Charlotte & Wilbur for all

Pig FI

Thank you so much to the wonderful mom who clued me into this great modified Charlotte’s Web unit over on Miss Kolis’ Classroom Blog. Wow! This post is a treasure trove of ideas for the teacher who wants to teach this book in a differentiated classroom. You will find graphic organizers, a comprehension journal, visuals to [read more…]

Analyzing text

Teaching Channel FI

Teaching Channel has done it again. They have produced yet another great video on differentiating literacy instruction.

Don’t believe me? Click on over to this short piece (5 minutes) on analyzing text. If you teach ELLs, you will find the differentiation focus of this video to be especially helpful. This is a Grade 5 example, but teachers in many [read more…]

Hamburger helper

Hamburger FI

There are so many reasons to love Reading Rockets. They have great articles, tips for teachers and even lesson plan ideas. I usually share their articles on this blog, but today I am sharing one of their many fabulous lesson ideas-the paragraph hamburger.

What is a paragraph hamburger? Glad you asked! It’s a writing organizer that visually outlines the key components of a paragraph. As you teach the elements of a good paragraph (topic sentence, detail sentences and a closing sentence) you show students that each one forms a different part of a tasty [read more…]

Sharks and schema

Shark FI

Don’t miss today’s idea if you are currently teaching about schema. Mrs. Jump has created an irresistible visual that could be used in an mixed-ability classroom to teach and reinforce a concept that will likely be new to most learners. I love her lesson because of the visual itself (so many of our learners need more exposure than they can get from one or two lessons on a topic) and because it allows a range of students to participate [read more…]

Daily 5 details

Daily 5 FI

I could not feature differentiation and literacy all month long without a mention or two of The Daily 5. I chose this post from Setting Up for Second because it is so visual and detailed that even novices would be able to replicate the materials and format by reading this classroom/lesson description.

So many aspects of this structure allow students to learn in their own ways. For example, students have choices throughout the process of [read more…]

How do you spell ‘Minecraft’?

Word Work FI

I love it when I get to show off a new “find” on Differentiation Daily. Miss DeCarbo at Sugar and Spice is one of those new discoveries and the post I am highlighting is a real gem. If you are first grade teacher (or really an educator in any one of the early grades), you will want to see the differentiated spelling/word word strategy recently posted on her site.

After noticing that her learners needed a more personalized approach to word study, Miss DeCarbo designed a bulletin board that reminded students [read more…]

The poetry of Lego

Po Lego FI

So today I am featuring an idea that is brand-spanking new and it is nothing short of fabulous. After reading my short description, you are going to want to hop over to Ed-U-Like to read all about one teacher’s idea for using Lego to teach about poetry. Specifically, she is using Lego to teach about a poem’s structure. I am crazy about this idea. Not only would Lego-loving students love it, but visual learners (I am thinking in particular of many of my former students on the autism spectrum) may find that the light bulb finally goes off when [read more…]

Bag of nouns

Noun FI

Here is a fun yet simple game from The Inspired Educator Blog (great spot for teachers and learning coaches). The activity is called [read more…]

Help desk, master classes and more

6 Steps to Differentiated Instruction banner

I recently discovered an idea-packed essay on differentiation techniques written by educator Emma Davies and could not wait to share it here. Most articles on DI offer ideas that those of us in the field have seen and read many times before (e.g., tiering, cubing, station teaching). These ideas may be on-target and useful, but they may not always be fresh and new. Davies caught my attention because several of her suggestions were a bit different. So, if you are someone who reads a lot on this topic and want a few new tips, click on over and check out her “6 Steps to Differentiated Instruction”.

My favorite idea is the use of a [read more…]

Student-created prompts

Collage FI

Today’s idea is an oldie but a goodie. Larry Ferlazzo’s site is one of the best education blogs out there and he writes about dozens of teaching-and-learning-related topics. A few years ago, he posted this description about using student-created [read more…]