Building a lesson plan (infographic)
- April 14, 2021
- Posted by: Shannon Amaadar
- Category: teaching techniques
Building a lesson plan can be one of the most difficult and overwhelming things for new teachers. Where do you even start?
Depending on how much support is available from your school and what resources you have access, it can be quite difficult.
Sometimes, a curriculum is clearly laid out. The goals are visible and achievable with the resources are easily available. Other times, you are given an old book and told to use your expertise as a teacher to develop a plan.
We all hope for the former but sometimes are faced with the latter.
Over the next few weeks I’m going to give you a few great tips to help you with your own lesson planning. I’ll cover the 3 main situations teachers may find themselves in. Having a full curriculum to work with, having source materials but no guidance, and finally, teaching from scratch with limited to no resources.
Let’s start with the easiest and most ideal situation.
Don’t forget to read Ask the right questions (and get better results)
When a school has a curriculum you’re required to follow it often sets out the long term goals and suggested activities. This makes a world of difference when planning your lessons.
Knowing where you should end up allows you to work backwards and set short term targets. This helps you achieve the overall goal. Setting mini-goals within each subject unit will make things more manageable for you and help you assess your students along the way.
When creating your lessons, there are 3 elements you should always consider including.
This first is interaction. This can be through presentations, digital content or debates. Anything that has students using the target language in a meaningful way is great.
Next, you should include a problem-solving element. This might be a mind mapping activity or a project. Students working on projects in groups not only build critical thinking skills, but they retain vocabulary better as well.
Finally, add a few minutes at the end of class for reflection. Discuss the lesson topics and find out what students understood and took away from the lesson. At this point, you’re able to do mini-assessments to see if students are grasping the material or if you should adjust your approach.
It’s also useful to allow students to do self or, peer assessments. This way they’re able to vocalise problem areas and help each other where possible. Knowing that others have similar difficulties can be helpful in building confidence in students.
Have a look at the infographic below to help you with your lesson planning.
Building a lesson plan from a curriculum is, in my opinion, one of the easiest ways to go. You have targets preset and key activities are laid out for you. Your only job is to make sure you structure your lessons effectively.
That’s not to say that you won’t find any problems. This structure doesn’t allow for much creativity or flexibility. This could be fine for some, but it may be too rigid for classes that have little resources, or troubled students.
In the next article, we’ll look at how to build a lesson plan when you’re only given a workbook to build from. While this situation does give you direction, it allows for more creativity as well. If you know how to structure your lesson you can get some great results.