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Tiered Activities

Tiered activities are different versions of an assignment created to respond to students' varied readiness levels. All students explore the same key ideas and skills, but the complexity of the activities is adjusted to ensure appropriate challenge.

Possible Ways to Structure a Tiered Lesson:

  • By Challenge Level - Bloom's Taxonomy
    From knowledge, comprehension, application, to analysis, evaluation, and synthesis (from placing information learned on a chart...to...comparing and contrasting...to using the information learned to create something new)
  • By Complexity
    From simple to complex (reporting information on an issue/topic ... to... reporting different points of view on an issue/topic...to... determining a position on an issue and presenting a convincing argument to defend that position)
  • By Resources
    Choose materials at various reading levels and complexity of content
  • By Outcome
    From basic tasks to advanced tasks (presenting what was learned on a topic studied...to...presentation comparing same topic to today's similar issues and looking at impact, concerns, changes, etc.)
  • By Process
    From basic tasks to advanced tasks (Research consumer information about a product and report findings ... to ... establish criteria for purchasing a product based on information learned about the product...to...interview 3 people who have purchased the product and identify the criteria they used in making a decision when purchasing this product and drawing conclusions)
  • By Product
    Ex. Verbal/linguistic; visual/spatial; logical/mathematical; bodily kinesthetic; musical (student products reflect their learning preferences and interests)

*From: Differentiating Instruction in the Regular Classroom: How to Reach and Teach All Learners, Grades 3-12, Diane Heacox, EdD, Free Spirit Publishing.