one size does not fit all an introduction to differentiated instruction
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One Size Does Not Fit All: An Introduction to Differentiated Instruction

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One Size Does Not Fit All: An Introduction to Differentiated Instruction. Workshop 1. Take Care of Business. Introductions Expectations Graduate Credit Service Agreements & Vouchers. How well do YOU know the people around you? . 3 Facts & a Fib Write 3 facts about yourself

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take care of business
Take Care of Business
  • Introductions
  • Expectations
  • Graduate Credit
  • Service Agreements & Vouchers
how well do you know the people around you
How well do YOU know the people around you?
  • 3 Facts & a Fib
    • Write 3 facts about yourself
    • Write 1 fib about yourself
    • Circulate & talk to 5 people
    • If they do not correctly identify the fib, they must sign your postcard
workshop outcomes
Workshop Outcomes
  • Increased understanding of what Differentiated Instruction IS & IS NOT
  • Add to our Instructional Strategies Toolbox
  • Increased understanding of theories of multiple intelligence/learning styles
  • Begin planning a differentiated lesson/unit for your own classroom

“If students don\'t learn the way we teach them, we must teach them the way they learn.”

- Marcia Tate, Developing Minds Inc., Conyers, GA

what is your north star
What Is Your North Star?
  • Peter H. Reynolds
  • Listen to the story online
  • Read it online
differentiation is not
Differentiation IS NOT . . .
  • The same as an IEP for every student
  • Just another way to group kids
  • Expecting less of struggling learners than of typical learners
  • A substitute for specialized services
  • Chaotic
  • New
good differentiation is
Good Differentiation IS . . .
  • Varied avenues to content, process, product
  • Respectful of all learners
  • Proactive
  • Student-centered
  • A blend of whole class, small group, and individual instruction
  • Based on students’ readiness, interests, and/or learning profile
essential questions
Essential Questions
  • Who are the students in our classrooms?
  • What diversity impacts and influences curriculum and instruction?
diversity in the classroom




Vision Impaired

Hearing Impaired



Physically Disabled

Multiple Handicapped

English Language Learners

Social Status

Economic Status

Diversity in the Classroom
3 keys to differentiated instruction
3 Keys to Differentiated Instruction
  • Content
    • What we teach students
    • Materials and methods used
  • Process
    • Activities
    • Calls on students to use key skills
  • Product
    • How students show what they have learned
    • Should also allow students to extend what they learned
key 1 adapt content
Key #1 – Adapt Content
  • Refers to both materials & methods
  • Accommodate students’ different starting points
    • Some students ready for more complex or abstract levels
    • Some students ready for independent work
content differentiation examples
Content Differentiation Examples
  • Multiple versions of texts
  • Variety of texts to support concept
  • Interest centers
  • Learning contracts
  • Support systems
    • Audiotapes
    • Mentors
    • Study partners
key 2 adapt process
Key #2 – Adapt Process
  • Students use key skills
    • Bloom’s Taxonomy
    • Multiple Intelligence Theories
  • Common focus
    • Vary student activities
  • Teacher uses a variety of methods
process differentiation examples
Process Differentiation Examples
  • Tiered Assignments
    • Layered Curriculum (Nunley)
  • Learning Centers
  • Jig Saw Assignments
  • Learning Logs
  • Graphic Organizers
  • Modify their environment (fidgets)
key 3 adapt product
Key #3 – Adapt Product
  • Culminating learning experience that occurs after many days or weeks of study
  • Demonstration and extension of what they know, understand, and are able to do
product differentiation examples
Product Differentiation Examples
  • Variety of assessment types
  • Tiered Assignments
  • Independent Study
variables to consider
Variables to Consider
  • Readiness – in reading, math, & beyond
  • Complexity & Challenge of both process & product
  • Pace of learning and production
  • Grouping practices
  • Use of assessment results to inform teaching and learning
guidelines for the di classroom
Guidelines for the DI Classroom
  • Focus on essentials
  • Attend to student differences
    • NO strategy works on ALL students
  • Assess often and use it to make adjustments/modifications
  • Mutual respect
  • Be flexible
  • Doesn’t happen 100% of the time!!!!
simple ways to start
Simple Ways to Start
  • Add an interdisciplinary element to a favorite unit
  • Collaborate with other teachers
  • Offer students a variety of presentation options
  • Apply Multiple Intelligence thinking to group/individual projects
a few fun strategies

A Few Fun Strategies

Teach In Color!

