Hello again, and welcome to our discussion of Becoming a Better Teacher. Last chapter talked about incorporating essential questions into the classroom. This chapter is titled Curriculum Integration as a Tool for Coherence and discusses the need for teachers to rely less on textbooks and more on their own designed curriculum focused on student need.
The chapter is short and outlines reasons why creating integrated curriculum is important and broad concepts around the idea. The actual development and steps in creating your own curriculum come in in the next chapter (I have you excited for that, don’t I?).
The argument the book makes for curriculum integration is that students often move from one class to the next or one unit to the next without any sort of cohesion; everything is individualized and not part of a larger whole.
With integrated curriculum, students’ brains naturally store information as it is stored in relatable patterns. Further, they recognize how to apply knowledge rather than simply memorize facts. Finally, it also works to view school and education as a whole rather than as being made up of separate subjects.
I personally am a huge fan of subject integration as it blurs the lines between traditional subjects and makes students recognize that they are all interrelated, just as all things are in the world. Further, it lessens the likelihood of separation between the maths and sciences and arts and humanities; increasing likelihood of students enjoying and appreciating all subject matter.
The chapter continues on to discuss how to organize essential questions as a central theme for units, years, or subjects and makes excellent suggestions for pulling planning and organization all together.
Chapter three coming up next! If you want to buy the book, here’s the Amazon link.