Hopkins, L. Thomas
January 1942
Education Digest;Jan1942, Vol. 7 Issue 5, p43
This is a reprint of the article Making the Curriculum Functional by L. Thomas Hopkins which appeared in the November 1941 issue of the Teachers College Record. The assumption accepted in this discussion is that planning is a process, not an end, and a plan is merely any fixed moment in such a process. In the traditional school, adults learn how to plan the curriculum, for they do most of the planning. Children participate only in connection with insignificant details. It keeps them immature, dependent, submissive, which is what most adults want. The three conditions for the development of intelligence are effectively blocked in any program in which adults control the selection, organization, and development of experiences. A desirable basis for planning the curriculum would be for children and adults to work together cooperatively to help children discover, study, and satisfy their needs as intelligently as possible. By concentrating on the process of planning, the interests of children and adults can coincide and their efforts can be directed toward a common purpose. Will there be continuity in such a curriculum? Yes, since continuity represents the learnings a person takes up from one experience and carries on to the next.


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