You didn't hear it from me...

Discussion in 'General Education' started by Jessegirl, Sep 15, 2013.

  1. Jessegirl

    Jessegirl Rookie

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    Sep 15, 2013

    I was talking to a friend I graduated with. She works in a different district than I do, but we have a similar policy. I said "I have to go to polish off my plans". Some back and further. She outright said "I don't make plans any more". I asked her if her principal ever caught her or almost caught her. She said he doesn't bother to check. According to her, it's well known a lot of people don't make lps in her school. It's a freely said thing and no one is tattling.

    Maybe I'm bad, or a bit jelly, but I'd be tattling. If you worked in a school where lesson plans weren't checked and a cowork outright admitted in front of a large group they haven't done any plans for the year and won't, would you keep your mouth shut?

    Also, if you were in this position would you bother to make plan? I would, because with my luck I would get caught! LOL
     
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  3. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    I don't make plans because I'm afraid of getting my hand slapped for not having them. I make plans because they make me a better teacher. It's hard to imagine that your friend is as good a teacher as she would be if she did write plans, and ultimately her kids will suffer for it. Sounds like it's the administration that is dropping the ball here.
     
  4. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    At my previous school, no one checked for LPs and I stopped writing them in October once I realized this. Admin said we should have one available if someone observed our classroom but most people never wrote lesson plans and it was no secret. I think writing LPs are a waste of precious time.

    I would never tattle on a co-worker - not my style - over anything unless I thought I could get fired or in trouble due to the situation. Also, I am sure my co-workers could tattle on me for a number of things I don't do or turn in on time and my job already has enough "Admin spies."
     
  5. Go Blue!

    Go Blue! Connoisseur

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    You can make plans, without having to write them out word for word. A few notes on an index card should suffice.
     
  6. HorseLover

    HorseLover Comrade

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    Just because she doesn't write them doesn't mean she doesn't have a plan in mind nor does it necessitate that the students will suffer (though that is, of course, a possibility. Some people may not need written plans to be effective so I think that observing her class and lessons would be needed before knowing if it had a negative affect on her students. For me, I DO think I need plans in order for the day to run smoothly, but I don't need them as hyper detailed as they made us create them while in college. I think it depends on the teacher
     
  7. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    If the principal cared that plans were written, he or she would require them. The idea of "tattling" because I was "jelly" is a little...odd to me. It's just not my issue to be concerned with. At all.

    Lesson plans were not required at my previous school in any shape of form and I taughg just fine without them.
     
  8. Jessegirl

    Jessegirl Rookie

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    I could probably go without writing them as I my curriculum hasn't changed since I started. I'll never know, because I always have them around and prominently displayed. I feel detailed lesson plans are a waste. They take up more time than they should.
     
  9. Jessegirl

    Jessegirl Rookie

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    She's required to make lesson plans. She just doesn't have to turn them in. The principal is supposed to be checking they are in her classroom, but doesn't. The situation could turn into the principal comes in next week and sees she has nothing. Which I doubt, but still...
     
  10. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    Sep 16, 2013

    If the principal does come in next week, it will be the other teacher's baby.

    If this teacher was doing something detrimental to students and their learning, okay...but tattling because you're jealous isn't something I suggest.
     
  11. Blue

    Blue Aficionado

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    I always made an outline==not detailed. If I didn't, I would wander off topic'
     
  12. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    Sep 16, 2013

    I don't write out lesson plans. That doesn't make me an ineffective teacher, just an experienced one.

    My lesson is planned. I know exactly what I'm going to teach. At the end of first period, my kids will know the material I've presented. I know the Do Now I want my kids to do, the mnemonic devices I'll introduce, the examples I'll use. I could teach the lesson right now-- and I haven't yet had my morning tea. If someone stops by to observe me, fine. If they tell me that I'm being observed, fine-- nothing is going to change. At this point in my career, this is how I teach.

