Differentiated Instruction Presentation - June 2011

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Transcript Differentiated Instruction Presentation - June 2011

Board of Education Presentation Differentiated Instruction Committee Garden City Public Schools June 14, 2011

District Committee Members


• • • • • Dr. Teresa Prendergast Susan Lee Linda Norton Jean Ricotta Eileen Vota • • • •


Nancy Basel Stella Cristoforo Joellen Crowley Beth McVicar


• • • • • • • • Lori Palladino Eryn Maher Sarah Kashetta Marissa Pollicino Kevin Pollitt Michelle Ciquera Amanda Tarazi Dr. Paris Zaferiou

Middle School Professional Learning Community

• • • • • Dina Reilly Maria Cafaro Judith Hecker Ellen Wohlberg Dr. Nancy Mannion • • • • • Patricia McCartin Elaine Freerick Nancy Menges Susan Cohen Susan Brown

Charge of the Committee

To conduct a comprehensive assessment of the status of differentiated instruction in classrooms and to develop an action plan for improvement.

• • Review of research on differentiated instruction Develop a teacher survey on current classroom practices • • Create parent and student interest surveys Define ‘differentiated instruction’ • • Conduct parent focus groups Participate in staff development initiatives and professional learning communities • Present findings and recommendations to the Board of Education in June

Committee Members at Work

Goal: Review of the Research on Differentiated Instruction

Differentiation is responsive teaching rather than one-size fits-all teaching

“It means teachers proactively plan varied approaches to what students need to learn, how they will learn it, and/or how they will

show what they have learned

in order to increase the likelihood that each student will learn as much as he or she can, as efficiently as possible.” Carol Ann Tomlinson

Differentiated Instruction Defined “Differentiated instruction is a teaching philosophy based on the premise that teachers should adapt instruction to student differences. Rather than marching students through the curriculum lockstep, teachers should modify their instruction to meet students’ varying readiness levels, learning preferences, and interests. Therefore, the teacher proactively plans a variety of ways to ‘get at’ and express learning.” Carol Ann Tomlinson

Comparing Classrooms

Differentiated Classroom Traditional Classroom

• • • • • • • • • • • • Many learning profile options provided Many instructional arrangements used Student readiness, interest, and learning profile shape instruction Use of essential skills to make sense of and understand key concepts and principles as focus of learning Multi-option assignments are frequently used Flexible use of time based on student need Multiple materials provided Multiple perspectives on ideas and events are sought Teacher is a facilitator encouraging self reliant learning Students are assessed multiple ways Focus on multiple intelligences Excellence is defined by individual growth from a starting point • • • • • • • • • • • • Relatively few profile options taken into account Whole-class instruction dominates Coverage of texts and curriculum guides drive instruction Mastery of facts and skills out-of context are the focus of learning Single option assignments are the norm Time is relatively inflexible A single text prevails Single interpretations of ideas and events The teacher directs student behavior A single form of assessment is often used A relatively narrow sense of intelligence prevails A single definition of excellence exists The Differentiated Classroom by Carol Ann Tomlinson

Moderate Differentiation Differentiated Instruction Strategies Intensive Differentiation Choices of books Homework options Use of reading buddies Varied journal prompts Varied pacing with anchor options Student-teaching goal setting Work alone / together Whole-to-part and part-to-whole explorations Flexible seating Varied computer programs Varied supplementary materials Options for varied modes of expression Varying scaffolding on same organizer Think-Pair-Share by readiness, interest, learning profile Use of collaboration, independence, and cooperation Open-ended activities Mini-workshops to re-teach or extend skills Jigsaw Explorations by interests Games to practice mastery of information Multiple levels of questions Tiered activities and labs Tiered products Independent studies Multiple texts Alternative assessments Learning contracts Multiple-intelligence options Compacting Spelling by readiness Varying organizers Lectures coupled with graphic organizers Interest groups Tiered centers Interest centers Literature circles Stations Group Investigation Teams, Games, and Tournaments Problem-Based Learning Graduated rubrics Flexible reading formats Student-centered writing formats

Goal: Define “Differentiated Instruction”

GARDEN CITY SCHOOL DISTRICT Mission Statement  The Garden City School District seeks to create an environment for learning which enables each student the opportunity to grow as an individual as well as a group member while striving to achieve the optimal level of academic, social and personal success.

