Differentiating Curriculum

  • Curriculum differentiation is a broad term referring to the need to tailor teaching environments and practices to create appropriately different learning experiences for different students.

    A differentiated classroom includes the following elements:

    • Student differences are studied
    • Assessment is ongoing and diagnostic to understand how to make instruction more responsive to learner need
    • Focus on multiple forms of intelligence is evident
    • Excellence is defined in large measure by individual growth from a starting point
    • Students are frequently guided in making interest-based learning choices
    • Many learning profile options are provided for
    • Many instructional arrangements are used
    • Student readiness, interest, and learning profile shapes instruction


    More differentiated classroom characteristics:

    • Multi-option assignments are frequently used
    • Time is used flexibly in accordance with student need
    • Multiple materials are provided
    • The teacher facilitates students' skills at becoming more self-reliant learners
    • Students work with the teacher to establish both whole-class and individual learning goals
    • Students are assessed in multiple ways
    • Students help other students and the teacher solve problems
    • Use of essential skills to make sense of and understand key concepts and principles is the focus of learning