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What is Differentiated Instruction?

Sometimes, you might wonder how much your students are actually learning, and that is okay. Creating a differentiated classroom means developing strategies and mindsets that resonate with different students in different ways, giving each of them space and guidance to learn. It also means asking the right questions to determine readiness levels, skill levels, and interests.

Creating a Differentiated Classroom

 

Diversity is everywhere in the educational system. One only needs to take a look around public and private schools across the country to get a glimpse of the many different backgrounds of today’s students. Each of these students is unique, with different cultures, personalities, interests, and habits unto themselves. When these students come to school each day, they bring with them distinct ways of observing and learning, and as an educator, it is essential to be able to reach these students wherever they are in the process.

Trying to meet every student where they are within the learning process is a difficult task for teachers. With all of the time you spend bringing your subject matter to life within each of your classes, you have probably begun to see how each student absorbs the material. Some furiously take notes, attempting to transcribe every piece of information given to them, while others have an empty desk and absently watch the board as you teach. No matter what grade level you teach, there are techniques you can learn to maximize your student’s learning potential.

Sometimes, you might wonder how much your students are actually learning, and that is okay. Creating a differentiated classroom means developing strategies and mindsets that resonate with different students in different ways, giving each of them space and guidance to learn.  It also means asking the right questions to determine readiness levels, skill levels, and interests.

 

Why Adapting to Learning Styles is Important in a Classroom

The Differentiated Classroom, offered by Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne, will teach you how to create a learning environment that allows all students to succeed by applying the principles of differentiated education. By exploring new approaches to differentiated instruction, you will be able to encourage students to use their natural learning style to the course material presented in your classroom. Ultimately, you will notice there is a greater collective understanding, and as a result, the entire class benefits and improves.

A differentiated classroom responds to each student’s interests and scaffolds and supports to ensure high-quality interest-based student work. In this type of environment, the teacher is able to sufficiently infuse differentiated instruction into any curriculum to help all individuals. The Differentiated Classroom is offered by Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne and is available to teachers at any grade level. Students who enroll in this course will gain a comprehensive understanding and robust set of skills to establish and maintain a differentiated classroom and bridge the gap between merely processing and truly understanding.

 

Differentiation In Practice

In The Differentiated Classroom, enrollees will learn the theory behind the pedagogy to build an intuitive understanding of how differentiation impacts and shapes the educational experience of each student. The philosophy and strategy behind differentiated learning is a focal point of the course, and students will also learn key metrics and indicators in student development in differentiated education settings. Those who complete the course will take with them knowledge of efficiently dividing time and attention and develop a complete understanding of what, why, and how to differentiate in classroom instruction. Most importantly, enrolled students will learn how to develop this information into a sustainable and productive mindset and routine in their classrooms.

Communication is vitally important in a differentiated classroom. In trying to understand and serve the learning styles of each student, direct one-to-one interaction is the vehicle through which the student and teacher can exchange information effectively. The communication principle applies not only for general instruction but for the act of learning about each student’s habits and processes. No approach is one-size-fits-all, but by implementing a philosophy of differentiation in a classroom, you are directly empowering your students to succeed.

 

The Benefits of The Differentiated Classroom

The Differentiated Classroom, offered through Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne, was created specifically for K-12 teachers and was designed to complement a busy schedule. This course is offered in both an online and emailed PDF format that can be started at any time during a semester, and the student has up to one full year to complete the course. All offerings through Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne are open for anyone to register at any time during an open semester. Students earn graduate, non-degree semester credit, reflected on an official transcript from the university. Topics included in this highly sought-after course include:

  • Defining a differentiated classroom
  • Managing complex change toward differentiated schooling
  • Preparing students and parents
  • Differentiating content and process
  • Differentiated content
  • Communication strategies
  • Instructional strategies
  • Practical advice
  • Management approaches

 

How to Register

Registration is simple and can be done online or over the phone. Courses are offered ongoing during three semesters, and enrollees may begin at any time. Students may choose to enroll in up to a maximum of 15-semester credits at any time during a semester.

 

Fall: September 1 - January 31

Spring: February 1 - May 31

Summer: June 1 - August 31

No matter which semester best fits your lifestyle, we are confident that your experience in this course will be a tremendous resource, a professional advantage, and a measurable way of reaching each student in your classroom. Register now to begin the process and help your students succeed through differentiated education!

 

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