Why Create Lesson Plans? | planning board (2023)

Why lesson plan?

The overall goal of lesson planning is to make learning more effective for students.

Creating a plan is as creative as it is critical, as teachers use a wide range of strategies to engage students, assess progress, and support learning and understanding, while also thinking about the students on the receiving end. It's a time when teachers envision all the pieces of the puzzle and analyze how they fit together to create an effective learning experience.

Planning classes ahead of time means teachers are fully prepared each day to teach new concepts and engage in meaningful discussions, rather than figuring things out over time. Without a lesson plan, students can quickly lose focus and teachers may become confused and wonder what to do next.

A daily structure helps teachers:

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Approach each lesson with confidence:The planning process gives teachers a chance to review their own knowledge of the concepts being taught and ensures they have gathered all the materials they need to teach those concepts in advance so they can more effectively communicate what they have learned to their students . This, in turn, helps instill greater respect and engagement in learners throughout the lesson.

Manage class time more effectively:How will the lesson flow from the moment the students sit down at their desks until the bell rings at the end? Lesson planning helps teachers break each lesson into a defined flow of specific lesson activities—giving them a schedule to stick to. Well-organized class time also contributes to the pace of learning, which means that important parts of the lesson aren't cooped up when time runs out (or is cut short altogether), and that students are evenly engaged throughout the lesson.

Align learning with standards: While each lesson should have its own purpose, it also fits into a much larger landscape of national, state, or school standards that dictate what students must learn at each grade level and subject. When a lesson plan includes these standards, teachers can ensure students stay on track with expected milestones while making it easier to look back and measure progress. By the end of the year, they should be able to see how all the lessons add up to meet those standards.

Why Create Lesson Plans? | planning board (1)

Updating Substitute Teachers:A detailed and well-organized lesson plan is the perfect way to ensure a substitute teacher knows what he or she needs to cover during class. It creates consistency of learning for students as their progress is not interrupted. It helps the proxy guide a class that they may not be familiar with. Plus, it gives the regular teacher peace of mind that class time is being used effectively—and that he or she won't have to repeat the lesson later.

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Planning for the future – and perfecting:Daily lesson planning is demanding. It requires repeated upfront investment of time and effort. Even after class, teachers should seek feedback and practice self-reflection to identify things they can improve on next time. However, once a teacher creates a plan, they have a solid foundation from which to create future lessons - for their current class and the next - with only minor iterations.

Document your progress:Lesson plans provide a complete and continuous picture of all learning taking place in a classroom, as well as a quick snapshot of learning that has taken place in the past, making it a perfect resource for teachers to share with administrators and supervisors who need a front-line view of lesson progress. They can even help measure teachers' professional performance and even become portfolio pieces when they're looking for teaching positions.

Continue to learn consistently:When the lesson structure varies greatly from day to day, it can become challenging to keep up with the learning. A solid structure with phases that can be used in each lesson helps form good habits in how lesson time is used and signals to students what to expect every time they walk through those classroom doors. It also makes lesson planning a little easier since teachers don't have to reinvent the wheel every time they create one.

What Makes a Lesson Plan Effective?

Creating an effective lesson plan is much more than filling out a template. If a lesson is to achieve all of the above benefits, teachers must consider its structure, the goals they set for themselves and their class, the way they will deliver the material, and more.

Therefore, we recommend incorporating these eight strategies into the planning process to make learning more successful.

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1. Always plan with the students in mind

Think about what learning looks like from across the classroom. What might students think, feel and question? Are there points where they are likely to get confused? Is the amount of new material overwhelming? Is learning interesting and relevant to their everyday life? Putting themselves in their students' shoes helps teachers make each lesson more engaging—and helps capture the information.

2. Keep the same forest every time

While the material and presentation will change with each lesson, the general flow—from summarizing prior knowledge to introducing new concepts to reinforcement and conclusion—should remain the same. Consistency helps students know what to expect and build good teaching habits, while making the planning process more efficient (and less time-consuming) for teachers.

3. Set SMART goals for each lesson

What should students know or be able to do by the end of each lesson? Having a goal in mind gives teachers a yardstick against which to measure student learning and helps teachers go backwards when creating class learning activities. But those goals have to be SMART — meaning they arespecific, measurable, achievable, relevant,andtime based.

