Although there really is no way to categorize differentiated instruction, there are ways you can break it down into components.
http://iris.peabody.vanderbilt.edu/module/di/cresource/q1/p01/#content gave me so much wonderful information about this topic that I will be using throughout my individual learning project. It explained that there are 6 main components to teaching differentiated instruction which are:
- Content Knowledge
- Knowledge of what your students know and what they need to know
- Knowledge of evidence based instruction
- Experience and practice managing instructional resources
There was a reason why I put PATIENCE in all caps, and that’s because I believe it is one of the very most important qualities that you should have if you are going to be working with students struggling academically. Making time to get to know your students strengths and weaknesses, working on trial and accepting error, and not giving up on any student all requires patience. All of these components that I found on iris peobody vanderbuilt made sense to me, and really triggered new thoughts and ideas for me to apply to my future teaching.
Differentiated Instruction includes making changes to one or more of these elements: (According to iris peobody vanderbuilt)
These elements correlate with the components, because in order to make a change you will need to follow the steps and be aware of all of the knowledge you need to have. Once you are aware of all of the elements and components involved in individualizing education, you will be ready to start creating, planning, and experimenting with how your students will be learning best!
The changes a teacher makes to each of the classroom elements depends on the needs of their students! Before changing the components and elements though, you need to educate yourself.
While researching the components of this type of instruction on ReadingHorizons.com, I found some ways that will help you as the teacher get to know your students better.
- Look at students academic record
- Examine results of informal/formal tests
- Administer a self report measure
- Use charts such as the KWL chart
- Discuss their interests with them
- Have them write a journal entry about themselves
- Create classroom icebreaker activities
Another really important thing to remember is have good communication with parents and guardians. Keeping parents involved will be beneficial to not only them, but you and the student as well.
I am excited to start going into more depth of finding ways to make education easier for students who struggle learning!