 Students will thrive in a learning environment that is developmentally appropriate, individualized and challenging.

 Our goal and responsibility is to help each student develop an enthusiasm for learning, a respect for self and others, and the skills to become a creative independent thinker and problem solver.

Garden City Definition for Differentiated Instruction

• • • Differentiated instruction is based upon the principle that all children learn best when the instruction is responsive to the uniqueness of each student.

The intent is to maximize each child’s opportunities for growth and individual success, by addressing their academic abilities, learning styles and interests.

In order to challenge students at their readiness levels, the instructional process will focus on what students need to learn (content), how they learn it (process), and how they demonstrate their understanding (product).

Differentiated Instruction is a teacher’s response to learner’s needs guided by general principles of differentiation, such as respectful tasks flexible grouping ongoing assessment and adjustment Teachers can differentiate

Content Process

Readiness Interest through a range of instructional strategies


Learning Profile

What Differentiated Instruction … • • • • • IS Differentiated instruction is more QUALITATIVE than quantitative Differentiated instruction provides MULTIPLE approaches to content, process, and product Differentiated instruction is STUDENT CENTERED Differentiated instruction is a BLEND of whole class, group, and individual instruction Differentiated instruction is "ORGANIC" • • • • • IS NOT Individual instruction Chaotic or new Just another way to provide homogenous instruction (you do use flexible grouping instead) Just modifying grading systems and reducing work loads More work for the "good" students and less and different for the "poor" students

How to Differentiate Instruction in Mixed-

Ability Classrooms by Carol Ann Tomlinson

Goal: Participate in Staff Development Initiatives and Professional Learning Communities

• • • • • • • • •

Staff Development Opportunities 2010-11

Connecting Content and Kids: Differentiated Instruction and Understanding by Design with Carol Ann Tomlinson and Jay McTighe Differentiated Instruction In The Math Classroom with National Presenter Dr. Nanci Smith Current, Best Strategies for Challenging and Motivating your Gifted Students Charlotte Danielson’s Framework for Teaching: An Overview Teaching Gifted Students in the Classroom Current, Best Strategies for Challenging and Motivating Your Gifted Students Teachers College Reading and Writing Project Critical Thinking Instruction: How to Teach Problem Solving Skills to All Students Inclusion and the Differentiated Classroom

• • • • • • •

Staff Development Opportunities 2011-12

Differentiation for Gifted Learners in the Classroom (BOCES) Differentiating Math Instruction for Multiple Intelligences (Consultant John Hinton) Bridging the Mathematical Gap- Strategies for Differentiating Math Instruction (SCOPE) Differentiated Instruction in Action: Tiered Activities and Center Based Learning (Marissa Pollicino) Reaching Your Accelerated Students: Differentiation for Higher Achievers (Rich Madden) Maximizing Student Potential: Learning Styles and Multiple Intelligences in a Differentiated Classroom (Patricia Roberts) Collegial Circle: Brain Stations for Students (Dolores Volpe)

What is the Garden City Middle School Professional Learning Community?

 A collaborative professional community of faculty and staff whose goal is to ensure effective teaching and learning practices which address the needs of diverse learners in the classroom at their developmental level.

 Cross section of staff members whose focus is to help implement school and district goals at the middle school level.

How Has the Middle School P.L.C. Implemented the District’s Goal?

 Conducted faculty survey assessing the knowledge of differentiated instructional strategies and practices.

 Reviewed the data compiled from teacher surveys.

 Facilitated a workshop encouraging teachers to share effective differentiated strategies among each other.

 Developed a reference book for teacher use as a resource for lesson development templates.

How has the P.L.C. Implemented the District’s Goal? (cont’d)

 Organized a menu of relevant professional development ideas for teachers on differentiated instructional continuum.

 Facilitated a teacher resource room showcasing various differentiated instructional resources, ancillary materials, websites and knowledge sharing among faculty members.

Goal: Develop Teacher Survey on Current Classroom Practices

Teacher Differentiated Instruction Survey

A survey was administered to primary and elementary teachers in April 2011 to identify current classroom practices pertaining to differentiation. The results of the survey will be used to determine alignment with best practices. Teachers were asked: • to identify their familiarity and usage with various DI strategies, techniques or methods.

