Monday, April 8, 2013

Teaching with UDL

To further my understanding of teaching with UDL (Universal Design for Learning), I chose to create a lesson using the CAST Lesson Builder within the CAST UDL Exchange.  CAST (Center for Applied Special Technology) seeks to guide educators to incorporate UDL into their curriculum to provide students with greater opportunities to learn in an environment that is more flexible and accommodating for all learners.

Below are screenshots of the project I created using the CAST Lesson Builder that I posted to the CAST UDL Exchange.  I'm currently teaching a unit on war and society so I wanted to create something that I could implement in the classroom.  Here is the link to the project in the CAST UDL Exchange, but you'll need to create an account to view it.  The project framework provides flexibility to instructors to integrate technology that makes the learning objectives more accessible to different types of learners.  Furthermore, within the screenshots, the author's reflections provide my thoughts on how I perceive the project adhering to UDL philosophy.

Common Core Standards were built into the lesson builder.  To view the connections to the standards, follow the link above to the lesson in the CAST UDL Exchange.
Here is the link to the NPR story on Just War Doctrine since the project is presented as screenshots.


  1. Brian,

    This looks like an exceptional lesson plan. I love that you give your students the freedom of choice in completing the lesson. So many times I think teachers tell students exactly what to do and where to gather the research information. In this lesson, you guide your students and allow them the flexibility to approach the work in a way that best works for them. You don't specifically mention any accommodations for students with special needs, but because of the lesson design, there is really no need. You allow for that with the lesson structure. Great job at applying the UDL principles. You have created another awesome assignment. I'll be excited to hear how it works in your classes!

  2. Brian,
    Awesome lesson. I wish I had something like this in my Social Studies classes in school. Amy's right - the fact that you have provided choices is perfect for a UDL classroom. I would like to have read your opinion on the website. How easy was it to create this lesson? How helpful was it? How did the website make you think in UDL terms in order to hit all learning styles? I guess these questions arose because I didn't choose option and was interested. It looks like it was helpful. Thanks for sharing this, Brian.

  3. Well organized lesson plan, your students will get benefits of this, I will try to use similar way to develop my class lessons when i start teaching. Your goals, objectives, and materials are very clear to use with students in same grades.

  4. Brian,
    Great lesson! I love how you incorporated screen shots into your post. I also did a lesson plan I had used previously and was surprised to realize how much UDL I was already incorporating without knowing it.

  5. Brian-
    Excellent lesson! I agree with Amy and Jarod on providing choices for students. When we give students choices for their work, they always seem to take it one step farther than they would have because it is something they chose. Your lesson definitely implements the UDL principles.

  6. Brian-

    This is really great. I especially like to see the choices allowed for the assessment that gives kids a chance to use their own styles to show what they know. Is this a lesson already in the curriculum that you tweaked for UDL? Either way, your students will be lucky to be a part of it. Nice work!