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Differentiated Instruction


Differentiated Instruction David W. Dillard Interest Centers or Interest Groups Interest centers are set up so that learning experiences are directed toward a ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Differentiated Instruction

Differentiated Instruction
  • David W. Dillard

  • Based on the information provided today, teachers
    will be able
  • To define differentiated instruction (evaluation)
  • Implement differentiated instruction by
    overcoming obstacles and/or identifying current
    practices (evaluation)
  • List three strategies they have used or might use
    in their classroom (evaluation)
  • Find information and additional resources
    (provided in handout)

Definition I
  • Differentiated instruction is a process through
    which teachers enhance learning by matching
    student characteristics to instruction and
    assessment. Differentiated instruction allows
    all students to access the same classroom
    curriculum by providing entry points, learning
    tasks, and outcomes that are tailored to the
    students needs.

Definition II
  • In differentiated classrooms, teachers begin
    where students are, not the front of a curriculum
    guide. They accept and build upon the premise
    that learners differ in important ways. Thus,
    they also accept and act on the premise that
    teachers must be ready to engage students in
    instruction through different learning modalities
    by appealing to differing interests, and by using
    varied rates of instruction along with varied
    degrees of complexity. (Carol Ann Tomlinson)

Definition III
  • In differentiated classrooms, teachers provide
    specific ways for each individual to learn as
    deeply as possible and as quickly as possible,
    without assuming one student's road map for
    learning is identical to anyone else's. These
    teachers believe that students should be held to
    high standards. They work to ensure that
    struggling, advanced, and in-between students
    think and work harder than they meant to achieve
    more than they thought they could and come to
    believe that learning involves effort, risk, and
    personal triumph.
  • (Carol Ann Tomlinson)

Differentiated instructionFrom Wikipedia, the
free encyclopedia
  • Differentiated instruction (sometimes referred to
    as differentiated learning) is a way of thinking
    about teaching and learning. It means using a
    variety of instructional strategies that address
    diverse student learning needs. It places
    students at the center of teaching and learning
    and student needs drive instructional planning.
    Differentiated instruction is a way to enhance
    learning for all students by engaging them in
    activities that respond to particular learning
    needs, strengths, and preferences.

Differentiated instructionFrom Wikipedia, the
free encyclopedia
  • The goals of differentiated instruction are to
    develop challenging and engaging tasks for each
    learner (from low-end learner to high-end
    learner). Instructional activities are flexible
    and based and evaluated on content, process and
    product. Teachers respond to students readiness,
    instructional needs, interests and learning
    preferences and provide opportunities for
    students to work in varied instructional formats.
    In a nutshell, a classroom that utilizes
    differentiated instruction is a
    learner-responsive, teacher-facilitated classroom
    where all students have the opportunity to meet
    curriculum foundational objectives. Lessons
    should be on inquiry based, problem based and
    project based instruction.

Carol Tomlinson, professor at the University of
Virginia, identifies four classroom elements that
can be differentiated
  • Content   What the student needs to learn. The
    instructional concepts should be broad based, and
    all students should be given access to the same
    core content. However, the contents complexity
    should be adapted to students learner profiles.
    Teachers can vary the presentation of content,(
    i.e., textbooks, lecture, demonstrations, taped
    texts) to best meet students needs.

Carol Tomlinson, professor at the University of
Virginia, identifies four classroom elements that
can be differentiated
  • Process   Activities in which the student
    engages to make sense of or master the content.
    Examples of differentiating process activities
    include scaffolding, flexible grouping, interest
    centers, manipulatives, varying the length of
    time for a student to master content, and
    encouraging an advanced learner to pursue a topic
    in greater depth.

Carol Tomlinson, professor at the University of
Virginia, identifies four classroom elements that
can be differentiated
  • Products The culminating projects that ask
    students to apply and extend what they have
    learned. Products should provide students with
    different ways to demonstrate their knowledge as
    well as various levels of difficulty, group or
    individual work, and various means of scoring.

Carol Tomlinson, professor at the University of
Virginia, identifies four classroom elements that
can be differentiated
  • Learning Environment The way the classroom works
    and feels. The differentiated classroom should
    include areas in which students can work quietly
    as well as collaborate with others, materials
    that reflect diverse cultures, and routines that
    allow students to get help when the teacher isnt
    available (Tomlinson, 1995, 1999 Winebrenner,
    1992, 1996).

