Emergent Curriculum: How Might We Design a Vision that is Truly Shared?

Last week, I shared some thoughts about emergent curriculum design and specifically, the important role that constraints might play in getting it right.

In my experience, how we pursue vision is critical. In fact, it seems that one thing that distinguishes emergent curriculum design from administrator or teacher or vendor designed curricula is that it’s fueled by a truly shared vision. This changes our intentions considerably, challenging us to consider context and nuance as we work to define and prioritize standards and attend to alignment.

It’s not enough to be aligned to the Common Core. An emergent curriculum helps learners and teachers and our greater school communities meet the standards they set for themselves and for one another, too. We need to learn what the world will expect of all of us as well. Too often, these understandings are based on teachers’ assumptions and guided by their past experiences.

I’ve wondered: How might we create future-ready workshops and studios?

And I can’t help but feel that agile curriculum frameworks are a big part of this work.

I’m also certain about this: If we don’t design with the interests and needs of our real students in mind, our work will always be driven by our history rather than current needs and opportunities. Our curriculum isn’t about us. It’s about them, and it’s for them. Shouldn’t it be by them, too? At least in part?

How do we create a school and then, a writing workshop vision that is truly shared? And how might we use the Common Core in service to that far, far greater thing?

I’ve been doing this work in different systems for different purposes for some time now, and on Thursday, I’ll share the approaches that have served me best.

I’m wondering: How do you create a truly shared vision? How does it drive the way you design curriculum? How might we create agile curriculum frameworks? Why would we need to?

 

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