Don’t Overwhelm Children With Ineffective, Age-Inappropriate Curriculum

Target: The Honourable Adriana LaGrange, Minister of Education in Alberta, Canada

Goal: Protect children from inappropriate school curriculum in Alberta, Canada.

A newly proposed curriculum for Alberta, Canada children sparked a huge public outcry among parents. The program is supposed to exclude educational fads and return to tradition, but in reality it contains material that is highly inappropriate for young children.

Some concerned teachers worry about the new curriculum because they were cut out of the writing process and have not had any impact on it. The most recent draft proposes to remove lessons about being a good citizen and community member and instead focuses on topics such as ancient Rome, the spice trade, Chinese dynasties, and Genghis Khan. World history is developmentally overwhelming for second graders, who do not yet fully understand the concepts of their city, town, and province. A child who is just learning how to write a few-word sentence cannot meaningfully understand lessons about the Mongolian Empire. Thinking critically and asking questions about why and how events happened should be the main emphasis on educating young children, not memorizing and regurgitating facts.

The new curriculum apparently favors a Eurocentric point of view, which angers many parents. A school program should include all worldly points of view. Not only are children affected by the new program, but teachers are as well. For them, it will be almost impossible to deliver the proposed lessons in 20-to-30 minutes a day.

The government invests $6-million this year to begin classroom testing of the new curriculum, which will begin in few selected schools in September. The new K-6 curriculum is scheduled to be mandatory in all elementary schools in Alberta starting in September 2022. Please sign the petition below to protect children from an overwhelming curriculum at school.

PETITION LETTER:

Dear Honourable Miss LaGrange,

You promised to dispense with educational fads and return to tradition and used this statement to create a curriculum that is absolutely inappropriate for children K-6. You carelessly removed valuable lessons to integrate world history that is developmentally overwhelming for second graders, who do not yet fully understand the concepts of their city, town, and province. No child who is just learning how to write few-word sentences will meaningfully understand lessons about ancient Rome.

The apparent Eurocentric viewpoint of the newest daft angers many parents and should be rectified by including all worldly points of view. Also, not only are children affected by your new regulations, but teachers as well. Cutting them out of the writing process and forcing them to deliver material in a few minutes that took centuries to take place is unacceptable.

Parents and teachers alike are outraged and even form local groups to protest against the lessons you proposed. Beaumont parent Taylor Schroeter even calls them “the stuff of parents’ nightmares.”

Organizers have planned protests outside your constituency office in Red Deer. The draft for the new curriculum must be altered in an age-appropriate manner. Change it now and let parents, teachers, and children breathe a sigh of relief.

Sincerely,

[Your Name Here]

Photo Credit: Douglas P. Perkins,


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