ERIC Number: ED439856
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000
Reference Count: N/A
Continuity and Purpose in the Design of Meaningful Project Work.
McAninch, Amy C.
Early Childhood Research & Practice, v2 n1 Spr 2000
This paper discusses two pitfalls in designing project work. The first is a tendency to design projects with little emphasis on how the subject matter might connect to future studies. The second involves processes and goals of project work: all too often the processes proposed for project work serve goals that are nonexistent, weak, or unrelated to one another; or if strong goals exist, they are served by mundane processes. Because the philosophical foundations of project work reside in progressive education, and in particular in the work of Dewey, this paper focuses on the insights his conception of curriculum has for these pitfalls. In the first section of the paper, Dewey's principle of continuity is examined in relation to the first pitfall and the treatment of subject matter in project work. In the remainder of the paper, goals and processes are considered in light of Dewey's discussion of the concept of purpose. Dewey's theoretical analysis of progressive education suggests that subject matter content, processes, and products are all vital to intelligent activity. The paper also points to the fundamental role that the philosophical foundations of education play in the development of curriculum for young children and the difficulty of implementing progressive pedagogy. (Contains 11 references.) (Author/LPP)
Descriptors: Curriculum Design, Educational Philosophy, Experiential Learning, Learning Theories, Primary Education, Progressive Education, Student Projects, Teaching Methods, Thematic Approach
For full text: http://ecrp.uiuc.edu/v2n1/print/mcaninch.html.
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A