennedy

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. Nelson Mandela

Whenever the people are well-informed, they can be trusted with their own government. Thomas Jefferson

Education: a debt due from present to future generations. George Peabody

What are your favourite quotations about education?

Take the lid of jazz education and what do you find? Thought provoking thoughts from Branford Marsalis….

Now there’s a debate brewing on Ronan Guilfoyle’s site. All jazz students and teachers should read this! Click here for Ronan, and here (for Branford’s original YouTube interview that sparked all of this).

What’s your view?