Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner : Standards-Based Activities and Extensions for Middle School (Grades 6-8) book cover
1st Edition

Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner
Standards-Based Activities and Extensions for Middle School (Grades 6-8)

ISBN 9781618215420
Published March 15, 2016 by Routledge
270 Pages

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Book Description

Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner supports middle school teachers in teaching all students, including those with high ability. The book contains extension lessons in each content area with learning activities that align to the national content standards, embed ELA Common Core Standards, and correlate to DOK levels. The extension lessons provide for active learning tailored to address multiple learning levels. Using this semi-structured process ensures differentiated learning experiences that align to the standards while also respecting that students have different interests, different methods of learning, and most importantly, that they are learning at different challenge levels. The time is now upon us to emphasize interdisciplinary learning experiences that provide real-world connections and engage students in relevant and meaningful learning. We have long known that while critical for gifted and talented students, these higher level thinking strategies benefit all students.

Foreword by Karin Hess, Ed.D.

Grades 6-8

Table of Contents

Dedication Acknowledgments Foreword Introduction Chapter 1: Using the Extension Lessons Chapter 2: English Language Arts Extension Lesson Introduction Language Arts and Elements of Language Lesson 2.1: American Studies Lesson 2.2: Author Studies Lesson 2.3: Cause and Effect Lesson 2.4: Theme Lesson 2.5: Vocabulary in Text Lesson 2.6: Persuasive Writing Poetry, Literature, and Informational Text Lesson 2.7: Poetry Elements Lesson 2.8: Poetic Connections Lesson 2.9: Writing Short Stories Lesson 2.10: Short Story Elements Lesson 2.11: Response to Literature Lesson 2.12: Shakespeare’s Characters Lesson 2.13: Biography Novel Studies Lesson 2.14: Novel Studies Lesson 2.15: Novel Study Exploratory Activities Lesson 2.16: Survival Novels Lesson 2.17: Chasing Vermeer Lesson 2.18: From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler Lesson 2.19: The Pushcart War Lesson 2.20: Walk Two Moons Lesson 2.21: The Phantom Tollbooth Chapter 3: Social Studies/History Extension Lessons Introduction World History Lesson 3.1: Ancient Civilizations Lesson 3.2: Middle Ages Lesson 3.3: Feudalism and the Middle Ages Lesson 3.4: World War I and World War II Lesson 3.5: The Holocaust United States History Lesson 3.6: Explorers of the New World Lesson 3.7: Exploration and Explorers Lesson 3.8: Puritan Colonization of the New World Lesson 3.9: Colonies in the New World Lesson 3.10: Challenges in the New World Lesson 3.11: John Smith and the 13 Colonies Lesson 3.12: American Revolution and the Stamp Act Lesson 3.13: American Revolution: Causal Factors Lesson 3.14: Civil War Lesson 3.15: American Wars Social Studies Lesson 3.16: Study of a Decade Lesson 3.17: World Cultures Lesson 3.18: Teens in Other Cultures Lesson 3.19: Discovery and Colonization Lesson 3.20: Iditarod Lesson 3.21: Native American Life Lesson 3.22: Economics Lesson 3.23: Government Chapter 4: Mathematics Extension Lessons Introduction Numbers, Operations, and Problem Solving Lesson 4.1: Computational Thinking Lesson 4.2: Algebraic Thinking Lesson 4.3: Fractions Lesson 4.4: Fermi Questions Lesson 4.5: Multiple Intelligences Problem Solving Lesson 4.6: Modeling With Mathematics Lesson 4.7: Ratios and Proportions Geometry Lesson 4.8: Geometry Lesson 4.9: Geometry Problem Solving Lesson 4.10: Coordinate Plane Lesson 4.11: Polygons and Angles Lesson 4.12: Geometric Thinking in Sports Math Studies Lesson 4.13: Math Studies Lesson 4.14: Famous Mathematicians Lesson 4.15: Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math (STE Chapter 5: Science Extension Lessons Introduction Biology Lesson 5.1: Cells and Microorganisms Lesson 5.2: Cell Structure Lesson 5.3: Cells Lesson 5.4: Human Body Lesson 5.5: Life Sciences Chemistry Lesson 5.6: Acids and Bases Lesson 5.7: Periodic Table Lesson 5.8: Stoichiometry Lesson 5.9: Heat Physics Lesson 5.10: Force and Motion Lesson 5.11: Light and Sound Lesson 5.12: Work and Energy Lesson 5.13: Energy and Forces Earth Science Lesson 5.14: Air Pollution Lesson 5.15: Atmosphere Lesson 5.16: Diversity in Environments Lesson 5.17: Earth Science Lesson 5.18: Ecosystems Lesson 5.19: Environment Lesson 5.20: Volcanoes Lesson 5.21: Water Pollution Lesson 5.22: Water Quality and Ecology Lesson 5.23: Weathering and Erosion Lesson 5.24: Wildlife Conservation Lesson 5.25: Technology in the Sciences Chapter 6: Special Areas and Electives Extension Lessons Introduction Music Lesson 6.1: Instructional Music Lesson 6.2: Music Styles Lesson 6.3: Study of Music Lesson 6.4: Vocal Music Lesson 6.5: Band Lesson 6.6: Instrumental Music: Digital Connections Lesson 6.7: Instrumental Music Lesson 6.8: Orchestra Arts and Theatre Lesson 6.9: Art Fantasy Figures Lesson 6.10: Influences in Art Lesson 6.11: Schools of Art Lesson 6.12: Study of Art Lesson 6.13: Theatre Arts Lesson 6.14: Theatre Arts: Technical Theatre Lesson 6.15: Dance Physical Education Lesson 6.16: Fitness Lesson 6.17: Physical Education Foreign Language Lesson 6.18: Creating a Foreign Language Broadcast Lesson 6.19: World Language Conclusion References Appendix: Rubric and Forms About the Authors Common Core State Standards

