Teach English in Changsheng Zhen - Chifeng Shi

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Every student has an individual learning style and abilities. Teaching students with diverse needs and different learning abilities can be difficult. It involves creativity, time and a desire to understand how a student learns best. With the right techniques and tools, teachers can meet the needs of students with a range of abilities, here are some examples. Differentiated instruction Differentiated instruction consists teachers’ efforts to respond to variance among leaners in the classroom. Teachers who use this method will tailor their lessons and teaching approach to match their students’ learning styles while having the same learning goals. Research has shown the effectiveness of this method benefits a wide range of students, from the ones with learning disabilities to the ones who are considered high ability. Carol Ann Tomlinson, a professor of educational leadership, foundation, and policy at the University of Virginia and a leader in the area of differentiated learning, suggested that there are four classroom elements where teachers can differentiate instruction. 1. Content At most of the schools, there are educational standards to be achieved in lessons. However, students in the same classroom might not have the same fundamental skills or learning abilities. What teachers could do is to find out what the student needs to learn or how the student will get access to the learning resources. For example, meeting with small groups to re-teach a concept for weaker/struggling learners, or to extend the skills of advanced learners. 2. Process Every student has an individual learning style, providing choices of learning activities can be motivating and empowering. Teacher can enhance student learning by planning activities that engage and helps students to make sense of what they learn. For example, using tiered activities through which all learners work with the same goals, but proceed with different levels of support, challenge and complexity. 3. Products Products refer to culminate projects for students to apply and extend what he or she has learned in a unit. This allows students to demonstrate the mastery of content. For example, teacher give students options of how to express required learning, it can be in form of written report, oral report, tests, graphic organizer, or other activities. 4. Learning environment Teacher should build a supportive learning environment for students and it refers to the way the classroom feels and how the class works together. For example, teachers could set out clear guideline for independent work that matches individual needs. In conclusion, differentiation is a method of instruction designed to meet the needs of all students by changing what students learn, how they accumulate information, how they demonstrate knowledge or kills, and with whom and where learning happens. Differentiated instruction has proven to be a successful way to teach children with varying learning abilities. Students appear to be more motivated, engaged and take on more responsibility in learning, especially when they are allowed and given more options on choosing their own learning materials. However, teachers should also bear in mind that this method requires more work during lesson planning. Reference: Tomlinson, C. A. (August, 2000). Differentiation of Instruction in the Elementary Grades. ERIC Digest. ERIC Clearinghouse on Elementary and Early Childhood Education.