Berikut dinukilkan beberapa tulisan berkisar sekitar kurikulum dan filsafat kurikulum. Masih dalam bahasa aslinya. Tapi, agar para mahasiswa yang membaca tidak terlampau kesulitan untuk memahaminya, diberikan juga beberapa terjemahan kata secara harfiyah, sebagian yang mungkin sulit dipahami bahkan diberi terjemahan bebas.
(1) The role of philosophy in curriculum development
By Craig A. Cunningham, Ph.D.
Center for School Improvement University of Chicago
What is curriculum development and what do curriculum developers do?
vTraditionally, curriculum development has been seen as planning for a sustained [yang berkesinambungan] process of teaching and learning in a formal institutional setting
v“Curriculum” comes from Latin word for race course [jalur balapan]
vThe “curriculum” can be likened to [dapat diibaratkan sebagai] a race (or, better, obstacle–obstacle = “halang rintang“) course through a given terrain [medan, lapangan] of human endeavor [ikhtiar, kerja keras]
The assumptions [praanggapan; prakiraan yang mempunyai dasar yang kokoh akan kebenarannya] usually are:
vTime is too short to allow for learner self-direction
vThe real world is too messy a place [tempat yang sangat ruwet] for learners and other immature people
vMessy reality needs to be “translated” into schemas and logical orderings (subject matter) so immature minds can grasp [menangkap] it quickly and avoid wasting time, materials, or injuring the learner or others
Curriculum development always involves:
vAssumptions about the nature [hakekat] of learners (and teachers)
vAssumptions about the purposes of schools
vAssumptions about what kind of knowledge is important
vAssumptions about what kind of world we live in
vAssumptions about what kind of world we want to live in
(Different curriculums and different schools are more or less likely to reveal these assumptions)
While curriculum development seems on its face [tampak luar, sekilas] to be a very specialized, technical, almost clerical [teknis administratif] function, ….
it can also be thought of as:
vThe intelligent management [pengelolaan yang cerdik, yang piawai] of how learners interact with the world so that…
vIt forms learners’ values, dispositions [sifat tabiat alamiah], habits, selves
vCurriculum development is the creation of a better future [pengembangan kurikulum merupakan penciptaan masa depan yang lebih baik]
What are some philosophical questions that come up [mengemuka] in curriculum development?
vShould children be coddled [diperlakukan dengan ditimang dimanja dan penuh kasih sayang] or pushed [didorong]?
vHow important is it to achieve uniformity [keseragaman, kesamaan bentuk atau corak] of behavior or belief?
vShould individual differences be exalted [diagung-agungkan] or denied [ditidakabaikan, tak perlu diperhatikan]?
vShould students be able to choose what they learn?
vShould schools seek to change (improve) society or sustain it [membiarkan seperti apa adanya]?
vShould tolerance and understanding outweigh [lebih diutamakan dibandingkan] nationalism and distrust [ketidakpercayaan, ketidakyakinan]? (What is the school’s role in this?)
vShould everything that is learned have practical or economic value?
vShould schools seek to further parental goals or goals defined outside the family?
vWhat are the relative values of reading, writing, figuring, playing, working, sweating, debating, talking, listening, agreeing, disagreeing, relaxing, persisting, resisting, conforming, participating, expressing, creating, problem-solving, thinking, experimenting?
(2) A Philosophy of Curriculum:What should we teach?
Three basic educational approaches competed [bersaing pengaruh] in the second half of the 20th century [paruh kedua abad ke-20 = 1950-an ke atas] to shape [membentuk] our views on WHAT we should teach and HOW we should teach it…
Those apporaches were:
- Perennialism – a teacher-centered philosophy that focuses on “great books” [buku babon-karya tulis monumental masa lalu] the hope of impart [menanmkan] the culture’s enduring [kelestarian budaya] themes to students. The goal is to develop the ability for rational thought in students.
- Essentialism – a teacher-centered, back-to-basics approach to education that stresses the three R’s [Reading, wRiting, aRithmethic = “calistung”] and emphasizes the remembering of facts.
- Progressivism – a student-centered philosophy that attempts to interact with the real-world concerns and experiences of students. Classrooms are more democratic in governance [pengelolaan] and learning is more participatory and experimental than in either Essentialism or Perennialism.
