EDU 675 Change Leadership for Differentiated Educ. Envmnt
Professional Learning Communities. A significant part of differentiated instruction implementation is created through professional development. Complete the “Creating and Sustaining a Professional Learning Community” checklist in Chapter 1 of Differentiated Instructional Strategies in Practice: Training, Implementation, and Supervision (2nd ed.). How many of the questions on this checklist are present in your current school or workplace? Based on the results of this checklist, identify and discuss in detail four activities that would create and sustain a professional learning community in your school or workplace.
School Culture and Differentiated Instruction. View the video, Transforming a School into a Professional Learning Community. Considering your required readings and this video, what effects do differentiated instruction and professional learning communities have on school culture? How does differentiated instruction reflect the attitudes and values of a school building? How can the development of a professional learning community and differentiated professional development benefit students? Identify two examples, one negative and one positive, in your school or workplace that affect school culture. Identify how a professional learning community could benefit your school or workplace culture in the context of these situations.
Week 1 Journal
Implementing the Professional Learning Community. Consider the benefits of the activities proposed in your discussion of professional learning communities. How can you implement these activities in your organization, or how will you implement them in a future position that you will hold within an organization? Why would these benefit your organization or a future organization? What do you feel will be the outcome of this collaboration?
Week 1 Assignment
Professional Development and Research. Search the Ashford University Library databases for two articles discussing the benefits of a professional learning community to school culture and examine Figure 2 of your text, Differentiated Instructional Strategies in Practice: Training, Implementation, and Supervision. Using this research, design a professional development plan for your school that will positively impact school culture. In a three- to five-page paper, discuss the following:
a. Summarize your research and the research in Figure 2 (Joyce & Showers, 1995).
b. How is this research applicable to your work setting?
c. Discuss the professional development plan that you have created.
d. How will this plan benefit school culture?
e. Integrate the research you have found on professional development and include appropriate references within your discussion.
Job-Embedded Learning. How does your school or workplace use job-embedded learning? After reading Chapters II-1 and II-2, discuss two strategies that you would offer to your administrator or supervisor to increase engagement in job-embedded learning. How will these strategies increase the effectiveness of job-embedded learning at your school or workplace? Discuss your rationale for choosing these two strategies.
Four Corners. What is the purpose of the Four Corners strategy? How could it be used in a classroom? How could it be used in a professional development setting? Conceptualize and summarize how the Four Corners strategy may be used to develop a concept of interest to you, keeping an intended audience in mind (i.e., students or colleagues). Include various leadership aspects and incorporate differentiated instruction techniques into your concept. For example, you can develop a concept for teacher training, where leadership plays an important role in professional development.
Week 2 Journal
Encouraging Team Building Throughout the Year. Identify three ways in which you feel you can encourage team building throughout the year. Assume that you are an administrator or a teacher leader at a school. What additional managerial tasks could you use in order to maintain the effectiveness of this team building? How would these tasks encourage growth and collaboration between teachers throughout the year?
Week 2 Assignment
Critical Thinking Questions. After reading Chapters II-1 and II-2 of Differentiated Instructional Strategies in Practice: Training, Implementation, and Supervision, you will answer the following reflective questions that will require you to think and respond critically. In a two- to five-page paper, address the questions below, using specific examples from your professional experience, and cite the book when possible.
a. What are the benefits to the six-column framework for differentiated instruction? How can you use this framework in preparation for differentiated instruction? How might a leader use it to support change or improve instruction?
b. On page 39 of Differentiated Instructional Strategies in Practice: Training, Implementation, and Supervision, you were given a concept formation exercise to use with teachers. Read each step to the concept formation exercise. What is the purpose of each step? Will each step provide a pre-assessment of the teachers, or merely provide the instructor with baseline data?
c. What are the primary factors to consider when determining classroom climate? How do teachers use these factors in differentiated instruction? How can you use these factors to differentiate instruction when providing professional development to teachers?
Week 2 Assignment
Strategies to Build Culture. Select a strategy that can be used for building relationships within an educational or work setting. After selecting this strategy, use the Ashford University Library databases to locate two articles that focus on using this strategy in either the classroom or in a professional development setting. In a three- to five-page paper, not including title and reference pages, describe the strategy and summarize the findings of the two research articles that you found. Discuss how this strategy may benefit the culture within your school or workplace to improve instruction. Include APA-formatted citations for appropriate references or links.
Multiple Intelligences. Review the information on the Multiple Intelligences interactive chart and click on the “Take a Test” tab. Complete the test and view your results. Share your results with your classmates. How will the results impact your own choices for learning? Do you believe your education would have been improved if your own teachers had differentiated instruction based on your multiple intelligences? What influence do the theories of multiple intelligence have on differentiated instruction? Do you believe that learning improves when it is tailored to learning preferences, or does it just make learning more enjoyable? Can lessons be engaging without being differentiated for learning preferences? Why or why not?
Assessment Strategies. Analyze the assessment strategies presented in your reading and within your research on differentiated instruction. Identify two assessment strategies that may be used to differentiate instruction in a low-performing school. How do these assessment strategies benefit a high-performing student in a low-performing class? Would you use the same assessment strategies in a high-performing class that contained one or more low-performing students? Provide rationale for your answers.
