Lesson planning is the most critical component of teaching and learning. It identifies what academic content will be taught each day and what the learning expectations will be for the same.Even so, the teacher’s plate continues to be filled with more responsibilities and compliance requirements. As a result, something has to give, and unfortunately that something is often lesson planning.
A July 1, 2019 article in USA Today by Dalvin Brown highlighted that a survey of educators indicated more than 99% of ELA elementary teachers have at some point got lesson plans online. This provides more insight that lesson plans are necessary, but not prioritized on the list of teacher tasks. The lack of priority is also evident in the minuscule allocation of actual planning time built into the teacher’s work day by school and district scheduling. At most, teachers are allocated 45 – 55 minutes of daily “prep” time; much of which is used for other duties and responsibilities. Most, if not all scheduled after school time is allocated to staff meetings or PD for strategies or new school-wide implementations.
Many of the lesson plans purchased miss the mark because they often pull the teacher away from the standards as targeted by the schools adopted pacing guide. Even more problematic is the tendency of many lesson plans to make claims of covering multiple standards (The Hechinger Report by Jill Barshay 2020). Since the state standards were designed to be progressive and spiral as prerequisites to the next, piling them on in a single lesson makes it very difficult to move learners to mastery. “Covering” content is useless since progress toward mastery is always the desired outcome.
Fillable Form Lesson Plans are completed lesson plans. Each one presents a standard, lesson objective and corresponding learning targets for a 45 – 55 minute lesson, with explicit instructions on what to say and do. Teachers simply choose an ELA text for direct instruction, guided practice and independent practice, or math problems for the same three sections.
Fillable form Lesson Plans will reduce teachers’ lesson planning time from hours to minutes.