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TAG Presentation Grouping Strategies. Common Message for Principals, TOSAs, TAG Coordinators and Instructional Facilitators GOAL: Create a common language for grouping strategies in PPS. Why Group?.

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tag presentation grouping strategies

TAG PresentationGrouping Strategies

Common Message for Principals, TOSAs, TAG Coordinators and Instructional Facilitators

GOAL: Create a common language for grouping strategies in PPS

why group
Why Group?

Effective differentiation requires a classroom organization and management system that promotes students’ independence and responsibility, makes efficient use of instruction time, and limits the intensity of teacher preparation for instruction.

Bertie Kingore, Ph.D.

Reaching All Learners


“The Flexible use of student groups is the heart of differentiated instruction.”

When you group flexibly, you create instruction groups and prescribe specific activities that respond to students’ learning needs.

Diane Heacox, Ed.D.

Differentiating Instruction in the Regular Classroom

common language
Common Language
  • Ability or Performance Criteria?
  • Flexible grouping
    • Performance-based
    • Ability-based
    • Heterogeneous and cooperative
    • Whole group
    • Pairs, triads, tetrads…
  • Cluster grouping
  • Tracking **Defined here, but NOT recommended.
  • Teacher looks at current performance or potential for performance to determine groups.

Ability or Aptitude

  • Students are grouped according to scores on standardized tests of aptitude, intelligence, or ability.
flexible grouping
Flexible Grouping
  • Teacher uses curricular needs, student needs, ability, performance, interest, strengths, and preferences to determine the group make-up.
  • Used as needed to provide a better instructional match for students.
  • Flexible grouping is changed regularly to match student need to the task at hand.
flexible grouping7

Flexible Grouping

Occurs when there is a whole group assessment or instruction initially; and then the students are divided by their need for either review, re-teaching, practice, or enrichment.

Such grouping could be a single lesson or objective, a set of skills, a unit of study, or a major concept or theme.

Flexible grouping creates temporary groups for an hour, a day, a week, or a month or so. It does not create permanent groups.

performance grouping leveled groups
Performance Grouping (Leveled Groups)
  • Teacher looks at current assessment data in a particular content area to determine group membership.
  • Examples include
    • Walk to Read, Mosey to Math
    • Lit Circles
    • Reading/math groups
cluster grouping
Cluster Grouping
  • Purposeful classroom placement of 3-6 similar ability students (usually in the top 5%) together in a mixed ability classroom.
  • Ideally, the teacher has an interest and knowledge in teaching this group of students.
cluster grouping10
Cluster Grouping
  • Benefits
    • Provides a full-time gifted program requiring minimal funds
    • Prevents gifted kids from becoming the group which benefits least from heterogeneous grouping
    • Keeps TAG students together in area of strength and allows for taking risks which may not occur in heterogeneous grouping.
tracking we are not advocating this
Tracking(We are NOT Advocating this)
  • General learning ability or performance grouping that does not change. Once a student is assigned to this group, he/she keeps that assignment over the year, or years, regardless of change in achievement level.
cooperative grouping
Cooperative Grouping
  • Students are grouped for collaborative work, either by the teacher or by student choice
  • Grouping for the purpose of developing cooperative skills
  • Gifted students may have much to lose and little to gain from traditional cooperative groupings
follow up to the dr karen rogers presentation organizing the learning of gifted
Follow-up to the Dr. Karen Rogers Presentation: Organizing the Learning of Gifted

Gifted learners need to be grouped for substantial blocks of time for learning and for socializing

  • Magnet Schools, Full-time Gifted Programs
  • Cluster Grouping
  • Within Class Grouping
  • Cross-Grade Grouping
  • Pull-out/send-out Programs
  • Like-ability/performance Grouping
  • Cooperative Grouping
  • Academic teams and competitions
  • Affective support groups
  • Service learning and other group projects
research on instructional management grouping permutations
Research on Instructional Management:Grouping Permutations
  • Full-time ability grouping- Magnet schools (ES= .49)

e.g. Those receiving full-time ability grouping had 1.49 years of academic growth in one year’s time.

  • Regrouping for specific instruction (ES= .34)
  • Cluster grouping of GT students (ES= .59)
  • Send-out grouping (ES= .45)
  • Within class ability grouping (ES= .34)
  • Cross-graded classes (ES= .45)
  • Mixed ability cooperative groups (ES= 0)
  • Like ability cooperative groups (ES=.28)

Karen Rogers, Ph.D.


Whole class

Mixed ability

Similar ability

Individual work

Cooperative work

Common time for teachers to meet and plan


“The concerns are adult issues, not kid issues….” a paraphrase from a PPS Principal in reference to student movement to an above grade level class.

planning for grouping questions to consider
Planning for Grouping:Questions to Consider

When does grouping benefit students?

When does grouping facilitate instruction?

Which activities lend themselves to group work?

How do you determine group membership?

pre assessment


The purpose of pre-assessment is to determine what students know about a topic before it is taught. Pre-assessment will help the teacher determine flexible grouping patterns and should be used regularly.

pre assessment strategy examples
Pre-assessment Strategy Examples

Teacher prepared pre-test

KWL Charts /Graphic Organizers

Writing Prompts/Samples

Guess Box

Student demonstrations and discussions

Student products and work samples

Show of hands/EPR Every Pupil Response

Standardized Tests/ISM Data

Teacher observation/Checklist

support from otl
Support from OTL


Accelerated content materials-

when pre-assessments show it is necessary

management of groups
Management of Groups

Prepare the students

Discuss what and why your classroom operates like it does

Behavior expectations

Managing student work

What to do when you’re done

effective grouping options activity
Effective Grouping Options Activity

Use the Effective Grouping Options Handout

Work as a Table

Fill in the boxes

Discuss questions provided


Flexible Grouping for the delivery of instruction is the cornerstone of appropriate differentiation for the gifted student as well as all students. The use of Flexible Grouping assures Success for Every Student.