Time to start thinking about September and returning to school

Hey all,

It’s scary to think we’ve passed the half way point of the summer holidays and thoughts of September and returning to school are starting to creep in.  Read below for some of the resources and lesson plans available on lessonplans.ie to help you get ready to return to school in September.

  1. Student teachers if you’re getting ready to go on school placement or teaching practice then check out lessonplans.ie.  We have a growing pool of resources and lesson plans available for teaching practice or school placement.  There are lesson plans and resources for every class level  such as a whole unit of plans on Tom Crean Antarctica Theme suitable for 4th, 5th and 6th class available. There are also lots of lesson plans available for the junior level of the school such as 19 lesson plans for suitable for Junior or Senior infants based on the theme Animals in Winter .

2. Lessonplans.ie has so many lesson plans and resources available for NQT’s also. We have DIP and Droichead plans to help make your first year working as easy as possible. Check out these 4th Class long term dip plans for term 1 available on lessonplans.ie.

 

3. Are you a class teacher who’s moving school, class level, or year group.  Again we’ve plans and resources for all class levels and subjects. We also have activity booklets for the first day back to school suitable for 1st, 2nd, 3rd and 4th class.

4. If you’re like so many others and still applying for jobs we have lots of interview prep booklets and materials available for both primary and post primary level.  These have valuable tips on interview questions and tips on how to fill a standard application form and cover letter.

5. We also have lots of lesson plans and resources available for post primary teachers. These include plans for both the junior and senior cycle.  Some resources include this free KWL chart, a Junior Certificate population test and well-being lesson plans suitable for 1st years.

Why not check out lessonplans.ie now and see if there’s something you can download to make your transition back to school as smooth as possible!

Lessonplans Team 🙂

How to write a good lesson plan

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 on your lesson plans.  Also make this objective or outcome as specific as possible.  Be every 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.

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 grab children’s interest from the start. Have a punchy introduction such as a game, puzzle , 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 loook 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 lower ability, the higher ability need to challenged are differentiated for also.  Examples of ways to differentiae include different worksheets, less 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 on teaching practice as you are always working within a theme. Show all integration and linkage on your plans.

Lessonplans.ie 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.

Selling my Teaching Resources: How and Why I do it!

We are delighted to introduce this weeks post written by Rebecca.the.irish.teacher who is a popular teacher on instagram.  Through her blog and instagram profile she aims to offer advice, support and resources for teachers. 

Why I started selling lesson plans online:

As teachers, we spend hours a day/week/month creating resources for our class. If we’re not creating them, we’re scrolling through the internet searching for the resource or lesson plan that we want. (This can sometimes take longer than actually making the resource yourself, if you’re like me and don’t stop until you find exactly what you’re looking for).

I’m a fussy fuss pot when it comes to what resources I use for my class. Stubborn as a mule, I get an idea in what way I want to teach, resource and extend my lessons and I don’t budge from it. For English, Maths and Science, it is important that my lessons are:

  • Engaging and fun (to teach).
  • Differentiated.
  • Contain CHALLENGE for each ability.

The truth is, a large majority of teachers make resources for their class at some stage during the year. Maybe not all of the time, but at some stage, right? After a year of making lots of teaching resources, I thought about the fact that I’d spent all these hours making resources for my class that were used once. Once. After all that time and effort, no one other than me and my children benefited from these lessons. Therefore, I started selling my teaching resources. Knowing and appreciating how time-consuming teaching is, I hoped my teaching resources would save someone else time and hassle. Considering I had made them ANYWAY.

A platform I use:

Lately, I have started selling my lesson plans on lessonplans.ie. I know what you may be thinking, surely this takes even more time and effort out of a teacher’s day. But that’s where you’re wrong. Lesson plans is by far the quickest, most convenient site I’ve used to upload a resource. If, like me, you already have the resource made, the hard part is done. Within a few clicks, you could be sharing your hard work with other teachers like you that may need exactly what you’ve created.

Is it worth it?

On my Instagram, I set up a Q&A about selling lesson plans and this one caught my eye as it was my exact thoughts this time 3 years ago. The main thing I wanted to know was ‘is it worth it?’.

