Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Generative Curriculum Leadership

We just finished our Teacher Leader self-examining forms and I admit relief at my "critical friend" review being close to how I perceive my own understandings of curriculum wisdom, which is a step beyond constructivist best practice. So now, to put it all into context, see the title link for a book resource on being a "generative leader." I will post more about how this all could relate to art education specifically...
Okay, here's the nutshell version and I am officially inviting my teaching peers to join in: Constructivist Best Practice (CBP)--you faciltate students working through the knowledge, applying, synthesizing, exploring their own tangents.
Curriculum Wisdom--Using CBP, but also using backwards design, aligning all that you do with big ideas or essential concepts so students have clarity on connections. Equally important are the 3s's: student, subject, society as the curriculum is developed and aligned.
An example of a big idea: "Does art change culture or culture change art?"
An example of 3S: "What digital footprint am I making?", another one:"Who decides what is 'art'?"
Now for the leadership component, a professional always seeks discourse & inquiry in their practice (e.g. a doctor or architect), and an educator does the same, ideally. But also, invites others to join them in the inquiry model (deep curriculum inquiry). If you use the architect's blueprint as an analogy, the curriculum is standards-based (the blueprint-the what), the contractors get it built (the how) but the aesthetics of the house are left to the artistry of the craftsmen and decorators (with the client in mind). So, I'm building more time for tangents and reflections, really attending to the alignment and clarity pieces. I'll let you know how it goes!


  1. Hi, interesting about the architect, builder, and artist relationship, but I wouldn't put the artist as the last step; aesthetics are first, but not more important.
    Choosing what you have an interest in, what appeals to you, what designs give you pleasure aesthetically--these aesthetic choices inform the design. But, the builder in us, the craftsman, informs us of practicalities, and in doing so, also informs the design. Once our project is built, we make more aesthetic decisions, redesign, rebuild, and so on--the process of creating is iterative. Aesthetics, design, and craft are all equal partners.

    I like your 3 Ss; is this your concept originally?

  2. The 3 S's come from several curriculum texts, most recently "Transformative Curriculum Leadership" by Henderson & Gornik. Applying this to art education is my original concept, one I'm just ramping up. Great clarification about the artist--I totally agree!


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