Ideas That Support Responsive Instruction

  • Offer students more time to respond orally, read passages and complete learning tasks.
  • Use multi-sensory (auditory, visual, tactile,kinesthetic) instructional materials to support student comprehension.
  • Provide a visual organizer, outline or copy of notes to students when presenting academic content.
  • Enable students to record oral lessons.
  • Supplement auditory information with visual cues and gestures.
  • Chunk presentations into short segments.
  • Reduce the amount of text on screens or printouts.
  • Segment instruction for physical (e.g., body breaks) and tactile activities.
  • Provide opportunities for learning tasks that are active (rather than focusing on only sedentary tasks).
  • Model/demonstrate ways to self-regulate.
  • Support students to recognize their learning strengths and styles and the adaptations and strategies that work best for them.
  • Increase the wait time after questioning and during discussions.
  • Make available advanced or challenging tasks to students who require enrichment or extension.
  • Activate and build on background knowledge or experience for students.
  • Tailor tasks and units to students’ interests and cultural needs.
  • Use the gradual release of responsibility model to meet the needs of individuals and groups of students.
  • Ensure guided/scaffolded and independent practice and application are a part of instruction.
  • Use a combination of advanced and simple vocabulary during instruction and conversations with students.
  • Pre-teach challenging vocabulary.


  • Provide resources in a variety of formats including print, visual, audio and multimedia.
  • Collaborate with students to select resources that reflect diversity and students’ needs and interests.
  • Invite students to use portable electronic devices to document information.
  • Provide assistive technology such as speech to text, text to speech, word prediction, talking dictionary and highlighter.
  • Encourage students to use visual dictionaries to verify meanings or spellings of words.
  • Provide online accessibility to textbooks, assignments, calendars with assignment and assessment dates and assessment rubrics.
  • Support EAL students’ language needs with resources in the language of instruction and in their first language.


  • Provide additional time to complete assessments.
  • Offer a reader and/or a scribe and explain difficult wording.
  • Give students specific dates for completion of individual parts of an assignment.
  • Communicate details about assignments and examinations to parents/guardians in electronic or print format.
  • Use a variety of ongoing daily assessments to monitor students’ progress.
  • Present options to students regarding topics, tasks, resources and learning groups.
  • Vary options for demonstrating learning (oral, written, visual, dramatic, multimedia).
  • Involve students in assessing their learning and development using portfolios, celebrations of learning and/or electronically documented learning.
  • Involve families in developing plans for supporting student achievement.
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