4. Plan various classroom activities

It's not enough to stand in the front of the classroom every day and give a lecture. Students learn best when they are actively engaged in content, which means teachers need to incorporate variety into their lessons. Whether it's a group activity, movie, presentation, quiz, independent reading assignment, class discussion, journal entry, or hands-on experiment, keeping things fresh and interactive takes a lesson from bad to great.

5. Leave room for discussion

A lesson should never be a one-way flow of information from teacher to student. The best lessons leave room for open discussion about day-to-day learning—teachers can even prepare questions before each lesson to probe students' minds. The same goes for questions from your students. Taking time to answer in class encourages dialogue and gives teachers an additional opportunity to check understanding.

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6. Collect (and listen to) feedback.

What did the students think of this last learning activity? Do you feel you understand this core concept? Is there a specific place that students keep getting stuck in? What could be done better next time? Teachers who use their own self-reflection, student feedback, and peer guidance are better able to respond to the needs of their class in subsequent lessons.

7. Keep a steady pace

A good plan takes into account how much time the class needs to spend on each learning activity and how these activities are distributed. Overload the class with too much information and students may not have enough time to absorb the material. Move through the plan too slowly and the last part of the lesson will be rushed. If the pace is too slow, students may lose attention. It's a balancing act that requires careful thought to flow and pace.

8. Leave room for flexibility

Even the most carefully planned lesson can go awry under unforeseen circumstances. Maybe students didn't understand a concept in the allotted time, or a class discussion took longer than expected. Having some leeway built into each lesson helps keep things on track. Prioritizing learning objectives, concepts, activities, or skills also helps teachers figure out what to skip today and revisit later if they need to make adjustments on the fly.

Chapter TwoWhat Makes a Great Lesson Plan?


What is the purpose of creating lesson plans? ›

Lesson planning communicates to learners what they will learn and how their goals will be assessed, and it helps instructors organize content, materials, time, instructional strategies, and assistance in the classroom.

What are the 5 reasons for developing a teaching plan? ›

Why Is a Teaching Plan Important?
  • It helps you to be more organized. With a teaching plan, you'll know exactly what you're going to teach and when. ...
  • It helps you to be more prepared. ...
  • It helps you to focus on your goals. ...
  • It helps you to save time. ...
  • It helps you to improve your teaching.
Jan 3, 2023

Which purpose of a lesson plan is the most important? ›

A lesson objective can be one of the most important components of a lesson plan. Objectives define what students are going to learn during the lesson and explain how the learning is going to be assessed.

Why is it important for a student to make plans? ›

Many students face a huge amount of pressure and uncertainty when it comes to their future, finances, qualifications, and even social life. However, having a plan can help you piece the puzzle together. Helping you see a clear picture of what needs to be done and how it needs to be done.

What makes a lesson plan effective? ›

A successful lesson plan addresses and integrates these three key components: Objectives for student learning. Teaching/learning activities. Strategies to check student understanding.

What is the number one reason that teachers need to have effective lesson plans? ›

What is the number one reason that teachers need to have effective lesson plans? To assure the academic success of all students.

Why is planning important 3 reasons? ›

In particular, planning helps to critically assess the goal to see if it's realistic. It facilitates decision making and allows setting a time frame by predicting when the company can achieve its goal. It also defines how to measure performance against the set goals and whose responsibility it will be.

What is the importance of creating a plan? ›

It helps us achieve our goals, and allows for more efficient use of time and other resources. Planning means analyzing and studying the objectives, as well as the way in which we will achieve them. It is a method of action to decide what we are going to do and why.

How do you create an effective and great lesson plan? ›

Steps to building your lesson plan
  1. Identify the objectives. ...
  2. Determine the needs of your students. ...
  3. Plan your resources and materials. ...
  4. Engage your students. ...
  5. Instruct and present information. ...
  6. Allow time for student practice. ...
  7. Ending the lesson. ...
  8. Evaluate the lesson.
Oct 30, 2019

What is the strongest feature of a lesson plan? ›

1. Level of Class: an effective lesson plan must feature the class of learners for which the lesson is being designed. This will serve as the background to every other thing that will go into planning the lesson. The language of the lesson, especially, depends so much on the class of learners.

What are the four purposes of planning? ›

Planning is the process of organizing ideas into actionable steps. Within planning, there are four major categories: strategic, tactical, operational, and contingency planning. Strategic planning is a process that organizations use to determine their goals and objectives.

