I received a letter from a reader this week that told me she was so intimidated by the thought of differentiating that it has completely paralyzed her from doing anything to get started. I get so bummed when I hear that, because I just know how great students respond when they are all working at their own level of readiness and are interested and engaged in learning. It compelled me to sit down and create a holiday ‘gift’ for my readers that would be a hassle free way to get at least one activity under your belt just to see how great differentiating can be.
Here’s the scenario. I have a small group of students that are still struggling to identify and represent teen numbers. I have another small group that can identify and represent but are struggling with before and after numbers (which are crucial when we start +1 and -1 activities. Then I have a good number of students that are ready for decomposing teen numbers and yet another slightly smaller group that have master decomposing but need another challenge to keep them engaged.
The question remains . . . how can I have one activity that meets all their needs . . .
Here it is. I Spy Santa Searching for Teen Numbers . . . There is one playing mat available in color
or black/white for my color printing challenged friends. On these mats there are 10 numbers hidden. Students use their magnifying glasses to search the picture and find the numbers.
When they find them, they record the number in the box on their recording sheets and finish the problem.
One sheet ask for the students to write the number and represent it in a ten frame.
On sheet asks for students to write the number and tell what comes before and after.
Another sheet asks students to decompose the number by telling what added to 10 equals the number.
And a final sheet requests students to add 10 to their number (my high flier students enjoy this challenge, and I always offer them a 100s chart if they need to check their answer. They’ve become quite good at maneuvering their way around the 100s chart).
One activity 4 levels of response. Your high fliers aren’t doing MORE work and your students who struggle aren’t getting LESS work. Everyone is getting work that is challenging to them.
Everyone gets to enjoy the same, fun activity. It’s a win for the kids and a win for you . . . (and a win for you when your administrator comes in and asks how you’re differentiating the week before the holidays).
I hope you enjoy this freebie. And if you are looking for other differentiated activities like this one for your classroom, please feel free to browse my blog store or TpT store.
Ho Ho Ho!