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Differentiated instruction



An introduction to how we differentiate content, process, and learning environment to meet student needs.

An introduction to how we differentiate content, process, and learning environment to meet student needs.



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Differentiated instruction Differentiated instruction Presentation Transcript

  • Differentiating Instruction TED 406 Teaching Secondary Reading Jill A. Aguilar (Adapted from Tomlinson, 1995, 1999; Winebrenner, 1992, 1996)
  • What is Differentiated Instruction?
    • To differentiate instruction is to recognize students varying background knowledge, readiness, language, preferences in learning, interests, and to react responsively.
  • What is Differentiated Instruction?
    • Differentiated instruction is a process to approach teaching and learning for students of differing abilities in the same class.
  • What is Differentiated Instruction?
    • The intent of differentiating instruction is to maximize each student’s growth and individual success by meeting each student where he or she is, and assisting in the learning process.
  • What is Differentiated Instruction? Learning Environment
  • 4 Elements to Differentiate
    • Content – what the student needs to learn or how the student will get access to the information;
    • Process – activities in which the student engages in order to make sense of or master the content;
    • Product – culminating projects that ask the student to rehearse, apply, and extend what he or she has learned in a unit; and
    • Learning environment – the way the classroom works and feels.
  • Content
    • Examples of differentiating content:
    • 1. Using reading materials at varying readability levels;
    • 2. Putting text materials on tape;
    • 3. Using spelling or vocabulary lists at readiness levels of students;
    • 4. Presenting ideas through both auditory and visual means;
    • 5. Using reading buddies; and
    • 6. Meeting with small groups to re-teach an idea or skill for struggling learners, or to extend the thinking or skills of advanced learners.
  • Process
    • Examples of differentiating process:
    • 1. Using tiered activities;
    • 2. Providing interest centers;
    • 3. Developing personal agendas (task lists written by the teacher and containing both in-common work for the whole class and work that addresses individual needs of learners);
    • 4. Offering manipulatives or other hands-on supports; and
    • 5. Varying the length of time a student may take to complete a task.
  • Product
    • Examples of differentiating product:
    • 1. Giving students options of how to express required learning;
    • 2. Using rubrics that match and extend students' varied skills levels;
    • 3. Allowing students to work alone or in small groups on their products; and
    • 4. Encouraging students to create their own product assignments as long as the assignments contain required elements.
  • Learning Environment
    • Examples of differentiating learning environment:
    • 1. Making sure there are places in the room to work quietly and without distraction, as well as places that invite student collaboration;
    • 2. Providing materials that reflect a variety of cultures and home settings;
    • 3. Setting out clear guidelines for independent work that matches individual needs;
    • 4. Developing routines that allow students to get help when teachers are busy and cannot help them immediately; and
    • 5. Helping students understand that some learners need to move around to learn, while others do better sitting quietly
  • Full Range of Students
    • Students with identified special needs (IEP);
    • Struggling readers;
    • English learners;
    • Speakers of non-standard Englishes;
    • Gifted students;
    • Who else?
  • What Differentiation Is Not
    • Class centered
    • Mainly for students with learning problems
    • A tracking system by abilities
    • A recipe for learning
    • A different lesson plan for every student
    • Whole-group drill and practice or any single structure or activity
    • Fact-based learning alone
  • What Differentiation Is Not
    • Unmanageable or undisciplined
    • Modifying the instruction up or down in difficulty
    • A method you will need all new materials for
    • Cost free
    • Just about learning styles
    • A set of strategies and activities
  • What Differentiation Is
    • Student centered
    • For all students
    • For heterogeneous groups
    • A change in philosophy about how learning should take place
    • Multiple approaches or options for content, process, and product
    • A mix of whole-class, group, and independent learning
    • More about quality than quantity
  • What Differentiation Is
    • Flexible and varied
    • Proactive in the planning stage
    • Rooted in assessment
    • Based on continual reflection and adjustment to help students learn well
    • A belief system that says all learners come to the classroom with potential ready to be accessed
  • Let’s Try It Out… Learning Environment Content Product Process Curriculum Student