– Albert Einstein
ALL-ED is a framework that helps teachers plan equitable learning experiences that engage, value, and stretch ALL students. In every curricular unit, the teacher must have planned multiple pathways that draw students into the topic, capitalizing on student background experiences, prior knowledge, interests, and strengths. In addition, multiple pathways anticipate and address essential learning needs from the launch of the unit. Howard Gardner, in The Unschooled Mind, describes entry points as different ways a teacher can approach a topic so that students, regardless of their unique blends of intelligences, experiences, and interests, can find ways to become involved with content. He describes the topic of study as a room with several doorways through which to enter (1991).
Along with invitations into the topic understudy, multiple pathways are used throughout a unit to require student to demonstrate their understanding in a variety of ways. This requires students to think flexibly with their knowledge, builds communication skills, and promotes memory. For example, let’s examine this assessment of 3rd graders understanding of exploration.