Sunday, April 10, 2011

Thing #5 - Differentiated Learning

Differentiated Learning

  I teach 3rd grade, but I team with another teacher, so I teach only Math, Science, and Social Studies.  I use differentiated learning on a regular basis.  
Math:   I begin with whole group instruction and then students have daily choices that go with the concept being addressed at the time as well as review concepts.  Below are some of the choices students learn from:
  •          Games
  •          Response Wheels
  •          Problem solving activities
  •          Math Art
  •          Paper and pencil work
  •          Manipulatives
  •          Internet activities
  •          Begin with overview and whole group instruction
  •          Hands-on activities
  •          Journaling and recording activity
  •          Partner/Table collaboration
  •          Whole group sharing 

Diverse Learning

  The application I felt would be the most beneficial in my classroom would be audio text.  To be able to transfer the written word into digital audio format for struggling readers would be a wonderful tool.  Students would be able to follow along, yet be read to.  They can stop when necessary, re-read, highlight, and go at a pace that is best for them.


  Nettrekker is a wonderful program that allows you to find lesson plans within the Michigan GLCE's.  It was very easy to use and allowed me to find a a multitude of lessons within various subject areas.  When the lessons are brought up, the readability level was displayed on the side so that it was easy to distinguish the appropriateness for the student or class you are looking for.
  This is a valuable tool for educators.  Ease of use and quick find lessons in appropriate levels makes it a nice application.

Text-To-Audio Conversion

  This program has the potential of being a great tool for students who struggle with reading. Experts note that audio books can help young or struggling readers, but just following words are not enough. With audio books children learn to listen; they will listen as the story is read and visualize the story. The use of imagination is paramount in creating independent readers. This is not an ability that you can teach your child in the traditional manner. That is one of the primary benefits of audio books for children. They will have no choice but to use their imagination and they will see how enjoyable it is.
  However, unless there are better programs out there than vozMe, I am not overly impressed.  Both the female and male voices are monotone and hard to understand.

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