Subject-based and cross-curricular approaches within the revised primary curriculum in Northern Ireland: teachers’ concerns and preferred approaches
The Northern Ireland Curriculum (NIC) was revised in 2007. Like the proposals in the Cambridge Primary Review (Alexander 2009) and the Rose Report (Rose 2009), it is not structured in single subjects but in ‘Areas of Learning’. These include ‘Language and Literacy’, ‘Mathematics and Numeracy’, ‘The Arts’ (art and design, drama and music) and ‘The World Around Us’ (WAU), an area which includes history, science and technology and geography. Cross-curricular or integrated approaches to planning and teaching, termed ‘Connected Learning’ within the NIC, are encouraged, along with the use of active learning methods, Assessment for Learning (AfL) techniques and a focus on ‘Thinking Skills and Personal Capabilities’.