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Are community gardens attracted to a limited population? I mean….not everyone wants ' to garden' so the very nature of the population will be limited to those who have an inkling too, correct? /The information available is very scanty thus making it difficult to create a better and well-understood statement of the problem…


DQ 1
Are community gardens attracted to a limited population? I mean….not everyone wants ‘ to garden’ so the very nature of the population will be limited to those who have an inkling too, correct?

DQ 2
The information available is very scanty thus making it difficult to create a better and well-understood statement of the problem…

And it has to be. If there was tons of information, chances are there wouldn’t be a gap, right? So as I say ….build your case for your focus and develop that gap like an attorney builds a case for their client. SLowly seque from what is there, to your focus. Relate it, connect it….do this by using theory too. What theory are you using and how ‘far does it go”? …does it hit upon your focus or what you see as where it should be? If not, that is a gap, right? THe theory only goes up to a certain point and then, ….well, you have a gap where it might not cover. It comes close, but not quite there.

The same way with existing research…it comes close, but not quite there, thus a gap. The key is how you ‘present it or write it up’ in your dissertation.

DQ 3
Grouping students in a way that is conductive to learning is an essential strategy in order for all children to reach their highest potential and show proficiency in concept mastery. Diversity in schools is not measured only by the students who populate the classrooms; each classroom includes numbers of learners who have diverse needs while learning. Children learn at different paces and in different ways, and teachers, especially at the elementary level, organize varied types of grouping to ensure that all students? needs are met in different subject areas. Felder and Brent (2005) said that students have different levels of motivation, attitudinal learning, and perspective and responses to instruction.

Students? learning styles vary tremendously since they have different intelligences. According to the theory by Howard Gardner in 1983, it was stated that there are eight different intelligences, from auditory to visual and analytical, all children learn differently. Teachers must understand their students? needs and styles of learning in order to provide effective instruction. To improve learning, educators need to use multiple ways to introduce and access subject content (Hattie, 2012). Additionally, instruction requires information with detailed knowledge about the students? varied strengths, needs, and areas for growth (Tomlinson, 2014).

Teachers assess students? learning daily, and based on results, they provide differentiated instruction. They decide whether to continue lessons with whole group instruction if needed, change the method of concept delivery, or break the class into ability groups. When teachers increase the skill engagement by taking students? learning style, pace, and ability into account, this approach will help children reach more accurate understanding of concepts. The strategy of ability grouping has been part of the American schools for decades, but the resurrection of ability grouping began to have focal attention as a result of No Child Left Behind (Brown Center Report, 2013). The NCLB had mandated that all students show growth in academic achievement; therefore, ability grouping resurfaced to service students performing below grade level (Brown Center Report, 2013).

Ability grouping is an elementary school practice where classrooms are constructed with heterogeneous abilities; for teachers to reach all students and ensure their learning, they use different levels of ability grouping (Brown Center Report, 2013). For primary grades, this practice may be helpful to get students to reach a level of proficiency, but the intermediate grades need to follow more cooperative group activities with differentiated settings. According to analyzed research completed by Johns Hopkins on ability grouping in 1986 had concluded that this type of grouping is a strategy to be used up to first grade, but it should recede in higher grades (Brown Center Report, 213). Ability grouping is within the elementary classroom, and teachers use varied ways to address the strategy which is considered to be under differentiated instruction.

Ability grouping has been reduced in the American classroom. According to the Brown Center Report (2013) 80 percent of elementary schools grouped students by ability in 1961 to the 1980s, but this percentage has declined in the 1990s as 27% of teachers reported to use ability grouping; another type of grouping is called flexible grouping, and 56% of the nation?s elementary teachers follow this type of grouping (Study based on the Johns Hopkins reports). The controversial perspective on ability grouping relates to the fact that separating students by ability, children?s characteristics are segregated, and they work with the same group of students throughout the year. This practice does not promote social interaction amongst children, which is proven by Piaget to be helpful to their language, skill, and cognitive development (Fischer, 1980).

The challenges that I faced when I completed this section is the sorting through the abundance of information, and ensuring that I am covering different aspects related to the topic. I can definitely refine the research further and tie the concepts together, bringing the concept of multiple intelligences, students? pace, and use of ability grouping together. I am a fifth grade teacher, and I do not have set ability groups in my classroom as I believe that students? discourse and interactions allows for better learning. I definitely use flexible grouping and heterogeneous grouping for all other subjects, so I was satisfied with the results that I founds regarding the lack of encouragement of ability grouping.

Brown Center Report (2013). The resurgence of ability grouping and persistence of tracking. Brookings, March 18, 213. Retrieved from

Gardner, H. (1983). Multiple intelligences: What does the research say? Edutopia, July 20, 2016. Retrieved from

Hattie, J. (2012). Visible learning for teachers: Maximizing impact on learning. New York, NY: Routledge. Retrieved from

Felder, R., and Brent, R. (2005). Understanding student differences. Journal of Engineering Education, 94(1), 57-72, 2005. Retrieved from

Fisher, K. (1980). A theory of cognitive development: The control and construction of hierarchies of skills. American Psychological Association, Vol. 87(6), 477-531, November 1980. Retrieved from

Tomlinson, C.A. (2014). The differentiated classroom: Responding to the needs of all learners. Alexandria, VA: ASCD. Retrieved from

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