We were able to attend a series of talks/workshops run by Routes into Languages In our school last month. The first I went to was Differentiation by Philip Campagna. Here are my rough notes:
Of the ways to differentiate, the easiest (although a bit of a cop out) is differentiation by outcome.
Most teachers teach to the middle.
Be careful with extension work, a lot of bright children don't like the idea that they're given harder work, they want to go deeper.
If differential gets wider within a class, planning gets harder and harder.
Target the individual pupil, give them autonomy.
Is planning more about getting through topics or helping learners progress in their learning?
The attitude of the learner is key. How do we get a learner to buy in?
Look at language acquisition rather than rote learning with little comprehension.
Writing is just copying at this stage. We want them to develop skills.
David Crystal A little book of language.
We should be like tennis coaches, break it down, exaggerate it.
Differentiation by support, let them see the bigger picture, work the first two questions as examples.
Teacher, pupils helping each other, classroom assistant.
Language ambassadors/leaders. Get them to talk to younger pupils re what it was like to go through GCSEs.
Audit rest of staff to see if they have any languages.
Differentiation by text / resources.
Need to build in challenge even for lower ability pupils.
Differentiation by task. Eg do similar task where weaker ones interview 6th Years, as they find writing difficult.
Differentiation by interest: what are they interested in?
Do they want to go off skiing etc? Interview them re interests eg future plans and teach them that vocab
Teachers dislike identifying less able pupils but kids know.
Use 'at least' as this gives even weakest chance of success. (At least 2 better than at least 5)
Replace at least 5 words in the text with synonyms
Use same photo for different activities with different year groups.
Form 1 as self.
Forms 2-3 as third person.
A level conditional
Differentiation by support. Give less able pupils key words or ask them what words they would want to say.
Improvise as many sentences as you can which contain the word X (eg Tigre) Go table by table for feedback on possible sentences.
Differentiation by support:
Explain to your partner how you did something, figured something out.
We don't give them iPhone classes but they work it out because they want to.
Ask kids how we could use the technology.
Ability groups or mixed ability groups acc to fitness for purpose.
Try boy/girl seating plan for some activities. Watch the boy dynamics.
Work in groups to reconstruct the text.