Student-Driven Differentiation and NGSS

Margaret O’Sullivan for having me as their podcast guest. Check out our conversation about Student-Driven Differentiation here and let us know your thoughts! Share this! Twitter Facebook Email LinkedIn Print Reddit Tumblr Pinterest #MargaretOSullivan #NGSSNavigators #Differentiation #NGSS #studentdrivendifferentiation

How to Overcome Common Anxieties About Differentiation

This post was originally published on Corwin Connect. In my work with teachers across the country on differentiating instruction, it appears that when it comes to differentiation, teachers fall into one of three categories: teachers who want to differentiate instruction for their students but don’t know how teachers who have tried to differentiate for their students and “give-up” because they found differentiating instruction was too time-consuming, didn’t produce their desir

Student-Driven Differentiation

What is Student-Driven Differentiation? Student-driven differentiation shifts the focus from what students are going to do to what students need to learn. The focus also shifts from the teacher as the owner of the knowledge and the students the receivers of such knowledge. Student-driven differentiation requires teachers to find a healthy balance in their relationships with all students, use multiple types of evidence to ensure student growth, and partner with students in the

How To Coach For Differentiation

A teacher in a differentiated classroom does not classify herself as someone who ‘already differentiates instruction.’ Rather that teacher is fully aware that every hour of teaching, every day in the classroom can reveal one more way to make the classroom a better match for its learners. – Carol Ann Tomlinson Raise your hand if differentiation is on your school district’s list of initiatives? If your district is like many across the country, differentiation is something that

Why Differentiation Misses the Mark for Gifted Students

This post was originally published in @PeterMDeWitt’s blog Finding Common Ground in Education Week. Today’s guest post is written by frequent Finding Common Ground blogger Lisa Westman. Lisa is an instructional coach specializing in differentiation for Skokie School District 73.5 in suburban Chicago. She taught middle school gifted humanities, ELA, and SS for twelve years before becoming a coach. Last week I wrote Differentiation: Attainable or Somewhere Over The Rainbow whic

Differentiation: Attainable Or Somewhere Over The Rainbow?

This post was originally published in @PeterMDeWitt’s blog Finding Common Ground in Education Week. Today’s guest post is written by frequent Finding Common Ground blogger Lisa Westman. Lisa is an instructional coach specializing in differentiation for Skokie School District 73.5 in suburban Chicago. She taught middle school gifted humanities, ELA, and SS for twelve years before becoming a coach. “If we have data, let’s look at data. If all we have are opinions, let’s go with

Differentiation is The Key to Assessment For Learning

“Too often, educational tests, grades, and report cards are treated by teachers as autopsies when they should be viewed as physicals.” Douglas Reeves One of my favorite stories is about the man who taught his dog to whistle. The man was so proud of his teaching. He walked his dog around town and proudly proclaimed, “I taught my dog to whistle!” Then, one day, a neighbor stops the man and says, “I don’t hear your dog whistling.” To which the man responds, “I said I taught him

How Differentiation Fosters a Growth Mindset

This post was originally published on Corwin Connect. For more on differentiation, click here. “The great teachers believe in the growth of the intellect and talent, and they are fascinated with the process of learning.”– Carol Dweck, Mindset The theory of growth vs. fixed mindset popularized by the research of Carol Dweck is ubiquitous in today’s educational landscape. A cursory Pinterest search for “growth mindset” produces a plethora of options for bell ringers, bulletin b

Learning Progressions: Student Need and Student Choice

Corwin Connect. By Stephanie Larenas and Lisa Westman “Destiny is not a matter of chance; it is a matter of choice. It is not a thing to be waited for; it is a thing to be achieved.” William Jennings Bryan Students are not reborn every September. They are not new to education or to subject-area content. Their desire to learn is innate. While students may get a “clean-slate” each September and have the opportunity to make a new first impression, they are, in fact, the same lea

Last I Checked, Compliance Isn’t a Learning Standard

This post was originally published in @PeterMDeWitt‘s blog Finding Common Ground in Education Week. Today’s guest post is written by Lisa Westman. Lisa is an instructional coach specializing in differentiation for Skokie School District 73.5 in suburban Chicago. She taught middle school gifted humanities, ELA, and SS for twelve years before becoming a coach. “Do the best you can until you know better. Then when you know better, do better.” Maya Angelou For five years I took t

Yes, Differentiation is Hard. So, Let’s Get It Right. 

For other posts on differentiation, read these posts: Why Differentiation Misses the Mark for Gifted Students Differentiation: Attainable Or Somewhere Over The Rainbow? Differentiation is The Key to Assessment For Learning How Differentiation Fosters a Growth Mindset How to Differentiate for Success on Standardized Tests This post was originally published in @PeterMDeWitt‘s blog Finding Common Ground in Education Week. Today’s guest post is written by Lisa Westman. Lisa is an

Thank you for making me cry

My first year teaching was one of the best and worst years of my career. I was hired to teach 7th and 8th grade gifted humanities in a small suburban community just north of Chicago. The teacher that held this role previously, Diane*, had been promoted to Director of Engaged Learning for the district. In her new role, Diane was to work with ALL teachers (veteran and new) on their instruction. Diane was beloved by students, parents, teachers, and admistrators. She was a living

Where I found my “balance”

Heads up, this post is going to be about “working out”. Six years ago, as a reader that would have been enough information for me to decide to stop reading this post. In fact, prior to 2010 I hadn’t worked out in 5 years (unless you count endless trips to my kitchen to refill my cereal bowl with Lucky Charms) and I really didn’t want to hear about anyone else’s exercise routine. So, I get it. But, bear with me, this post is different. I had many excuses as to why I didn’t exe