How detailed are your lesson plans?

Discussion in 'Elementary Education' started by Mr. Nobody, Oct 11, 2014.

  1. Mr. Nobody

    Mr. Nobody Rookie

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    Oct 11, 2014

    When I first began teaching (which was not that long ago) all that was required was we write objectives for each subject in a planner of some sort. I would also include notes to keep myself on track under each objective.

    Now everything must be in an excruciatingly long, extremely detailed lesson plan template that our school has created. Using the template, my weekly plans are between 20 - 30 pages long. If you include my small group plans, then 35 - 40 pages. (Funny thing is every staff meeting we are told that the school is going green and we need to reduce our paper consumption)

    Because we are supposed to have our lesson plan books open on our desks at all times, I either have to make double copies if I want the plans with me while I am at the board/in a small group, or I write myself an outline based off my detailed plans.

    Most times I do the latter, so I feel like I am writing two sets of plans. One for "show" and one that I am actually using.

    I am wondering if this is something unique to my county/state or is this beginning to happen everywhere.
     
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  3. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Oct 11, 2014

    We can do our plans basically however we want as long as they're turned in. Each day's box takes up about 1/4 of a page. I have four preps. My plans take me 15-20 minutes each week to write.
     
  4. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

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    Oct 11, 2014

    My plans have to include the objective, procedures, homework, and standards. They do expect the objective to be specific, and the procedures should be fairly detailed - I usually write 4 - 5 sentences.

    Now, keep in mind, I write a box up 7 different periods throughout the day. More significantly, I teach in small groups for pretty much every period so we're talking about objective, procedures, homework and standards for 2 or 3 different lessons per period.

    However, I plan by unit. I create a spreadsheet with the individual lessons in the unit and locate or (much more frequently) create resources for each lesson. This can take hours or days depending on the size of the unit. And, again, I usually have at least 2 different math units, for example, going at the same time because of the composition of my class.

    It's a lot of work. I don't understand it when people say that they can do it quickly. I spend hours a week designing units of study. Maybe I'm doing something wrong....
     
  5. pinkrobots27

    pinkrobots27 Rookie

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    Oct 11, 2014

    I teach at a private bilingual school so my situation is a little different. Apparently, in the past, they required very detailed lesson plans but there were several complaints and they changed the format.

    I've seen some of other teacher's LPs and they are pretty brief. Works for them though. It takes me about an 1.5-2 hours to write 2 week lesson plans. They aren't very detailed but good enough to know what I'm teaching and how I am going to teach it. I would make them more detailed but the format they gave us does not allow me to do so.

    The worst thing was making our pacing guide. That took me a good 5-6 hours. Then I saw the school had messed up some of the calendar dates and had to edit the whole thing. :dizzy:
     
  6. Mr. Nobody

    Mr. Nobody Rookie

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    Oct 11, 2014

    Same here!
     
  7. schoolteacher

    schoolteacher Habitué

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    Oct 11, 2014

    I worked at a school several years ago that attempted to have teachers make plans exactly as you described. We called our union, who then intervened. We were given a template that required lesson plans of one page for each subject.

    Is this something district wide or just in your school? You might want to talk to your union if you have one.
     
  8. waterfall

    waterfall Maven

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    Oct 11, 2014

    I don't have to turn plans in, so I'm free to do them however. Last year I started doing "official plans" only one day in advance, and it sounds crazy but I love it and works out great for me. I used to plan for the entire week, and I found myself going back and changing things pretty much daily because my students needed something explained in a different way, needed more or less time than I expected on something, etc. Now I have a general idea of where I'm going next but I don't sit down and write plans until one day ahead, and then I never have to do the same work twice! Since my lesson plans are only for me, I just use bullet points to remind myself of the activities I want to do. It takes about 10 minutes to type up my plans for the next day, and then I spent about 40 minutes gathering or making materials, making copies, etc.
     
  9. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    Oct 11, 2014

    Lesson plans for me are separate from creating things I need for my units. I make my plans on Wednesdays usually this year. Then I make a list of everything I need for my four preps by day. I create and/or print as I have the time or need. A lot of the things I use are from previous years though, so I'm not creating as much as I was in past years.
     
  10. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    Oct 11, 2014

    This is something I've been fighting about recently. I'm used to sending in something about 1/2 a page for an entire week (teaching one prep). I write what I'll do each day, objectives to be covered, links to any websites, etc. And that's it.

    The ICF at my school tells me every single week my plans are not long/detailed enough. I guess my problem is the only feedback that I get from this lady is how I write my lesson plans, never the actual less itself. Why do I need to write a lesson plan so detailed anyone could follow it, if I don't have a sub?
     
  11. geoteacher

    geoteacher Habitué

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    Oct 11, 2014

    All my plans for the week fit on one typed sheet of paper. I include enough to help me remember the main activities and goals that I have for the day.
     
  12. orangetea

    orangetea Connoisseur

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    Oct 11, 2014

    My lesson plans are about a paragraph for each period that I teach--so it ends up being about a page per day.

    I also write example problems and activities separately for each day--those are much longer.
     
  13. iteachbx

    iteachbx Enthusiast

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    Oct 13, 2014

    I had a similar situation my first few years. But no one ever actually looked at my plans. They were never collected and the only time my AP looked at them was before or after a formally observed lesson. So this year I'm cutting back. I type up the objective, some questions I'll go through and what the independent practice will be. Our contract says we can't be told how to plan we just need to be planning so I'm not concerned and at this point I think it's even less likely my admins will come around and want to actually see my plans. Even if they do I don't think there's anything wrong with mine.
     
  14. otterpop

    otterpop Aficionado

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    Oct 13, 2014

    I basically have to write sub plans. They are incredibly detailed and a huge waste of time.
     
  15. Mr. Nobody

    Mr. Nobody Rookie

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    Oct 24, 2014

    Exactly. I don't understand the point. I remember during a staff meeting a few years ago we were told that the point of lesson plans were to show evidence of planning and that we're not just teaching on the fly. As long as a teacher hasn't scribbled something for math like, "Teach fractions" I don't see the point of typing such long plans.

    It is burning me out. I am spending so much time trying to look good that I feel like I am not as good as I used to be if that makes sense. I don't have the energy to research new and exciting ways to teach skills and doing projects with my kids after writing so many pages of detailed lessons
     

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