• to identify the content area for which the district could support teachers in differentiating instruction. • to recommend specific materials, web sites, professional books or other resources. • how they tailored instruction to meet the needs of accelerated or struggling students.

• to identify ways the district could support teachers in working towards the goal of offering differentiated instruction for all students.

Teacher Familiarity and Usage with Various DI strategies

Familiar/Very Familiar Use Occasionally/ Regularly Teaching strategy or technique

Flexible Grouping Depth and Complexity Extensions Tiered Lessons Compacting Questioning Strategies Student self assessment Peer Critiques Centers or stations Pre-assessment Product Options RAFTing 88% 79% 79% 50% 93% 66% 65% 88% 91% 73% 36% 86% 45% 82% 60% 92% 61% 56% 86% 83% 75% 19%

Survey Responses

• • • In the last three years, 89% of teachers have attended a workshop on differentiated instruction; 59% have attended a workshop pertaining to special education; 12% of the teachers reported attending a workshop in gifted education.

55% of the teachers would like additional support in differentiating mathematics instruction Teachers were interested in staff development initiatives focusing on specific DI strategies  the development of tiered lessons,  the compacting of curriculum,  different product options  ‘RAFTING’  student self-assessments

• • • • • • • •

Teaching Methodologies Used to Meet the Needs of Accelerated Students

Differentiated reading groups, writing assignments, homework assignments Flexible grouping Use of ‘just right books’ during reading time Higher level questioning, open-ended questions Extension or enrichment activities Tiered assignments Product options Research based projects

• • • • • • • •

Teaching Methodologies Used to Meet the Needs of Struggling Students

Small group, one-to-one instruction Flexible grouping Modified assignments Scaffolding, questioning techniques, visuals, reinforcement materials Use of manipulatives Questioning strategies Re-teach and pre-teach strategies Product options

• • • • •

Ways to Support Teachers in Meeting the Goal of Offering DI for All Students

Schedule time for grade-level workshops, collegial circles for discussion and preparation of materials, peer modeling of lessons Purchase materials and professional resources to support teacher professional development Offer staff development opportunities on differentiated instruction strategies for accelerated students Attend local and state conferences Reduce classroom ‘pull-outs’ so that additional ‘whole-class’ instruction could take place


Not Differentiated Highly Differentiated


Assessment Flexible Grouping Learning Profile Tiered Activities Curriculum Compacting Learning Contracts Adjusting Questions Anchor Activities Learning Centers/Stations Problem-Based Learning

Goal: Create Parent and Student Interest Surveys

To Differentiate Instruction By Readiness


To Differentiate Instruction By Interest To Differentiate Instruction by Learning Profile A readiness level is a student’s entry point relative to a particular understanding or skill An interest level is a child’s affinity, curiosity, or passion for a particular topic. ٭vary difficulty level of text & supplementary materials ٭ adjust task familiarity ٭ vary direct instruction by small group ٭ adjust proximity of ideas to student experience ٭ give choice of mode of expressing learning ٭ use interest-based mentoring of adults or more expert-like peers ٭ give choice of tasks and products (including student designed options) ٭ give broad access to varied materials & technologies A learning profile is how we learn. It may be shaped by intelligence preferences, gender, culture, or learning style (visual, auditory, kinesthetic, concrete, abstract) ٭ create an environment with flexible learning spaces and options ٭ allow working alone or working with peers ٭ use part-to-whole and whole-to-part approaches useful instructional strategies: - tiered activities - tiered products - compacting - learning contracts - tiered tasks/alternative forms of assessment useful instructional strategies: - interest centers -enrichment clusters - group investigation - choice boards useful instructional strategies: - multi-ability cooperative tasks - interest groups CA Tomlinson, UVa ‘97

Parent Surveys

Parent can help teachers understand the learning profiles of their children. Parents will reflect upon and give examples pertaining to the following statements:  My child is a “self-starter” who works well alone, needing few directions and little supervision.

 My child works toward his/her personal goals and expects to see results from his/her work.

 My child continues to work on a project even when faced with temporary defeats and slow results.

 My child thinks “outside the box” when approaching a problem or topic.

 My child uses imaginative ways of doing things with or without suggestions.  My child prefers working or playing alone rather than doing something “just to go along with the gang.”

