EFFECT OF USING DIFFERENTIATED INSTRUCTION STRATEGIES FOR HISTORY INSTRUCTION ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF 8TH-LEVELFEMALE STUDENTS’ POSITIVE THINKING SKILLS

Authors

  • Amal Seeed Alqahtane, Maha Ali Alkhashil Author

Abstract

Currently, the world is witnessing an acceleration in the volume and type of knowledge, with changes in all fields, including educational instruction, which needs to evolve continuously to keep pace with such challenges and future development requirements. Therefore, the educators interest in the teacher and developing and diversifying of his teaching methods to consider differences between learners in abilities, tendencies, attitudes and readiness to achieve effective learning for all.

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Differentiated instruction is a modern strategy that is in demand by educators. It is considered a priority for improving the educational process, as confirmed by the results of previous studies conducted in different environments at different educational levels to determine the effectiveness of not only using differentiated instruction strategies to achieve certain educational process outcomes but also identify differences among learners in terms of needs, previous knowledge, intelligence, and preferred learning styles (Al-Jaafariand Al-Buhairi, 2021; Najdiand Al-Ghamdi, 2020; Al-Tamimi and Al-Ghamdi, 2020).

Al-Banna et al. (2021) define differentiated instruction strategy as “a set of various methods, means and activities used by teacher within instruction process to meet all students’ different needs by dealing with each level in an appropriate manner, to achieve equal learning opportunities and improve educational level for all students” (Al-Banna et al., 2021: 459).

Abdul-Rahman (2021) and Al-Harthy (2021)contend that differentiated instruction is based on constructivist theory and intelligence studies conducted by educational and psychological scientists. It also relies on several assumptions,the most significant of which is that students differ from each other in terms of previous experiences, abilities, inclinations, characteristics, talents, trends, and learning methods. Teachers are unable to reach all learners’ required learning level through a single instruction method, as there is none that suits all learners; differentiated instruction, however, provides an appropriate learning environment for everyone.

Further, Al-Harthy (2021) reveals that differentiated instruction contains a set of areas and elements that constitute instruction to help educators understandthe differences between learners with differing abilities, tendencies, trends, and learning styles. Differentiated instruction can be achieved through objectives, content, processes, products, learning environment, assessment methods and tools, and the use of technology, methods, outputs, classroom tasks, and homework. Both Abdul-Rahman et al. (2021)and Smeeton (2020) noted that justifications for using differentiated instruction include the nature of students—who do not follow a single learning method, due to the various differences that affect their learning ability;human cognitive theories and learning methods, which confirmed the findings of studies conducted on brain functioning and learning methods;andachieving educational process objectives. Instruction diversification is required to shiftthe educational process focus on to learners. It also raises learners’ achievement and motivation levels whilecontributing to overcoming educational problems such as classroom density, lack of capabilities, and classroom decorum.

Al-Harthy (2021), Al-Banna (2021), and Al-Othman (2021) indicate that differentiated instruction takes many forms, including instruction according to the multiple intelligences theory, which dates back to the American psychologist Howard Gardner in the early 1980s and emphasizes lesson provision according to students’ preferences and diverse intelligences including linguistic, verbal, mathematical, logical, visual-spatial, musical, physical, dynamic, interpersonal, personal implicit, and natural intelligences. In addition, instruction was imparted according to different learners’ styles: auditory, visual, kinesthetic, and sensory. This approach reflects an interest in educating students in a manner similar to their own style. Cooperative learning is a form of differentiated instruction that takes into consideration task organization and distribution according to students’ mental interests and favorite representations.

Further, teachers must differentiate the product by providing learners with multiple and varied tasks, giving them freedom of choice in accordance with their abilities, interests, and learning styles,while differentiating the learning environment by implementing various methods according to different instruction strategies in the classroom (Aldossari, 2018).