What are the key points of planning? ›

Six Key Elements of a Successful Plan
  • Gather Information.
  • Set objectives of the plan.
  • Devise strategies to meet goals.
  • Implement your plan.
  • Monitor plan performance.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness/success of your plan.
Dec 14, 2022

What are 2 primary benefits of planning? ›

Planning fulfills the following objectives:
  • Gives an organization a sense of direction. ...
  • Focuses attention on objectives and results. ...
  • Establishes a basis for teamwork. ...
  • Helps anticipate problems and cope with change. ...
  • Provides guidelines for decision making.

What are the benefits of creating and action plan? ›

Action Plans are useful, because they give you a framework for thinking about how you'll complete a project efficiently. They help you finish activities in a sensible order, and they help you ensure that you don't miss any key steps.

What is the most important part of planning? ›

Procedures. Procedures are some of the most important components of planning. They describe the exact manner in which something has to be done. They basically guide actions for activities that managers and employees perform.

What are the 5 key components of a learning plan? ›

But lesson topic, class objectives, procedure, time management, and student practice are the five components that a good lesson plan always includes.

What are the 5 factors that determine the method of teaching? ›

Factors affecting Teaching related to Learner
  • Support materials. Teachers have their support system which consists of tools that helps them to improve their capacity of teaching. ...
  • Instructional facilities. ...
  • Learning environment. ...
  • Socio-economic factor. ...
  • Expectations.

What are the 5 characteristics of a lesson plan? ›

What are the Qualities of a Great Lesson Plan?
  • Clarity of Organization. ...
  • Clarity of Explanation. ...
  • Clarity of Examples and Guided Practice. ...
  • Clarity of Assessment of Student Learning. ...
  • 6 Remote Learning Strategies to Successfully Check for Your Students' Understanding.
Jan 27, 2021

What are the five steps taken when developing a learning plan? ›

In order to develop a learning plan with a learner you will first need to identify their learning needs.
Steps to develop a learning plan
  • Assessment of learning needs. ...
  • Identification of learning goals. ...
  • Identify learning resources, supports and strategies.

What are the basic principles of lesson planning? ›

The three principles are: (a) initiating the lesson planning process by articulating a clear LO; (b) designing learning opportunities that lead to accomplishing the LO; and (c) including an appropriate formative assessment that provides tangible evidence of achievement of the LO.

What are 4 important parts of a lesson plan? ›

A good daily lesson plan will include at least the following:
  • Introduction. The beginning of the lesson should engage the students' attention and focus on the topic. ...
  • Lesson development. Teachers should make students aware of the intended learning outcomes of the lesson. ...
  • Assessment activities. ...
  • Wrap up:

How do you develop a lesson plan? ›

(1) Determine the objective (2) Research the topic as defined by the objective (3) Select the appropriate instructional method (4) Identify a usable lesson planning format (5) Decide how to organize the lesson (6) Choose appropriate support material (7) Prepare the beginning and ending of the lesson (8) Prepare a final ...

What are the 5 C's for teachers? ›

The essential components of an excellent education today embody much more than the traditional three R's. Past President of NAIS, Pat Bassett, identifies Five C's – critical thinking, creativity, communication, collaboration and character, as the skills that will be in demand and will be rewarded in this century.

What are the 3 most important elements in the teaching and learning process? ›

Effective teaching involves aligning the three major components of instruction: learning objectives, assessments, and instructional activities.

What is the most important factor in teaching? ›

Skills and experience of the teacher

While students are at the receiving end, the teachers are at the dispensing one, therefore they are the source of knowledge. So, the most important factor affecting teaching is the ability or potential of the teacher.

What are the 3 objectives in lesson plan? ›

Cognitive objectives emphasize THINKING, Affective objectives emphasize FEELING and. Psychomotor objectives emphasize ACTING.

What are key words in a lesson plan? ›

Key words: apply, build, choose, construct, develop, dramatize, experiment with, identify, illustrate, interview, make use of, model, operate, organize, plan, practice, schedule, select, solve, utilize.

What 6 elements are essential for a good lesson plan? ›

The most effective lesson plans have six key parts:
  • Lesson Objectives.
  • Related Requirements.
  • Lesson Materials.
  • Lesson Procedure.
  • Assessment Method.
  • Lesson Reflection.
Sep 1, 2019


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