Session 351: Differentiation

  1. Welcome to another #UKEdChat - This week the focus of the discussion is DIFFERENTIATION - Joining in? Six qu's coming up

    Welcome to another #UKEdChat - This week the focus of the discussion is DIFFERENTIATION - Joining in? Six qu's coming up Differentiation
  2. #UKEdChat Q1
Based on your teaching experiences, how would you define ‘differentiation’ & how has this definition been formed in your mind?
    #UKEdChat Q1 Based on your teaching experiences, how would you define ‘differentiation’ & how has this definition been formed in your mind?
  3. @ukedchat Looks like a great session tonight. Will have to catch up on the discussion afterwards.
  4. @ukedchat Differentiation can be a minefield sometimes. Get it right, then it’s great. Get it wrong, then :-( #UKEdCHat
  5. If you're joining in tonight's discussion on differentiation, then remember to use the #ukedchat hashtag.
  6. @ukedchat allowing everyone to reach the same overall aim - giving a step ladder to those who need it
  7. @ukedchat I try and plan top down - not sure if that is the best way to do it!
  8. @UKEdSch A1 Differentiation is how you approach different students, what questions you ask them, the level you pitch your lesson at #ukedchat
  9. @ukedchat A1 Planning/ resourcing etc for different starting points whilst maintaining high expectations for all. #UKEdChat
  10. Q1. When I was training, I was led to believe differentiation meant planning lots of different tasks all the time. Not useful! #ukedchat
  11. @UKEdSch Differentiation is knowing your children,who can access what learning and at what pace. It isn't giving the less able easier stuff #ukedchat
  12. @sborwick20 @ukedchat Agree, Saz. Recognising that pupils will get there at different times and allowing for this.
  13. Ensure that Ss have the opportunity to be stretched to achieve their potential whatever that maybe, despite their starting point. #ukedchat
  14. @dailydenouement Exactly how it was for me in training at times - drove me potty! #UKEdChat
  15. @UKEdSch A1: Differentiation is acknowledging pupils learn at different rates and planning for this. Easier to do in some subjects I'm sure #UKEdChat
  16. @JLJbusinessed Ideally yes, #UKEdChat but how is it attainable in a classroom full of individuals?
  17. @UKEdSch A1 Differentiation=responding to needs of the chn you teach. Definition from experience of teaching chn with wide range of needs #UKEdChat
  18. @ukedchat @#ukedchat #Ukedchat Q1 Differentiation is planning strategies for all to access the lesson and for some to advance it
  19. @digicoled @JLJbusinessed It's why I go for a teach to the top approach then support down as applicable. #UKEdChat
  20. @digicoled @JLJbusinessed Activities that are low threshold and high ceiling. (Am I the first to mention this 😂) #UKEdChat
  21. @MrGPrimary @dailydenouement Very similar for. The focus was certainly on 'difference' as opposed to actual learning. Gone are those days, thankfully. #ukedchat
  22. @ukedchat The idea of differentiation as a way of planning for Ch's range of needs was an idea taught heavily during mybteacher training
  23. A1 Differentiation: guiding all to access learning in the style, form and pace best for their needs to achieve their very best. #ukedchat 
  24. @KLMorgan_2 @dailydenouement Hmmm, not convinced that they've gone yet! I only qualified last year... #UKEdChat
  25. #ukedchat A1 I used to think of it as different work, now I think of different resources, support and scafolding to tackle the same work!
  26. #UKEdChat Q2
Designing differentiation can be very time-consuming. What are your best strategies to manage differentiation 4 your students?
    #UKEdChat Q2 Designing differentiation can be very time-consuming. What are your best strategies to manage differentiation 4 your students?
