Curriculum design: Step 2 – Set the destination

The 6-step process of curriculum design…

Our approach to curriculum design – as outlined in the book School & College Curriculum Design: Intent – follows a six-step process as follows…

The second step towards designing an effective curriculum is to set the destination which is about identifying what we want all pupils and students to know and be able to do at the end of their curriculum journeys – be that the end of a module or topic, at the end of a year, key stage or phase, at the end of their schooling or college studies, or indeed in ten years’ time in work and life.

This stage begins by developing a shared understanding of the importance of knowledge – including cultural capital – and then agreeing, within subject disciplines or curriculum areas, what  knowledge matters most to our pupils’ and students’ future successes.

Powerful knowledge is needed, not simply to pass qualifications, but also to enable pupils and students to be genuinely prepared for the next stages of their education, employment and lives. As such, the knowledge base must be broad, encompassing employability and enrichment skills, cross-curricular skills such as literacy and numeracy, and research and study skills such as note-taking, as well as approaches to learning such as metacognition and self-regulation. What’s more, this knowledge base must be suitably challenging for all.

A part of the process of setting the destination is identifying the key concepts that must be taught – and learnt – in each subject discipline. These ‘foundational’ concepts – a combination of knowledge and skills – provide the ‘end points’ or ‘body of knowledge’ towards which all pupils are headed.

Go to: Step 1 | Step 3 | Step 4 | Step 5 | Step 6

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