The Emergence Of The National Curriculum For England

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In this assignment, I will be discussing the emergence of the National Curriculum for England, and how reforms have led to its evolution into the present framework. I will also be looking at current theories of teaching and learning, and how the National Curriculum 2014 for science reflects these. I will consider how the curriculum document structures how teachers should teach, and also what types of learning theories and teaching approaches might support the teacher in delivering the curriculum.

The first part of this assignment will focus on the English Curriculum for primary education. England has not always had a National Curriculum. Even after the Education Act of 1944, which introduced a tripartite system of free schooling for all children, there were no statutory requirements for schools other than the inclusion of religious education. In 1953, the first non-selective school opened and changes began to be made with the intention of modernising the primary and secondary school curricula (Arthur and Cremin, p.284). The Plowden Report of 1967 argued for a primary school curriculum that would allow children to live “happily and usefully”, stressing the importance of “other skills besides those of reading, writing and arithmetic” (Plowden, p186).

However, The shift to more progressive ideas of a child-centred curriculum led to accusations of a decline in educational standards, leading to a “turning point in modern educational history” (Davis 2002 p275), the William

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