First off, teachers are the people who enact curriculum. Other people have a say in creating and revising the curriculum, but ultimately, it is the teacher in the classroom who is required to use the curriculum to teach. Whether they are using it fully and completely is up to them, but the power lies with the teacher. I’ve got the power! (Yeah, I know you just sang that!)
Unfortunately, it may not always be the case that the teachers have power over what is in the curriculum. I see this as a tragedy, because the people who create curriculum can’t find out if it is an effective and efficient curriculum without having hands on experience teaching it. During the lecture, Mike talked about a time when curriculum was designed over the summer by teachers who then received their masters credit for it. I think that is a great idea, but at the same time, a very time consuming idea. I realize that curriculum can take a long time to develop, and it isn’t reality to pull out classroom teachers from their jobs and have them working on curriculum development, but I think that would be ideal.
As for the way curriculum is set up, I think it’s great. There are the outcomes that are set in stone, but you can get to the outcomes any way you want (as long as your principal approves, of course). I am excited to get creative and work towards the required outcomes in fun and experiential ways. The amount of outcomes may be slightly unpractical, but goals are generally set high in any workplace. I don’t like that in a way, we are set up for failure. But on the other hand, if there were not enough outcomes, then some teachers would slack off and do the bare minimum. It will be interesting once I am a practicing teacher, to find out how possible or impossible meeting the outcomes seems, and how I will decide which ones are more important than others. I imagine I will be doing lots of consulting with well-practiced educators!