Teaching Breadth vs. Depth

Jeff Park
Professor Dimmitt
4-11-12
Case Study Paper

Thinking, Motivating, and Standardized Testing Breadth vs. Depth: Curriculum Conflicts in a Secondary Classroom

Author: J. Merrell Hansen

Mr. Benson was forced to deal with the difficult task of teaching an excessive amount of material in his history class. He felt there wasn't enough time in the school year to adequately cover all of the topics. This situation represents a personal dilemma that many teachers face due to overloaded curriculums and textbooks. Each section of the course is based on an incredibly broad topic, which could be studied in depth for an entire semester. Teachers have to make difficult choices about ...

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to teach all of the material because it was all so historically important to him. The response by his students was confusion and an overall lack of understanding. This proves that teaching the entire curriculum in depth can overwhelm the students learning process.
At a certain point there was a realization that he couldn't cover the entire course. "He began to realize that even if he hurried, even if he followed a strict schedule, and even if he did not do any of the fun things that he liked to do, he could not cover everything," according to Hansen. Numerous teachers encounter this problem every year in multiple academic subjects.
Once this reality is realized a teacher must then decide which topics to cover and which to skim over. This choice is extremely difficult because any of the topics could be on a standardized test. The solution to eliminating classes is not clear but it has to do with intuition and critical thinking by the teacher. Mr. Benson failed to make this ...

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PAPER DETAILS
Added: 4/24/2012 11:36:13 PM
Submitted By: jkpark
Category: Education
Type: Premium Paper
Words: 1110
Pages: 5

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