    My entire year is planned out-- I did that over the summer. I'll cover the syllabus, with lots of "extra" little tidbits. (Like last week, when I covered sets of numbers. As always, I mentioned the Imaginary Numbers, and refused to tell them what they were. And, as always, a couple of kids were intrigued enough to look it up.) I'll have plenty of time to review for exams. And my honors kids will be challenged.

    If my prep were to change today, I could walk into almost any class in the building, cold, find out the page, and teach the lesson. (it's been 12 years since I taught Calculus, so once we get further into the year, that would require a bit of prep.)

    It's kind of like cooking. While you may get creative with a particular recipe, you don't always have to look it up. Once you know what you're doing (because you've done it so many times) the written word is less necessary.

    I wouldn't sweat something happening in someone else's class unless I feared the kids were being hurt. That doesn't appear to be the case here, so I would focus my efforts on my own class.
     
  13. platypusok

    platypusok Companion

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    Sep 16, 2013

    Literally, what I write in my lesson plan book is something like the title of the story or something like "the beginnings of the revolution." Sometimes, I write page numbers and sometimes I don't. And that's about it.

    My lesson plans for tomorrow read:
    1st class: intro to scientific revolution
    2nd class: intro paragraphs
    3rd class: paragraphs/irony
    4th class: review
    5th class: paragraphs/chracterization
    6th class: intro paragraphs

    And that's it.

    But I do know exactly what I'm going to do tomorrow from bell to bell. My high school kids are working on fully developed paragraphs, not the anemic ones they like to write. I will go over the ppt again with them. I have two student samples from last week to look at that are pretty good with some things that need to be addressed that a lot of the class did (terms of art and biased language). And then they will get their marked up paragraphs from last week back to rework.

    Just because it's not written down doesn't mean there's not a plan. She could have one too.
     
  14. Missy

    Missy Aficionado

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    I would not tattle. How is this your business? If she is caught, it's her problem.
     
  15. dave1mo

    dave1mo Comrade

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    Another reason we need value-added merit pay and evaluations in education. If you THINK you're an effective teacher without plans, cool; back it up with some data. I get the feeling that those of us who don't have written lesson plans aren't really as effective as we think we are...
     
  16. ChristyF

    ChristyF Moderator

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    I used to think that plans were a pain, but now we are pushing planning with purpose and I can't imagine not doing so. It's my 17th year in 4th grade so I'd be ok, but to reach the rigor the planning makes a difference. I've told my principal I plan for me, not her, so they aren't pretty. They work for me, and she's happy with them.
     
  17. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    I don´t think you need to say anything. Seeing from the posts here, many teachers are able to do a great job without hand writing their plans. I for one cannot operate with written plans. I will not remember what I wanted to do, what video clip I had wanted to show, etc. If she can function without written plans, then great.
     
  18. platypusok

    platypusok Companion

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    I'm going to toot my own horn but I had written earlier about my barebones lesson plans and I have awesome test scores.
     
  19. lucybelle

    lucybelle Connoisseur

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    I wouldn't say anything either. No need to burn bridges.
     
  20. MissCeliaB

    MissCeliaB Aficionado

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    I agree. My plans are very bare-bones, and mostly exist so I can stay ahead on making copies, since I don't have planning time every day. I know what I am teaching, and much of my planning comes in while preparing and researching lectures.
     
  21. Peregrin5

    Peregrin5 Maven

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    I find having a lesson plan makes me less stressed because I know what I'm doing for the day even if it's only a few words or a paragraph long. I know some teachers get by just fine without them though. Our admin never checks ours either.
     
  22. HistoryVA

    HistoryVA Devotee

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    Regardless of your personal views, it would be petty and self-defeating to tattle on a coworker. IMO, you'd get a reputation and be seen as untrustworthy. Last year, a coworker THOUGHT I ratted him out of a mistake he'd made (the department chair caught it on her own; I didn't even know about it until she emailed everyone correcting it) and it severly damaged our relationship. He would complain about me behind my back and still doesn't believe that I wasn't involved. Now, neither of us trusts the other.

