Essay - Differentiated Learning by Differentiating Instruction, the Educator is Recognizing that...


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Differentiated Learning

By differentiating instruction, the educator is recognizing that learners vary in ********** background, experience, intelligence, knowledge, language, interests, learning styles, and unique abilities. Differentiated instruction provides an approach to learning tailored to individuals of differing capabilities in the same classroom. The purpose of this differentiation is ***** leverage each student's educational development through catering to his or her individual educational needs.

***** Ann Tomlinson, a specialist in differentiated instruction and author of several books on ***** topic including The ***** Classroom: Responding to the Needs ***** all Learners, stresses ***** st*****ardized practices fail academically diverse learners.

Differentiated classrooms feel right to students who learn in different ways and at different rates ***** who bring to school different talents and *****. More significantly, such classrooms work better for a full range of students than do one- size-fits-all settings. Teac*****s in ***** ***** are more in touch with their ***** and approach teaching more as an art th***** as a mechanical exercise (4).

A teacher, however, should not just differentiate learning ********** any thought to the process, according to Tomlinson. Educators should make sure that curriculum is specifically focused on the informati***** and knowledge most essential to experts in a cert*****in discipline; curricula, programs, and products are developed to en***** that stud*****ts tackle with, apply and underst***** those priorities; *****on and assignments are interesting and relevant to students; and learning is active and ***** personal interest and satisfaction to a widest range of students.

There is no magic recipe for instructors. They must search for and develop materials based on these factors that are unique to each classroom ***** its *****. "Differentiati***** of instruction ***** a te*****cher's response ***** learner's needs, guided by general principles of differentiation such as respectful tasks, flexible grouping, and ongoing assessment and adjustment. Teachers can differentiate content, process, and product, according to students' readiness, **********, and ***** profile" (15).

T***** book, Responding to the Need, in particular offers specific suggestions on how ***** develop and incorporate differentiated learning. For example an activity described in Chapter One discusses how students in fifth grade at an elementary ***** ***** learning about well-known people as a way to link social studies ***** language arts. Everyone must acquire and use research ***** writing skills and share wh***** is learned with other students.

Fifth-grade students are given the assignment to read a biography of a famous person from literature or hist*****y. As most librarians ***** teachers know, most students ***** ***** age are not interested in biographies, so ***** teacher has a barrier ***** the beg*****ning. Students must use print and electronic research materials to learn ***** the person they choose and then write a report about him or her. To increase creativity, ***** are motivated to use both original ***** found illustrations in their *****s. The ***** uses a rubric to assist students ***** areas such as use of resources, organization, and quality of language.

An***** teac***** hands out interest inven*****ries to help students find topics that shows a

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