Curriculum is the game

If I look back on March, it seems like a world ago. I was eight weeks into life at a new school. I was getting to know everyone, and where on Earth F51 was. I’m pretty sure F51 doesn’t exist- even now. I was excited- not just at the idea of working with such brilliant teachers, but lifting the hood on an already fantastic curriculum.

And then before we knew it, we were behind screens, tussling with collaborative documents and CPD to the void of four walls; talking that gave us an absence of nuance or the opportunity to gauge the how, or the why; juggling technology to try to keep having the conversations that were so vital to the continuum of our curriculum, but also to us as professionals, academics, people.

Curriculum acted as our commonality: as the language that could bring us together and challenged our thinking; the substance that forced us to tackle its mass, one positional play at a time, unsnarling and unravelling because we were preoccupied with a new sense of busyness, and the wicked problem to wrestle with.

Curriculum directed our words. It determined our thinking but also our relationships as we worked in isolation. It brought us together in clusters to discuss which direction it might head in next, as though at times, we didn’t know and were simply a step ahead. It provoked us to debate aspects of the subject, of what it meant to teach our discipline and how that would actualise itself beyond our mind’s eye. It acted as a shared pursuit, driving our development as teachers not only individually, but collectively so.

Curriculum thinking set the pace: that fluctuating speed that magnified itself in lockdown- standing still in paralysis of contemplation, only to be then forced onwards with the urgency in those moments where it made a little more sense, and the thinking aligned into a sense of sequence. Where one piece rested against the next, taking a breather before the board was thrown into the air once again.

Because, curriculum is a game of odds, after all. It doesn’t seek to be concluded- the satisfaction isn’t sought from the ‘end,’ because that’s not where the heart of the work lies. It is the impetus, the force with which it impels itself to move forward- here is where we find our greatest sense of contentment in curriculum work.

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