Process refers to the way students come to understand essential knowledge and ideas. Carol Ann Tomlinson (2004), one of the most respected voices in differentiation, uses the term "sense making" to describe what happens as students begin to process what they are learning and make it their own.
Differentiation occurs when the teacher offers a variety of ways for students to make sense of what they are learning. When this is combined with different degrees of complexity and appropriate support more students are able to arrive at new understanding.
|Students make or do something||work on a project, solve a problem, research a topic, add description to a piece of writing, have a discussion, contribute to the success of a group|
|In a variety of ways||through talk, role-play, reading, writing, media, hands-on productions, in groups, pairs and independently|
|At different levels of complexity or sophistication||
|With different degrees of support from teacher and/or peers||scaffolding, minilessons, technology|
|Using essential skills and information||collaborating, creating, analyzing, thinking critically, problem solving, communicating, reflecting, evaluating|
There are a number of teaching strategies that help students process what they are learning in ways that work best for them. These include:
|Learning logs||Jigsaw||Exit Cards|
|Graphic organizers||Think-Pair-Share||Grouping Options|
|Dramatization||Mind mapping||Anchor Activities|
How can I get started? What should I be thinking about?
The projects described in the Into the Classroom section of the website include the content, process and products that lead to a complete learning experience. There you will find effective activities and teaching strategies for helping students work through the process as they make sense of the essential knowledge and understandings found in the ELA program.
Check out the following two projects designed by Quebec teachers. The process includes all of the activities found in the immersion and preproduction sections of each write-up.
|Students create illustrated picture books. They work in small teams to brainstorm, plan, problem-solve, write and illustrate a narrative text in order to better understand how visual and narrative elements work together to covey meaning.|