When exploring curriculum and educational delivery methods, one approach will not facilitate effective teaching. In every classroom, regardless of age level, a layered approach to curriculum design is most effective to reach a large variety of learners. Reflecting on this week’s reading by Arthur Ellis, I am further convinced that a layered approach to educational philosophical practices accomplishes dynamic and intriguing classrooms. There are advantages and disadvantages to every teaching style, therefore it is important that instruction is flexible and dynamic based on student populations every given school year. Teachers should model curriculum based on age-levels, abilities, and knowledge of individual student populations; it is therefore of the utmost importance that teachers assess and gather data on every classroom consistently throughout the year to evaluate individual students’ progress and growth. Furthermore, learning should be intriguing and curriculum should be designed to facilitate a yearning to learn.
Ellis (n.d.) determines that there are several models of instruction that can be employed in a classroom, the didactic model, the problem solving or inquiry/discovery model, and the interpersonal learning model. Ellis states, “…A teacher will want to combine these elements for the most effective approach to teaching. The teacher will want to encourage creative thinking and intuition as well as a firm understanding of the basics of education” (p.11). People receive information through various sources throughout their lives and educators should recognize that the classroom is a real-world model of a miniature society; students in the classroom environment should learn to coexist, receive factual information, experience learning in different ways, effectively solve problems, organize and group content, adapt information making comparisons to information they already know, and receive information in cooperative, competitive, and individualistic settings (Ellis, n.d.). I embrace multiple teaching methods understanding that certain situations allocate different pedagogical styles and philosophies. The approach that I favor is the experiential approach to learning, as Jerome Bruner states:
We teach a subject, not to produce little living libraries from that subject, but rather to get a student to think mathematically for himself, to consider matters as a historian does, to take part in the process of knowledge-getting. Knowledge is a process, not a product.
–Jerome Bruner, the Process of Education (1960)
While I embrace this approach, I also understand that various methods to conveying knowledge will effectively reach more learners.
Ellis, A. (n.d.). School curriculum. Personal Collection of (Ellis, A.), Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, WA.
Scheuerman, R. (2014). Session 9: The courts and education. Personal Collection of (Scheuerman, R.), Seattle Pacific University, Seattle, WA.