Week 10 – How can I differentiate through student product in my classroom

How can I differentiate through student product in my classroom?

For this week’s question above it made me ponder how I would differentiate to not only meet the needs of each student, but to give some choice in the product. In any classroom one enters there will be extremes in the range of abilities. There will be those that are performing off the charts, students far below, and those in the middle grounds. As one might imagine, it was a difficult task to come up with a project that allowed for differentiation through the product. With a bit of thought and a brilliant idea from my wife, who had a father for an architect, I finally came up with a project that could integrate technology and what we were focusing on at that time in point.

My group and I had previously chosen to make geometry our focus for our second assignment. With my part of the assignment I chose to do shapes. I felt it appropriate to continue to use shapes in this last assignment, only this time I decided they could and would be able to handle more. It was time for them to use their knowledge of shapes to combine to make larger shapes, one of the standards for kindergarten. But it was more than just throwing together two shapes to make a larger one. They would be architects! Wait, architects? In kindergarten? They would first learn what an architect is and does. From here they would then design a building on a blank piece of paper by drawing a building using various shapes. For example, they could design a school building, with a rectangle for the main building, squares for the windows, and so forth. But this design would have to be carried out! From this design we would discuss how architects label their “designs.” Their next job would include labeling each shape with a color they would use. They would use construction paper for each shape. Sounds simple right? I thought so too! And then I remembered, architects don’t build their own designs! And so back we went to designing buildings with shapes we had learned about throughout the year. After completing their designs they would be partnered up, where they would instruct their partner on how to build their designs, right down to the color and shape labeled in their design. Finally, after having their designs built for them by a peer, they would repeat the partner work with blocks to see how different the two models are.

The final step as listed in the rubric below would be to select a technology tool to present their projects. We have been learning how to correctly use a camera throughout the year and have done a bit of work with Voicethread to learn about various subjects. The document camera is something I have used, but have not allowed for much student use. As for the Show Me app on the ipad, though we have not used it, I have it on my ipad and have found it rather simple to use. If they so choose, they could very well use more than one technology tool to present their work.

I suppose that the question could have very well been answered simply with student choice. But in order for anyone to understand I felt that I had to explain my project just a tad. With that said it can be seen that there could be differentiation in the product through the use of various shapes, colors, designs, building creations, their directions given, and finally, the technology tool used in the end to present project.

Below are the standards to be addressed as well as the rubric to be used.

Standards:

Alaska State Standards:

K.G.1 Describe objects in the environment using names of the shapes and describe their relative positions

K.G.2 Name shapes regardless of their orientation or overall size

K.G. 5 Build shapes and draw shapes

K.G. 6 Put together two-dimensional shapes to form larger shapes

Technology Standards:

A2: use technological tools for learning, communications, and productivity

E2: discriminate between responsible and irresponsible uses of technology

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Use of Multiple Shapes and Colors Use multiple colors to represent the multiple shapes for the building Used at least three different colors for the minimum three different shapes Used one or two shapes and colors to make the building Used one shape and/or color to make the building
Design, Labeling, and Creation Designed building, labeled appropriately with colors shapes would be, and created building as shown in design Designed a building, added a few labels, and created building Designed a building but did not label anything or make it to create building Did not design, label, or create a building
Work with peer – built partner’s work (architect and a builder) Worked with peer, followed their directions, built their design as asked, and discussed how it was going to be built before hand Worked with partner and built partner’s work mostly the way it was designed Worked with peer, but did not build their partner’s design as asked Did not work with a peer to design and create a building with shapes
Technology Integration  Voicethread, camera, document reader, or Show Me App Chose more than one technology tool to present work Chose one technology tool to present work Did not use any form of technology to present work
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