This study explores the question of “why we teach as we do” through the self-reflexive lens described by several noted curriculum theorists, but perhaps best exemplified in a simple theorem for a reflexive curriculum-making praxis first proposed by aesthetics educator Arthur W. Foshay in his aphorism, “Who is to encounter what, why, how, in what circumstances, under what governance, at what cost?” The efficacy in Foshay’s postulation is not self-evident, but must be revealed in an alternating sequence of engagements with the constituent elements of its syntax. The method for this presentation of living inquiry in curriculum-making is trifold, involving the intersection of an art studio project involving 3rd and 4th grade students in a new elementary school; the mixed genre writing of an accompanying paper drawing upon the artist/teacher/researcher’s autobiographical narrative and poetry; and, a series of drawings that retrace and elaborate upon the project and paper. This study argues that Foshay has proposed a qualitative theorem inviting ongoing interpretation in curriculum-making. An alternating sequence of conceptualizing events constitutes a living inquiry, offering the possibility of greater innovation in learning than the more formulaic unit structures designed by mandate.
Rolling, J. H. (2007). Exploring Foshay’s theorem for curriculum-making in education: An elementary school art studio project. Journal of Curriculum & Pedagogy, 4 (1), 136-159.