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Setting the Stage for Success

Differentiated instruction doesn’t start with teaching, it starts with building relationships in a safe, positive classroom environment. This week you will create a differentiated classroom framework based on a design that was originally constructed to assist teachers in meeting the new Common Core State Standards in an inclusion classroom (Voltz, Sims, Nelson & Bivens, 2005). This framework will be shared with other teachers in your Professional Learning Community (PLC) with the shared vision of creating a strong school vision that is student-centered through the foundations of differentiation.

Assignment Instructions:

You will design a differentiated classroom environment plan that includes a physical layout along with pro-social strategies for encouraging positive behaviors. This may be presented as a Prezi or PowerPoint, in a Voicethread with audio narration, blog space, or using a standard Word document. The length of presentation style will be determined by your choice of presentation tool. Each section below must be thoroughly addressed. The minimum length requirements are listed below.

Demographics- Describe your current (or fictional) classroom including:


  • Grade Level and Subject Area
  • Total number of students – ability levels, gender, students with special needs, English Language Learners (ELLs)
  • Other relevant information (such as socioeconomic status, family background, recurring behavior issues, etc.)


Classroom Environment- Discuss how you will use foundational concepts of differentiated instruction to design your classroom’s physical layout to meet the demographics you’ve outlined. Be sure to include:


  • Furniture arrangement (this includes students desks, teacher’s desk, computers, reading corner, library, pets, quiet zone)
  • Architecture (this includes immobile objects and structures such as doors, windows, bathroom, sink, bulletin boards, chalk/ white boards)


You must include at least one scholarly, research-based article to support your design. You must also include either a diagram, photos, or illustration along with a written (three to four paragraphs) or narrated explanation (one to two minutes) of why you chose this particular layout and how it relates to your class demographics.

Classroom Environment - Minimum Length Requirements:


  • Prezi or PowerPoint – three slides
  • Blog or Standard word document – three to four paragraphs
  • Narrated Voicethread – one to two minutes


Positive Behavior Environment- Describe how you will encourage positive behavior using proactive differentiated strategies based on current (within the last five years) research. Be sure to include:


  • Rules and routines that maximize success
  • Value individual differences
  • Emotionally safe environment
  • Specific behaviors are expected (respect, listening, problem solving)


Positive Behavior Environment - Minimum Length Requirements:


  • Prezi or PowerPoint – six slides
  • Blog or Standard Word document – six paragraphs
  • Narrated Voicethread – three minutes


Use your course text and at least two scholarly articles from the Ashford University Library or Google Scholar to support your research. Be sure to provide proper APA citations at the end of your assignment for the sources that you use (e.g., at the bottom of the blog or last slide of PowerPoint). If writing a paper, APA format should be followed including title and reference pages.


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