  27. @UKEdSch Q1: ensuring all S's can access lesson/tasks. By teaching & trialling systems to allow S's to learn #ukedchat
  28. @ukedchat It's trying to make the lesson accessible for all. Not easy, v hard! #ukedchat
  29. @MrGPrimary @KLMorgan_2 @dailydenouement Think it depends on the school you are placed in. Some mentors just do exactly what they were taught. #UKEdChat
  30. @sborwick20 @ukedchat I had the pleasure of meeting the wonderful @shaun_allison back at the start of the year. I must read and go to book for all #UKEdChat
  31. @UKEdSch Give them all individual targets - set once per half term at least. Support the ones who need it in class #ukedchat
  32. @UKEdSch Questioning, breaking down lesson tasks as we go. Whiteboards rule 😀 #ukedchat
  33. @UKEdSch A2 the easiest form of differentiation is the use of targeted questions, you can change the level of your question to the student #ukedchat
  34. @ukedchat Don't over complicate it - you don't need to have a different task for every ch - let ch choose their own level of challenge #ukedchat
  35. @KLMorgan_2 @dailydenouement Thankfully I was more forthright than the average student teacher! Must be an age thing! #ukedchat
  36. @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat I think if you use lots of different sorts of tasks, most students should be able to access at least some of them #ukedchat
  37. @UKEdSch A2. As much as I don’t like it, you need to group pupils, otherwise differentiation can go 30 ways #UKEdChat
  38. @ukedchat there has to be an expectation of this is what I am going to teach - but plan fr those that will struggle & those who exceed #ukedchat
  39. #ukedchat Yes, think some staff may still plan for difference in task rather than thinking about students/support. 
  40. @KLMorgan_2 @ukedchat @shaun_allison It's a brilliant book and it definitely reminds you of some key things that you do but you have forgotten you do
  41. @Teaching_Mr_T What if some always choose the easy option, rather than trying to stretch themselves? #UKEdChat
  42. Q2 read work as regularly as poss so you are aware of what Ss can / can't do - then targeted Qs in class. Modelling is key too. #UKEdChat
  43. @digicoled @UKEdSch Should differentiation not be 30 ways though? No two students are the same. Discuss... #ukedchat
  44. @Teaching_Mr_T @ukedchat Not sure ch should choose learning level. I feel the teacher should determine this. My opinion :-) #Ukedchat
  45. @ukedchat In my experience, ch normally over pitch rather than under. I do a quick question on the board with them if unsure of their ability
  46. #ukedchat A2 Deploy adults and resources effectively, then think about how the activity might be adapted- translations, simpler words....
  47. Q2: Nothing revolutionary but my best way of tackling differentiation is through planning my questions. #ukedchat
  48. @UKEd_NW Questioning can be very, very powerful if thought through beforehand... #ukedchat
  49. A2 It can be less time consuming if questioning is well planned & there is a focus on verbal feedback in "real time" #ukedchat 
  50. #UKEdChat Q3
How effective is differentiation in your setting overall, and how is it managed across different subjects?
    #UKEdChat Q3 How effective is differentiation in your setting overall, and how is it managed across different subjects?
  51. @sputniksteve @digicoled @UKEdSch As in is if fair to band children by ability? Should we not endeavour to provide a learning experience suitable for each child? #ukedchat
  52. @Teaching_Mr_T @ukedchat Yes. Links with developing resilient learners. Pupils who relish feeling 'stretched'. They know where they are, where next etc #ukedchat
  53. @digicoled Differentiation is not just the lesson though - do you not tailor marking/feedback to the child? #UKEdchat
  54. @ukedchat In practical art sessions u can use 'experts' to help others. Not too much, but good way of spreading skills #ukedchat
  55. @bilingual_bees So, how much questioning do you need to plan for? #UKEdChat Or, pick up on cues in the classroom?
  56. @MrGPrimary @digicoled @UKEdSch Yes it should but doesn't necessarily have to mean 30 different resources or tasks - high quality Q and "live" feedback help! #ukedchat
  57. #UKEdChat Q1- effecitve diff. Isn't about watering down concepts, but making them accessible, using pupil strengths & capturing imagination.