    Unless the situation is detrimental to the children or unless it would affect your job, everyone needs to do their own thing and stop worrying about others.
     
  23. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    I wouldn't know HOW you would tattle on a teacher in another district, but I wouldn't suggest finding out.

    Our work from day to day is designed into the classroom. The most I have to plan is the best way to present it. When I was working with three other co-teachers, this was more choreography than lesson planning. Now, it's me and a Title I teacher who does more support and tutoring than classroom teaching, so I'm a lot looser in my daily approach and base it more on student need than anything else.
     
  24. dave1mo

    dave1mo Comrade

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    I'm not disagreeing with you, but do you have evidence that says you wouldn't be a better teacher with more in-depth plans?

    I occasionally have sparse plans, but I always have plans. I've also discovered that planning more minutely forces me to think about procedures and orders that I wouldn't have thought about otherwise. I also tend to have more "oh, we should do THIS" moments during sessions where I spend an hour planning out the next week or two.
     
  25. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I turn in my plans when scheduled to do so...once every three weeks. On other weeks, I have a rough sketch of where I'm going but sometimes fill it in as I go...the benefit of having taught for 17 years, being a peer coach and curriculum writer...I know my stuff. As a colleague, I'd be violating trust and confidentiality to rattle on a colleague. As. Union member, I'd be violating omertà. It's not my job to police what others do. If their practices impact my kids, I'll have a word with those colleagues...but not administration unless it is a situation that is unsafe...even then I'd go to that colleague first to express my concerns.
     
  26. DHE

    DHE Connoisseur

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    My partner teacher had very scarce plans in the past that wouldn't work for me. She did them that way for the same reason; they weren't being checked. I never said anything because if he wasn't worried, why would I say anything. However, our new P does look at them and she is having trouble writing hers.
     
  27. kellzy

    kellzy Comrade

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    There's a teacher in my school who doesn't make plans. But that's because she's been in the business since before most of the rest of the staff was born. Her first year teaching was in the mid 1950s. She's an absolute pro. She doesn't make plans, she's open about it, and the administration knows it too.
    However, I will continue to make plans until I've been in the business more than 50 years. Then I'll be comfortable not doing that.
     
  28. kevo2005

    kevo2005 Companion

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    I never planned. Never. Not any of my first three years! My plans literally consisted of my syllabus. First six weeks these topics, second these topics, Etc.

    I was/am super flexible.

    My last year teaching, last year, I had 97% of the juniors pass their exit TAKS test. Oh I taught every junior.
     
  29. Jessegirl

    Jessegirl Rookie

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    For those who are confused, I'm not going to report my friend. I was saying I would be tempted to do it if it were someone in my building. Just wondered what other thought. IMO, it's tempted to throw someone under the bus for not doing their job, whether you need them or not lps are a part of your job if your p wants them, if you ever find admin on your back for a minor mistake.
     
  30. readingrules12

    readingrules12 Aficionado

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    I always make lesson plans. I would keep my mouth shut though. Save your battles for when a teacher is REALLY doing something much more serious. I wouldn't ever tattle on policy issues like that.

    While most teachers probably do better with lesson plans than without them, I don't think it is the most important thing in the world.
     
  31. JustMe

    JustMe Virtuoso

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    I have no desire to add unnecessary conflict to my life.
     
  32. Aliceacc

    Aliceacc Multitudinous

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    I think there's a huge difference between not having formal written plans and winging it.

    I know exactly what I'm teaching before I enter school each day. (Today doesn't really count; I'm testing all day. And the tests-- 4 different versions of it-- are already run off. And all 4 answer keys are done.)

    But my lesson plan for yesterday consisted of
    "Properties:
    closure, commutative +/x, associative +/x, identities +/x, inverses +/x, distributive, reflexive, symmetric, transitive."

