How to write a good lesson plan

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As another block of teaching practice or school placement looms this week, here are some tips to help write a great lesson plan.

Top tips for writing a great lesson plan

  1. Set out the learning objective for the lesson clearly in your lesson plans.  Also, make this objective or outcome as specific as possible.  Be very clear about what you aim to teach the children during that lesson.
  2. Highlight your method of assessment – teacher observation or teacher-designed task.  If you are assessing using teacher observation, make sure you identify how you will record this.  Typically this is recorded in a teacher observation notebook.
  3. Identify teacher questioning.  There are 2 options for this- lower and higher-order questioning.  Lower order are closed questions such as “What was the name of the boy in the story?”. Higher order are open-ended questions like “How do you think he was feeling?”
  4. Write about language development opportunities during the lesson.  This can take the form of new vocabulary, words, oral language development etc.
  5. Use a range of different teaching methodologies. If you’re writing lots of plans, inspectors will be looking to see a variety of these used throughout.

The main body of lesson plan

  1. When writing the main body of the lesson plan use bullet points. Do not write the lesson plan in an essay-style way.  Bullet points make it clear and readable for the inspector, and yourself. Remember it is a working document and will guide you through the lesson.
  2. Write a clear introduction.  Try to grab children’s interest from the start. Have a punchy introduction such as a game, puzzle, or exciting picture.  Something that will inspire immediate engagement.
  3. The development section is your opportunity to explain how the main teaching of that lesson will take place.  Focus on what you will do and what they will do.  Remember, too much teacher talk is always a favourite critique for inspectors so look at your lesson objective and make sure you are teaching this.  Highlight what the children will do during the development.
  4. When concluding your lesson always include a social conclusion and a cognitive conclusion.  Social conclusion means tidying up, collecting worksheets, a transition game etc.  Cognitive conclusion is again your opportunity to revisit the objective.  Asking questions, finishing with a game which relates to the lesson etc are all good ideas.
  5. Always show how you will differentiate your lesson.  Remember that as well as those with lower ability, the higher ability needs to be challenged are differentiated for also.  Examples of ways to differentiate include different worksheets, fewer questions on some, more on others, questioning etc.
  6. Make sure you identify all resources used during the lesson.
  7. Integration is easy to identify in teaching practice as you are always working within a theme. Show all integration and linkage on your plans.

We have a huge range of lesson plans available to download across all subject areas. Why not download some to see an example of how to write a good lesson plan?

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