Differentiation Strategies - Wiki

Differentiation Strategies for GT
and/or Highly Able Students
Make a tent out of a sheet of card stock paper.
On one side of your “tent” write your name large enough for
others to see.
Divide the other side of your “tent” into four quadrants.
In the upper left quadrant, write the name of your
In the upper right quadrant, write the grades and
courses you teach.
In the lower left quadrant, draw a picture/symbol that
shows something about you.
In the lower right quadrant, draw or write about your
plans for the summer.
Chapter Four : pages 100-102
Reaching All Learners ~Bertie Kingore
A written variation of
brainstorming increases mental
engagement for all students.
Results invite students to compare
and contrast concepts related to a
Products are a rich resource for
summarization or expanded
writing about a topic.
We all know what you what key elements we
should be differentiating:
1. Content
2. Process
3. Product
4. Environment
5. Assessment
Why differentiate instruction with a group
of students, whether GT or standard?
The simple answer, we all know, comes from some well known
gifted education researchers--- Carol Tomlinson, Joyce Van
Tassel-Baska, Donna Ford, Susan Winebrenner, Nicholas
Colangelo and Gary Davis, Paul Slocumb, and Ruby Payne, and,
of course, Bertie Kingore, and others….
They emphasize that all students are different, and therefore,
require different instruction in order to teach/engage them.
(Differences can be ethnic, racial, cultural, socio-economic.)
Joyce Van Tassel-Baska, Ed. D. from the Center for Gifted
Education at the College of William and Mary, Virginia:
(2 min. audio on “Experience”)
Differentiated classrooms offer learning
options that tap into readiness levels,
interests, and learning profiles. You will see:
 1. A variety of ways for students to explore
 2. A variety of activities/processes enabling
students to understand and “own information
and ideas”
 3. A variety of options through which
students can demonstrate/exhibit mastery
Wordle gives us the answer:
Pace and variety in instruction are especially important for the
advanced learner.
Potential issues DI addresses for the advanced learner:
May become bored
Can become mentally lazy, even though they do well in school
May think grades are more important than ideas
May become perfectionists
May fail to develop a sense of self-efficacy
May fail to develop study and coping skills
“Integrating elements of abstract thinking, complexity, and depth
(ACD) avoids instruction based on advanced and gifted
students doing more, working harder, or making less errors;
the focus instead is on students thinking differently.”
--Bertie Kingore, Ed. D.
"When gifted students exceed standards at given stages of
development, accelerate them to the next level within or across
subjects, within or across levels.“
--Joyce VanTassel-Baska, Ed. D.
Bertie Kingore---to provide ACD:
“Teachers concluded that when they prompt more abstract thinking, complexity,
and depth they are more likely to get the advanced thinking they expected.
Gifted learners need opportunities for abstract thinking and complex content to
stay mentally engaged in learning...”
See Kingore handout on ACD related to thinking and inquiry (discussion):
Abstractions, Change over time, Essential questions, Ethics, Generalizations,
Interdisciplinary content, Issues, Language and terminology, Methodology,
Patterns, Perspectives, Resources and technology
Coming up….We’ll look at moving the
advanced learner to “other activities.”
Turn and Talk
What concerns do teachers sometimes
have with using small group
instruction in their classroom?
Set rules together.
Create a contract to be signed by both the
student and a parent.
Start small!
Use grouping strategies frequently so that
students remain “trained”.
Examine the
“Small Group Implementation Schedule”
“Getting Started” suggestions on pages 63-66.
“Learning Behaviors Rubric” on page 56.
Reaching All Learners ~Bertie Kingore
Whole Class
Similar-Ability Small Groups
Mixed-Ability Small Groups
Individual Work
What are the advantages and disadvantages of
each type of grouping?
On your blank sheet of paper, write down your
response to one of the following questions:
What is one idea for grouping that will try to
implement next school year? Why does this
idea appeal to you?
What is one suggestion that you have for a
teacher new to grouping based on your prior
Earlier, we looked at “why to differentiate” for the advanced learner.
 We reviewed the need to provide “pace and variety” and ACD.
 But, how to differentiate for these learners?
We start with at least two basic pre-instruction activities:
1. Content pre-assessments---whether formal or informal
2. Student Interest Survey/Inventory---learn about talents, passions
2a. BCPS “Learning Preference Survey”
3. This info/data will lead us to “SEEA” or compacting the content
Once we determine what the student(s) mastery,
then we can move to differentiating the content by:
 S = Substituting
 E = Extending
 E = Enriching
 A = Accelerating
Possibilities for substituting lesson(s):
1, When the class has already read a particular work, is it possible to
substitute a different work by the same author or a work from the
same genre?
2. Can you substitute an author of the same time period, style, etc.?
 Possibilities for extending content:
1. Journaling on a book or author under study
2. Journaling on literary elements
3. Animoto book review
4. Soapstone another book by the same author under study
5. Service Learning projects
Possibilities for enriching lesson(s):
1. Based on student Interest Survey, student selects a project from the
Product List or Choice Box or Options List that they want to do. Example:
Research/produce a video on a contemporary African American writer
2. Website/wiki exploring the Great Depression and the current recession
3. A Student Service Learning project related to a contemporary issue of
interest to the student
 Possibilities for accelerating lesson--(earlier and faster paced):
1. Students read books at the next grade level and select their own product/
assessment of the books
2. Students read several of one author’s books, rather than one, then select
their own product/assessment
Review Product Options on pages 26-27 in Kingore’s Reaching All
Learners and list one product that you could use for each --Substituting
Your SEEAs:
Chapter Four : pages 85-170
Reaching All Learners ~Bertie Kingore
Assessment and Evaluation Card
Four Corners
Top Ten
Topic Talk
Topic Talk and Switch
Notes on Process
Ideas for how you might implement this strategy with advanced learners
Notes on Process
Ideas for how you might implement this strategy with advanced learners
Promotes the review and organization of
Serves as a springboard for summarization,
topic discussions, and vocabulary
Encourages students’ high-level thinking
Assesses students’ accuracy, depth, and
complexity of content
Teaching Without Nonsense~Bertie Kingore
A technique for succinctly retelling and
organizing information
May be completed in words, phrases, or complete
sentences which may elicit higher thinking
Teaching Without Nonsense~Bertie Kingore
Using the word DIFFERENTIATION on the
first line designated as “subject”, use the
Thinking Triangle to represent your thoughts
and point of view about the strategies you have
learned and discussed during this workshop.
There are two main reasons for providing technology integration with
advanced learners:
1. Allow them virtual experiences in their area of interest, passion, gift,
or talent that they cannot experience otherwise.
2. Allow them to practice with and create products that go beyond the
“pencil and paper” products/assessments/depths provided in
traditional instruction.
Web 2.0 tools and Digital Blooms’ Taxonomy is provided by BCPS and
Promotes the use of higher order thinking skills and Internet tools.
"For gifted children, there will be information available on almost
any interest they have -- anything from sites such as NASA for
those interested in Astronomy to sites on literature, geology,
history, and Star Trek. Also many of these sites offer more than
one-way information. Most WWW authors cheerfully respond to
email queries from their pages and will provide specific
information requested. Next time you or your child has one of
those questions which you can't find an answer, someone on the
Internet probably can and will if you ask them."
The Internet and Gifted and Talented Children by Gayle Dallaston
Web 2.0 tools and Digital Blooms’ Taxonomy:
 Free technology for teachers:
 BCCP Web 2.0 wiki:
Complete the alphabet grid with ideas
or thoughts that you will take away
from this workshop.

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