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Thursday, December 31, 2009

What is Individualized Instruction?

When mentoring our pre-service and in-service teachers we need to describe and model both research-based and clinically tested best practices. Accordingly, our mentees should know how to individualize instruction.

Below you will find a definition for individualized instruction, and related questions and guidelines.

Individualized instruction refers to the modifications that a teacher makes to reach individual students with special needs.

In order to make the most effective modifications to reach a student with special needs, here are four questions to consider when individualizing instruction:

1. What is important (i.e. the enduring Jewish knowledge learning outcome) for all the students to learn in this lesson?

2. What is important for this particular child to learn in this lesson?

3. What is this particular child’s preferred way to learn?

4. What modifications do I need to make in this lesson to help this particular child become a successful learner?

Once you have answered these questions, you then consider these three guidelines:

1. Use the least obtrusive support first.

2. Use age-appropriate materials, learning outcomes, and activities.

3. Modify before changing the activity.

On the next post we will examine the first of four different types of instructional modifications, modifying the presentation of material.

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