Catering to students of different learning styles and abilities is one of the greatest day-to-day challenges of the teacher in the classroom. SmartBoard technology can be used as a tool to help differentiate learning and instruction by varying the methodology employed to reach the learning goals of individual students. In this section, you will find some ideas utilizing the wide range of media available through use of technology in general, and SmartBoard in particular.
Listed bellow are three basic methods for differentiating instruction:
A. Differentiating Content
B. Differentiating Product
C. Differentiation Process




A. Differentiating Content


Using the Smart Recorder:
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One way to differentiate content is to allow students of higher aptitude to demonstrate understanding at a faster pace or higher level. The Notebook software offers a tool called the Smart Recorder. The Smart Recorder captures actions and sounds as they happen on the screen. In this example, the teacher assigns a text in Tanach to one student every week. The student prepares a short video for the class explaining the text and highlighting and explaining important concepts and key phrases. In this way, the teacher could assign the more difficult passages and commentators to higher level learners. The recorder records sounds and actions from the screen, and the file can be played as a movie, using Windows Media player.
This sample was created by an 8th grade student, explaining the Gemara Pesachim 101 a :pesachim 101 a.wmv



B. Differentiation Process


A teacher can differentiate instruction by varying the types of activities for students based on their learning style. It allows students alternative methods of manipulating ideas. In this example, a Gemara teacher accommodated different styles by illustrating the concepts of the text (Pesachim 100 Pores Mapa) through animation. The animation was created in PPT and recorded using the Notebook recorder for the purpose of displaying the sample here:
The text was captured from מאגר ספרות הקודש by using the screen capture application in Smart Notebook.

pores_mapa_1.jpg
Click to view supporting animation: pores mapa2.mov



C. Differentiating Product


Differentiating the product means varying the complexity of the task for students, based on their ability. There can be several different types of tasks within each activity, and the teacher can assign roles to students in varying degrees of complexity.
In the following example, a 7th grade Hebrew class read a story. The task involved arranging sentences from the story in chronological order. All students were given the cards with the sentences. In the meanwhile. each student was called individually up to the SmartBoard to perform a task. Students were generally asked to illustrate one of the sentences on the SmartBoard, by drawing or using clipart. Students with stronger verbal skills were asked to record and articulate questions surrounding the story line. The class as a whole then used their cards to help arrange the story in order on the SmartBoard.
This activity was created in PowerPoint. Click here to download the file: maklot.ppt
The same activity can be created in NoteBook, where each sentence is placed on a new slide, and Notebook drawing and recording tools are used for the individual activities.
maklot1.jpegmaklot2.jpeg