Saber-Tooth Curriculum (2023)

The Saber-Tooth Curriculum

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The field of education is an ever-changing plain of opportunity. Since the inception of education there have been different ideas of what should be taught in schools. The Saber-Tooth Curriculum holds that education started with fish-grabbing, horse-clubbing, and tiger-scaring long before reading, writing, and arithmetic. After these original three subjects were established, it became difficult to change the curriculum.

In Saber-Tooth Curriculum there are several different groups that characterize educators. The most prominent character in the book is Dr. Peddiwell, a professor of the history of education. He is a representative of liberal educators – those who value a broad knowledge of skills and challenging encounters with important issues. Dr. Peddiwell holds a “seminar” at the bar in Tijuana to speak about the pressing issue from his point of view: the development of education. Dr. Peddiwell challenges his former student, Raymond Wayne, to look at the example of Paleolithic education and how it was developed (Peddiwell, 11-23). In Peddiwell’s story we meet New Fist, a social meliorist. New Fist developed the first school and curriculum to improve his society. “He began to catch glimpses of ways in which life might be made better for himself, his family, and his group,” (26). This is the first notion of why we should have education at all and is still one of the main educational goals professed by most institutions today. New Fist’s basic curriculum worked until an ice-age necessitated a change. Even though change was needed, the tribe’s education stagnated. Few wanted to think of new ways to meet the basic needs beyond what was already taught. Luckily there was a group of New-Fist Radicals who came up with net-making, antelope-snaring, and bear-pitting. The inventors of these new techniques thought they were “indispensable to modern existence” and should be taught in school. (40) However, the majority of society found this to be a ridiculous notion. They thought practical lessons had nothing to do with school. It was argued that students needed the old standard subjects to develop emotional and behavioral qualities (40-43). So the society had its first developmentalist educators, albeit slightly misguided. Eventually scientific curriculum makers surfaced. They were the college professors who decided to “engage in scientific research in education by counting and measuring quantitatively everything related to education which could be counted and measured” (55). They attempted to measure many unknowns and the results were not too successful. How can you track the changes of the human mind?

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The Saber-Tooth Curriculum is written as a personal narrative in parts and dramatic monologue in others. The purpose is to draw the reader in and make it easily accessible to the audience. Peddiwell is presenting ideas that may not be taken well by some and using this format makes those thoughts more palatable.

The personal narrative sections are written as Peddiwell giving a lecture to Raymond Wayne at a bar in Tijuana. This seems a most unlikely place for serious educational discussion to occur. It allows the reader to ease into the ideas presented during the second setting, Paleolithic times. By setting the educational context in Paleolithic times the author distances himself enough from current education that the reader can easily see the issues he has brought up in his lecture. There can be no political arguments since the story happened long ago. Peddiwell avoids many issues of today by placing the story in schools so old we have to stretch our imaginations.

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Although the setting is in the distant past, it still is relevant today. Times have changed since the debut of The Saber-Tooth Curriculum in 1939. Many districts are still trying to live in the past with the curriculums they are using. Some of this is due to financial reasons – new technology requires more money – but we have to be on the frontline of what is happening in the world to keep education relevant. When this book was written technology was in its infancy. Now many fields required advanced technical knowledge and highly specialized skills.

Peddiwell uses the book as a platform for three main points. First that education is great, but must be relevant to the times (37-44). Without a relevant curriculum we are doing our students a disservice. The basics are great, but must be something that is applied to the newer aspects of our society. We must know how to spell and write, but in current times students must also learn to type. The second point Peddiwell makes is that there are definite shortcomings in teacher training (50-57). He points to the three things higher education did to make the field of education respectable: organize it systematically, use scientific research, and make the subject hard to learn. Throughout college, the theory of education comes before practical application. It is difficult to see the why before you have seen it in action. He also argues that teacher training has become extremely specialized within subject areas, leaving gaps of broad ignorance in the other areas of education (55). Today there is a huge amount of specialized knowledge required to be successful in a chosen field such as chemical engineering. Having a general science background is not enough to succeed, but a general background of other subjects is useful. The third point of the book is that education must be purpose-driven and not allowed to get lost in red-tape (137). So many teachers lose their drive because they do not see the purpose of what they are teaching or they cannot convince their students of the materials’ purpose. Red-tape is another reason many teachers give up. Filling out paperwork takes hours of time that could be spent on developing dynamic lessons that would ignite student interest.

