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Slacca Myths, Realities, And Coaching 2009[1]


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Slacca Myths, Realities, And Coaching 2009[1]

  1. 1. Myths and Realities about Differentiation: Supporting Systemic Change in Teaching and Learning Susan Bergman, Mathematics Coordinator Merlene Gilb, Gifted Coordinator Webster Groves School District
  2. 2. Myths and Realities Sorting Activity <ul><li>In your small group, classify each of the provided statements as either a myth or reality in relation to differentiation. </li></ul><ul><li>Next, match “parallel” statements (the myth and it’s related reality). </li></ul><ul><li>Finally, as a group decide on an additional myth that could be added to the list and it’s related reality. </li></ul>
  3. 4. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is something extra teachers have to do in the classroom. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation is at the core of what we know about quality instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>It is not extra, it is good teaching. </li></ul>
  4. 5. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is a lowering of expectations for students. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation always “teaches up”. It’s never a way out of rigor, but rather support to achieve rigor. </li></ul>
  5. 6. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is incompatible with standards and standards-based teaching. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation is a means of achieving standards by ensuring that more students achieve the learning goals. </li></ul>
  6. 7. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is for students with special needs. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation is for everyone. </li></ul><ul><li>Every student has readiness needs, learning preferences, specific interest and aptitudes, and affective needs. </li></ul>
  7. 8. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is tracking in the regular classroom. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation exists to ensure equity of access to the highest quality curriculum for all learners. </li></ul>
  8. 9. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is Multiple Intelligences or learning styles. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation addresses readiness, interest, and learning profile. </li></ul><ul><li>(Gardner’s work addresses 1/4 of 1/3 of that range.) </li></ul>
  9. 10. Myth Reality <ul><li>A differentiated classroom is noisy, confusing, unstructured, disorderly, or chaotic. </li></ul><ul><li>An effective differentiated classroom exhibits more order and structure than single-approach classrooms. </li></ul>
  10. 11. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation becomes untenable when report card time arrives. </li></ul><ul><li>Best practices of grading are in-sync with principles and practices of differentiation. </li></ul>
  11. 12. Myth Reality <ul><li>As long as I give my students choices, I’m differentiating instruction </li></ul><ul><li>Quality differentiation balances student choice and teacher choice which is based on assessment data and clear learning targets. </li></ul>
  12. 13. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is unfair because a teacher who differentiates doesn’t treat all students the same. </li></ul><ul><li>A goal of Differentiating Instruction is to make sure each student gets the help necessary for success. </li></ul><ul><li>That’s likely “more fair” than one-size-fits-all. </li></ul>
  13. 14. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is individualized instruction or a lesson plan or IEP for each student. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation seeks common patterns of need across students and focuses on small groups. </li></ul>
  14. 15. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation is something most teachers do already. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation is something all teachers need to do with deliberate intent. </li></ul><ul><li>Very few teachers proactively differentiate instruction. </li></ul><ul><li>It is the standard necessary for academic diversity. </li></ul>
  15. 16. Myth Reality <ul><li>Differentiation requires teachers to use particular instructional strategies – a “bag of tricks”. </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation is not about any particular instructional strategy. It is a way of life in a classroom. </li></ul>
  16. 17. Our Journey <ul><li>50 teachers selected to participate in Teacher Leader Academy (TLA) </li></ul><ul><li>Administrators participated in training as well as a book study </li></ul><ul><li>Differentiation training provided by ASCD trainers: Judy Rex and Nanci Smith </li></ul><ul><li>Each TLA member was assigned a coach </li></ul><ul><li>The coaches have focused on building relationships. </li></ul><ul><li>Follow-up reflection sessions are held after school. </li></ul><ul><li>WGSD Teacher Leader Academy </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul>
  17. 18. <ul><li>• Professional development as a term is a major obstacle to progress in teacher learning; </li></ul><ul><li>• We need to deeply appreciate the meaning of noted educator Richard Elmore’s observation (2004) that improvement above all entails “learning to do the right things in the setting where you work” (p. 73); </li></ul><ul><li>Student learning depends on every teacher learning all the time; </li></ul>C H A N G E Some Thinking to Offer “ Change the Terms for Teacher Learning” Michael Fullan Journal of Staff Development, v28 n3 p35-36 Sum 2007 A Change in Terms . . . PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT becomes ONGOING LEARNING
  18. 19. <ul><li>The process of change is difficult and frustrating to grasp because it requires taking into account factors we’d rather not have to stop and deal with. We would rather lay out the purpose and plan and get on with it. Change doesn’t work that way. </li></ul><ul><li>Making change work requires the energy, ideas, commitment, and ownership of all those implementing improvements. </li></ul><ul><li>Shared vision and ownership are more the outcome of a quality change process than they are a precondition. </li></ul>C H A N G E Further Thinking to Offer Understanding the change process. 8 Forces for Leader of Change By Michael Fullan, Claudia Cuttress, and Ann Kilcher JSD – Fall, 2005
  19. 20. <ul><li>Do our own mental models trap us? </li></ul><ul><li>Do we REALLY understand the magnitude of the changes we are asking teachers to make? </li></ul>In working toward school change, we need to examine our own beliefs about WHY teachers aren’t changing.
