Lesson Planning

This is offered with grateful appreciation to my colleague in the 7th Grade, who is a genius with all things Google and created this application.

We use Google to organize, post, and track Unit plans and individual lesson plans.  In Google Calendar, create an all-day event that starts and ends with your semester, or whatever academic time frame you use.  Label it with the title of your unit, and add into the Description the overarching concepts, essential questions, major themes, etc., of the unit.  This can even be a single Unit Plan within a semester, among several plans.  The event window allows you to attach multiple documents to that event, and these documents can be major themes, essential questions, project descriptions, etc.

Write a single lesson plan.  We use a template, so I simply make a copy and name it with the idea or theme of the lesson. When I do this for my lessons in Everydaymath, I just use the chapter title.  The name might look like this: Equivalent Fractions  EM4.1  Simple.  This is stored in the Lesson Plan Folder: sub-folder, 2012-2013; sub-folder Math or Science.  Now you can change this plan at any time and it’s linked to the day that you intend to teach that lesson; you can print it or share it with anyone. How is that plan linked to the day?

Create an event(all-day, no time) for the day that you plan to teach that content. I title that event as I have titled the lesson plan, so that I can look at the calendar and see the topics without having to open the events.  In this event window, attach the lesson plan that you wrote. You can change these dates, or extend the time, whatever works for your practice and the learning pace of your classes. You can attach multiple documents to this event and these can be activity worksheets, lists of materials, homework problems, etc.  So you end up with an event on every day of the month, with a lesson plan for that day attached!

Now in Google Calendar, you can see the unit and pull up a document with relevant information on that unit, you can see your lesson titles for the days that you teach that content, and pull up those individual lesson plans.  It is some work in the first year, but the subsequent years are the real payoff when you can check pacing, lesson content, organize materials, and provide access to administration or parents.  From a planning standpoint, I think it’s an Order of Magnitude improvement.

What do you think?

About gblakney

Middle School Mathematics Teacher, passionate EdTech user who loves to experiment with new methods and tools in the classroom. Following the lead of Dan Meyer and Jo Boaler, I create a safe place for kids to discover the fun and beauty of maths. I use Number Talks and Groupwork to make maths accessible for all of my students. I enjoy Mathematics and I'm enthusiastic about teaching; the kids really respond to that.
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