UBC Theses and Dissertations
A case study of one special interest group moulding student attitudes through its school program : salmonids in the classroom Wolthers, Timothy James
In public education, it is not possible to present school programs that will satisfy all the external groups from society. When an outside interest group perceives a need that is lacking in the schools' curriculum, it may petition the ministry of education or the local school board to include its need into the curricula. Another method to influence or insert its point of view is for the interest group to produce its own curriculum for a school program. This study investigated the impact of one outside interest group as it attempts to modify students' attitudes through its school program, Salmonids in the Classroom. Werner's description of editorial criticism permitted examination with a political perspective, of the resource package, Salmonids in the Classroom. The methodology of this analysis permitted a view of the goals and values espoused and hidden in a school program and how those goals and values were modified as they are passed from the program sponsors through the developers to the teachers. To determine the effects of the Salmonids in the Classroom Program upon student attitudes toward the salmonid resource, a Likert-type instrument using a slide show was used. To understand children's beliefs and attitudes about the salmonid resource, student interviews were conducted with some students after they were exposed to the Salmonids in the Classroom Program. This study confirms that a special interest group can sponsor a school program and modify student attitudes to be more supportive of the interest group's programs and goals. This study may be useful not only to teachers to assist in clarifying their role with the special interest group's school program, but it may also be useful to special interest groups who may be planning ways to influence the public through the school system.
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