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Curriculum Design that places Socio-cultural Awareness and Cultural Humility at the center: Assets-based and student-based approaches

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How we approach curriculum development has a direct impact on how students experience music classes, and their growth and development over time. The Longy MAT faculty team consistently explores avenues of socio-cultural curriculum development that goes beyond just choosing repertoire from various cultures, and has the understanding of cultural humility as a core frame through which all decisions are made. This session will share a framework for teaching artists to use in curriculum development that includes assets-based pedagogy, student-centered learning and culturally sustaining pedagogy. This framework will contain key questions and a rubric/spectrum diagram that helps teaching artists examine whether their lessons are student-centered and assets-based. Teaching artists will explore how to use various lenses to reflect on and deeply examine their lesson plans and their teaching approach, by way of asking reflective questions from various angles of culturally sustaining pedagogy as curricular processes occur. These socio-cultural and assets-based lenses, will develop a deeper understanding of cultural humility and the funds of knowledge (assets) that students come to our programs with. Examples will be shared that showcase effective strategies for lesson plan development, and student-centered learning processes. Curriculum and lesson plan templates that use the socio-cultural approach will be shared and collaboratively explored. While there may not be enough time to focus on all areas, the socio-cultural lesson plan framework approach includes cultural awareness (linked to race, class, gender, sexuality, nation and language), supporting students who have special needs, students who have English as a second or third language and students who have been through trauma or need further emotional/academic support. The approach focuses on exploring the assets in all types of learners in the music classroom, and using these assets for curriculum design. MAT faculty will also share how they use these approaches to prepare MAT students to teach in El Sistema- inspired programming and public schools.


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