May 22, 2024
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RYNJ Addresses DI at PD

This year’s Professional Development Program at RYNJ has helped to build camaraderie, develop a wonderful sense of pride and naturally promote professional dialogue and collaboration amongst the staff. Differentiated instruction (DI) has been the focus and theme of the year. Learning from the theories of masters in the field such as Carol Ann Tomlinson, combined with practical applications from master teachers, has been profoundly effective for the RYNJ faculty as a whole. Throughout the year, the teachers have had opportunities to interface with each other discussing theories and applications of methods to assess and reach all the different children who are in the same classroom. A successful professional development (PD) day took place in February, when the students were excused from classes and the teachers became students. Bob Iseminger, an outstanding educator and a consultant from Pieces of Learning, brought fascinating data about technology and the changing 21st century learner. As the student has changed, a teacher’s strategies and process to promote learning must be changing and differentiated as well. Iseminger was well received for his insight, warmth and hands-on activities that could be implemented the very next day.

On Tuesday evening, April 28, the RYNJ faculty came together again for a PD night focusing on differentiated instruction in the classroom. The evening showcased RYNJ’s own teachers presenting sessions to their colleagues. Each presenter masterfully offered a unique lesson or approach to how they differentiate in their classroom. The teachers had the ability to choose three of these 30-minute sessions, tailoring their schedule to their interests. This was a wonderful opportunity to highlight pedagogical methods and strategies by watching how other teachers engage, facilitate and manage their curriculum and classrooms effectively. Learning from fellow colleagues about DI in the classroom while enjoying hors d’oeuvres that were also differentiated, created a wonderful and successful PD evening.

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