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Differentiated Instruction and Universal Design for Learning - Essay Example

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This essay describes two approaches to learning: Differentiated Instruction and Universal Design for Learning. When being a teacher is truly a challenge in the conditions of extremely versatile schools, new approaches to pedagogy are in need that will help students “to learn how to learn”…
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Differentiated Instruction and Universal Design for Learning
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Download file to see previous pages In her book “Differentiated Instruction: A Guide for Middle and High School Teachers”, Amy Benjamin defines differentiated instruction as a “broad term that refers to a variety of classroom practices that accommodate differences in students’, learning styles, interests, prior knowledge, socialization needs, and comfort zones”. The author explains that differentiated instruction is about a balance between the learning content and expected competencies and stresses the necessity of pedagogical options that would maximize learning. The latter primarily aims at teaching students how to learn meaningfully.In her article “Differentiating Instruction: Meeting Students Where They Are” Jennipher Willoughby observes that differentiated instruction is grounded on the idea that students will learn better if they try to make connections between what they learn in the curriculum and a variety of their interests and experiences. To add, it suggests that the most effective learning takes place when learners are pushed a bit beyond the limits of the area they can handle without assistance. Importantly, this point is different for learners who keep working below grade level and those students who are talented in particular area. Put simply, rather than employ the teaching-to-the-middle approach which means arranging a single avenue for everyone in a class, educators experienced in differentiated instruction match activities, tasks, and assessments to learners’ interests, preferences in learning, and abilities. ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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