  58. @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat There are definitely times when teachers should choice, but there are times when we should trust kids, they are wiser than we credit them
  59. @MrGPrimary @digicoled YES and this is key. It is across the whole learning journey, not restrained to books or lessons. #UKEdChat
  60. @bilingual_bees @digicoled @UKEdSch Oh most certainly not - I very rarely diff by task. I don't believe it is effective teaching to give "easier" work #ukedchat
  61. @KLMorgan_2 @ukedchat Absolutely, children are wiser than we often give them credit for
  62. @sputniksteve @digicoled @UKEdSch Yes - I think I may have been missunderstood. I certainly don't mean 30 different pieces of work! #ukedchat
  63. @PaulCarneyArts Many times, I’ve had expert pupils showing me art techniques etc. Gives them great pride #UKEdChat
  64. @ukedchat I'm not in a school these days but I find setted subjects more effective than mixed ability #ukedchat
  65. @MrGPrimary @digicoled @UKEdSch Exactly - or "extra / more / harder" work! So many diff ways to differentiate #ukedchat
  66. @ukedchat Haha, its a minority 95%+ get it right - they know their level and other stretch themselves and achieve well
  67. @UKEdSch A2 Differentiated ?s/input, allow chn to select task, mixed ability partners help each other + teacher supp for chn who need it #UKEdChat
  68. @ukedchat Though sets easier for teachers they for can demoralise the students #Ukedchat
  69. @UKEdSch #ukedchat a1 differentiation is meeting the current needs of all pupils in terms of moving their learning forwards.
  70. Ever visited a lesson and there are wonderfully differentiated worksheets for the kids - and they (the kids) look confused? #ukedchat
  71. @UKEdSch #ukedchat a2 questioning is very powerful in terms of differentiation.
  72. @ukedchat 1. Choice (but this MUST be rooted in 'challenge"). 2.Questioning. 3. Resources (to enable independence). 4. My rogue answer is EXPECTATION
  73. A3 try to use support staff to help differentiate for more and for less able pupils #ukedchat
  74. I think differentiation by task might be more effective for stretching top end - but not just giving more of the same. #ukedchat
  75. @_theteachr @bilingual_bees @digicoled @UKEdSch Should we not be challenging all anyway? Sometimes the challenge is to explain to someone who doesn't "get it" #ukedchat
  76. @_theteachr Lessons can sometimes involve way too much time spent on explaining how to do all the different sheets. #ukedchat
  77. @_theteachr @MrGPrimary @digicoled @UKEdSch If diff is done well, every student should have the opp 2 access more challenging work in every learning sequence (ideal world!) #ukedchat
  78. @UKEdSch Most effective differentiation is by outcome, questioning and feedback, rather than by different tasks #ukedchat
  79. #UKEdChat Q4
How do you plan differentiation into the teaching element of your lessons, via questioning etc.?
    #UKEdChat Q4 How do you plan differentiation into the teaching element of your lessons, via questioning etc.?
  80. @_theteachr @MrGPrimary @digicoled @UKEdSch But yes, think there should be high challenge planning for most able students to ensure they're consistently challenged #ukedchat
  81. @UKEdSch #ukedchat as a manager I find tchrs own m.ment of it is variable. Tchers who are flexible and think on feet often better at it a3.
  82. @UKEdSch Yes, A4. Through questioning, using other adults, and feedback from students #UKEdChat
  83. Differentiation task should give opportunity to access to higher levels even if kids don't reach. Then task not a pointless add on.#ukedchat
  84. @_theteachr Yes! This was my own mistake in my NQT Year thinking differentiation = different work! #ukedchat
  85. @ukedchat Q4 In my subject it's usually a physical tangible product and I'm trying to break that down into smaller steps for some #ukedchat
  86. @shaun_allison @sborwick20 @ukedchat Thank you, Shaun. That's really very kind but I have a long way to go. 'I keep fighting the good fight' though.
  87. @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat 1/2 Setting is an interesting one in terms of pupil outcomes - think the research says that it has positive outcomes for least/most able...
  88. @UKEdSch #ukedchat a4 simple prompts help, i.e. asking why? not just what?, asking for alternative answers, deeper explanations etc.
