6 Digital Tools for Differentiated Instruction

Check out some interesting tools to help differentiate your classroom
Contributed By

Kristen Cole

Education Writer

6 Digital Tools for Differentiated Instruction

Posted in Pro Tips | May 10, 2019

As educators, we are always looking for ways to address the numerous academic needs of our students within the classroom. There are students who need more help, students who need to be challenged more, and those students somewhere in the middle. Technology can help both assess what students need as well as challenge them to grow. So keep reading to discover six digital tools you can add to your repertoire to help differentiate instruction within your classroom, in addition to Schoology of course.

1. Badaboom

Badaboom is similar to Kahoot, a game that students play as a class that gives immediate feedback to both the student and the teacher. The major difference is that Badaboom offers more options for answers. Students can handwrite answers including math symbols, answer multiple choice questions with multiple correct answers, and even write free text as a response.

Teachers can import their own quizzes that they’ve already created. It still offers the competitive aspect that students and teachers love about Kahoot with more for teachers to use to assess what students know. This would be great for differentiated instruction to assess what students know about a topic or what they learned in a unit. The game helps teachers create future lessons and provide immediate feedback.

2. Newsela

Newsela is a great differentiation tool for reading. As a teacher, you can login and create classes, then start assigning articles to students. You can choose the same article, but choose the article length and lexile level to assign to each group or student.

If a student needs more challenging reading, they can receive a higher lexile level with questions that match what they’ve read. A student who struggles with reading can read at their level and answer questions based on what they’ve read. This way both students can be part of a classroom discussion over the topic without feeling left out.

Newsela doesn’t just cover ELA topics either. You can look up science, money, law, geography, sports, and even Spanish. Newsela is a wonderful resource to add differentiated reading to all subject area classrooms.

3. Edcite

Edcite offers assessment for differentiated instruction. You can create tests and quizzes with different types of questions. Questions can be answered by highlighting text, dragging and dropping text boxes, typing out equations, answering in multiple steps, checking boxes, and even labeling diagrams.

Teachers can assign different types of questions and different levels of difficulty. If your school gives common formative assessments, this tool is a great asset. It’s also a great tool for preparing for standardized testing, since you can create questions in the proper formats. If you don’t want to create your own assessment, it’s easy to grab some of their pre-made questions to use in class.

4. Quizlet

Quizlet has been used by many teachers and students to create flashcards for students to study. You can use it to differentiate instruction a couple of different ways.

The first is to create a list based on your topic and have students login and join your classroom. You can watch their performance with the given list. You know where you need to revisit in future lessons.

You can also create different groups with different lists. If students need a shorter spelling list, assign them a different list from another student and see how they perform. This would also work for students who need more challenging words.

5. Explain Everything

Explain Everything is the perfect digital whiteboard tool. Teachers can use it for video lessons, but it’s also a unique way for students to show what they know about a topic. They can draw on the whiteboard and record their voices to share their knowledge. This is especially great for multi-step processes.

For differentiated instruction, students can use this at any point during a unit to share their knowledge. It is also an opportunity for students who are more knowledgeable to create a lesson to share with other students.

6. Piktochart

Piktochart allows students to create infographics, presentations, and posters from templates. There are different templates based on what you are trying to create. Students can demonstrate knowledge of a topic in a creative manner. Teachers can differentiate by assigning different instructions to students. Imagine if students could draw out a scientific process, retell a story, or maybe show historical events leading up to a war.

These are just a few tools to help you differentiate learning for your students. We know there are many more! Do you have any digital tools that you use to differentiate instruction in your classroom? Share with us on Twitter @Schoology!


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