Hidden Curriculum

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Before I read some articles, I thought hidden curriculum is something always bad. It was like 25th frame of the education. However, when I went into detail, I realize that it can be something good, as well.  I don’t know why, but for me if a course book doesn’t have any colored person in its visuals that means it gives a hidden message by putting only white people there. That was all my knowledge about hidden curriculum, which is sending subliminal messages through instructional materials. After reading all those articles, I figured out that hidden curriculum is like manners and customs.  Everybody knows them, even though they are not written anywhere. The society teaches them naturally. The difference is the school does it intentionally. As the article says through hidden curriculum, schools teach students some values and norms and expose students to the ruling ideology implicitly.  As İnal examples Turkish education system’s rituals such as getting into lines in the school garden to go into the school building and the seating arrangements in rows in classrooms simulate the military hierarchy in the education system (İnal, 2004). Students having to stand up when the teacher comes in and boys buttoning their jackets in front of teachers and school principals are examples of the hierarchical relationships being imposed on students (İnal, 2004) till now it’s okay, but İnal argues that the hidden curriculum vary depending on the type of the school. For example, in a state school students are imposed to be obedient labors in the society while private school students are taught to be competitive, knowledgeable, active, and versatile. Here comes the injustice again. While I think that imported materials may mislead our students by sending intentionally wrong messages, our system uses it as a means of reproduction of stratification. When the hidden curriculum of two different schools is compared, it can be claimed that the administrators chose a political view or an idea to make students internalize it. I can still say that they impose some social norms consciously and the students accept them unconsciously and it’s also something subliminal. As you see, we are where we have started. To be honest, after having known all of these it can be interpreted that depending on the user hidden curriculum is something either good or bad.  It’s good because it helps maintain the present social order, prevent unwanted social chaos etc. It’s bad if it reproduces social stratification in the society. It steals the right of being in higher positions of lower class students.

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