  89. @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat 2/2 ... but that the "middle" ability groups (majority) come off worse for setting!
  90. #ukedchat A4 - Questioning, activity resources and child created success criteria (especially in writing)...
  91. @ukedchat Q4 for some I'm looking to challenge them into thinking of the next stage. What can u do with that skill/knowledge? #Ukedchat
  92. @MrGPrimary @bilingual_bees @digicoled @UKEdSch A challenge is always to explain to someone else - if you can't explain something to your grandmother, you don't understand it #UKEdchat
  93. @MrGPrimary @_theteachr Unfortunately, yes! Diff resources can be helpful for EAL / SEN students, particularly 4 assessments but there are other ways too! #ukedchat
  94. @KLMorgan_2 I know - @nfowles5 has given us the answer. No more point to #UKEdChat this evening ;0)
  95. @RequireImprove @nowMrsBeattie Focus on content and practice throughout the course, not mad panic of "revision" and prep in the final months. #ukedchat
  96. @ukedchat Some of my kids have toolkit with their own resources which allows them to independently access the same work as peers #UKEdChat
  97. #UKEdChat
What are the main barriers to differentiation, and how can these be overcome?
    #UKEdChat Q5 What are the main barriers to differentiation, and how can these be overcome?
  98. #SLTchat good differentiation will lay a path to top levels then you know it has been thought through - kids may not reach though. #ukedchat
  99. @digicoled We started with an empty box and the ch adds resources as they want - dice, fractions cards, numberlines etc etc #UKEdChat
  100. @ukedchat Depends on the task, quite often in maths my task is linked to an objective they all need to achieve, lowers have support, highers add depth
  101. @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat There's loads available online about this and via the @IOE_London. My MA thesis was a case study on setting - happy to share! #ukedchat
  102. @ukedchat #ukedchat I aim to the very top and use differentiation to scaffold so everyone of my pupils can access it!
  103. @ukedchat In literacy my children work towards the same L.O normally however they each have toolkits with appropriate resources pitched for them
  104. @ukedchat A lot of my differentiation comes down to outcome now. I've found more often than not the children surprise me with how well they achieve
  105. A5 - barrier - time. Partial solution - sharing strategies #ukedchat
  106. @ukedchat Yes we then look at adding depth. Every lesson I plan comes with greater depth opportunities that we can apply to, or through questioning
  107. @ukedchat KS2 Sats - 'all ch have to face the same test at the end of the day' end quote, so why differentiate? #UKEdChat
  108. @Teaching_Mr_T Inspiring stuff. #UKEdChat Giving pupils responsibility for their own learning.
  109. @ukedchat @UKEd_WMids Teacher mindset about pupil achievement. Sadly, it can cause diminished expectations. Teacher expectation =v.positive effect size #UKEdChat
  110. @ukedchat @KLMorgan_2 ratios, time, funding and the idea that you're not doing differentiation already; overcome by gov't £ + confidence in professional judgement
  111. @UKEdSch A5 over-complicating it, keep it simple & manageable or else it becomes too much #ukedchat
  112. @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat Some of the best differentiation I've seen has been in art lessons...
