Monday, June 11, 2012

My Favorite Differentiating Resources . . .

I use a variety of resources to help me in my journey towards a differentiated classroom, and I've had so many readers ask which resources I find most useful so I thought I would share a few of the things that have been helpful for me.  I decided to separate this into two different posts.  This post will focus on actual printed resources or guides that I use and later I will show you specific items and tools that I use in my class (including some items I wish I had but haven't acquired yet).

Above all, resources that I feel have been most helpful to me are any and all publications by the Differentiated Instruction guru, Carol Ann Tomlinson.  She is the queen of D.I. I'd LOVE to meet her someday but until then, I stalk her through her publications and books.  My favorites are:

This is a super easy read, tons of great 'get right to work' suggestions and ideas. 

Great resource guide for elementary specifically.

Great read for those getting started.

Knowing that instruction should focus on core principals, I also reference the following website quite a bit to keep up on the latest Common Core State Standards for Kindergarten.  It's a great reference site for everything Common Core.

A couple of guides that I have made up myself that help me greatly in my day-to-day planning are:

Click on the picture above to get a copy of the explanation.

And this template I use (not as much anymore more but quite a bit when I first started out) to remind me of the what process I should use for tiering.  You can click on the form to get a copy for yourself.

Another chart that I use quite often when I think about differentiating in response to learning profiles and intelligences is

I put this in the front of my planner to remind me of all the intelligences I should be considering when planning learning centers and other activities.  If you'd like a copy for yourself, just click on the picture above to download it.

These are just a few references that I use regularly to keep me on the straight and narrow. If you have any great resources that you use, please drop me a comment.  I'd love to hear from you.  And come back and check out my favorite tools used for differentiating in the next couple of weeks.


  1. Thanks for the book recomendations! I am having a hard time deciding which one to get!!

  2. I find it easiest to differentiate in reading and writing - but our math curriculum is SO involved, and SO hard to stay on top of, I find it more difficult to differentiate there. I'm curious about these reads...will have to check them out! Thanks for this post. You got me thinking!

    Crisscross Applesauce in First Grade

    1. That's so funny Holly. I find it easiest to differentiate in Math. I do math stations which can be complicated to organize but I think I have a pretty good system figured out.

  3. Thank you for your hard work. I am looking forward to reading the resources you suggested

  4. These templates are great! I am so excited to see them- I have so many summer projects planned and these are perfect to help me focus. I am adding these books to my amazon wish-list. I'll get into them as soon as I'm done reading my Guided Math book.

    1. Yes! I'm sooooo glad you can use them.

  5. This is all so helpful!! Thanks for the templates. I am definitely going to use the Multiple Intelligences handout w/my lesson plans as a reminder!
    Learning Is Something to Treasure

  6. Thanks for the templates! They will be a great way to help me think more and plan better for differentiating. Thanks!

  7. Thank you so much for sharing the posters and planners - so helpful! I found this post via Pinterest, and have included it in my weekly round-up of great pins on my blog. If you'd like to have a look, you can find it here:

    Kelly at Little Green



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