Overview

Girls frustrated with school work
PDT-TchGN-34

Differentiation: The Power and Potential of Choice

Differentiation: The Power and Potential of Choice

New Featured Event with Mike Anderson, prominent expert and award-winning author of Learning to Choose, Choosing to Learn!

"When work is a pleasure, life is a joy! When work is a duty, life is slavery." Maxim Gorky

There is an uncomfortable truth about many children's school experiences--with little voice or autonomy, many students languish with schoolwork that has little personal relevance. They view school as something done to them, not something in which they have true power and voice. However, when teachers share power and control with students, offering simple and meaningful choices about their work, schools become vibrant, interesting places where students care about their work. 

Additionally, one of the great challenges of differentiated instruction is getting students into the "just-right" zone. Not only is the "just-right zone” where learning is most effective, but it is also where learning is most enjoyable. This means that when given appropriate choices, and when taught how to choose well, students will self-differentiate. Teachers who use the reading workshop approach know the power of teaching students how to choose "just-right" books. This same principle can apply in any content area. Students can find just-right math problems, take on appropriately challenging science and social studies work, and explore just-right art and music challenges. 

There's more good news. When used well, choice doesn't have to involve herculean teacher planning. In fact, many teachers find that they have more positive energy and passion for teaching when using choice. Their time is spent more efficiently, and they get excited as their students come alive in the classroom. One teacher in a school using choice recently remarked, "I'm retiring at the end of this year, and I'm having so much fun I don't want to retire anymore!" 

In this active and interactive presentation, educators will gain practical strategies and skills for implementing choice effectively with students. They will see examples of choice in action, and they will experience meaningful choices themselves. All participants will receive a robust set of resources to help guide their ongoing implementation after the event is finished.

In addition, participants will receive a copy of Mike Anderson's book, Learning to Choose, Choosing to Learn, selected as the April 2016 Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) member book.

What You Will Learn

PDT-TchGN-34

Differentiation: The Power and Potential of Choice

Engage your students with personal and relevant schoolwork using differentiation: the power of choice!

Educators will gain insight about differentiation through:

  • practical strategies and skills to implement choice effectively,
  • exposure to examples of choice in action,
  • personal, meaningful experience of choice, and
  • resources to guide implementation of choice in their classroom.

Travel & Site Information

PDT-TchGN-34

Differentiation: The Power and Potential of Choice

Portsmouth Harbor Events & Conference Center

Address: 100 Deer St. at 22 Portwalk Place, Portsmouth, NH 03801

Phone: (603) 422-6114 

https://goo.gl/maps/x9DUQySUEAU2

Directions from the From the South
Portwalk Place may not be recognized by Google, US Postal Service, nor GPS; please use 100 Deer Street as your trip destination to map your route.

  • Interstate 95 N to Exit 7 in 
    New Hampshire
  • right onto Market Street
  • right onto Russell Street
  • Merge onto Deer Street.
    (100 Deer Street is straight ahead when stopped at end of Russell Street)
  • Pull into Portwalk Place at 100 Deer Street. (This is a one-way drive.)

Directions from the North

Portwalk Place may not be recognized by Google, US Postal Service, nor GPS; please use 100 Deer Street as your trip destination to map your route.

  • Interstate 95 S to Exit 7 in 
    New Hampshire,
  • left onto Market Street,
  • right onto Russell Street
  • Merge onto Deer Street.
    (100 Deer Street is straight ahead when stopped at end of Russell Street)
  • Pull into Portwalk Place at 100 Deer Street. (This is a one-way drive.)

Instructor Bios

PDT-TchGN-34

Differentiation: The Power and Potential of Choice

  • Mike Anderson

    Mike Anderson

    Mike Anderson has been an educator for more than 20 years. An elementary public school teacher for 15 years, he has also taught preschool and university graduate level classes. In 2004, Mike was awarded a national Milken Educator Award, and in 2005 he was a finalist for NH Teacher of the Year. He also spent many years as a presenter, consultant, author, and developer for Northeast Foundation for Children, a nonprofit organization dedicated to creating safe, joyful, and challenging classrooms through the Responsive Classroom approach to teaching. Now, as an independent education consultant, Mike works with schools across the United States and beyond, supporting great learning through customized consulting. He has also taught workshops in Canada and Mexico and has presented at many national conferences including NCTE, ASCD, and Learning and the Brain. Mike is the author of many books about great teaching and learning including "The First Six Weeks of School," 2nd Edition (CRS, 2015), "The Well-Balanced Teacher" (ASCD, 2010), and "The Research-Ready Classroom" (Heinemann, 2006). His most recent book, "Learning to Choose, Choosing to Learn" (ASCD, 2016), was selected as the April 2016 ASCD member book and was sent to 62,000+ educators in more than 100 countries.

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