Creature Comforts!


color increases understanding
Color Increases Understanding
  • Using color for key concepts can increase memory retention up to 25%
teach in c o l o r
Teach in Color
  • Color Code
    • Key Concepts
    • Colored Pens
    • Color with Sunshine
  • Painted Essay
  • Colored Acetate
    • Number chart
    • Sliding mask
    • Highlighting tape
    • Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome
a quick start
A Quick Start
  • “Color Code” key concepts
    • Easy in modern classrooms
      • White boards, Smart Boards, & computer software
    • Key terms in all content areas
    • Math (parts of equations)
    • Language arts (parts of speech, important vocabulary, editing)
  • Correct “with sunshine”
  • Students do their own color coding
    • Highlighting Tape
    • Colored pens/pencils/highlighters
word walls in color
Word Walls in Color


correct with sunshine
Correct “With Sunshine”
  • Use yellow highlighter to identify incorrect answers
  • Give student option to correct and receive partial (or whole) credit
    • Key to success – require students to explain in writing what they did wrong and how they corrected the problem
use colored pens pencils
Use Colored Pens/Pencils
  • In writing for peer editing
    • Each member of group gets a different color
    • Can instantly see if everyone has contributed
      • Option – students use colored pen for their own editing/revising
  • For language study of verbs
    • Color code the different tenses
    • Color code the verb endings
    • Color code roots/prefixes/suffixes
skier to ski
Je skie

Tu skies

Il/elle/on skie

Nous skions

Vous skiez

Ils/elles skient

Skier(to ski)
  • Post key concepts or terms on walls
  • Use bright colored paper
  • At test time . . .
    • Leave it up in same place
    • Cover the concept with the same color paper
  • Memory trigger for visual learners
    • They can “picture” the words.
vision learning
Vision & Learning
  • “25% of students in grades k-6 have visual problems that are serious enough to impede learning.” (American Public Health Association)
  • “It is estimated that 80% of children with a learning disability have an undiagnosed vision problem.”(Vision Council of America)
20 20 does not mean that vision is perfect
20/20 does not mean that vision is perfect!
  • The 20/20 vision test does not test how well you see at reading distance. In fact, the 20/20 test fails to evaluate many other important aspects of normal vision such as:
    • Eye focusing
    • Eye coordination
    • Eye teaming (binocular vision)
    • Eye movement
    • Visual perceptual skills
    • Color vision
simple tools
Simple Tools
  • Sliding Masks & Focus Frames
    • Provides for a narrower focus
    • Add colored acetate
  • Book Marks & Sticky Flags
    • Provides focus
    • Add colored acetate
    • Coded Bookmarks
    • Sticky Flags
scotopic sensitivity syndrome
Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome
  • 12% of population
  • Contrast problems (only 1 symptom)
    • Black text on bright white paper
    • Striped patterns on carpet clothes seem to move
    • Vertical/horizontal blinds
  • Leads to classroom difficulties
    • Restlessness
    • Difficulty staying on task
scotopic sensitivity syndrome1
Scotopic Sensitivity Syndrome
  • Contrast problems (only 1 symptom)
  • Strategies
    • Use dull colored paper for writing
    • Use colored acetate over black text on white paper
    • Use a bookmark when reading to avoid losing place
creature comforts grades k 12
Creature Comforts Grades K-12
  • Tolerance for sitting will ALWAYS be at different levels for different people.
  • Even adults benefit from Fidgets or Movement
  • Set ground rules in the classroom.
      • Remove “it” if/when it becomes a toy or distraction
tactile fidgets grades k 12
Tactile FidgetsGrades K-12
  • Paper clip
  • Cellophane tape rolled backwards around a finger
  • Pipe cleaners
  • Stress balls
  • Pocket Fidget (small item kept in the child’s pocket)
  • Carpet square under desk
visual fidgets grades k 12
Visual FidgetsGrades K-12
  • Lava lamp
  • Fish tank
  • Mobile
nomadic learners
Nomadic Learners
  • “If we build in enough movement during the class period, students will be less likely to move on their own.”
  • Motion resources
    • Minds in Motion
    • Learning on Their Feet