My answer is YES. It’s a fantastic way to earn some extra money for the work that you’re doing anyway! It’s a no brainer in my eyes, like why wouldn’t you do it? Let’s say you upload a product at the weekend that you had taught that week to your class, that resource is now there for the foreseeable future, earning you money anytime another teacher buys it.

Why set up an account?

It’s not a consistent income as there’s no telling when your products will sell, but the market is there, so why not avail of it? Your resources could be exactly what another teacher is looking for and they’re currently where? Sitting in a folder on your laptop/desktop gathering (virtual) dust! Take the chance. Upload your resources and join this exciting, online teaching resource author community. You’ve nothing to lose, you can’t lose money so why not try earn some?

Within 5 minutes, an account can be set up on lessonplans.ie and you could be sharing your teaching resources with loads of like-minded teachers. Teachers, who could be waiting for something like yours to come along! Over on my Instagram, I have created a highlight where I talk about adding products to lessonplans.ie and just how easy it is! Take a look there for more of a step-by-step guide or have a browse in my store:

To sum up:

Initially, selling my teaching resources was for my “holiday fund” that slowly built up and up. Now it’s really growing and it’s very exciting! What are you waiting for? Get uploading!

If you’ve any questions about uploading or selling your lesson plans online, please ask. As well as that, let me know if you’ve set up an account, I’d love to share your page to help grow your business!

Good luck!

5th Class Lesson Plans, Teaching Practice Plans and Resources

Similar to all primary classes, teaching 5th class requires lots of preparation and lesson planning in advance. We know how time consuming and stressful this can be sometimes. To make it a little easier we will be updating our blog regularly to update what materials we have for each class level. Please see below for a list of materials we currently have available on lessonplans.ie for 5th Class:

  1. There are multiple lesson plans for 5th Class that can used for TP. These include maths lesson plans that were awarded a 1:1 grade and spring theme plans across maths and Gaeilge.
  2. For Gaeilge we have multiple lesson plans for 5th Class  in addition to fun resources like question words as Gaeilge.
  3. In addition, resources available for 5th & 6th Class include a Lines and Angles Flipchart, as well as China themed plans and Chinese new year worksheets.
  4. Lessonplans also has good resources for maths that can be used with 5th and 6th classes. Resources include maths lesson plans for 5th and 6th class and bundle maths plans with up to 15 plans. In addition there is also some good maths resources available for 5th class.
  5. Explore English resources and lesson plans suitable for 5th class including a homophone worksheet and verb and tense worksheet.
  6. For Geography, History and Science we also have some bundle lesson plans suitable for 5th class that you may want to check out.
  7. There are also multiple resources to help make TP and class management easier including Technology themed classroom jobs and sample Assessment Methods Table

We would love to see more 5th class resources on the site, so please don’t be hesitant to join lessonplans and start uploading today.

 

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Tips on religion lesson plans, ideas and resources

Religion can be a tricky subject to plan for . This is due to a number of factors.  The main one being that most schools follow a religion programme . This means religion is very structured and often we teachers are working to a scheme of work. However there are times when you do need to plan and organise extra religion lessons . This applies to both class teachers and those on school placement or teaching practice.

For example this week is Catholic schools week, so it’s necessary to go outside of the set programme you follow to incorporate new lessons and material.  This Friday, the 1st of February is St Brigid’s Day .  There is so much all class levels can do around this day including making the crosses, colouring and designing the cloak, writing facts and the life or St Brigid etc.  On teacher plans we have a fantastic resource from Ms Connolly . She has provided 30 key words related to the story of St Brigid.  We also have a fantastic range of religion lesson plans and resources on lessonplans.ie for both primary and secondary teachers.

Links to  primary religion lesson plans and resources for class teachers and teaching practice placements .

