Differentiated instruction is built on a foundation of effective teaching practices. Quality curriculum is one of these defining principles, as what is taught serves as the basis for how it is taught. Quality curriculum has its basis in standards, or descriptions of student outcomes in content areas. (Puckett, 2013, Chap. 5, Introduction)
However, many educators have concerns regarding these new standards for various reasons outlined in Chapter 5 in the textbook including, but not limited to:
- Lack of training to implement the new standards
- A realistic view of standard mastery of students with special needs
- Too much government control over creative freedom of instruction
- How these new standards will be implemented on such a large scal
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are meant to provide educators and parents with a consistent and clear understanding of student expectations. While written to address English Language Arts and Mathematics, the CCSS address college and career ready knowledge and skills in preparing students to transition from high school to college.
First, read Chapter 5 of the course text. Then view the webinar, “Common Core State Standards: Where Does Differentiating Fit”.
Next, read and respond to the following scenario:
Ms. Phillips instructs in a middle school inclusion class with 20 ‘typical’ students, three students who have an IEP for a Specific Learning Disability, one student who has an IEP for “Other Health Impairment” (ADHD) and two students who are identified as ELL. Her class is beginning with a unit on the American Civil War that will focus on the significance of the Civil War Battle and the reason and significance behind President Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation.
As the unit starts, Ms. Phillips provides her students with a KWL chart to share what they already know about the Civil War
Example of a Student Response to the KWL Chart (Creately, 2011)
After reviewing the student’s KWL charts (see an example above), Ms. Phillips realizes that she should integrate differentiated strategies to provide a more well-rounded and accurate understanding of the topic and to make it more personally relevant.
For this discussion:
- Create two measurable lesson objectives that are aligned with one Common Core Standard. For each of the objectives, create two differentiated strategies designed to master the objective.
- Explain how the strategies you’ve suggested are engaging to diverse learners.
- Cite scholarly sources to support how your strategies are examples of differentiation.
This week you will:
- Create an instructional alignment between the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) and differentiated instruction.
- Develop engaging and motivating differentiated strategies that align with Common Core State Standards.
- Implement instructional plans to promote opportunities for success in differentiated learning environments.
Now that you’ve designed the physical layout of your classroom and have a strong idea of how you will create a positive behavior management system, it is time to get instruction started! With the adoption of the Common Core State Standards, schools are holding students to higher standards and requiring more advanced proficiency in graduation requirements. This means that you, the teacher, will need to create engaging and dynamic lesson plans that align with the new standards that also promote opportunities for success in your differentiated learning environment. It is important to point out that the CCSS do not specify how to teach or how to assess; the standards only identify what students should know and be able to do (CCSS, 2014).
The Common Core State Standards (CCSS) are meant to provide educators and parents with a consistent and clear understanding of student expectations. While written to address English Language Arts and Mathematics, the CCSS address college and career ready knowledge and skills in preparing students to transition from high school to college. One example of providing multiple means of instruction through differentiation is through instructional technology. The following short video from PowerUP What Works (2013) will help to provide some information that will helpful to you.
Other methods of differentiated instructional strategies can be found in Miss Taylor Brooke Stancil’s Differentiated Instructional Strategies Kit (Links to an external site.) with suggestions for all ages, grades and content area.
To begin, this is a three-minute video that clearly explains the purpose behind the Common Core State Standards (CCSS):
This video was created by the DC Public School system. As the video explains, one of the purposes of the Common Core State Standards (CCSS) is to scaffold ideas, starting with a foundation and then gradually becoming more challenging and abstract. Differentiated instruction has a similar conceptual framework as teachers must continually work to identify and implement strategies that work for all students.
For your assignment this week you will create a blog that is written in user-friendly terms and is easily understood by other educators, parents, and community stakeholders regarding the purpose of the Common Core State Standards, the evidence-based foundation for differentiated instruction, and how the two methods align. In addition, you will include resources, references, guides, and materials that will contribute to your reading audiences’ understanding of each topic and how they can be integrated into curriculum material and instructional delivery.
Common Core State Standards Initiative. (2014). Myths vs facts (Links to an external site.). Retrieved from http://www.corestandards.org/about-the-standards/myths-vs-facts/
DC Public Schools. (2012, November 2). Three-minute video explaining the common core state standards (Links to an external site.) [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5s0rRk9sER0
PowerUp What Works. (2013, September 16). Embedded supports to differentiate instruction for struggling students (Links to an external site.) [Video file]. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1GTdUtAUl2M&list=PL9-_3Cww3Z20IhrLNjMDWARunIckafQnP
Stancil, T. (2011, November 30). All children can learn (Links to an external site.). Retrieved from http://cnweb.cn.edu/tedu/New%20Website%20Docs/DifferentiatedInstructionStrategiesKit.pdf
Puckett, K (2013). Differentiating Instruction: A Practical Guide [Electronic version]. Retrieved from https://content.ashford.edu/
- Chapter 5: Instructional Strategies Supporting Differentiated Instructional Practices
Tomlinson, C., Britt, S. (2012). Common core state standards: Where does differentiating fit? ACSD. (Links to an external site.) [Video File]. Retrieved from http://www.ascd.org/professional-development/webinars/tomlinson-and-britt-webinar.aspx
Newton, S. (n.d.). Civil war – kwl. (Links to an external site.) Retrieved from http://creately.com/diagram/example/go7g10ui1/Civil War – KWL
Stancil, T. (n.d.). Differentiated instruction strategies. Retrieved from http://cnweb.cn.edu/tedu/New Website Docs/DifferentiatedInstructionStrategiesKit.pdf
Uzayr, S. (2012, March 13). Top 10 free online blogging platforms. (Links to an external site.) Retrieved from http://sixrevisions.com/tools/top-free-online-blogging/
nlumarketing. (2012, Feburary 1). Career Readiness and Common Core Standards. (Links to an external site.) [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VedAZSrszzE
nlumarketing. (2011, December 8). Tips for Differentiating Instruction with Common Core Standards. (Links to an external site.)[Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN3i0Ws06vA
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