Welcome to Differentiated Instruction and the Professional Learning Cycle in Science!

Subject Council's 2012 Professional Learning Cycle

"How can we improve student learning in secondary science by inquiring into our current assessment practices in order to better differentiate instruction?"

Thurs Feb 9 - Blessed Trinity
Thurs Mar 22 - St. Marcellinus
Thurs May 10 - Blessed Trinity

Overall (Long Term) Learning Goals in Secondary Science:

Day 1 of Cycle: Feb 9

After comparing all four groups, the following success criteria was consolidated:

Other Files:

Day 2 of Cycle: Mar 22

Checklist for Learning Goals & Success Criteria:
Day 3 of Cycle: May 10

(Sheldon teaches Penny Video:

After 3 Days of the PLCycle, here's
some reflection feedback from teachers/
department heads:

As part of planning, groups decided on course, unit of study, expectations, and assessment strategy to try:

Grade 9
Grade 10
Day 1
(Feb 9)
Strategies: Learning Goals, Self-Assessment (checklist)
Unit/Lesson: Static Electricity
Strategy: Development of Learning Goals and Eliciting Information about Student Learning
Unit & Expectation(s):
SNC2D – Chemistry – Conservation of Mass Lab (expectation C2.2, C2.4, C3.2)
Diagnostic: Molecular Modeling Kit
Summative: Lab with an Evaluation Rubric
Strategy: Descriptive Feedback
Task: Diversity Project
Strategy: Learning Goals
Unit: Structure and Matter
Expectations: C2.5, C2.6, A1
Developing Learning Goals
In SPH3U – Kinematics – Motion lab
In SPH4U – Dynamics – Circular Motion
including expectation A1.8
Unit 2 Task
Learning Goals, Success Criteria, Rubric
Plan Day 2
(Mar 22)
Learning Goals and Success Criteria for Current Electricity

Optics, E2.2
Learning Goals, Success Criteria, and Peer- and Self-Assessment

Medical Case Study - using learning goals, success criteria / rubric
Gr 12 Energy Changes & Rates of Reaction
Using Learning Goals and Success Criteria --> plan an inquiry
Expectations: D2.8, A1

external image vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document.png vee map blank.docx

Gr 12: Circular Motion(B2.7)
Gr 11: Cart on a Ramp (B2.4)
Learning Goals & Success Criteria

Static Electricity Task:
You will be able to:
  • Plan and conduct a scientific inquiry based on the question: How can you use static electricity to make an empty pop can roll the greatest distance, without touching it?
  • Make an appropriate hypothesis
  • Select appropriate materials
  • Determine an independent and dependent variable while controlling other variables
  • Gather qualitative and quantitative data (using a table, graph, or written statements)
  • Analyze and interpret your results based on prior knowledge of static electricity and making connections to your hypothesis

Gr 11 Gas Laws
Using Learning Goals, co-constructing success criteria, and plan an inquiry
Expectations: A1.5, A1.6, A1.8, A1.10, F2.1, F2.2, F2.3

STSEs - blogging; look at a variety of blogs to come up & co-construct success criteria

Sample Expectations --> Learning Goals:
Expectation: E2.6 use an inquiry process to investigate the effects that changing resistance and changing potential difference have on current in a simple series circuit [PR, AI]
Note: PR & AI refer to overall expectation A1
Learning Goals: Students will be able to
  • perform an experiment to investigate the relationship between resistance, potential difference, and voltage
  • record data collected during the experiment
  • analyze results using a graph
Sample Look Fors --> Success Criteria:
  • using materials and equipment safely
  • use appropriate symbols and units of measure
  • create an appropriate graph (axes, scale, line of best fit)
  • generate a conclusion that describes the relationship between resistance, potential difference and voltage
  • justify conclusion based on data from experiment

Graphic Organizers

to use while doing science and for assessment: pre-assess prior knowledge, address misconceptions, guide further instruction

external image pdf.png peoe-steps-set-2-template.pdfexternal image vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document.png OWL(H) Graphic Organizer.docxexternal image vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document.png I think We Think Graphic Organizer.docxexternal image vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document.png Scientific Investigation - Graphic Organizer.docxexternal image msword.png Exit Card - RERUN Chart (Blank Template).docexternal image vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document.png vee map.docxexternal image vnd.openxmlformats-officedocument.wordprocessingml.document.png vee map blank.docx
- you can also use the Smarter Science posters as graphic organizers

Our PLCycle Plan:

PLCycle in Science - Graphic - Ministry Presentation.jpg
PLCycle in Science - Graphic - Ministry Presentation - Details.jpg

Useful Websites

Professional Learning Cycle (PLC)

Videos on EduGAINS website outlining, with examples, the four stages of a PLC: Plan, Act, Observe, Reflect - the science example focuses on inquiry

DPCDSB's DI Website
-access a variety of DI resources created by and for DP
HCDSB Differentiated Instruction "Livebinders" website
TVDSB DI Website
-great resources!
DI in Science Article
-a brief overview of how to differentiate
instruction and assessment in science
Science Cafe Wiki
-uses a learning menu - great way to use a wiki for DI!
Cybrary Man's Educational Websites - DI
a TON of links to DI related resources
Exploratorium Science Snacks
-discover science in an active way!


-fun, engaging, tactile & visual for summarizing,
notetaking and graphic organizers
"How to Fold Foldables" **http://bit.ly/nqVXT**
"Vocabulary Foldable Teacher Directions" **http://bit.ly/vXG5LR**
Another Great Website with PowerPoint on Foldables: **http://bit.ly/rNXIY9**

Eight Types of Instructional StrategiesThat Improve Learning in a 21st Century World