If you’ve ever attended a professional development session on differentiation and walked away more confused and frustrated, you’re not alone. While differentiation is critical to an inclusive and effective classroom, a lot of the training doesn’t offer practical strategies that you can implement right away. Thankfully, this podcast episode does!
In this episode, Caitlin and Jessica offer listeners two easy and effective strategies to help differentiate lessons. And the best part? These easy-to-create resources can be used in a variety of lessons, so the little bit of effort you put in now will pay dividends all year long. Little effort, big impact!
Caitlin and Jessica will show you how to create one graphic organizer in three slightly different formats, so your lower-level, on-level, and higher-level students can all feel challenged without getting frustrated. They will also show you how to design an Evidence Tracker with extra support for students who need it. Listen in and try one of these strategies this week!
Tune in now to hear:
- [01:00] Caitlin and Jessica discuss the frustrations of common differentiation-focused professional development.
- [03:50] A reminder to EB Teachers: Your EB resources already have differentiation built into the lessons!
- [05:00] Tired of going down the rabbithole of online lessons? If you’re looking for a great, supportive community with lots of valuable teaching resources, join our waitlist – we’d love to have you!
- [06:40] Strategy #1: Differentiate writing assignments by batching them in advance. Determine your big writing assignments for the year and create graphic organizers for them, if you do not already have them.
- [08:00] Jessica shares the components of an effective writing graphic organizer.
- [08:40] Next, create a second version of each graphic organizer, for students who need more support. Add checklists and hints for students.
- [09:00] Finally, make a 3rd version of each graphic organizer, this time for advanced students. Include extra writing requirements that the other organizers do not have (for example, “Use 2 academic vocabulary words in each body paragraph”).
- [11:00] Reminder: Rinse and repeat these organizers throughout the year, with multiple writing assignments! With only a few small tweaks, you can use them for many assignments.
- [11:40] Strategy #2: Pass out an Evidence Tracker at the beginning of any reading unit in which students will be finding evidence. (EB teachers, you have access to this in your library already!)
- [12:00] Not an EB teacher? No problem! Jessica walks listeners through the simple process of creating an Evidence Tracker.
- [14:30] Try one of these strategies soon and see what a difference it makes!
- [15:40] If you try one of these strategies in your classroom, let us know how it goes! Visit us on Instagram to share with us.
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