When teachers are faced with 30 (or more) pupils who offer such wide a range of abilities in the plethora of subjects that are to be taught, ensuring that all the individuals in the classroom can access the learning on offer. This is where differentiation comes to play, with planning resources, content and activities within each lesson being one of the vast challenges for primary colleagues – planning is needed for pupils from one end of the ability spectrum to the other.
Experienced headteacher Rachel Orr, with more than 20 years of classroom experience, now compiles some of her best ideas on differentiation in the 100 Ideas for Teachers series, published by Bloomsbury.
Split into ten distinct sections, Rachel offers practical ideas on whether to group pupils, or not; building challenge and structures; plenary activities; homework; along with exploring marking and feedback. Each of the 100 ideas offers an individual teaching tip, providing further tips, encouragements, or ideas.
This is a great book – and resource – for student teachers, NQT’s or primary teaching colleagues who struggle with the differentiation aspect of their planning.
What the publishers say:
Differentiation is a key part of the curriculum, but can be a divisive subject among teachers. Experienced teacher Rachel Orr provides guidance on using differentiation to make learning engaging, empowering, investigative, explorative, and open-ended; matching the learning needs of each individual pupil without limiting them or your teaching.
Differentiation is about knowing your pupils, and making the best learning environment for them as individuals as well as for the class as whole. This is a compilation of the many ways to easily organise and differentiate learning, as well as useful tips on scaffolding, structuring learning, and how to build on positive outcomes to make further improvements, covering each aspect of teaching, from whole class activities to homework.
About the author:
Rachel Orr is a primary head teacher in the north east of England. With over 20 years’ teaching experience working in a range of primary schools, Rachel has significant experience of curriculum structure, planning, organisation and delivery. She has led sessions on English, Maths, IT, Assessment, and Creativity in the Curriculum, as well as using an investigative, questioning, skills-based approach.
Review written by: @digicoled
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