Rigor is creating an environment in which each student is expected to learn at high levels,
each student is supported so he or she can learn at high levels,
and each student demonstrates learning at high levels (Blackburn, 2008).

Thursday, February 26, 2015

What Is #Differentiation?

Differentiated instruction is a popular concept, and I have heard many interpretations of its meaning. For most teachers, it means creating lessons that include different elements to meet the needs of each individual student in a diverse classroom. According to the technical definition, in differentiated instruction, a teacher varies the content (what), process (how), or product (demonstration of learning) of instruction to enhance student understanding.

One concern I hear from teachers is that differentiation means some students will miss some aspects of learning. In sports, there are basic warm-up exercises and drills that every player does. But good coaches also work with each player during practice to increase strengths and bolster any weaknesses. During instruction, we need to do the same thing. We should teach the core information to everyone and adjust our lessons based on what we know about our students in order to help every individual reach his or her potential. 

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