  • 7.1 Comprehensive services for all resident
    children with disabilities, as required by the
    Individuals with Disabilities Education Act
    (IDEA) and Chapter 162, RSMo, are an integral
    component of the districts educational program.
  • 1. The district has policies and procedures in
    place to ensure provision of effective special
    education services to children (ages 3-21) and
    their parents in accordance with state and
    federal regulations.
  • 2. All students with disabilities have access to
    the general curriculum, participate in regular
    education settings with nondisabled peers, and
    demonstrate progress in the general curriculum.
  • 3. The district ensures that all students with
    disabilities receive appropriate supports,
    services, and modifications (including related
    services, assistive technology, and positive
    behavioral interventions) to address their
    individual needs.
  • 4. The district implements programs which result
    in improved opportunities for post-secondary
    education and employment for students with

  • 6.3 The district has implemented effective
    instructional programs designed to meet the
    assessed needs of its students, as well as the
    practices and procedures needed to support these
  • 1. Classroom strategies that accommodate
    students individual learning needs are
  • 2. A balanced, research-based reading program is
    in place for grades K-3.
  • 3. The district consistently provides access to
    extended learning time and alternative
    instructional delivery systems for all students.
  • 4. The district identifies and provides targeted
    instruction or other needed services/interventions
    for educationally-disadvantaged, ESOL, migrant,
    and homeless students, as well as students who
    may, for other reasons, be at risk of leaving
    school without completing high school.

  • I Long to return to the Good Old Days
  • I thought I was differentiating
  • I teach the way I was taught
  • I dont know how
  • I have too much content to cover
  • Im good at lecturing
  • I cant see how I would grade all those different
  • Kathie F. Nunley, Differentiating in the High
    School, Thousand Oaks, CA Corwin Press, 2006.

  • I thought differentiation was for the elementary
  • I subscribe to ability grouping
  • I have real logistic issues
  • I want my classroom under control
  • I dont know how to measure my students learning
  • I have neither the time nor the funding for all
  • Kathie F. Nunley, Differentiating in the High
    School, Thousand Oaks, CA Corwin Press, 2006.

  • Ive been teaching this way for years and it
  • Theres no support for it at my school
  • My district requires me to follow a prescribed
  • Parents expect lecture format in high school for
    college prep
  • The bottom line if they are learning, you are
  • Kathie F. Nunley, Differentiating in the High
    School, Thousand Oaks, CA Corwin Press, 2006.

Response to
  • Student readiness
  • Student interests
  • Student learning style
  • Multiple intelligences
  • Success for all students
  • What is practical and what is doable

  • Curriculum content, difficulty, standards
  • Rules explicit, implicit, written
  • Instruction teaching style, individual group
    work pace, teacher student directed
  • Materials textbooks, trade books, tests,
    homework, equipment, supplies
  • Environment furniture, seating, space, doors,
    windows, barriers
  • Mary Anne Prater, She Will Succeed! Strategies
    for success in Inclusive Classrooms, Council for
    Exceptional Children

Mary Anne Prater, Council for Exceptional Children
Key Guidelines for Differentiation
  • All of you are already doing some differentiation
  • Take small steps to implement
  • Clarify key concepts and generalizations note
    taking is critical
  • Use assessment as a teaching tool to extend
    rather than merely measure instruction
  • Emphasize critical and creative thinking as a
    goal in lesson design
  • Engaging all learners is essential
  • Provide a balance between teacher-assigned and
    student-selected tasks

Strategies for Differentiated Instruction
  • Informal and formative as opposed to summative
  • Classroom assessment is ongoing through personal
  • Questioning try to question all students
    level the question to ability and aim at higher
    order thinking
  • Observation move around the room, have a room
    chart and make notes
  • Observation II (class management) you should
    know when you have lost them
  • Discussion with the whole class, group, or

Classroom Assessments
  • You have their attention (They have a pulse)
  • One-minute paper (what did the students lean)
  • Note-check teacher and or peer
  • Three (???) questions you still have or would
    like clarified (collect and answer the next day)
  • The Muddiest Point
  • One-sentence Summary
  • Whats the Principle/Process
  • Clickers -- eLearning
  • Questioning

