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Skip to 0 minutes and 13 secondsI plan to use differentiation in the lesson by giving them a ZipGrade quiz, which they then used and the questions they got incorrect, they start on a task based on that question. So if they got the first couple incorrect on the ZipGrade, they start at the top of the flow chart on the essential tasks. So the easiest questions were the essential questions. If they haven't got one of the two questions based on those right in the ZipGrade, they have to start on these questions. They move them through. So they had three essential tasks they had to do. They had their stretch tasks, which they could choose two of.

Skip to 0 minutes and 44 secondsAnd the challenge, which is the hardest, they could choose one of, so it was about building difficulty up, but making them think about their own weaknesses and develop those particularly. So the whole point for that lesson was to make sure they could build on that and choose their particular areas they were not as good at and use that to develop.

Skip to 1 minute and 28 secondsThis is your piece of information today. It's vital, OK? So you've got a flow chart with different tasks as you go through. Yellow ones are your essential tasks, OK? Orange ones are your stretch, and green are your challenge. When you do this, you have to make sure if you start at task one, you do all of your essential tasks. OK? All of those must be done-- all the yellows. But when you get into your stretch tasks, you just choose two. So it's your choice which two you do, OK? When you get to challenge, you only have to do one of them. Again, it's your choice which one you think will push you the most, OK? Which is your weakest area.

Skip to 2 minutes and 4 secondsAll right? Are there any questions so far? No? You sure? OK. So Task One-- information. It's your head. It's your brain. OK? The other tasks-- there's information all around the room that's labelled, OK? Task Two starts over here. Task Three, Task Four, Task Five, Task Six, Task Seven is behind the tables there. Task Eight is hidden behind Kenny, so watch out for that one. Task Nine is on this table, and Task Ten is right at the front. OK? So if you want any information, you can use it. But it's absolutely up to you to move through these tasks as you see fit. OK? Any questions at the moment? No? Fab. OK. Have a look which task you are setting.

Skip to 2 minutes and 48 secondsOff you go.

Skip to 2 minutes and 57 secondsWeak. OK. So if they're weak, do you need loads of energy, or not much energy to break them up? Little. Little. Yeah. So that's why you often find them like this.

Skip to 3 minutes and 19 secondsAll students were engaged with it. They were moving through that was an appropriate way for them. It was a bit surprising sometimes to see some of them that I thought would get to the challenge didn't get there, and some people that I thought were not going to get anywhere near it got to it. So that was quite a surprise for me. But they did really well. I could go around and check as they were going that they were getting it right, and sort of intervene if they weren't. But they were completely independent for the whole lesson doing what they wanted to do. So it was good.

Using pyramids of learning in the classroom

The four-minute video above shows Kate R with a Year 9 class (13-14 year olds) using a pyramid of learning and then reflecting on the lesson.

Carefully observe the video and listen to Kate’s reflections. Think about how you might use approaches similar to those taken by Kate and in what circumstances.

You may want to focus on:

  • Subject
  • Topic
  • The practicalities of managing things
  • Questions you may have about the approach

The “flowchart” [DOCX] [PDF] used by Kate is also shown below:

Flowchart

The pyramid of learning she uses is available via the previous step. The Zipgrade tool was introduced in Step 2.5.

Share your ideas by contributing a short summary of your thinking to the discussion and respond to at least one of the summaries contributed by another learner.

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This video is from the free online course:

Differentiating for Learning in STEM Teaching

National STEM Learning Centre