Intermediate Differentiated Instruction
4 Part eSeminar - On Demand with Cindy Strickland


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Program Overview

How do teachers think about, plan for, and carry out differentiation within the context of an entire unit of study? In these sessions, teachers ready to move beyond the basics in differentiation will analyze and emulate examples of differentiation that are multi-faceted in nature and that exemplify the key differentiation principle of flexible grouping.

Prerequisites:
Participants should have participated in a Basic Level Differentiation Course OR have thoroughly read at least one of the following texts: (Study guides are available for the Tomlinson texts at www.ascd.org)

  • Fulfilling the Promise of the Differentiated Classroom by Carol Tomlinson
  • The Differentiated Classroom: Responding to the Needs of All Learners by Carol Tomlinson
  • How to Differentiate Instruction in Mixed-Ability Classrooms, 2nd Edition by Carol Tomlinson
  • Text to be used for the 4 sessions: Tools for High Quality Differentiation: An ASCD Action Tool by Cindy Strickland. Each site will need one copy of the toolkit as well as make copies of specific pages for each participant at the site.

    Audience: Teachers, K-12
    Duration: 90 Minutes each session

    Program Content Description

    Session #1: Setting the Tone for Differentiation
    Participants will:
    Know how to...
  • Set up a classroom for successful differentiation
    a. Physical considerations
    b. Emotional considerations
  • Explain differentiation to students and parents
  • Set up key routines for differentiation
    a. Getting the right assignment to the right student
    b. Getting kids into groups
    c. Giving multiple sets of directions
    d. Handling materials
    e. Keeping the noise level reasonable
    f. Choosing and designing anchor activities
    g. Evaluating and teaching group skills
  • Keep track of student progress

  • Understand that...
  • Teachers in a differentiated classroom must be good managers of space, time, materials, and students
  • Students must be taught how to function well in the DI classroom
  • A smoothly running differentiated classroom requires that teachers and students adjust the ways they think about their respective roles and responsibilities
  • If you can manage a classroom, you can manage a differentiated classroom

  • Be Able To...
  • Anticipate and address common management concerns related to setting up, maintaining, and refining a smoothly running differentiated classroom
  • Assignment 1 will involve at least one of the following:
    For Teachers:

  • Identify management "hotspots" and evaluating current proficiency in dealing with those issues
  • Identifying and attempting a new strategy from the presentation or other source
  • Observing a colleague implement a management strategy
  • Reflecting on management issues and implementation

  • For Administrators:
  • Analyzing specific needs of your school or a team of teachers in your school in terms of addressing management issues
  • Modeling ways to address a management concern either in a classroom or in a staff development setting
  • Observing and analyzing a teacher's use of management strategies to support differentiation
  • Collecting and reflecting upon students and/or teachers' reactions to the strategy

  •  
    Session #2: Getting Ready to Differentiate a UNIT of study
    Participants will:
    Know...
  • The meaning and importance of the KUD in planning for high quality differentiation
  • How to adapt other objective setting models to meet the requirements of high quality differentiation
  • Role of preassessment in differentiating a unit of study

  • Understand that...
  • High quality differentiation must begin with high quality curriculum, which includes a clear focus on learning goals that go beyond knowledge and skills to include big ideas or essential understandings of a discipline
  • We can't differentiate a unit of study well unless we have evidence of the varied needs of students in terms of readiness, interest, and learning profile

  • Be Able To...
  • Tell the difference between a learning objective that focuses on knowledge, understanding, and/or skill
  • Write a coherent and cohesive KUD for a unit of study and for specific lessons within that unit of study
  • Design an appropriate unit preassessment that gathers information about a variety of aspects of student readiness, interest, and learning profile
  • Assignment 2 will involve at least one of the following:
    For Teachers:

  • Writing and field testing a unit KUD
  • Analyzing the application of an existing unit KUD
  • Designing and carrying out a preassessment that supports a unit KUD and showing how to use the results to differentiate appropriately
  • Analyzing the usefulness of an existing preassessment that supports a unit KUD and ways in which this information is used to differentiate the unit
  • Reflecting on the experience

