Early in our teaching careers, we no doubt all found lesson planning to be a complete mystery. While engaging in this often time-sucking task, perhaps we begrudged each minute spent behind the desk, wondering if all of this paperwork was what we really signed up for. After all, when we pictured ourselves as teachers, we likely did not imagine that it would involve so much paperwork!
Eventually, though, the truth dawned, and we realized that only through thorough lesson planning we were able to succeed during the in-class hours. The harder we planned, the more smoothly class time would go. (Barring the inevitable, unforeseen emergency classroom dramas, of course!)
Even if you are new to the skill, lesson planning does not need to be a source of frustration. By following some simple steps, you can decode the mystery and fall into a planning rhythm that suits your needs.
How to take the hassle out of lesson planning:
- Always start with the objective. Decide what skill you want your students to be able to demonstrate mastery of and plan your lesson around that. State this as a goal: "The learner will be able to..."
- Choose your text. Decide what part of the curriculum or text will best help students meet the object and then plan your lesson around that section.
- Develop activities. Learning involves much more than acquiring information. After all, what good is knowing if the students cannot also do? Be sure to plan an activity that enables students to demonstrate their knew-found knowledge.
- Record your plans by utilizing ready-made templates. Lesson plan templates can take the hassle out of deciding how to best organize your ideas. If you do not already have a favorite template, fear not: there are a plethora of free templates available online. Choose the one that best suits your needs.
Why not take some time today to evaluate your own lesson planning systems to ensure that you are making the most of your time and energy?