Differentiated Instruction: Maximizing the Learning of All Students


Take some time now to answer the following questions. Please note that the IRIS Center does not collect your Assessment responses. If this is a course assignment, you should turn them in to your professor using whatever method he or she requires. If you have trouble answering any of the questions, go back and review the Perspectives & Resources pages in this Module.

  1. What is differentiated instruction?
  2. Describe at least four significant ways in which differentiated instruction differs from traditional classroom instruction.
  3. How can teachers get to know their students? Make sure to include the three characteristics of students that are important for differentiating instruction and give at least two examples of how teachers can learn about each.
  4. Happy TeacherMs. Hasbro has taught high-school Spanish for ten years. She would like to start differentiating instruction and needs to make some changes.
    1. Explain why each of Ms. Hasbro’s classroom practices listed below is not a differentiated practice.
    2. Describe what Ms. Hasbro can do differently with each of them.
      • Delivers instruction primarily by lecturing
      • Does not permit students to retake tests they have failed
      • Records zeros for missing assignments
      • Groups students at the beginning of the year based on the previous year’s achievement test scores
      • Gives bonus points for classroom participation
      • Gives a test every Friday
  5. Think back to a class you took in high school. Describe both the class and how the teacher typically conducted it. Describe five elements that you would change to make it more differentiated. (Make sure to include at least one each for content, process, and product.)
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