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Common Core State Standards (CCSS)
Chapter 5 states:
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. (p1)
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 scale
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
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, and two differentiated content strategies to master the objective/ standard.
- Explain how the strategies you’ve suggested are engaging to diverse learners.
- Cite scholarly sources to support how your strategies are examples of differentiation.
Guided Response: In your guided responses to two peers, the task requires you to assume the role of a school administrator. For each response, please evaluate the alignment of one specific lesson objective with its CCSS and provide additional or alternative, differentiated strategies based on your evaluation.
Web Quest for Differentiation
“All Children Can Learn”. Then, search the web for effective, evidence-based differentiated strategies that are engaging, motivating, and address the needs of individual learners.
In the Discussion Board, provide five evidence-based strategies:
- Two instructional strategies (i.e., graphic organizers),
- Two instructional tools (e.g., technology tool, device or iPad App, Web Quests, etc.),
- One activity (e.g., Think-Pair-Share).
In addition, analyze each strategy’s instructional application, its relevance to the differentiated theory, and how you might use it in the classroom you’ve created in Weeks one and two assignments.
Guided Response: Choose one of the five strategies identified by at least two of your peers on which to comment. Evaluate how you peer-analyzed it and related it to ‘real-world application.’ Provide at least one additional suggestion, supported by research to make it accessible to a population who may have been overlooked including students with special needs, English language learners, gifted students, or another unique population