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Page history last edited by lauriecairns 11 years ago




Differentiated Instruction Wiki: A practical resource for teachers


"If a child can't learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn."

(Ignacio Estrada)


The Executive of the Special Education Association (SEA) of BC, a Provincial Specialist Association of the BC Teachers' Federation, initiated this inquiry to address an emerging need among its PSA membership:

-to connect classroom and resource teachers (special education teachers) through differentiated instructional practices that best meet the needs of students with special needs, and that establish effective and manageable working relationships among teachers.

The general focus question for the group inquiry is:

How can Special Educators work together with classroom teachers in the identification and application of critical elements of Differentiated Instruction in order to ensure success for every student?


Within this overarching focus, each of the SEA group members conducted an individual investigative inquiry/action research project emerging from their specific interest and teaching practice:

Individual questions:

·       Does the use of student information about a student’s style, interests, and readiness for learning during the IEP planning process, lead to greater success and happiness for a student with special needs?

·       Do French Immersion teachers agree that the use of leveled books, as an aspect of Differentiated Instruction in a second language classroom, leads to increased decoding and comprehension skills?

·       How does inquiry engage classroom teachers to use DI strategies?

·       How do you promote DI as being manageable for classroom teachers?

·       How do you assist teachers to become familiar with DI and to implement DI in their classrooms? What are some entry points?

·       What are some of the effective ways support staff can work with a classroom teacher to provide Differentiated learning for students?



The group met six times on their inquiries with Liz Moore and Nancy Hinds, BCTF inquiry facilitators, leading to their celebration and presentation at their Annual Cross Currents conference in April 2010. A BCTF-sponsored Wiki was used to organize their information and prepare a collaborative report. The learning process occurred in face-to-face group sessions, in the spaces between with their colleagues on-line, and in the application of new technology via the Wiki.

The anticipated overall result of their inquiry process is a practical go-to resource for teachers in British Columbia linked to the SEA website.


SEA Inquiry Researchers

Miila Pullan (SEA Inquiry Project Co-ordinator)

Leann Buteau

Carol McAndrew

Laurie Cairns

BJ (Bonnie-Jean) Foulds

Janice Clary


Work Smarter NOT Harder!!


Thanks to Karen Rojem, BCTF Information Services staff, for her training and support in using a Wiki for this inquiry.


With appreciation to the Government of British Columbia through the Ministry of Education for the grant funding that supported this BCTF PSA Inquiry Project.




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