Independent Together: Supporting the Multilevel Community

Learning Community for Teachers

"Differentiated instruction... is about shaping instructional methods and classroom practices in response to the diversity of students in our classrooms" (Manitoba Education and Training, Success for All Learners xi).

Differentiated instruction generally begins with formative assessment. It involves the partners in the learning community in planning to meet students' cognitive and developmental goals, and to accommodate the learners' interests and learning styles. Differentiated instruction in the multilevel classroom also involves planning for strategic instruction from multiple curricula. Planning for learners with exceptional needs includes meeting the specific learning outcomes identified in their individual education plan (IEP). Watch Video Clip (1.01 MB)

Teachers facilitate differentiated instruction in a variety of ways. You can

  • use formative assessment to focus on what you see and hear during regular instruction to determine what learners can do View Word Document - Listen to Audio Clip (115 KB)
  • plan from the Suggestions for Instruction in one or two Foundation for Implementation documents at the outset, and move into others as confidence and knowledge grows (Notice the overlap of instructional strategies and processes from one subject and/or grade to another.)
  • construct a classroom continuum of learning built on formative assessment for learning View Picture
  • establish flexible and cooperative groupings Watch Video Clip (454 KB)
  • use the Model of Explicit Instruction to meet the needs of a wide range of learners Watch Video Clip (952 KB)
  • implement the multiple intelligences model for instruction and application of new learning Listen to Audio Clip (26.3 KB)
  • allow for student choice and more time to complete tasks View Word Document - Watch Video Clip (476 KB)
  • provide authentic materials for mathematics, science, and art (such as collections of buttons, keys, bottle caps, bread tags, cartons, rocks, variety of art media, and so on) and text sets View Picture for supporting inquiry and literacy in a collaborative classroom Watch Video Clip (710 KB)
  • schedule large blocks of uninterrupted time for workshops (60 to 90 minutes) and integrated themes View Picture
  • invite parents into the classroom to see what differentiated instruction looks like and to assist in the learning of the classroom Watch Video Clip (825 KB)
  • engage parents in setting goals and action plans for learning View Word Document - Watch Video Clip (427 KB)