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Susan Winebrenner is a full-time consultant in staff development. She presents workshops and seminars nationally and internationally, helping educators translate educational research into classroom practice.


Today's teacher is bombarded by multitude of standards coming from seemingly every direction. By the time that many of us were almost comfortable with 21st Century Skills and the Common Core State Standards, we were confronted with the Next Generation Science Standards. Meanwhile the pendulum is swinging from No Child Left Behind to the Every Students Succeeds Act. Combine all of this with the ever-evolving world of technology and increasing demands to differentiate for all students, and many teachers are left wondering, “How do I manage to do it all?”

In Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner, Brulles, Brown, and Winebrenner provide a series of roadmaps to help teachers to find multiple paths to meaningful activities, out of the wilderness of confusion, and into a well structured learning environment. Incorporating Depth of Knowledge, the lessons cover the core content areas as well as areas of music, arts and theater, physical education, and foreign language. The lessons provide not only extensions for advanced students but offer suggestions for all students that go beyond just more of the same. If you have ever had a student who said, “I'm done. I'm bored. What's next?” and wondered what to say, this book is for you.

,Dr. Brian Housand, Professor of Education,East Carolina University, 1/19/16

Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner is a fantastic resource for teachers who want to meet the various needs of the students they serve. How much intervention is needed? Does the student need additional help? Or, perhaps she requires something extra challenging? Is the need intense? If so, is remediation or more advanced thinking the answer?

Brulles, Brown and Winebrenner offer teachers quality extension lessons using national standards and Depth of Knowledge Levels 1-4. To make differentiation accessible and easily implementable, all core content areas are broken into subject titles such as Novel Studies, Poetry, Informational Text, United States History, Earth Science, Physics, and Geometry, to name just a few. In addition, 19 of the extension lessons are written for specialist areas and electives coursework.

I highly recommend Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner to everyone who acknowledges the unique needs of the students they serve. I have added it as a go-to resource when consulting with school districts, training teachers, and working with families within the gifted community.

,Tammy L Notehelfer,Gifted Education Consultants, 4/11/16
An absolute “must read” for any classroom teacher needing to craft individualized lessons for middle school students in accordance to today's national, state, and local school district standards, “Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner: Standards-Based Activities and Extensions for Middle School” is exceptionally well written, organized and presented. “Differentiated Lessons for Every Learner” should be a part of every school district and academic library's teacher instructional education resource and reference collections.,Midwest Book Review, 3/1/16