Many studies have dealt with differentiated instruction.Smets(2017) conducted a study at Brussels University in Belgium, which aimed to identify an evidence-based method through which differentiated instruction could be implemented by presenting a checklist for high-quality differentiated instruction. Marolly (2018) aimed to analyze the differentiated instruction effect on learners in a virtual English-language learning environment and the support for each learner’s capabilities according to his or her intelligence, readiness, and learning style. This study sample consisted of 29 tenth-grade students and confirmed the effectiveness of differentiated instruction in a virtual environment, its positive effect on student learning, and increased motivation. Al-Tamimi and Al-Ghamdi(2020) aimed to determine the effectiveness of a training program based on differentiated instruction in the development of planning, implementation, and evaluation skillsby language teachers in primary grades. Thisstudy sample consisted of 25 female teachers and its tools consisted of an achievement test and a note card. It also confirmed the positive effect of the program based on differentiated instruction in developing the instruction skills of its sample. Najdiand Al-Ghamdi(2020) aimed to reveal the effectiveness of a training program based on differentiated instruction in developingelementary science teachers’ differentiated instruction skills. This study sample consisted of 25 skills, and its tool consisted of testing differentiated learning skills.It concluded that the training program was effective in developing teachers’ differentiated instruction skills. Al-Othman (2021) aimed to measure the effectiveness of using a differentiated instruction strategy to help first-grade students acquire and maintain historical thinking skillsinthe social studies and citizenship subject. This study sample consisted of 54 students, whose historical thinking skills were measured through a test. The study revealedstatistically significant differences between experimental and control groups in the scaling of the historical thinking skills test in favor of the experimental group, whichreceived differentiated instruction.

Differentiated instruction strategies have been linked to the development of thinking skills taking into consideration learners’ patterns and thinking methods, including positive thinking identified by Dargahi(2015: 12) as “a type of thinking providing the individual with the ability to manage crises and adopt positive as well as optimistic feelings through positive coping skills and strategies, personal control of negative feelings and thoughts resulting from facing life pressures, and development of positive thoughts that support happiness and satisfaction with life.”

Lutfi (2020) and Al-Seyouf et al. (2020) refer to strategies used in positive thinking, including self-talk —an individual’s ability to direct self-dialogue in a positive direction to appear in the form of certain behaviors—and an imagination strategy that adds the largest number of emotions toan image while imagining it several times, as thoughts are formed through feelings and thinking and affect our behaviors. Further, modelling strategy assists in acquiring new positive behaviorsand reducing some of the existing behaviors of the individual.

Lutfi (2020)also indicates that the most significant theories to explain positive thinking are optimism and pessimism.Optimists and pessimists have different perceptions about achieving objectives;while optimists believe that their behavior will lead to positive results, pessimists believe that they will often fail. Furthermore,the hope and initiativetheory focuses on self-esteem and considers hope as a source of human strength. Moreover,achieving one’s objectives requires perseverance and diligence. All of thesefactors lead to positive thinking.

Numerous studies have confirmed that positive thinking prevents many frustrating negative thoughts and feelings from having adverse effects on one’s mental health and ability to cope with stress and anxiety, which deepens the sense and enjoyment of quality of life, happiness, self-esteem, and psychological harmony (Eaglesonetal., 2016; Matel-Anderson and Bekhet, 2019;Lutfi,2020).

Many previous studies have examined positive thinking, including Al-Seyouf et al.’s (2020) study, which aimed to identify positive thinking strategies among diploma students of the Faculty of Educational Sciences at Jordan University. The study sample consisted of 109 students, who were asked to answera questionnaire comprising 49 items. The findings revealedthat the estimates of diploma students for positive thinking strategies were average in all study fields. Lutfi (2020) similarly aimed to identify the effectiveness of a program based on experiential learning in developing female students’ instruction implementation skills and positive thinking at the Faculty of Home Economics. This study sample consisted of 33 students, who were administered a test of instruction skills that was rated on a positive thinking scale. Saleh(2020) aimed to identify the effect of using group discussion methods and developing positive thinking among university youth. The study sample consisted of 12 students, and the positive thinking scale was employed. Itdetermined the effectiveness of a professional intervention program developed by researchers to increase students’ positive thinking, particularly problem-solving skills and the formation of social relationships with others.

Despite the significance of developing positive thinking, two researchers inthe university instruction field noticed that students’ positive thinking skills were poor; to confirm this, they conducted a survey to identify the level of positive thinking skills of a sample consisting of 20 students. The resultsindicated that students’ positive thinking skills were indeed poor, highlighting the need for modern strategies in instruction history that contribute effectively to overcomingthe difficulties related to instruction in the field and the importance of training students to be taughtpositive thinking skills so as to enable them to gradually employ their mental abilities and achieve mastery over their skills. Such strategies include differentiated instruction.

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Published

2024-05-18

How to Cite

EFFECT OF USING DIFFERENTIATED INSTRUCTION STRATEGIES FOR HISTORY INSTRUCTION ON THE DEVELOPMENT OF 8TH-LEVELFEMALE STUDENTS’ POSITIVE THINKING SKILLS. (2024). International Development Planning Review, 23(1), 1897-1913. https://idpr.org.uk/index.php/idpr/article/view/284