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My first reaction to this book was that it was ridiculous – a lecture at a bar in Central America about cavemen could have nothing worthwhile to say. As I kept reading I realized that I agree with two of the three main points discussed above. We have to keep our curriculum relevant to today. That is why I integrate many living composers into the music we study. So many kids think that the orchestra only plays music of “dead white men.” It is so funny to see their faces when I tell them that the composer is teaching at a middle school just like ours or I show them a picture of someone younger than me! This book makes me want to integrate all the amazing music technology that has come about in the past ten years. Of course that costs money that the school district does not have for my program since it is not a STAAR-tested subject. The point about red-tape has really hit home this year. One of our science teachers was trying to arrange a field trip for the kids to see in action something they were studying. The first response from the field trip coordinator was no – because they were not studying that TEK at that moment. So the teacher tried to reschedule for the week they were working on that particular TEK. Denied again, this time because it was the week before CBA testing. The students would remember the concept much better experiencing it in action than just seeing it in the book and lecture, but red-tape prevented them from doing so.

(Video) THE SABER-TOOTH CURRICULUM

FAQs

What is the main message of saber tooth curriculum? ›

The Saber-Tooth Curriculum teaches us that a curriculum should preserve the past, but not be limited by it.

Does the Saber Tooth Curriculum still exist? ›

a. Does the Sabre-tooth Curriculum still exist at present? From my perspective, Sabre-tooth Curriculum still exist at present since the educational system today still teaches students to do particular tasks on their own and with that, it helps a lot in exercising their minds and skills, too.

What are the insights gained and lessons learned from the Saber Tooth Curriculum presentation? ›

Saber Tooth Curriculum Analysis

The Saber-Tooth curriculum generally means enjoining in traditional ways and old systems of education. It embodies people's resistance to change and hesitancy to embrace innovation, even if it is the only way for survival and what the age calls for.

What type category of learning experience did the teacher in the story Saber Tooth Curriculum? ›

In the Saber Tooth Curriculum, learning is experiential and authentic.

What does curriculum mean in your own words? ›

The term curriculum refers to the lessons and academic content taught in a school or in a specific course or program. In dictionaries, curriculum is often defined as the courses offered by a school, but it is rarely used in such a general sense in schools.

Why was the Sabre tooth curriculum has develop? ›

And finally, saber-tooth-tiger- scaring-with-fire was promoted to educate students in the art of eliminating threat to tribal safety. The maturing years in the lives of New-Fist and his disciples were spent developing the new system in the face of the scepticism that greets any change.

Can a school exist without the curriculum? ›

Essentially, the desired learning objectives upon which the school structure is based form the curriculum, and the curriculum guides the school structure, the school culture, as well as the learning objectives. In short, a school cannot exist without a curriculum.

Is curriculum necessary to develop? ›

A curriculum is considered the “heart” of any learning institution which means that schools or universities cannot exist without a curriculum. With its importance in formal education, curriculum has become a dynamic process due to the changes that occur in our society.

Is it necessary for teachers to learn about the curriculum Why? ›

Answer and Explanation: Yes. Creating and managing a curriculum is one of the most important functions of a teacher, so it is absolutely necessary for all teachers to be familiar with school curricula.

What do you think is an effective curriculum? ›

An effective curriculum addresses students' needs, interests, concerns, developmental and emotional maturity levels, experiences, and current knowledge and skill levels. Learning is relevant and applicable to students' daily lives. Concepts and skills are covered in a logical sequence.

Why it is important to make the curriculum relevant to the needs of the community? ›

The curriculum has purposes, aims or objectives which reflect general societal aspirations. Society plays a significant role in determining what is considered worthwhile knowledge, desirable attitudes and relevant skills.

What does the author mean when he says in a Saber Tooth Curriculum A curriculum should be timeless? ›

What does the author mean, when he said “A curriculum should be timeless?” Explain. It simply means that our education system should fit with the needs of the time and serve a purpose.

Is it true that in the saber tooth curriculum learning is experiential and authentic? ›

In the Saber Tooth Curriculum, learning is experiential and authentic. able to know on how to make a solution in facing those circumstances. 2. It is a reality that there exist more than one curricula in the teacher's classroom.

How significant is the curriculum and curriculum development in the teacher's classroom? ›

It helps teachers align.

A good curriculum also connects teachers from across grade levels and subject areas to look at the big picture of student learning. Teachers can work together to plan a progression of topics that build off of ones that came before and connect across disciplines.

How do teachers do curriculum implementation? ›

Teachers build lessons that include simulations, experiments, case studies and activities to deliver curriculum. This interactive approach intertwines curriculum and practical experiences that immerse students in learning.

Why is a curriculum important? ›

An effective curriculum provides teachers, students, school leaders and community stakeholders with a measurable plan and structure for delivering a quality education. The curriculum identifies the learning outcomes, standards and core competencies that students must demonstrate before advancing to the next level.

What is learning experience in curriculum? ›

Learning experience refers to any interaction, course, program, or other experience in which learning takes place, whether it occurs in traditional academic settings (schools, classrooms) or nontraditional settings (outside-of-school locations, outdoor environments), or whether it includes traditional educational ...

