Curriculum Theories

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Introduction
The foundations of education disciplines are the focus of this work. The disciplines are Sociology, Psychology, Philosophy, History of Education and Curriculum Studies. The pedagogical relevance of the foundations theories in the contemporary classroom are discussed throughout. The reflection of the theoretical principles in educational policies and in the school setting are also evidenced in addressing the Aibherin case study. As will be referenced throughout, the foundations disciplines form the building blocks for teacher education.
Part A
The concept of active learning is not a new one. It can be traced back to Confucius (c2500 BC). ‘I hear and I forget, I see and I remember, I do and I understand’. Dewey (1938) learning
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The lesson began with collaborative learning which saw the children discuss the photographs with their peers. Talk and discussion promotes the use of oral language. Learning through language is one of the stated principles of the 1999 curriculum ‘the curriculum incorporates the use of talk and discussion as a central learning strategy in every curriculum area’ (1999 Curriculum).
The role of the teacher is that of facilitator when it comes to active learning. The teacher must plan what happens and create an environment for children to explore, grow and develop. They must be aware of the different learning styles that can coexist in the classroom. Gardner surmises that children are better served by a variety of teaching methods as children’s learning style is very much based on their type of intelligence.
In order to encourage active learning the teacher student relationship is important. The teacher must nurture and develop the child and be seen to take a genuine interest. Good classroom planning and appropriate resources and materials are required. Organisation and establishment of systems that enable the class to operate efficiently are
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Ireland was beginning to find itself in a period of economic strength. The corporate tax on foreign multinational companies had been reduced to zero in 1957 and this was to have a significant impact on the country’s finances. Zero corporate taxes along with relative low wages within the European Economic Community meant that Ireland was a destination of choice for many overseas manufacturers (http://www.economist.com/node/3261071). The upturn in the economy coincided with a feeling that the Irish education system was in need of reform (Brown, 1985). Walsh points out that the economic concerns of the mid 1960s where to be more prevalent in policy provision than advances in pedagogy (Walsh, 2011). When considering curricular change in the social context educational policymakers of the 1960’s took into consideration the issue of equality of opportunity and the provision of a minimum level of education for all (Burke, 2002). It had taken until the 1960’s for policymakers to draw the parallel between investment in education and continued economic growth (Burke,

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