Classroom Assessments
  • Use a seating chart to log questions/responses
  • Can be as easy as /-
  • Can be used for behavior/attention
  • Have students keep a response sheet to questions
    and collect/check at the end of the lesson/day
  • Clickers/eLearning automated responses
  • Thumbs up thumbs down response to questions

Questioning I
  • Remember wait time
  • Provide at least three seconds of thinking time
    after a question and after a response
  • Utilize "think-pair-share"
  • Allow individual thinking time, discussion with a
    partner, and then open up the class discussion
  • Ask "follow-ups" (Why? Do you agree? Can you
  • Tell me more. Can you give an example?
  • Withhold judgment

Questioning II
  • Respond to student answers in a nonevaluative
  • Ask for summary (to promote active listening)
    "Could you please summarize John's point?"
  • Survey the class "How many people agree with the
    author's point of view?" ("thumbs up, thumbs
  • Allow for student calling "Richard, will you
    please call on someone else to respond?"
  • Play devil's advocate

Questioning III
  • Require students to defend their reasoning
    against different points of view
  • Ask students to "unpack their thinking"
  • "Describe how you arrived at your answer."
    ("think aloud")
  • Call on students randomly. Not just those with
    raised hands
  • Student questioning. Let the students develop
    their own questions.
  • Cue student responses. "There is not a single
    correct answer for this question. I want you to
    consider alternatives."

Graphic Organizers Note Taking
  • Do you really know what students are learning,
    writing down, understanding?
  • T-Notes
  • Cornell Notes
  • Lit Circle
  • Q-Notes
  • Inference Notes
  • Cluster Notes
  • Hierarchical Notes
  • Think-in-Threes
  • Timeline Notes
  • Venn Diagrams
  • Conversational Roundtable
  • Episodic Notes
  • Spreadsheet Notes
  • This is a skill that must be taught, use
    different organizers with a specific purpose in
  • Check what students create

Lit Circle Notes
Inference Notes
Cornell Notes
Tiered Assignments
  • Designed to provide different levels of
    complexity, abstractness, and open-endedness.
    The curricular content and objective(s) are the
    same, but the process and/or product are varied
    according to the students level of readiness

Interest Centers or Interest Groups
  • Interest centers are set up so that learning
    experiences are directed toward a specific
    learner interest. Allowing students to choose a
    topic can be motivating to them. The teacher may
    select a variety of topics or areas that students
    or groups can select.

Flexible Grouping
  • Students work as part of many different groups
    depending on the task and/or content.
  • Groups assigned
  • Readiness
  • Assigned by teacher
  • Randomly
  • Chosen by students
  • Allows students to work with a wide variety of
    peers and keeps them from being labeled

Learning Contracts
  • An agreement between the student and the teacher
    (they may or may not be written, but written
    often works better)
  • Teacher specifies the necessary skills
  • Student identifies the methods for completing the
    task (there may or may not be debate on
    establishing and there may or may not be
  • Allows students to
  • Work at an appropriate pace
  • Target their learning style
  • Helps students work independently
  • This is an excellent way for students to
    understand what is EXPECTED of them.

Choice Boards
  • Organizers that contain a variety of activities
  • Students choose activities to complete as they
    learn a skill or develop a product
  • These may contain small groups, pairs, or
    individual assignments

Differentiated Instructional Strategies I
  • Anchor Activities are on-going assignments tied
    to the curriculum and for which students are
    accountable that can be worked on independently
    throughout a grading period or longer.
  • Allowing for multiple right answers are
    open-ended assignments that focus on the process
    of solving the problem and/or critical thinking.
  • Adjusting questions In class discussions, tests,
    and homework, teachers adjust the sorts of
    questions posed to learners based on their
    readiness, interests, and learning profiles.
  • Agendas These are personalized lists of tasks
    that a student must complete in a specified time,
    usually two to three weeks. Student agendas
    throughout a class will have similar and
    dissimilar elements. The agendas can be
    personalized (e.g., include IEP tasks, more
    challenging work) for individual students, if
    needed. Students work individually (or in small
    groups) to complete the agenda tasks.

