Course Description

In this class you will learn strategies to differentiate your math instruction to meet all the various needs of your students. You will learn to make the content standard strands (Number and Operations, Geometry, Measurement, Algebra and Data Analysis and Probability) accessible to all types of learners. For each content strand you will become familiar with open questions and parallel tasks which vary in difficulty. These effective and proven strategies can be used together with any district math program to create a math-rich classroom environment. 

Learner Outcomes

By the end of the course participants will:

  • Understand the why and how of differentiating math.
  • Understand the principles and approaches to differentiating math.
  • Understand how open questions and parallel tasks can be used to differentiate math
  • Be able to apply differentiation strategies to the math classroom.


I learned many things through this class. One of the most important things I learned was that it was possible to differentiate math without it being too overwhelming.

---Summer 2017 Student

Now, when we have open questions, students are so excited to share their work and I am getting participation from some of my most reluctant math students. In fact on Tuesday, when we had an indoor recess, one of my students that has been having a really hard time with math asked for some more of these questions during recess. He was so excited about his work, he shared it with the whole class during the next day's morning meeting! I am so thrilled with these new opportunities in math and new ideas for teaching and engagement. I will definitely continue to implement these for years.

---Winter 2016 Student

This class has opened my eyes into many ways to reach all different levels of my math students. Since learning about parallel tasks and open questions, I have had some success in my own classroom. I have been able to pose an open question to the whole class and see their all the ranges of responses. I truly think my mind frame has significantly changed for the better since learning how to differentiate within one question or task. I have been working with my principal in framing better questions in general, so this class played well with my goals as a teacher. The power of a quality question holds so much more potential to reach more students. I plan to pose either a open question or a set of parallel tasks with every lesson.

---Winter 2015 Student

Enroll Now - Select a section to enroll in
Section Title
Differentiated Math
Start Now, you have 365 days to complete this course once enrolled.
Delivery Options
Distance Learning  
Course Fee(s)
Tuition credit (3 units) $690.00
Available for Credit
3 Quarter Credits
Reading List / Textbook

Required text for PK-8th grade: Good Questions: Great Ways to Differentiate Mathematics Instruction, by Marian Small.

Required text for 6-12th grade: More Good Questions: Great Ways to Differentiate Secondary Mathematics Instruction, by Marian Small and Amy Lin.

Section Notes

This course is offered in collaboration with The Innovative Northwest Teacher (TINT)

Course is self-paced. Completion time: up to one year from date of enrollment.

Refund Policy: Withdrawals submitted online through SPU within 7 days of enrollment will receive a 95% refund. Withdrawals received after that point will not receive a refund and no withdrawals will be accepted after the completion deadline for the course. Instructions on how to withdraw are located on our website under Students/Withdrawal and Refund Policies.


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