  113. @ukedchat Trying to enable all chn to achieve their age related expectation even though they are working at a lower level but justifying giving a
  114. @ukedchat A3 Progress evident in differing groups, differentiation clear to see (learning walks). Effective strategies shared in staff mtngs #UKEdChat
  115. @ukedchat Differentiated task which is easier perhaps as essentially in sats, they now all face the same test, there aren't 2 different levels anymore
  116. Planning time & teacher knowledge/skill - overcome by sharing ideas, resources and seeing as much good practice as possible! #ukedchat 
  117. @Sue_Cowley @ukedchat Confidence in professional judgement is key here. I wonder how many feel they have to 'show' it to tick a box? #ukedchat
  118. @Teaching_Mr_T @ukedchat Because all students have to face the same test at the end of the day... #UKEdchat
  119. @ukedchat Also, ensuring people don't have a preconceived idea - e.g my lower table for example orange will do this- it should be fluid groups and
  120. @Sue_Cowley @KLMorgan_2 Professional judgement? #UKEdChat I thought that had been removed from the profession ;0)
  121. @ukedchat Assessment for learning before allocating a task, even if you think you could guess what task the children may need
  122. @ukedchat This is why I prefer children choosing tasks at times, or moving themselves on after a 'try three and see' approach #UkEdChat
  123. @KLMorgan_2 @ukedchat the only way to see it is to look really closely at practice, not at lesson plans, it's not necessarily possible to write it down
  124. More immediate feedback on student understanding during lessons could make a huge impact to effective differentiation #UKEdChat
  125. @ukedchat A5 Time to find out how to do it effectively and knowledge esp if you have some chn 3 or 4 yrs behind ARE.Ask those who know! #UKEdChat
  126. @_theteachr @PaulCarneyArts @ukedchat @IOE_London Yes, findings were pretty much what I said before! If want the more detailed report PM me your email and I'll dig it out for you 😊 #ukedchat
  127. @KLMorgan_2 @ukedchat I think maybe we need to shout a bit more about all the subtle things we do in pursuit of differentiation.
  128. @KLMorgan_2 @Sue_Cowley @ukedchat That is sad. The emphasis should be on improving students, not on ticking boxes #UKEdChat
  129. @Teaching_Mr_T @ukedchat Oh, I see - got it... Hope you gave an appropriate frown to the person...
  130. @nfowles5 @ukedchat #ukedchat - couldn't agree more. Expectation and careful questioning are key.
  131. @KLMorgan_2 @Sue_Cowley @ukedchat High quality interaction, discussion and adapting to the evident needs of children; tweaking challenge up or down. #ukedchat
  132. Does every teacher differentiate in such black and white terms? Is it always so easily quantifiable? #ukedchat 
  133. @KLMorgan_2 @Sue_Cowley @ukedchat Agree - think student progress over times rather than these "snapshots" speaks for itself in most cases #ukedchat
  134. @ukedchat I completely disagree with 3 levels. In my opinion effective differentiation is about meeting individual needs #UKEdChat
  135. @ukedchat At times, you may only have 1 level, others may be 5. I decide the level of differentiation based on AfL and what each child needs #UKEdChat
  136. @MissPTeaching @ukedchat But there can be levels of ability within your three levels - aarrgghh #UKEdChat
  137. And actually - if a good teacher knows the class well, there is a ton of micro-differentiation that adds up to a lot #ukedchat
  138. Think this is totally dependent on context - I've worked with classes with level ranges way beyond 3 levels of difference #ukedchat 
  139. On Facebook, @RevRichardColes has commented on what he calls the "acid-reflux of 'feedback',a great evil of our times" #ukedchat
  140. @digicoled @ukedchat Yeah but then you'd still be differentiating more than three ways wouldn't you- you'd have like a lower 1, 2, 3 etc it's like sublevels
  141. Maybe good differentiation is getting to know the kids you teach & planning lessons for them - it's different every year. Always #ukedchat
  142. #UKEdChat A6 - levels of differentiation should be decided on context of lesson, afl and needs of class - 3 makes another hoop to jump thru
  143. @digicoled @MissPTeaching @ukedchat Yes there's NC levels, sub levels, levels within levels... either way, know your kids & adapt to their needs whether 3 ways or 30! #ukedchat
  144. @ukedchat A6 This heavily depends on what you are teaching and the chn in your class. #UKEdChat
  145. @bilingual_bees @digicoled @ukedchat Totally agree! There's not a fit-all answer- it depends on your class, objective, subject etc! #flexible
  146. As always, my teaching is now fine tuned because of Twitter... #ukedchat
  147. @ukedchat The main barrier is the articulation of what we already do. The nuance of action we pursue based on knowledge of the individual child.
  148. I'd rather see a teacher who knows their well kids & does what they can for them in regular interactions than 'great' tasks/sheets #ukedchat