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Strategies for Differentiation

Strategies for Differentiation - Bernice Westbrooks EDU 673...

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Bernice Westbrooks Instructor: James Young Strategies for Differentiation The text states that retrofitting is a "reactive rather than a proactive approach" to curriculum design (p.9). Retrofitting instruction happens when we, as educators, see that some part of the implemented curriculum is not working, so we change it to fit the needs of our students better. For example, retrofitting happens a lot in Special Education. Rather than designing a completely new curriculum, we often modify the curriculum used by "mainstream" teachers, so that our students have access to the same curriculum, but in a different way.
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Universal design is the process of creating a curriculum that is so tailored to the needs of the students; it does not need to be modified. UDL is the proactive approach to differentiating lessons. The approach requires teachers to collect all kinds of facts about their students, which will affect the curriculum in these areas: content, process, and product (p. 11). For example, when the teacher adopts a curriculum that considers the ability levels, cultures, backgrounds, learning styles, talents, and interests of all students; the teacher can be more successful at presenting the material because it is being presented in a multitude of ways, in order to engage all students. I have had experience with both strategies. Retrofitting happens with the state standardized tests. The Special Education students are required to take the exam, but modifications are allowed. Students who can not read or write are allowed to use pictures, or point to the answers. Also, the time allotted is extended. We have also done UDL. This happens when we collaborate; take into consideration all of our students, then come up with activities that will enhance the lesson being taught. We make sure the plan accounts for all ability levels, and
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Strategies for Differentiation - Bernice Westbrooks EDU 673...

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