Differentiation in the Classroom







Differentiation in the Classroom

















Differentiation in the Classroom

Differentiated instruction is increasingly becoming popular among teachers. It is a mode of instruction that caters for the different needs of learners. The site article by Ochoa (2015) shows different strategies that could be used in teaching a diverse ability classroom using differentiated instruction. This information can be used to help a new or "old" teacher who has difficulty with working on differentiation in the classroom by giving simple yet effective suggestions for activities and assignments.

Goal: (Long Term)

Improve on the reading skills of the students with diverse needs through mini-lessons that target a specific skill.

Objective: (Short Term)

By the end of the lesson the learner should be able:

  1. To read a text from their literature books and answer questions related to the text at the individual level.

  2. To discuss and read a passage from their textbook and come up with themes about the passage.

  3. To improve on their word analysis and vocabulary by reading fluently in groups as well as in dynamic duo pairs.

Strategy: Skill

Differentiated instruction: The lesson is arranged to encourage learner participation and address needs of learners based on their skill levels in reading.



Content Area: Reading comprehension.

Grade Level: 5th Grade.

Process: Lesson Development

Part 1: Review of the previous lesson

The learners will take turns to tell their peers what they remember in the previous lesson on writing creative compositions. The teacher will guide this activity to avoid confusion and disorganization of the classroom. Time allocated for the brief review of the previous lesson is five minutes.

Part 2: Learner-centered planning

Each student will be given the opportunity to set their personal goals and evaluate their abilities in reading. After the review of the previous lesson, the learners will spend about 10 minutes writing down their goals in reading with the guidance of the teacher. Useful tools such as Measure of Academic Progress (MAP) will be used to monitor the progress of the learners every semester/ school term. In this lesson, the learners will take a short aptitude test on their reading skills. The scores will be used to create ability groups for the learners. The students will use their scores to assess their needs in vocabulary, reading and comprehension.

Part 3: Classroom Activities

Now that the goals are set, the plans are written down; the learners will start reading activities using various modes of learning. These activities give the students the opportunity to engage in different reading sessions with their peers. In the first option, the students will use literature circles that are small groups of learners selected by the teacher depending on their scores on the aptitude test. The second option is the dynamic duo in which the learners choose a partner or study buddy. Lastly, the learners have independent reading sessions where they work on their reading skill individually. In this lesson, the teacher will explain to the learners the functions and roles of each student in the literature circles, dynamic duo and independent sessions.

Assess: (Informal)

Learners have diverse ways of understanding and reading. The assessments are tailored towards the needs of the learners depending on their progress and scores in previous tests. The options for assessment are: Tic-Tac-Toe Board (contains activities that assess performance of learners in the literature circles, dynamic duos and as individuals) and Book reports (Students are required to write an essay about the books they have read in the previous weeks).


Homework Assignment: Students should read Wonder by R.J. Palacio and write a brief summary.














Ochoa, M. (2015). Differentiation in a Reader's Workshop. Retrieved from