    That's it. That was my entire written lesson plan word for word. That and the homework assignment.

    Yet every kid now understands why zero doesn't have a reciprocal, why addition of odd numbers isn't closed but addition of evens is, that a set that isn't closed is not "Open" but instead is "not closed", why subtraction isn't commutative, why division isn't associative, how NOT to abbreviate "associative", how line symmetry relates to the symmetric property (and how it's different from the commutative property) and how the game Manhunt relates to the transitive property. And a whole lot more.

    They also knew what to expect on today's test and did a Do Now like the most difficult problem on today's test. And we started with a prayer and I checked the weekend's homework-- no one had any questions on it. And we laughed a lot in those 38 minutes.

    Not WRITING a formal plan is NOT the same thing as not having a plan.

    If someone looked over my shoulder and saw my excuse for a lesson plan, they might be tempted to run to the Assistant principal and accuse me of not doing my job.

    They would be making a mistake. And the AP would let them know that in no uncertain terms.
     
  33. MissScrimmage

    MissScrimmage Aficionado

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    Yes! My lesson plans are brief - Printing p. 59, Science day & night, math - teach new centres, number books

    But I know exactly what I am going to accomplish in those minutes, have back up ideas in case something flops and extension activities in case we fly.

    If a colleague was concerned about my planning I hope they would speak to me first. But my principal's pretty on the ball - if there was any concern about my planning, she'd be the first one to address it.
     
  34. monsieurteacher

    monsieurteacher Aficionado

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    :spitwater:
     
  35. TeacherNY

    TeacherNY Maven

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    There is a teacher at my school who writes "plans" but never follows them...and everyone knows it. Her students do nothing and when people talk about her class they pretty much roll their eyes. I make plans and my students do great things in my class and that's what I want to be known for. I don't care what that other teacher does because I know what people think of her...let her be THAT teacher. Her class is a hot mess and that's her problem.
     
  36. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Really? You'd be tempted throw someone else under the bus to try and get an administrator off your back and onto someone else's? :confused::wow:
     
  37. nyteacher29

    nyteacher29 Comrade

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    As I tell my kids, you become a lot more successful in life when you worry more about what you are and should be doing than what others are/should be doing.

    Keep writing your lesson plans and your admin won't be on your back about them and just hope your friend doesn't get stuck one day
     
  38. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    I tell my kids that taking care of themselves is enough of a job, they don't need to worry about what someone else is doing.:D
     
  39. ChemTeachBHS

    ChemTeachBHS Comrade

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    Sep 17, 2013

    Our plans are auto checked by the computer. Oncourse sends a email to the P every Tuesday with the names of those that didn't post anything. With that being said one could technically post a blank page and no one would ever know. My plans are bare bones- just the Chapter, lesson and topic to be covered. That doesn't mean they are not well planned out. Give me any date during the school year and I can tell you what I should be teaching (give or take an lesson or two depending on how the students are doing).

    ETA: OP ratting someone out is childish and immature. It will harm your reputation and could cost you your job in the long run. No on wants a teacher that they can't trust.
     
  40. kab164

    kab164 Companion

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    We are required to turn them in by Monday morning. If we don't, we get a reminder from the office. I believe auditors have asked to see them?
     
  41. Rainbowbird

    Rainbowbird Groupie

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    Sep 17, 2013

    My principal doesn't require lesson plans from me, but I write them anyway. I would forget something like a poem or snippet of something good if I didn't write it down.they are very general but I list the standards for the week that I am focusing on.(I teach preK so we do not cover a huge number of standards a week, at least not formally.)

    No way would I rat on a colleague for something like that. Why would I do that? Why would anyone do that? Some people are fine without having to write stuff down. It's none of my business.

    Especially if you've been teaching forever, you might not need them. I know that I wrote much more detailed plans my first year of teaching than I do now.
     

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