I am writing in regards to your article about cultural literacy. Even though an honorable point is made about America being a diverse country, I do not feel that it is necessary to develop curriculum around each unique culture. Rather, it may be more beneficial to develop one common core of knowledge. With a foundation which teachers can incorporate into their curriculum, all students will be more or less on the same wavelength, and schools can be better prepared to educate. .
If a core of knowledge were instilled in curriculum, teachers would have an easier time expanding on subjects instead of reviewing. It is a well known fact that the beginning fraction of the school year is spent trying to get all students at a common place, to make it easier for the teacher to educate. This portion of time could be cut if all students learned the same curriculum, and therefore were all at the same place. More emphasis could be placed on teaching new ideas and expanding, rather than reviewing for some students, and learning some things totally different ways for others.
The collective curriculum that would be taught with a common set of instruction would only be a portion of the curriculum that students are receiving. There would still be room to incorporate teachers" special topics. As long as the students would be on some sort of common ground, they would be better suited to continue in education. Teachers would not have to totally give up their own ways and units of teaching; instead just incorporate the common core.
Teaching and learning could be based upon this standard core of knowledge. It would not be very beneficial for teachers to base their curricula around each culture. Students may move and have to be taught all over again. Or, their parents may have learned something differently, and may not be able to help at home. With a common core of knowledge, students would be better prepared to succeed.