An extension of my blog post- "Differentiation. Stop rolling your eyes..."
- Practical List of Ideas for Differentiation
(inspired by #edchat conversation on 7-20-10):1. Upon reading a
book in an elementary school classroom at the "carpet area," allow
students with attention concerns, sensorimotor problems, or other
sensory issues to sit in chairs, bean bags, or in a defined space on the
carpet away from other wandering hands.
2. While reading a
story to elementary school students, stop to ask questions to help make
connections. Being aware of students' baseline levels, ask one student
to name the characters in the story. Ask another student to tell which
character is his favorite and why. Ask the nonverbal student with
autism to point to a verbally named character.
3. @suedensmore gave a great
example from her music class during #edchat-"Differentiation: some kids can play the lead
part, others play more supporting w/less notes. We all play the same
4. In a 3-8 math
class where students are expected to know the times tables, place a
multiplication table on the desk (or inside a notebook or the front
cover of a text book to be more discreet). Better yet, hand the student
5. If you know that one of
your students works at a slower pace than the others and you hand out a
worksheet that needs to be completed, why not CUT THE WORKSHEET IN HALF
for that student. OR, do it for half the class (no one will know which
students need less work).
6. STOP TEACHING
WITH WORKSHEETS! But, if you must, alter the worksheets for students.
Remember that students with special needs like autism or Down syndrome
are often visual learners, but so are many others. Take out extraneous
detail or distracting content. Limit text on the page. Provide visual
cues and less answer choices. (If you didn't create the worksheet, but
are photocopying it, use White Out or place a Post-It over the section
you want to delete while you copy the page.)
7. In high
school, let the student decide what grade to work for. Give out a
rubric for an A. Give out a rubric for a B. Give out a rubric for a
C. Tell the students that they can choose to get any grade they want
A-C depending on the work they complete.
lecturing and expecting students to take notes in a high school or
middle school class, consider handing out a template ahead of time to
students who may need it. Allow students to record lectures. Consider
recording your own lectures using a Flip
Cam and post your lectures online to help students make connections
between their notes and your presentation.
9. In an
elementary classroom where students are learning to add and subtract,
try using Touch Math. Teach
this method of counting touch points to the whole class, and let
students choose to use the strategy or not. Do the same with touch
points for coins.
10. In a Kindergarten when writing their names, some students can use a
#2 pencil, some students may need a fat tipped marker, some students
may need to use stamps, while other students may need to use a keyboard
to type the letters.
11. In P.E. class, if a student cannot perform the assigned task, can
it be modified? If the student can't do jumping jacks, how about just
the legs? or just the arms? How about running in place?
12. Writer's Workshop. One student may be encouraged to write a
paragraph and type it on the computer. Another student may be
encouraged to write a complete sentence and check it with a proofreading
checklist. Another student may still be asked to draw a picture.
Another student might make a graphic image or even post his work on
Please share more!!!