Event Title

Disillusionment of Differentiation: Jumping off the Differentiation Bandwagon

Graduation Year

2013

Location

Lower Level, Ames Library, Illinois Wesleyan University

Start Date

20-4-2013 9:00 AM

End Date

20-4-2013 10:00 AM

Description

Teacher preparation programs and educational courses recommend differentiation as an effective teaching practice. Tomlinson (2000) defines differentiation as “tailoring instruction to meet individual needs.” With such a broad definition, there are a variety of ways a teacher can differentiate. With support for differentiation growing, some administrators are requiring teachers to differentiate in the classroom. This study explores the challenges I faced when preparing and implementing differentiation in a Geometry classroom as well as the student perspectives on differentiation. Due to the variety of ways to differentiate, this study focuses strictly on differentiating homework assignments based on student interest. Data sources included field notes, interest questionnaires, student work, student questionnaires, and reflections. While education coursework encourages the practice of differentiation in the classroom, the findings of this study calls into question some of the basic assumptions behind differentiation and questions the return on investment of teacher time.

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Apr 20th, 9:00 AM Apr 20th, 10:00 AM

Disillusionment of Differentiation: Jumping off the Differentiation Bandwagon

Lower Level, Ames Library, Illinois Wesleyan University

Teacher preparation programs and educational courses recommend differentiation as an effective teaching practice. Tomlinson (2000) defines differentiation as “tailoring instruction to meet individual needs.” With such a broad definition, there are a variety of ways a teacher can differentiate. With support for differentiation growing, some administrators are requiring teachers to differentiate in the classroom. This study explores the challenges I faced when preparing and implementing differentiation in a Geometry classroom as well as the student perspectives on differentiation. Due to the variety of ways to differentiate, this study focuses strictly on differentiating homework assignments based on student interest. Data sources included field notes, interest questionnaires, student work, student questionnaires, and reflections. While education coursework encourages the practice of differentiation in the classroom, the findings of this study calls into question some of the basic assumptions behind differentiation and questions the return on investment of teacher time.