“Is there ever going to be a place in school where my child will be able to learn his way? It seems as though teachers see the need to help students who are having problems, those who are average, or those who comply and don’t cause problems. But when my child asks for something different to do he is always told he has to do what the teacher said, whether or not it meets his needs. The work the teacher gives is usually far too easy for my child.”
While there may not be a single school, classroom, or teacher that meets all the needs of your child, a framework from which to approach planning, instruction, and learning may be a good place to start. The framework is Universal Design for Learning, or UDL. “Universal design for learning (UDL) is a framework to improve and optimize teaching and learning for all people based on scientific insights into how humans learn.” (http://www.cast.org/our-work/about-udl.html#.VP-YcSmtBpI)
According to the National Center on Universal Design for Learning: “Universal Design for Learning is a set of principles for curriculum development that give all individuals equal opportunities to learn. UDL provides a blueprint for creating instructional goals, methods, materials, and assessments that work for everyone--not a single, one-size-fits-all solution but rather flexible approaches that can be customized and adjusted for individual needs.” (http://www.udlcenter.org/aboutudl/whatisudl)
The three principles of UDL are Multiple Means of....
Today’s classrooms are increasingly diverse. Along with that is the need to develop a learning environment that eliminates barriers and embraces individual differences, creativity, and learning at a student’s own pace. The resulting flexibility encourages multiple paths for student success.
For more information about UDL explore these resources (not an exhaustive list).
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