Differentiation and Special Needs
Writing can be very frustrating for some learners, but it is possible to help each of them gain success. Consider using some of the following techniques:
- Writer’s Workshop can also be utilized in small groups. Helping two or three students at a time on a more individualized level can help to boost their confidence and will allow you to focus on their unique needs.
- Chunk the assignment. Work on smaller parts in each sitting.
- Help with brainstorming. Use questioning techniques to help guide thoughts when students become stuck. This can help to avoid frustration right off the bat. Many learners find it difficult to figure out exactly what to write.
- Offer brain breaks. Allow learners to stand, stretch, get a quick drink of water, etc…
- Utilize graphic organizers. Help individual students to understand how they can be beneficial in completing their writing.
- Use cloze writing. Offer templates for students that are partially complete, allowing them to have to hand write only the most important parts of the writing project.
- Change up the scenery. Take writers outside to work in the fresh air (weather permitting of course), or work in another available learning space like the library or even in a new location in your classroom, such as your class meeting space or reading corner. (This applies to all students. Sometimes a more comfortable or enjoyable place to sit can help them to focus more!)