Differentiation: a practical approach based on current research
‘Differentiation is a way of thinking about the classroom with dual goals of honouring each student’s learning needs and maximising each student’s learning capacity.’ (Tomlinson & Strickland 2003).
The term‘ differentiation’ is often used in schools but not fully understood. The idea of differentiating instruction to accommodate the different ways that students learn is not ‘rocket science’ but it does require the effective use of formative data and collaborative planning time. It is an approach to teaching that advocates active planning for student differences in classrooms. This workshop will help teachers develop an understanding that –
- They need to create an environment that actively supports students in the work of learning
- There needs to be absolute clarity about the learning destination—(Knowledge, Understandings, Skills)
- They can different the content, process, product or learning environment based on readiness
- They need to persistently know where students are, in relation to the learning destination, all along the way (pre- & formative assessment) and respond accordingly