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Understanding of Pre-School and Pre-Primary Curriculum Based On Learning Paradigm

Ona Monkevičienė, Aušra Žemgulienė, Kristina Stankevičienė
2013 Pedagogika  
Following the conceptual ideas expressed by Lithuanian educational researcher M. Lukšienė and other authors of education curriculum theories all over the world, the article analyses theoretical conception of contemporary (self-) education curriculum. An attempt is made to highlight changes predetermined by shift in teaching / learning paradigms, data of qualitative analysis of pre-school. Pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education programmes are presented from the perspective of
more » ... perspective of curriculum theories and the created models. The article focuses on the following objectives: to reveal the conceptual fundamentals of changes in (self-) education curriculum as well as change trends in their conceptions abroad and in Lithuania; to create conceptual model of pre-school and primary (self-) education curricular; to present the data of qualitative analysis of pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education programmes from the perspective of curriculum theories and the created models. The theoretical analysis of conceptual fundamentals of (self-) education curriculum theories allowed for formulation of the following conclusions: M. Lukšienė, the theoretician of the Lithuanian education reform (implemented since 1988) suggested the ideas that encouraged the change in (self-) education curriculum based on transfer from teaching to learning paradigm in cultural context, with emphasis laid on nurturance of a free and responsible personality. Contemporary conceptions of (self-) education curriculum suggested by foreign authors are grounded on ideas of learning paradigm, shifting from the concepts of (self-) education curriculum in its narrow sense to those of (self-) education curriculum in its broad sense that embrace: self-education goals, learning outcomes, cycle of implementation process and achievement assessment, teacher's perspective, child's / learner's perspective, kind of self-education situations (-formal, non-formal, informal). In the center of conception of (self-) education curriculum, the question of meaningfulness is raised, seeking to find answers to the questions: what and why? The essential targets of education are derived from these questions, which include: development of personal powers, development of relationship with others and empowerment for learning. The suggested models for structure of pre-school and pre-primary (self-) education curriculum comply with the aforesaid conception. The content analysis of pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education curriculum from the perspective of the discussed concepts of (self-) education curriculum theories and the created models revealed that: The harmony of goals of pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education curriculum is insufficient. The goals of pre-school (self-) education curriculum embrace only a part of child's individual powers, components of child's relations with others and child's empowerment to learn. The goals do not formulate the (self-) learning outcomes to be achieved and only child's care is emphasized (satisfaction of needs, assurance of good mood). The goal of pre-primary (self-) education curriculum is mainly concentrated on development of child's individual powers and child's empowerment to learn but the objective to strive for development of child's relationships with others, social and cultural environment is neglected. The goal of general primary (self-) education curriculum included all the three priority trends of (self-) education goal: development child's individual powers, child's relationships with others and child's empowerment to learn and, thus, is oriented to a clear outcome of (self-) education expressed through conception of competences. However, the explicit formulation of the goal does not focus on striving for satisfaction of child's needs and assurance of his / her emotional wellbeing. The compliance of objectives of pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education curriculum is not sufficient, lack of unified internal logic of their formulation is observed. The objectives of pre-school (self-) education curriculum are not in concordance with the goals. The objectives of development of personal powers, development of relationship with others and empowerment for learning are formulated not only at level of needs and emotional wellbeing but also at that of competence components, i.e., the objectives are much broader than the goals. The majority of the objectives of pre-school (self-) education curriculum are formulated not as statements that elaborate on the goal but rather as conditions for implementation of the goal. The objectives of pre-primary (self-) education curriculum meet the goal and are oriented to (self-) education of basics of competences. The objectives clearly focus on development of child's individual powers but attention to development of child's relationships with others and to empowerment to learn is not sufficient. The objectives of primary (self-)education curriculum are formulated as striving for development of personal competences but information on what competences have to be developed and at what measured level they should be acquired is not available. The objectives should be more oriented to development of child's competence to learn. The concordance of principles of pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education curriculum is not sufficient. The principles that ensure development of child's individual powers are observed in all the curricular. The principles that guarantee development of child's relationships with others and child' empowerment to learn are not harmonized in pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-) education curriculum (programmes of different levels emphasize different principles). Primary (self-) education curriculum lacks principles of child's empowerment to learn, what does not comply with the objective "to develop and educate a child, who is ready to learn further". Pre-school (self-) education curriculum lacks principles of contextuality, accessibility, inclusion of (self-) education and innovativeness of education, which are prioritized in the EU documents. The compliance of competences to be developed by different level curricular is insufficient. Lithuanian programme documents do not create prerequisites for concordance of competences to be developed at pre-school, pre-primary and primary (self-)education levels because different competences are targeted at in different curricular. The harmony between generic competences provided for in curricular of pre-school and pre-primary education is not complete. The same competences to be developed are indicated in preschool and pre-primary (self-) education curriculum but they do not coincide with generic competences to be developed in primary education.
doi:10.15823/p.2013.1800 fatcat:ohl2gkg3hvacpdv2nd23kskm5m