June 14th, 2020

  • Kumashiro described “common sense” as something that everyone should already be familiar with. The idea of common sense is so important to recognize because it is no inclusive, it never includes the same knowledge for all people. Just as Kumashiro experienced in Nepal, what may feel like common sense for some people, could be completely new concepts for others.
  • Kumashiro went into a Nepal school prepared for a fully planned out, busy year, soon realizing that they learned with a much slower start than what seemed common in America. Rather than being able to use activities and new plans that were created for this year, the class was to strictly follow the textbooks provided by the government which provided samples and practice questions for homework. The class would cover one section of the textbook each day to allow them to complete the book by the end of the year and complete their standardized test created from the text.
  • I like to think that we do not have the same type of strictly follow the textbook education here in Canada, but I would say that is pretty naive or hopeful of me. I do remember growing up and having some educators teach straight from a textbook and use the exact practice questions and exams provided in the text, this technique is not beneficial, because providing the same type of questions and instructional strategies only cater to one type of learner. A common idea in the Canadian educational system is to include a variety of students’ work to contribute to their final grade, this is beneficial because it allows students to make up for any errors they may have made in the year as well as relieve some of the pressures of having one exam determine the students pass or fail grade. I find our curriculum is becoming more creative and inclusive, although we will always have room to grow, I believe we do have a lot of educators that try to create an inclusive, unique, and beneficial learning environment.

2 Comments

  1. Brittany, I agree we are seeing a shift in how educators are adapting to be more inclusive and creative. There are four different approaches to curriculum design – syllabus, product, process and praxis. Which did you see with the Kumashiro example of lecture-practice-exam? What do you see happening in Saskatchewan? Which approach do you feel is seen by the educators shifting towards “becoming more creative and inclusive”?

    I’d be curious of your thoughts on how the commonsense and can be oppressive to particular groups.It becomes easy to replicate the experiences we had if positive and fail to see the dangers within.

  2. Hello Brittany!

    Very well written response. I feel as though me and you had some very similar takeaways from the readings we were assigned! One thing I was curious about when reading is, why do you actually think that things worked so different in Nepal? How do you think that us as a society should be altering our curriculum in order for each student to achieve their full potential?

    I also want to mention that I agree that there is certain types of classes in Canada that work similarly to Nepal’s classes. They are very textbook focused and doesn’t look at other aspects. One last question I asked myself was do you think this type of education is effective? I personally think that a healthy mix of every type of education is the most effective!

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