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Ideas from the PD

Joined: 5 years ago
Posts: 5
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Hi all, here are some of the ideas shared in the professional discussion at the PD last night. They cover a range of strategies and resources that people found useful in their settings. If your idea is listed here and you would like to add some detail, please feel free!


Adult sector:

  • BTN archives transcripts
  • Ball game - Round the World
  • Spellodrome
  • Word Shark
  • Skill building books for the first 40 mins of class to cross levels from basic reading to spelling


School sector:

  • Organising and structuring content to scaffold - helping students to make generalisations
  • Team teaching - 1 x mainstream and 1 x EAL specialist 
  • Concentrate on what is key/most important - minimise the extraneous
  • Pre-teaching of concepts, vocabulary, etc.
  • Collaborative or group work tasks - differentiated tasks within the group 
  • "Perusall" collaborative reading software - quite high level
  • Creating support material for different levels to support content e.g. text study
  • Highlighters! - find and highlight areas of the text to help students see patterns e.g. Where are the analysing?
  • Using abridged version of a text
  • Link Listening and Speaking tasks to text content (building the context)
  • Reading together to support lower level learners
  • Make the most of first language support where available - give them specific students to support or specific tasks to do with students
  • Differentiated or individual Homework tasks
  • Focus questions for different groups
  • Start with a good model so all students can see what the finished 'product' looks like, then break it down and explicitly look at how it works
  • 'Streaming' of classes - some schools attempt to make more homogenous classes this way
  • Using visual support and a range of other ways to scaffold understanding - give he learners multiple 'ways in'
  • Structure + strategy = Success (or at least confidence)
  • Assess student needs, the give students the skills they need to complete the task - lower the cognitive load

Click below to download 


VicTESOL Association Officer Admin
Joined: 6 years ago
Posts: 16

Some resources following the event:


The Goals of Differentiation

Carol Ann Tomlinson

VicTESOL Association Officer Admin
Joined: 6 years ago
Posts: 16

Leading and Managing a Differentiated Classroom 

Carol Ann Tomlinson and Marcia B. Imbeau

VicTESOL Association Officer Admin
Joined: 6 years ago
Posts: 16

Classroom strategies and tools for Differentiating Instruction in the ESL Classroom 

Anne Dahlman, Patricia Hoffman & Susan Brauhn 

Member Customer
Joined: 5 years ago
Posts: 1


Time filler - short essay for different levesl.

I also suggested using ABC's BTN (Behind the News) archives. The high achievers don't need to read the transcript print out and can steam on ahead doing the related quiz too, while the lower ones can read and watch with comprehension checking questions along the same way to reach the same goal, a short essay on the topic.