Reconceptualizing Curriculum Development : Inspiring and Informing Action book cover
1st Edition

Reconceptualizing Curriculum Development
Inspiring and Informing Action

ISBN 9781138809444
Published February 28, 2017 by Routledge
264 Pages

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Book Description

Reconceptualizing Curriculum Development provides accessible, clear guidance on curriculum problem solving and educational leadership through the practice of a synoptic curriculum study. This practice integrates three influential interpretations of curriculum—curriculum as deliberative artistry, curriculum as complicated conversation, and curriculum as currere—with John Dewey’s lifetime work on reflective inquiry. At its heart, the book advances a way of studying as a way of living with reference to the question: How might I live as a democratic educator?

The study guidance is organized as an open-ended scaffolding of three embedded reflective inquiries informed by four deliberative conversations. Study recommendations are provided by a carefully selected team. The field-tested study-based approach is illustrated through a multi-layered, multi-voiced narrative collage of four experienced teachers’ personal journeys of understanding in a collegial study context. Applying William Pinar’s argument that a "conceptual montage" enabling teachers to lead complicated conversations should be the focus for curriculum development in the field’s current ‘post-reconceptualist’ moment, the book moves forward the educational aim of facilitating a holistic subject/self/social understanding through the practice of a balanced hermeneutics of suspicion and trust. It closes with a discussion of cross-cultural collaboration and advocacy, reflecting the interest of curriculum scholars in a wide range of countries in this study-based, lead-learning approach to curriculum development.

Table of Contents


Foreword (William F. Pinar)
Preface (James G. Henderson)

Chapter 1—A New Curriculum Development: Inspiration and Rationale (James G. Henderson)

Part I: Lead-Learning Invitations (James G. Henderson)
Chapter 2—Teaching for Holistic Understanding: Inspirational Events in Study and Practice (Daniel J. Castner)
Chapter 3—Embodying Holistic Understanding: Democratic Being in Trying Times   (Jennifer L. Schneider)
Chapter 4—Sowing Holistic Understanding: Building a Disciplinary Community (Christine Fishman)
Chapter 5—Deliberative Conversation: Cross-Paradigm Critique and Negotiation (Wendy Samford)
Chapter 6—Deliberative Conversation: Possibilities of Equity in Everyday Schooling (Boni Wozolek)
Chapter 7—Deliberative Conversation: Consciousness-Raising for Democratic Interdependence (Beth A. Bilek-Golias)
Chapter 8—Deliberative Conversation: Inspiriting Teaching through Mythopoetic Inspiration (Petra Pienkosky Moran)

Part II: Collegial Stories and Commentary (James G. Henderson)
Chapter 9—Lead-Learning Stories: A Narrative Montage (Jen Griest, Jennifer L. Schneider, Susan School, & Konni Stagliano)
Chapter 10—Generative Leadership: Protecting the Good Work (Catherine E. Hackney) 
Chapter 11—Build It and They Will Come: A Cross-Cultural Conversation on Lead-Learning Possibilities and Challenges (Tero Autio, Aboudou Hamidou Berthé, Donna Adair Breault, Rosemary Gornik, Thomas E. Kelly, Kauko Komulainen, & Wen-Ling Lou)

About the Book’s Collaborative Team

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James G. Henderson is Co-Coordinator, Teacher Leader Endorsement Program, Kent State University, USA.


"This book is a thoughtful reminder of what curriculum and teaching have meant in the past and could mean again in a brighter future."

Nel Noddings, author of Education and Democracy in the 21st Century

"Curriculum work really starts with people, not with theories.  Professor Henderson understands this.  This magisterial work offers a strong analytical focus on the pedagogical features of the curriculum – on the interactive life of the teacher and the student.  The field of Curriculum Studies has long languished with a multiplicity of theories that has challenged its disciplinary integrity. Too many of its practitioners have pledged avoidance to institutional and normative concerns. Professor Henderson’s work defies this trend and offers renewed promise to fulfill the historic involvement of curriculum professors in the work of the school.  We have waited too long for this thoughtful and exciting line of inquiry."

Peter Hlebowitsh, Dean and Professor, University of Alabama, USA