Writing lesson plans does not have to be difficult. This is the time that a teacher can show their creativity. Here is a how-to on how to create effective lesson plans that will help ensure success. You can use the Lesson Plan Template as you work through creating your lesson plans.
Time Required: 2-4 hours
- Begin with the end in mind. What do you want the students to learn from this lesson? What state or national standards are you meeting? What does the state or your district require? What age students are you trying to reach? How are you going to assess that learning? Once you've determined this, write a quick description and list out your objectives for the assignment.
- Create a key vocabulary list that you will add to as you write out your lesson plan procedure. This will help you remember terms that you need to make sure the students understand as they work through the lesson.
- Create a materials list and add to this as you write your procedure so that you know exactly what you will need including A/V equipment, number of copies, page numbers from books, etc.
- Determine how you will introduce the lesson. For example, will you use a simple oral explanation for the lesson, an introductory worksheet, or an interactivity of some sort.
- Decide the method(s) you will use to teach the content of your lesson. For example, does it lend itself to independent reading, lecture, or whole group discussion? Sometimes it is best to use a combination of these methods, varying teaching techniques: beginning with a couple minutes of lecture, followed by a short whole group discussion to ensure that the students understand what you have taught them.
- Once you have determined how you will teach the content of the lesson, write out supporting information in your notes.
- Determine how you will have the students practice the skill/information you just taught them. For example, if you have taught them about the laws of supply and demand in economics, how you will have them practice this information to truly gain an understanding of the material. Will you have them complete independent practice, use a whole group simulation, or allow students to work cooperatively on a project? These are just three possibilities of how you can have them practice the information.
- Once you determine how students will practice the skills that you taught them, write out step by step instructions.
- Create an end of period review.
- Complete details for any homework or assessments that you will be giving the students.
- Decide on any accommodations you need to make for your class including accommodations for ESL and special education.
- Once you have completed your lesson plan, finish out the details including creating the assessments, homework assignments, and any handouts.
- Finally, make copies and collect materials for the lesson.
- Some teachers find that by writing the assessment first, they are better able to focus their lesson on what is essential.
- Try not to always rely solely on your textbook for lessons. At the same time make sure that you evaluate any other source you might use like other books, teachers, written resources, and internet web pages.
- Some school districts require standards to be listed on the lesson plans while others don't. Make sure that you check with your school district.
- Overplan, overplan, overplan. It is much easier to cut things out of a plan or continue it the next day than fill up fifteen or twenty extra minutes.
- If possible, connect homework to real life. This will help reinforce what the students should be learning.
What You Need
- Lesson Plan Template or Plain Paper
- Textbooks, Books, and/or Other Materials