Student Surveys

Student surveys are age appropriate questions focusing on learning styles and interests. At the primary level, students will create a “me map” highlighting things they are good at or like.          When you study for a test, would you rather… If you are not able to complete something, it is because… When you read for fun, do you prefer… Usually, when I have free time I… The types of things that we do in class I really like are… My hobbies are… I am uncomfortable when people ask me to… The classes I enjoy the most are… because… I prefer to work….. by myself, with a partner or in a small group

Goal: Conduct Parent Focus Groups

Parent Focus Groups

April 28, 2011

Benefits of a Focus Group

A focus group is a carefully planned discussion to obtain perceptions, opinions, beliefs and attitudes regarding a defined interest area.

• Way of collecting information from a group of people in a short time • A tool for collecting information about people’s attitudes and perceptions • Evaluate program/service effectiveness, strengths and weaknesses • Assess needs and gaps • Guide program development

Structure of the Focus Groups

• • • • • Six focus groups comprised of 10-12 parents, an administrator and a teacher Participants were asked to respond to a series of questions and to respect the views of all participants Comments from each of the groups were compiled The DI Committee reviewed comments and discussed their implications Parent feedback was considered when making committee recommendations to the Board of Education

Focus Group Discussions

What aspects of learning is your child most excited about?

Hands-on activities, projects, group work, real world applications, use of computers, manipulatives, art, science, writing, reading, math •

How do you know if your child’s teacher is aware of his/her academic needs, strengths and areas of interest?

Phone calls, emails, individual student feedback, parent questionnaires or surveys about child •

How might a teacher (and/or the district) help you understand how he/she is differentiating the instruction for your child?

Explain how teacher utilizes DI during Back-to-School Night, ongoing communication of child’s progress, use of website, newsletters, weekly assessments, updates, assurance of grade level consistency •

What does differentiated instruction mean for your child?

Child is being appropriately challenged, enthusiastic about learning, not bored, happy, maximizes potential, teacher inspires child to learn

Focus Group Discussions (cont’d)

Which content area(s) do parents believe we differentiate most often?

Primary literacy, spelling, reading, writing, elementary science labs • • •

In which content area(s) could we explore further differentiation?

Use of centers in grade two, primary level math, literacy in the upper elementary levels, social studies

How might we enhance the instructional program to best meet your child’s needs?

Grammar instruction, use of centers, compacting curriculum, greater consistency across the grade levels, enhanced and ongoing communication

Of all the things we discussed today, what to you is the most important?

Communication-use of newsletters, grade level consistency, want teachers to employ best practices, encourage sharing of ideas with colleagues, foster positive relationships between teacher, child and parent

Where do we go from here?

Middle School Recommendations

• • • • • Volunteer peer observations Continue adding differentiated instructional materials to Middle School Teacher’s Resource Room Informal knowledge sharing Turn key staff development focusing on differentiated practices for teachers Develop a booklet for paraprofessionals supporting a differentiated model in the classroom


• • • • • • Offer in-service courses and staff development opportunities focusing on differentiated practices and mathematics instruction for teachers as noted in teacher surveys Share resources developed by the middle school PLC and the district committee with K-8 classroom teachers Distribute the newly created pamphlet Differentiated Instruction: Enhances Academic Performance for ALL to parents during Back-to School Night. Classroom teachers will discuss how differentiation occurs in their classrooms Expand primary and elementary school professional libraries to include differentiated instructional resources Develop curriculum guides for grades 2-5; distribute to parents during Back-To-School Night Administer parent and student interest surveys in the fall to assist teachers in understanding their students’ learning styles, needs and interests.

• • • • • • •


Invite Hofstra University professors to conduct workshops to faculty, focusing on what differentiated instruction looks like in practice Attend AGATE Fall Conference (or similar conferences) promoting gifted and talented education Increase efforts to provide parents with opportunities to communicate with teachers about curricula, student progress and classroom activities.

Provide parents with opportunities to participate in future focus group initiatives Continue partnership with literacy consultant to enhance elementary balanced literacy instruction Refine elementary school schedules to maximize whole class instructional time Communicate district expectations for differentiated instruction to teachers

Differentiation is a Way of Thinking About Teaching and Learning

Thank you for your participation and continued support