Most teachers tend to be eclectic [pilih-pilih aspek yang terbaik dari berbagai pihak/aliran]- they draw [mengambil] from more than one of these approaches. And I fall into that same category; I’m an eclectic, I suppose.
Adjectives serve as better answers than do nouns [baca: paham lebih baik dari sekedar tahu] in describing what the curriculum of education should be like. The content of the curriculum should be flexible, responsive to the changes of society. The content of the curriculum should be sympathetic [memperhatikan] to the values and limitations of the students. My own experience leads me to believe that every life is richer if the individual has read Kafka and Steinbeck, Aeschylus and Blake, Camus and Hemmingway. But I view the Great Books approach to education today as more of a misguided effort to preserve a cultural timeframe than anything else – to halt (or at least slow) cultural change.
I believe that reading (and literacy) is essential; it is the medium of later instruction. To the extent [baca: apabila] that an emphasis [perhatian berlebihan] on basic skills [baca: “calistung” tersebut] has become exclusive [lepas dari yang lain], to the extent that a concern with math and language skills has crowded out [menyingkirkan, menjadikan tersingkir] music and the arts, the emphasis on basic skills has become a destructive force. But kids who show up at school [bersekolah] should learn to read. And as much as I hate to agree with George W. Bush about anything, they should learn to read early. They should learn to do arithmetic and gradually progress to more abstract forms of math. They should be introduced to the various formal genres of language – to poetry and letter writing, the short story and the novel. When Piaget allows, they should be introduced to epistemology and taught to ask “but how do I know that.” And of course they should be given an understanding in social studies classes of how our society works (civics) and why (history). And there is science. But none of these core classes should be allowed to displace completely [menggeser sepenuhnya] the arts. And an understanding of the importance of the role of creativity in fields like math and grammar needs to be maintained.
(3) The Roles of Students and Teachers
What is the place of students? What is the role of teachers? The questions are reciprocal [imbal-balik] in the sense that you must have students in order to be a teacher.
Students should be active participants in the learning process. I believe in cooperative learning, in a process where students learn together. And I believe in participatory learning. Education, especially in the early grades, is not about knowledge – facts and figures, dates and names. It is about skills. Students learn the three R’s mostly through exercising, practicing particular skills. You don’t tell someone how to read. You introduce them to the process and allow them to practice it in ways that build strength in it.
Teachers should be expert [pakar. ahli] guides, not bosses or masters. The rigidity [kekakuan] of the relationship and the formality[kekakuan hubungan] of the two roles, student and teacher, will vary [berbeda-beda] from subject area to subject area and from grade to grade. The idea that we can make generalizations [menyamaratakan, “nggebyah-uyah”–Jawa] about kindergarten classroom relationships that will still hold true [dianggap akan sama dengan] in the tenth grade is probably a naive desire to oversimplify [terlampau menyederhanakan] theory and philosophy.
If I must generalize about teaching situations in a subjunctive [perbandingan bertingkat: lebih >< kurang] mode [pola, bentuk], I’d prefer [akan lebih suka] a student-centered classroom where the teacher aids [membantu] in the discovery process (not in construction of “reality,” since reality is already here and is pretty real [benar-benar sudah ada] without the help of my students) and where the teacher acts as a coach [pelatih] in the development of skills. I’d prefer a classroom where the students felt [merasa] as few restrictions as possible [sedikit sekali hambatan] within the requirements [tuntutan] of the learning process. And I’d prefer a classroom where learning, not teaching, was the central focus.
The higher the student-teacher ratio, the less like this [akan tidak seperti yang digambarkan di atas] a classroom becomes. And in my mind the single biggest factor in the quality of education and the success of the educational process is the most expensive factor – personnel [yang paling utama dan berpengaruh adalah faktor manusia]. We can tinker [memperbaiki] with curriculum. We can alter [mengubah] pedagogy [cara mengajar]. We can think of new ways to measure success (and accountability). We can require [menuntut, menghendaki] that the one [satu-satunya] teacher we have (in a room where two are needed) be better trained. But the solution that is most likely to work is the solution that no one wants to pay for: more teachers per school.