23 Mar 2018
Lesson planning is a significant element of teaching-learning system. A lesson plan is a step-by-step guide that provides a structure for an essential learning. Before planning a lesson, it is essential to classify the learning outcomes for the class. It is important because it helps the teacher in maintaining a standard teaching pattern and does not let the class deviate from the topic. Pre-planning helps the teacher to be better equipped in answering questions asked by the students during the lecture. An effective lesson plan has three basic components; aims and objectives of the course, teaching and learning activities and, assessments to check student understanding of the topic.
Aims and objectives of the course
In order to begin with lesson planning, it is important to know the aims and objectives of the course being taught to students. A teacher should be prepared not only to teach the students but also to make sure that they take some fruitful thought regarding the lesson at the end of the class. The aims and objectives should answer questions regarding all the angles of the course. The questions could be like the following:
- What is the subject of the course?
- What should the students understand regarding the subject?
- What should they take away from the subject at the end of the class?
Most of all, the sequence of these questions is very important. Also, it will be easier to plan the lesson once these questions are answered.
Teaching and learning activities
Once the aims and objectives are in place, it is important to make sure that the planned lesson is understandable by the students. The teacher should prepare different explanation methods for the students to understand the topic easily. The methods could include giving real-life examples or creating a hypothetical situation related to the topic. Moreover, showing videos related to the topic may also assist in better understanding. Including activities related to the lesson is helpful for students to remember the topic being taught.
The key is time management. A teacher has to time all the activities during the class hours in order to finish the lesson according to the plan. Everything including explanation, examples, and activities have to be timed in a manner that the lesson is not extended for the next class.
Assessments to check student understanding of the topic
In order to check the understanding after the planning and learning activities, it is important that the teacher drafts questions in different ways to check the knowledge and understanding of the topic. It’s the teacher’s decision to check the understanding orally or in writing. For this question answer session, time is required. The questions have to be preplanned. The teacher should be aware of what she planned for the students to learn so that questions can be drafted accordingly. Also, activities can be planned to check the knowledge and understanding of the matter.
Benefits of lesson planning
“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Thus, an organised teacher will always be able to deliver the lesson within the given time frame (during the limited class timings). With the additional time saved, a teacher can give additional attention and time to students that require additional help. Also, there will be a sense of control and direction while teaching. Even if there is confusion amongst the students, the teacher will be able to guide them effectively as the teacher will be well versed with the subject matter and will be able to cater the questions without any stress.
A teachers’ most important trait is confidence. Lesson planning can help the teacher to be well prepared and be aware of what he/she intends on teaching the students. It can also help the teacher to focus more on the basic knowledge first then take the students towards the next step. The teacher will never stammer or mumble during the lecture because of the timely preparation of the lesson.
Furthermore, a teacher is one of the first few inspirations of a child. Setting a good example of pre-planning can always assist a teacher to become a good inspiration and the confidence with which the teacher delivers the lesson will make the student realise the importance of planning ahead of time and adopt this habit for other disciplines of life.
The ethnic diversity in schools is increasing with the passage of time as the people from rural areas have realised the importance of education. Thus, the learning capacity of each student varies from one another. Lesson planning can minimise this understanding gap if the teacher plans the lesson effectively. This can be done by taking the first step that is, start teaching from the core so that nobody is left behind and that every student is on the same page and then the teacher moves ahead with the topic.
A lesson plan does not necessarily have to be a detailed script that contains the plan of every interaction with students in the classroom. It should preferably have the general overview of the aims and objectives of the course, the plan of teaching and learning activities of the course and the activities planned to check the students’ understanding. The driving force behind lesson planning is the motivation for the teacher and hunger to learn more by students is what keeps a teacher going.