  20. 21. <ul><li>What are your beliefs about how students learn? </li></ul><ul><li>How tightly are your beliefs tied to your own strengths as an educator? </li></ul><ul><li>What are your beliefs about your role in student success? </li></ul><ul><li>What keeps you from trying new practices? </li></ul>Differentiated Coaching For TEACHER-CENTERED staff development, the starting point is FOUR essential questions . . .
  21. 22. Establishing a COMMON FRAMEWORK <ul><li>Describes preferences for learning in a nonjudgmental way, encompassing both adult and student learning styles. </li></ul><ul><li>Strengths-based rather than describing the deficits of learning styles (use your strengths NOT work on weaknesses). </li></ul><ul><li>Must work within and honor diverse cultures. </li></ul>Using a framework opens up conversations about beliefs and reminds change agents of their OWN educational biases and how much they are asking teachers to changes.
  22. 23. Myers-Briggs Type Indicator tool (MBTI) Tool NOT a Test Self-reporting NOT Diagnostic 8 PREFERENCES 16 TYPES
  23. 24. Imagine for a Moment . . . <ul><li>that you are back in school and you have </li></ul><ul><li>just been given a major assignment that </li></ul><ul><li>is due at the end of the semester. </li></ul><ul><li>When would you normally </li></ul><ul><li>FINISH such a project? </li></ul>Not LABELING but providing a FRAMEWORK to discuss differences in positive ways.
  24. 25. Let’s Find Out
  25. 27. A Significant Factor in Education The selection ration (I) calculates the expected number of teachers, based on their frequency in a standard population sample, expected to go into teaching.
  26. 28. My Ideal Staff Development Day EN Extraversion Intuition ES Extraversion Sensing IN Introversion Intuition IS Introversion Sensing
  27. 29. Learning Styles and Coaching <ul><li>The root meaning of the verb ‘to coach’ is to convey a valued person from where he or she was to where he or she wants to be. (p. 24) </li></ul>
  28. 30. The Sequential Coaching Process: <ul><li>Find out what teachers believe. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop a change process that takes into account the information needs and learning needs of each teacher. </li></ul><ul><li>Talk with the teachers about the biggest problems they face in their classrooms. </li></ul><ul><li>Reframe those problems when necessary. </li></ul><ul><li>Develop alternatives, evaluate them, and choose the one with the best chance of success. </li></ul><ul><li>Carefully monitor the implementation of the solution, collecting data as evidence. If this process goes against the teachers’ natural strengths, it will be very difficult to implement correctly to produce the kind of evidence needed to change beliefs. </li></ul><ul><li>It is key to stay dedicated and persistent in ensuring that teacher’s efforts produce evidence that overcomes their beliefs. </li></ul>
  29. 31. <ul><li>I believe that the art of thus giving shape to human powers and adapting them to social service, is the supreme art; one calling to its service the best of artists; that no insight, tact, executive power is too great for such service . - Dewey </li></ul>
  30. 32. Reflection on a Word
  31. 33. Questions for One Another
  32. 34. Thank You!
  33. 35. Helpful Resources . . . <ul><li>Susan Bergman </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Merlene Gilb </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>Sarah Riss </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul><ul><li>WGSD Responsive Teaching Website: </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Kise, J. (2006). Differentiated coaching : A framework for helping teachers change . Thousand Oakes, CA: Corwin Press. </li></ul><ul><li>Tomlinson, C. (2003). Fulfilling the promise of the differentiated classroom: Strategies and tools for responsive teaching . ASCD. </li></ul>