Standard #3: Differentiation

Over the time that I have been at my student teaching placement, I have learned about the importance of differentiation through my mentor teacher. Differentiation is a driving force in the classroom and role that she is in.

She gets to know every student on a personal level and uses the knowledge that she acquires from her interactions with her students to help build how she teaches them skills and strategies. My mentor also has her instruction very IEP goal driven to make sure that her students are meeting their IEP goals as the year progresses. Then during the IEP process makes sure to include information that informs the parents of the character of their student and what qualities they possess that she has seen first hand.

Then when it comes to her flexibility and responsiveness in lesson adjustments, I think that she is a professional. We often have to leave our lesson plans due to certain students needing extra support throughout the day that she provides. Our classroom is currently the home room for any student who needs to deescalate. She always has a classroom plan for if one of these situations arise. She also makes herself aware of the high flyers in the school, students who are on administrative radar due to extreme circumstances, so that she can be alert and aware of what to do if one of those students becomes a danger or an issue, and follows the plan put into place for that student.

Next year, I plan to take the strategies that my mentor teacher has taught me and use them in my own classroom. I will make sure to get to know all of my students to best support and represent them as individuals. I will also, make sure that I always have a lesson plan B just in case I come into a situation where I am in need of ditching a lesson. My mentor teacher has taught me how to differentiate to my best ability, and plan to use that information to guide myself as a future educator.

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