Commonplaces are interrelated curricular components encompassing learners, teachers, content, and context. Scholars in curriculum studies have employed commonplaces to frame curriculum development, to develop a heuristic for understanding curriculum, and to create a structure of analysis for curriculum inquiry.

Curriculum scholar Joseph Schwab delineated the commonplaces to guide the process of curriculum development. He explained that when people come together to revise curriculum, they need knowledge of these fundamental elements. Schwab's first commonplace, subject matter, means comprehension of content disciplines, their underlying systems of thought, and curriculum materials. Knowledge of learners involves familiarity with students including children's developmental abilities, their unique qualities, and their probable futures as influenced by the environment of families and community (rather than how education might transform their possible destinies). Schwab ...

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