Week 3 Assignment
Using Assessment and Feedback. Using ProQuest or other online sources, compile at least five references related to assessment and feedback strategies for differentiated instruction in a gifted classroom. Assume that you are a teacher in a gifted classroom with students who exhibit multiple intelligences represented among your students. In a three- to five-page paper, select and discuss a pre-assessment and post-assessment that would differentiate instruction to support your students’ multiple intelligences. How would you use feedback from these assessments to reflect upon and modify instruction within a gifted class? Make recommendations to colleagues about how differentiated instruction would help them in their roles as teachers, as well as how it might improve outcomes for their students. Your paper should be written in APA format and include references that are appropriately cited.
Adjustable Assignments, Compacting, and Grouping. How are adjustable assignments, compacting, and grouping used in differentiated instruction? Provide a brief summary of, as well as a strategy for implementing, each technique discussed in the reading. Imagine that you are providing professional development on these topics. Which strategies from your reading would you use? Which strategies would you omit if time constraints did not permit you to use all of them? How would you assess the understanding and implementation of the training?
Graphic Organizers. Chapter II-6 of your text discusses several graphic organizers that can be used for student success. Which of these have you used with students? Of those you have not used, which would you try in a classroom? How can you differentiate instruction with graphic organizers? Discuss a concept that is important to you. Which graphic organizer would you use to teach this concept to your coworkers?
Week 4 Journal
Personal Reflection. Critically reflect on your work thus far. What have you learned about the uses of differentiated instruction in both the classroom and in professional development? How will you use what you have learned to benefit your organization or an organization that you will work for in the future?
Week 4 Assignment
Critical Thinking Questions. After reading Chapters II-5 through II-8 of Differentiated Instructional Strategies in Practice, you will answer the following reflective questions that will require you to think and respond critically. In a two- to five-page paper, address the following questions using specific examples from your professional experience and cite the textbook or other scholarly resources.
a. What is a successful lesson framework composed of? How would this framework vary between two different content areas?
b. Why is it important to consider the background of the students and possible assessments used when designing a lesson? How does this lead to student achievement?
c. Reflect on the strategies you have learned thus far for differentiated instruction. Choose three of these strategies. Compare/contrast each strategy, noting the differences and similarities in student achievement. Could any of these strategies be combined and, if so, how will this impact student achievement?
Implementing Change. Review Figure 80 in your reading. Describe a situation in your past experience where you implemented change or could have implemented change. How could you use this chart to increase the effects of this change? Was this change process a success? Based on your readings, how could you have increased the likelihood of success in this situation? Describe a situation that you have encountered where a supportive response may have increased your adaptability to change.
Managing Change. Change can be difficult for some people. Think about a change you would like to see in your educational or work environment. How would you implement this change? Consider and discuss the possible resistance that you may encounter from your professional community. How would you support people throughout the change process? How would you overcome any resistance to the change?
Week 5 Journal
Teacher Leadership. Read the required article, “Asking the Right Questions” (Reason, C. & Reason, L., 2007). Reflect on what you have learned about teacher leadership. How can you implement change within an organization? How do you manage this change outside of a designated leadership position?
Week 5 Assignment
Critical Thinking Questions. Research three articles that focus on teacher/school leadership. Answer the following reflective questions that will require you to think and respond critically. In a one- to two-page paper, address the following questions, using specific examples from your professional experience and cite the three articles you found throughout the paper.
a. What is a teacher leader? How can you lead your organization through your individual capabilities? What leadership principles would you draw on?
b. What type of change will you implement in your organization or in a future organization? How will your research on teacher/school leadership help you to do this?
c. Discuss the implementation of change as a teacher or educational leader. How is this different from managing change?
Supporting Change. How does your work setting sustain morale and commitment from employees in times of change? Is the current support for change in your workplace successful? What strategies for supporting change in your work environment would you provide to your administrators? Why did you select these strategies? Support your discussion with references from the required reading.
Managing vs. Supporting Change. Identify a change that is presently occurring in your organization and provide your classmates with a background for the rationale behind this change. If you were assigned to support and manage this change, how would you do this? What would you do differently in managing and supporting this change? Provide rationale for your decisions based on the reading and one additional source.
Week 6 Journal
Leadership Through Professional Learning Communities. Reflect on your study of differentiated instruction, professional learning communities, and teacher leadership. What steps and leadership principles would you use to implement, manage, and support the development of a professional learning community in your organization? What possible challenges would you face during this process? How would you address these challenges to achieve the desired result?
Week 6 Final Paper
Differentiated Instruction Research Paper
During each week of this course, you will research and analyze differentiated instruction and the leadership principles necessary to implement effective professional development for understanding differentiated instruction. Using the assignment in Week Five as the foundation for your Final Paper, identify an area in need of professional development for differentiated instruction at your worksite. In a paper that is at least eight pages in length, excluding title and reference pages, research the objectives, assessments, strategies, and implementation of a professional development plan to address this need. Make sure to include leadership principles, choice of differentiated instruction for improvement, and key players involved at your site. For example, a school site would include parent groups, teachers, teacher leaders, school staff, and students. You should include research in your paper, identifying how these components are grounded in research and best practice. This paper should include at least eight sources of reference. The paper should be written in APA format with appropriate reference citations.