  • For Administrators:
  • Determining the readiness of your staff to analyze and write unit KUDs
  • Designing a staff meeting to introduce or reinforce the writing of KUDs and/or preassessments
  • Designing and carrying out a preassessment that supports a KUD for staff development and showing how to use the results to differentiate appropriately
  • Writing, field testing and/or analyzing a preassessment for differentiated staff development
  • Analyzing the usefulness of an existing preassessment that supports a unit KUD and ways in which this information is used to differentiate the unit

  •  
    Session #3: Differentiating a UNIT of study
    Participants will:
    Know...
  • What the flow of a differentiated UNIT looks like
  • How to incorporate more than one "flavor" of differentiation into classroom content, process, and product
  • How to plan for and track flexible grouping in the differentiated classroom

  • Understand that...
  • Good differentiated units incorporate appropriate differentiation of content, process, and product for variations in student interests, learning profiles, and readiness
  • What and how you choose to differentiate your units depends on your unit goals, the students for whom you are designing the unit, and your own comfort level with the strategies of differentiation

  • Be Able To...
  • Outline a unit of study that reflects the principles of good differentiated practice from start to finish.
  • Assignment 3 will involve at least one of the following:
    For Teachers:

  • Explaining the role of the role of flexible grouping in the differentiation model and reflecting on your own comfort with a variety of aspects of flexible grouping
  • Outlining and annotating a plan to differentiate a unit of study for interest, readiness, and learning profile
  • Analyzing and evaluating the flow of differentiation in existing differentiated units of study

  • For Administrators:
  • Designing a staff meeting to introduce or reinforce the role of flexible grouping in the differentiation model
  • Outlining and annotating a plan to differentiate a staff development initiative for interest, readiness, and learning profile
  • Analyzing and evaluating the flow of differentiation in existing differentiated units of study

  •  
    Session #4: Evaluating a Differentiated Unit of Study
    Participants will:
    Know...
  • How to design a culminating product assignment that appeals to varied interests, learning profiles, and readiness levels
  • How to evaluate the effectiveness of a differentiated unit study from the perspective of the student and the teacher
  • Common worries about grading in the DI classroom and varied ways teachers approach these concerns

  • Understand that...
  • When we provide more than one way for students to show what they have learned in a unit of study we are more likely to get a complete picture of student knowledge, understanding, and skill
  • There are fundamental difficulties with the way grading is handled in most schools, so to be successful with grading in the differentiated classroom we must first wrestle with these general difficulties
  • It is unlikely that we will ever agree on one "fair" grading system, however teachers in a differentiated classroom must THINK about the decisions they make about grading and CONSIDER the ramifications of those decisions for students in general as well as for individual students

  • Be Able To...
  • Design a differentiated culminating assessment for a unit of study
  • Consider multiple perspectives on grading
  • Explain how the philosophy behind differentiation might impact grading decisions
  • Begin to develop a philosophy of defensible grading in the differentiated classroom
  • Assignment 3 will involve at least one of the following:
    For Teachers:

  • Designing or adapting an existing culminating assessment so that it responds to differences in student interest, readiness, and/or learning profile
  • Carrying out and reflecting upon a differentiated culminating assessment
  • Reading, analyzing, and responding to given scenarios in which grading of differentiated assignments is a key issue.
  • Devising a product to communicate to key stakeholders your philosophy of grading in the differentiated classroom

  • For Administrators:
  • Designing or adapting an existing teacher evaluation process so that it responds to differences in student interest, readiness, and/or learning profile
  • Analyzing and reflecting upon a differentiated culminating assessment
  • Reading, analyzing, and responding to given scenarios in which grading of differentiated assignments is a key issue.
  • Devising a staff development to deal with issues surrounding grading in the differentiated classroom
  • What is an "On Demand eSeminar"?

    An On Demand eSeminar is a recorded presentation, available 24/7 from any computer you choose. When you register for an On Demand eSeminar you can view the entire presentation, or parts of the presentation as many times as you wish. You can stop, go back, and review pieces that you would like to focus on. You can even watch part of the presentation at your office, stop and come back to it later at home to finish.

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