ideas for the nomadic learner
Ideas for the Nomadic Learner
  • Mini Field Trip
  • A Home Away From Home
  • Music Stand Learning
  • Rocking Chair Reversal
act it out visual clues grades 4 12
Act It Out – Visual CluesGrades 4-12
  • Vocabulary strategy for the Kinesthetic Learner
    • Place students into groups
    • Provide 60 seconds to figure out how to Act Out a vocabulary word
      • Example – PERIMETER (walking around edge of room)
involve the senses
Involve the Senses
  • See
  • Hear
  • Taste
  • Smell
  • Touch
why music
Why Music?
  • Stimulates the brain
    • Right side for creativity
    • Activates thinking parts of the brain
  • Creates a sound curtain to isolate groups
  • Increases attentiveness
  • Effects emotions, heart rate, mood, mental images of listener
  • Embeds learning faster
    • Alphabet song
multiple intelligences

Multiple Intelligences

Begin With the Brain

brain principles
Brain Principles
  • The brain is a complex adaptive system.
  • The brain is social.
  • The search for meaning is innate.
  • The search for meaning occurs through patterning.
  • Emotions are critical to patterning.
  • Every brain simultaneously perceives and creates parts.
more brain principles
More Brain Principles
  • Learning involves both focused attention and peripheral perception.
  • Learning always involves conscious and unconscious processes.
  • We have at least 2 ways of organizing memory.
  • Learning is developmental.
  • Complex learning is enhanced by challenge and inhibited by threat.
  • Every brain is uniquely organized.
simple learning styles
Simple Learning Styles
  • Auditory
    • Learns best from listening
  • Visual
    • Learns best from seeing
  • Kinesthetic/Tactile
    • Learns best from doing
why visual literacy
Why Visual Literacy?
  • Average youth today
    • By age 18 - 22,000 hours watching TV
      • By age 14 has seen 12,000 murders on network TV programming!!!!
    • By 18 – 12,500 hours in school
  • Average vocabulary of 14-year-olds is shrinking
    • In 1950 – 25,000 words
    • In 1999 – 10,000 words
visual learner
Visual Learner
  • Images go directly to long-term memory in brain
  • Humans process visuals 60,000 times faster than text
  • Words processed sequentially
    • Keyboard
  • Images processed simultaneously
    • Camera
turn your paper sideways
Turn Your Paper Sideways
  • Grades 2-7 (or higher if needed)
  • A trick for lining up numbers when working with multi-digit numbers in columns
    • TURN THE PAPER SIDEWAYS & use the lines as column guides
    • Also provides novelty (brain trigger)
jig saw book
Jig-Saw Book
  • Good tool for kinesthetic learners
  • They can manipulate the content
gardner s multiple intelligences








Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences
sternberg intelligences
Sternberg Intelligences
  • Analytical
  • Practical
  • Creative
writing intelligence preference lesson plans
Writing Intelligence Preference Lesson Plans
  • As a result of the lesson, students should
    • Know what?
    • Understand what?
    • Be able to do what?
  • What range of learner needs in your class relate to the topic?
difficulty vs rigor
Difficulty vs Rigor

“ We must be careful not to assign

more difficult tasks (tasks requiring

more effort or time) when what we

mean to do is challenge students with more rigorous tasks (tasks requiring more complex thought).”

Judith Dodge - Differentiation in Action

assignments for next time
Assignments for Next Time
  • Try a new strategy & report back to the group about the experience
  • Begin the planning process for a lesson using intelligence preference
    • Choose a standard (or standards) to teach
    • Identify student goals for that standard
    • Choose possible strategies
    • Be prepared to share with the group
resource nunley website
Resource - Nunley Website
  • HOT TOPIC # 1: When counting, gestures help. Researchers discoveredthat when students have to count things, those that could point, nod or otherwise make body gestures, were faster and more accurate than those who were not allowed to gesture. The gesture apparently adds rhythm which makes counting more accurate and also aids the brain in maintaining place. Carlson, R. et al. (2007). Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory & Cognition, Vol 33, 4
  • Teacher Tip # 2: We use music for transition times in class and between class periods. I ask for student volunteers to bring in a CD of their choice for us to use for the week. No name, workshop participant, Midland, Michigan.

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