What is the purpose of curriculum development? ›

The major objective of curriculum development is to improve the District's educational offerings and its instructional activities and practices in order to increase student engagement in the learning process and improve student achievement.

What are the advantages of integrated curriculum? ›

An integrated curriculum allows children to pursue learning in a holistic way, without the restrictions often imposed by subject boundaries. In early childhood programs it focuses upon the inter-relatedness of all curricular areas in helping children acquire basic learning tools.

Is there a difference in educate and train or are they the same? ›

Train and Educate are two words that are often confused when it comes to their usage. Strictly speaking, there is some difference between the two words. The word 'train' is used as a verb in the sense of 'instruct'. On the other hand, the word 'educate' is used in the sense of 'inform' or 'teach'.

Does the Sabre tooth curriculum exist at present Scribd? ›

tooth-curriculum/. still exists.

What does the author mean when he says in a Saber Tooth Curriculum A curriculum should be timeless? ›

What does the author mean, when he said “A curriculum should be timeless?” Explain. It simply means that our education system should fit with the needs of the time and serve a purpose.

Why it is important to make the curriculum relevant to the needs of the community? ›

The curriculum has purposes, aims or objectives which reflect general societal aspirations. Society plays a significant role in determining what is considered worthwhile knowledge, desirable attitudes and relevant skills.

What do you think is an effective curriculum? ›

An effective curriculum addresses students' needs, interests, concerns, developmental and emotional maturity levels, experiences, and current knowledge and skill levels. Learning is relevant and applicable to students' daily lives. Concepts and skills are covered in a logical sequence.

How significant is the curriculum and curriculum development in the teacher's classroom? ›

It helps teachers align.

A good curriculum also connects teachers from across grade levels and subject areas to look at the big picture of student learning. Teachers can work together to plan a progression of topics that build off of ones that came before and connect across disciplines.

Why is it important for the teachers to learn about the curriculum? ›

Teachers must know and understand these outcomes in order to adequately prepare students for their future academic pursuits. This knowledge will help teachers plan lessons, select materials, and design assessments that are concurrent with the learning outcomes of the curricula they teach.

Why is it important to have a curriculum? ›

An effective curriculum provides teachers, students, school leaders and community stakeholders with a measurable plan and structure for delivering a quality education. The curriculum identifies the learning outcomes, standards and core competencies that students must demonstrate before advancing to the next level.

Is curriculum necessary to develop? ›

A curriculum is considered the “heart” of any learning institution which means that schools or universities cannot exist without a curriculum. With its importance in formal education, curriculum has become a dynamic process due to the changes that occur in our society.

What is the most important in curriculum development? ›

In every step of the curriculum development process, the most important task is to keep the learner (in this case, youth) in mind and involve them in process. For example, the curriculum team members, who have direct knowledge of the target audience, should be involved in conducting the needs assessment.

How does curriculum affect the learning process of a student? ›

As a sequence of learning opportunities, curriculum has several aspects. It exists as plans and intentions—the sequence of learning opportunities that one wishes students to experience. It exists as patterns of classroom activities that are meant to implement those plans and provide the desired learning opportunities.

How can a teacher effectively implement the curriculum in the school? ›

Using a wide variety of techniques, teachers encourage learning by delivering content in creative and impactful ways. Whole-group instruction, individualized attention, experiential education and using a global lens, are methods that provide teachers with avenues for success in the curriculum process.

How do you improve curriculum? ›

  1. Re-evaluate goals or objectives. What is the goal your university strives to achieve? ...
  2. Keep a trackof employee skills that are sought after.
  3. Take job trends into consideration. ...
  4. Make advanced technology a constant in courses offered. ...
  5. Curriculum Development and Planning — request a demo.
6 Oct 2018

What are the objectives of a good curriculum? ›

In terms of effectiveness, curriculum objectives should: be concise and understandable to teachers, learners and parents; be feasible for the teachers and learners to accomplish; encompass previous learning and require the learner to integrate and then apply certain knowledge, skills, and attitudes in order to ...

How do you create an effective curriculum? ›

There are five steps in creating an effective curriculum:
  1. Writing Effective Learning Objectives.
  2. Scenario Design.
  3. Logistics.
  4. Art of Debriefing.
  5. Evaluation Outcomes.

What is k12 curriculum? ›

The K to 12 Program covers Kindergarten and 12 years of basic education (six years of primary education, four years of Junior High School, and two years of Senior High School [SHS]) to provide sufficient time for mastery of concepts and skills, develop lifelong learners, and prepare graduates for tertiary education, ...

What is the most important part of curriculum implementation? ›

A very important part of curriculum implementation is that the teacher should consider carefully the order in which learning targets should be learnt.

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