Online Blog 4 covers the questions posted in Module 12, Activity 12-3:
a.Does the curriculum process follow a top-down or bottom-up approach?
The curriculum process follows a top-down approach. Every aspect of the school curriculum is conceived and initiated by the Central Level, then the Central Level disseminates the task to the Regional/Division Level for proper implementation and adaption of the educational progammes corresponding the needs and cultures of the region/division, before handing over the curriculum process to the School Level. The School Level will then implement the curriculum and makes the necessary adjustments to adapt the curriculum to the needs and abilities of the learners.
b. What are the potential strengths and weaknesses of this approach?
The potential strengths of this approach would include:
- Simplicity of the process since making decision with more people is more complicated
- Swiftness in the decision making process since making decision with more people will take more time.
- Easy to evaluate and know if the plans have been fulfilled or not.
While the weaknesses of this approach would include:
- Low participation – failure to generate adequate understanding, support, and commitment from the lower levels when not properly cascaded will eventually result to an unsuccessful implementation.
- Requires ample knowledge at the top level since every aspect of the curriculum would be coming from them.
- Failure to use or acknowledge specialized knowledge that might be present in the lower levels of the organization because everything is conceived/initiated from the top level.
c. What role does the teacher have in the process- curriculum planner, implementer or both?
The role of the teacher in the process is more of an implementer rather than a planner. This is because every aspect of the curriculum is conceived and initiated by the Central Level before cascading to the Regional/Divisional Level and finally reaching the School Level. The School Level will then adjust/modify and adapt the curriculum based on the learners various needs and abilities. The teacher will be the one to implement the adapted curriculum in the classroom. He/She will adopt the learning materials, implement activities that will develop lifelong and life-wide competencies, and will finally report on the students’ progress and performance to school officials and parents.
d. What is the ideal role of a teacher in the curriculum process? Why?
Based on the article Role of Teachers in the Curriculum Process by Stacey Zeiger, “In order to create a strong curriculum, teachers must play an integral role in every step of the process.”. This is because the teachers are the ones who work directly with the students, therefore, they know best what should be included in the curriculum and how they will benefit from it. Ideally, teachers must be involved in the planning, creation, implementation, and reflection of the curriculum. Teachers know better when it comes to the needs of their students than others involved in the process. They can only dictate the skills covered by the curriculum, but the “teachers can provide insight into the types of materials, activities, and skills that need to be included” in the curriculum, according to the article. In addition, since the teachers are the ones who will use the curriculum, they should have a contribution in its creation because the teacher can identify whether the activity will be appropriate for the stated time frame and whether it will gain the participation of the students. Involving teachers in the creation of curriculum will give them a sense of ownership in the final product and will give them more confidence in its implementation. The article also says that, “a strong curriculum is designed to allow the teacher to be flexible and to insert a few personalized components or choose among a selection of activities.” This means that even in the implementation part of the curriculum, the teacher must not be boxed within the parameters of the given curriculum, instead, teachers must be given the freedom to creatively modify it depending on the classroom situation. And lastly, teachers must also be involved in the evaluation of the curriculum they are the ones who actually use it, hence, they know what changes should be made, knowledge/information and activities to be added or removed, areas to be improved or modified, and/or might eventually give way to the creation of a new curriculum.
Arsad, Nefertari A. (2016) Principles and Processes in Curriculum Development, Los Banos: University of the Philippines Open University, Module 12: Curriculum Issues Pertaining to Basic Education in the Philippines
Zeiger, Stacey. (2016) Role of Teachers in the Curriculum Process, available at: