The Policy on Special Education informs school staff about the implementation of actions designed to prevent learning disabilities from the start of schooling, and consideration of the specific needs of students with learning disabilities.
To this end, teachers are increasingly encouraged to adopt differentiated teaching practices that take into account the different characteristics and varying skill levels of their students. And yet, in the research focusing on the teaching/learning of written language, there is no consensus as to which teaching strategies and methods optimize student learning.
Rich and varied differentiated teaching practices can be found in some settings.
This research aims to study different types of reading and writing instruction at the onset of writing learning in order to assess the emphasis placed on differentiated teaching and to the reading-writing interaction. In addition, it will examine the impact of different teaching methods on the development of reading and writing skills in Grade 1 and Grade 2 students.
This study contributes to highlighting the effective practices reported by teachers relating to differentiated teaching and the reading-writing interaction in the context of written language instruction in the first cycle of elementary school. As the results suggest, rich and varied differentiated teaching practices can be found in some settings, but it seems realistic to consider that these practices are not adopted by all Québec teachers. We feel that it is important that teaching practices viewed as “best practices” be communicated to teachers and school counsellors across Québec.
Marie-France Morin, Université de Sherbrooke
Deposit of the research report: January 2011