Wednesday, 1 February 2012

Differentiating using the "jigsaw method"

This one's inspired by a recent lecture as part of the National Induction Programme for NQTs:

I'm going to try using the "jigsaw" method of differentiation this week where the children are split into groups. They are then sub-divided into colours. For example, you might have eight groups with a red, a yellow and a blue in each. Next, set a task for each colour. All the blues, reds and yellows group together and work on their task. Then the original eight groups (one yellow, one blue, one red) get back together and share what they have learned.

I'm going to try this to teach stories about St. Bridget. 
There will be three different tasks:
1. The story of St. Bridget and the butter (on powerpoint - from a 2nd class history book - easy words, lots of illustrations)
2. The story of St. Bridget and the cloak (on powerpoint - middle-senior primary school reading level - harder words, some illustrations)
3. The life of St. Bridget and the origin of the cross (on paper - for those with higher reading abilities - difficult words, few illustrations)

They will then be put into threes to share the story they learned.


  1. Thanks for sharing this. I've not come across this methodology before. Do the children know which 'colour' they are. Does this create any 'labelling' issues??

  2. Thanks for the comment, Damien. I'm going to use three groups tomorrow named after sweets rather than colours - Skittles, Winders and HubbaBubbas. I'm hoping that they won't notice how I've split the groups!