From Readers Theater to Math Dances: Bright Ideas to Make Differentiation HappenReport as inadecuate

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Instructor, v120 n5 p31-35 Spr 2011

Carol Ann Tomlinson, a professor at the University of Virginia Curry School of Education, has led the push for differentiated instruction and sees a strong commitment by educators to tailoring teaching to student academic levels, learning styles, and personal interests. However, Tomlinson says barriers still stand in the way to making sure every child gets what he or she needs. One hurdle, says Tomlinson, is that teachers have to do something that's both basic and difficult: forget how they were taught as children. Before attempting to tier a lesson to make it appropriately challenging for individual students, or alter an activity to meet the needs of certain learners, teachers should decide what they want their students to know and do at the end of the instruction. Then, they should come up with multiple ways of getting there, says Aleta Margolis, executive director of the Washington, D.C.-based Center for Inspired Teaching, which provides professional development to educators. In this article, the author offers ideas on how to reach every kid in every subject and make differentiation happen.

Descriptors: Interests, Individualized Instruction, Academic Achievement, Barriers, Professional Development, Teaching Methods, Cognitive Style, Teachers, Teacher Education

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Author: Zuckerbrod, Nancy



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