Closing Learning Gaps with Differentiated Math Lessons

Session Description
In a multiethnic mathematics classroom, students have unique learning backgrounds and academic needs. In a public school classroom, it is often demanding having to address individual needs with personalized attention and instruction. At a public school that serves immigrant students, the teachers are often faced with the challenge of assessing students’ learning levels, teaching required content, and motivating each student. This task is at times daunting and seemingly impossible. However, we might be able to get a step closer to making this impossibility a reality with the aid of technology.

This research studied the effects of using an online module to differentiate mathematics instruction for immigrant students at a public high school. The differentiated lessons helped to address each students’ specific academic needs. Using the action research method, modifications were made to improve the subsequent week’s lessons based on observations made each week. Three areas of observation: content knowledge, engagement, and confidence level were used to to assess the effectiveness of these online differentiated math lessons. The research found mostly positive results for student learning, engagement, and confidence level. For future lessons, modifications can be made to the number of lessons, timing given to complete the lessons, and classroom environment to better address students’ needs. This presentation will cover the development of the lessons and what was learned from the action research process.

Tiffany Ng
Tiffany Ng, University of Hawaii, Manoa, Honolulu, HI, USA
I am an online graduate student in the Learning Design and Technology Program (LTEC) at the University of Hawaii, Manoa. I am also a High School math teacher in San Francisco, California.

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