Flightplans for Learning:
Differentiation & Deep Thinking
through Technology

woman pilotFasten your seatbelts and enjoy the flight... a pilot's job is to provide a safe and successful flight. In much the same way, a teacher must design an age-appropriate environment where students can develop a love of learning. Each teacher designs their own flight plan to meet the individual needs of their children. Although the approaches may vary, the destination is the same.


disasterIt's a pilot's job to provide a safe and successful journey. Whether you're an airplane pilot or a teacher you can avoid disaster with an effective plan.

After years of flying, pilots still use a random order checklist so they don't miss things. When things become routine, they can lose their impact. Avoid mindless technology activities. Instead focus on the uniqueness and excitement of the content.

Elements of a Flight Plan

Consider each of the following elements of an effective flight plan.

  • Destination
  • Departure & Arrival Times
  • Estimated Times
  • Alternative Airports
  • Instrument or Visual Guidance
  • Flight Rules
  • Airway Route
  • Fuel
  • Passenger

Match each item above to an activity you do during planning for technology-rich activities.
Where does the idea of differentiation fit into the elements?

flight planLike the FAA's required plan (on the right), you probably have a standard format for lesson plans. However it's also a good idea to go beyond those plans and develop materials that will address a variety of situations.

Developed by Annette Lamb, 3/06.