The most significant difference in the UDL Lesson Plan is that it incorporates the different learning styles along with the way student’s process information and makes sure that the teacher incorporates the three primary brain networks. Educators can provide individuals with the appropriate instruction for their levels by using Universal Design for Learning (UDL). Rose and Meyer (2002) state that the goal of UDL is to provide each student with a tailored learning experience that adjusts and moves with their needs. Pitler (2007) suggests feedback is a key component in the progression and growth of students learning. The use of student-student feedback and utilizing that component in the classroom really intrigues me. The use of blogs and wikis are also two ways that allow students to evaluate each other as well as explain their thinking and reflect on learning.
The key to UDL is planning and implementation. This week’s readings stress that student centered activities and learning along with feedback is the key to understanding and retention of knowledge. Giving students choices allows for different levels of knowledge, as well as different learning styles, interests and abilities. This includes according to Rose and Meyer (2002), different learning methods of recognition, strategic and affective networks.
The biggest issue I see with the use of UDL is time. UDL lesson planning is more intense and takes hours creating lessons. Classroom teachers that I have contact with all discuss how overwhelmed they are with “more to do”. I would hope that a team of teachers could work together to maybe create two UDL units a year, one in the fall and the other in the spring semester. I believe this would allow teachers to see how powerful the use of the UDL plan can be. I am sure that the more an educator uses the UDL plan the easier it would become and probably less time consuming. I believe UDL is not only a change in the way lesson plans or written but also a shift in how teachers think in regards to reaching every student in their classroom.
Rose, D. & Meyer, A. (2002). Teaching every student in the digital age: Universal Design for Learning. Alexandra, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development. Available online at the Center for Applied Special Technology Web Site. Chapter 6. Retrieved on October, 5, 2009, from http://www.cast.org/teachingeverystudent/ideas/tes
Pitler, H., Hubbell, E., Kuhn, M., & Malenoski, K. (2007). Using technology with classroom instruction that works. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Department.
Amy Clark's UDL Lesson Plan: A Divided Nation