Why differentiated Instruction?
Differentiated Instruction is a way of differentiating teaching in order to make certain that every student grows in all kinds’ of skills and knowledge areas as well as creating learning environments that addresses the diversity typical in every classroom. We learn differently—we have various learning styles, learning strengths, abilities, and interests. We also learn alike in that we need to find meaning and make sense of what we study. We learn best from work that demands we stretch ourselves, but does not intimidate us. Here is a fabulous story extracted from the book entitled “YOU CAN WIN” by SHIV KHERA.
“Some animals in a forest decided to start a school. The students included a bird, a squirrel, a fish, a dog, a rabbit & a mentally retarded eel. A board was formed and it was decided that flying, tree climbing, swimming, and burrowing would be part of the curriculum in order to give a broad-based education. All animals were required to take all subjects. The bird was excellent at flying and was getting A’s but when it came to burrowing, it kept breaking its beak and wings and started failing. Pretty soon, it started making C’s in flying and of course in tree climbing and swimming it was getting F’s. The squirrel was great at tree climbing and was getting A’s, but was failing in swimming. The fish was the best swimmer but couldn’t get out of the water and got F’s in everything else. The dog didn’t join the school, stopped paying taxes and kept fighting with the administration to include barking as part of the curriculum. The rabbit got A’s in burrowing but tree climbing was a real problem. It kept falling and landing on its head, suffered brain damage, and soon couldn’t even burrow properly and got C’s in that too. The mentally retarded eel, who did everything half as well, became the valedictorian of the class. The board was happy because everybody was getting a broad-based education.”
What education should really mean is that students are prepared for life, without losing their areas of specialization or competence.