Differentiated Instructional Strategies II
  • 4MAT Teachers who use 4MAT plan instruction for
    each of four learning preferences over the course
    of several days on a given topic. Thus, some
    lessons focus on mastery, some on understanding,
    some on personal involvement, and some on
    synthesis. Each learner has a chance to approach
    the topic through preferred modes and also
    strengthen weaker areas.
  • Attention to social issues, real world
    experiences, and community projects are
    performance assessment tasks, role-plays,
    simulations, etc. based on authentic situations
    of interest to students.
  • Centers are flexible areas in the classroom that
    address variable learning needs. Centers differ
    from stations in that centers are distinct.
    Stations work in concert with one another. Two
    kinds of centers are particularly useful for
    differentiated instruction learning centers and
    interest centers.
  • Chunking is breaking assignments and activities
    into smaller, more manageable parts and providing
    more structured directions for each part.

Differentiated Instructional Strategies III
  • Compacting is a process that involves
    pre-assessing students, giving them credit for
    what they already know and allowing them to move
    ahead in the curriculum. Compressing the
    required curriculum into a shorter period of time
    so students who master it ahead of their
    classmates can use the time they "buy back" for
    other activities.
  • Emphasis on Thinking skills giving students the
    opportunity to think aloud, discuss their
    thinking with their peers, and reflect on their
    thinking in journals.Developing student
    responsibility giving the students opportunity
    to help develop the evaluation rubrics, write
    project proposals, and complete self and group
    evaluations.Flexible grouping matching
    students to skill work by virtue of readiness,
    not with the assumption that all need the same
    task, computation skill, writing assignment, etc.
    Movement among groups is common, based on
    readiness on a given skill and growth in that
    skill.Flexible pacing allowing for differences
    in the students' ability to master the curricula.

Differentiated Instructional Strategies IV
  • Goal setting and planning involving students in
    their individual goal setting and the planning of
    learning activities, one to one with the
    teacher.Group investigation working in
    cooperative mixed-ability groups on open-ended
    tasks or in like-ability groups working on
    appropriately challenging tasks. Usually the
    focus is on the process and thinking
    skills.Hands-on projects/activities using
    manipulative to motivate instructions.High-level
    questions questioning that draw on advanced
    levels of information, requiring leaps of
    understanding and challenging thinking.Independe
    nt study providing students with the opportunity
    to work independently to investigate topics of
    interest to them.

Differentiated Instructional Strategies V
  • Interdisciplinary/integrated curricula around a
    theme thematic units, which make connections
    across multiple curricular areas.Interest
    centers are designed to motivate students'
    exploration of topics for which they have a
    particular interest.Learning centers are
    classroom areas that contain a collection of
    activities or materials designed to teach,
    reinforce, or extend a particular skill or
    concept.Learning contract is a proposal made
    prior to beginning a project or unit in which the
    resources, steps toward completion, and
    evaluation criteria are agreed upon with the
    teacher.Portfolios provide a means for helping
    teachers and parents reflect on student growth
    over time. These are collections of student work
    are excellent for helping children set
    appropriate learning goals and evaluating their
    own growth.

Differentiated Instructional Strategies VI
  • Problem-Based learning placing students in the
    active role of solving problems in much the same
    way adult professionals perform their jobs. The
    teacher presents students with an unclear,
    complex problem. Students must seek additional
    information, define the problem, locate
    resources, make decisions about solutions, pose
    solution, communicate that solution to others,
    and assess the solution's effectiveness.Stations
    are different spots in the classroom where
    students work on various tasks simultaneously.
    Stations work in concert with one another.
    Stations allow different students to work with
    different tasks. They invite flexible grouping
    because not all students need to go to all
    stations all the time or spend the same amount of
    time in each station.This page was created by
    Michael Szesze, Program Supervisor for

  • http//faculty.rmwc.edu/mentor_grant/Differentiate
  • http//www.weac.org/kids/1998-99/march99/differ2.h
  • http//pdonline.ascd.org/pd_online/diffinstr/el199
  • http//www.sresd.k12.mi.us/pages/resources/differe
  • http//www.njpep.org/pd/learning/differentiated_le
  • Note taking http//www.englishcompanion.com/Tool

This page has an Excellent 36-page handout
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