  1. We have booklets for First Confession and Communion for 2nd class . These are so beneficial if it is your first time teaching 2nd class. They’re also a great reference point if you wanted to make changes to existing booklets .
  2. A flipchart on The Prodigal Son is a great free resource available on lessonplans.ie.  This prompts discussion and enables an easy flow of integration with English.
  3. Muinteoir Rachel has a set of 3 Religion lesson plans , ideal for teaching practice or school placement.  The lesson plans include a plan on St Thomas Aquinas, Christian symbols and St Vincent De Paul.  These lesson plans are suitable for 5th or 6th class.
  4. Exploring world religions is also catered for on lessonplans.ie with a 14 page flipchart on Islam.  These are great for senior classes – 4th, 5th and 6th.

Links to secondary lesson plans and resources for class teachers and school placement or teaching practice. 

  1. On lessonplans.ie  you will find a 10 page flipchart about Knock . This is suitable for the Junior Cert Curriculum at secondary level.

New content, lesson plans, resources and materials are added on a daily and sometimes hourly basis on lessonplans.ie. Keep an eye on new content if there’s something specific you are looking for.

4th Class Lesson Plans and Resources

Similar to all primary classes, teaching 4th class requires lots of preparation and lesson planning in advance. We know how time consuming and stressful this can be sometimes. To make it a little easier we will be updating our blog regularly to update what materials we have for each class level.

Please see below for a list of materials we currently have available on lessonplans for 4th Class:

  1. For Gaeilge we have multiple Aimsir 5 TP Lesson plans that are available for download. In addition to this there are Gaeilge flip charts that can help guide creative writing.
  2. Lessonplans also has good resources for SPHE where you can find powerpoints suitable for 4th class on communication, conflict, decision.
  3. In addition to this we have maths lesson plans that include maths lesson bundles suitable for 3rd and 4th class. Maths resources include maths worksheets and flip charts.
  4. Explore English weekly lesson plans to save time. Furthermore, resources including worksheets for grammar capital letters and spelling are also readily available.
  5. For Geography we also have some lesson plans suitable for 3rd and 4th class that you may want to check out.
  6. In addition, take time to have a look through some of our 3rd and 4th Class History Lesson plans.
  7. There are also multiple resources to help make TP and class management easier including Technology themed classroom jobs and sample Assessment Methods Table

We would love to see more resources on the site, so please don’t be hesitant to join lessonplans.ie and start uploading today.

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1st/2nd Class Lesson Plans and Resources

We know it can even be time consuming to trawl through websites looking for resources and ideas for your class level so here’s a summary of what’s available on www.lessonplans.ie for 1st & 2nd class.

The following material is available right now on www.lessonplans.ie for 1st and 2nd class students.

  1. We have multiple Maths lesson plans available including Maths Trail 1st & 2nd class, Maths Weight Bundle lesson plans,
  2. Lessonplans also has a good selection of science plans for this class level. Options include  Science Lesson Plan – The Senses and Science 2 Year Plan 1st and 2nd Class,
  3. In addition to this we have week long lesson plans suitable for TP that cover lesson plans across multiple subjects including maths, english, music, SPHE & Physical Education.
  4. Lastly, the teaching resources available for 1st and 2nd Class. Available resources  include an Oral Language Milestone Chart, Visual timetables, Noise monitor display for effective class control and numerous worksheets.

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Reasons to teach children about the Chinese New Year

Chinese New Year is once again almost upon us.  This week I showed the children in my 2nd class the story of the Chinese New Year calendar.  They were fascinated at how each animal was chosen. They also loved discovering what animal represented their birth year.  I wasn’t too sure initially how interested they would be in the Chinese New Year but I was delighted to see how engaged they were throughout the lesson.  Below are some reasons why I think it’s such a great topic to discuss and teach in your class.

  1. Reasons to teach children Chinese New Year: The Chinese New Year is a topic which could be easily taught to all classes from 1st-6th . In addition material is very easy to adapt to the year group. Most children will be very interested to know what animal represents their year of birth.
  2. There are so many resources and activities available to support the teaching of the Chinese New Year.  On YouTube you will find a huge range of videos to show different aspects of the Chinese New Year celebrations like https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1cRMRp9-Z08. On teacher plans we have a Chinese New Year activity  worksheet suitable for most classes in the school, aside from infants.
  3. Children are engaged and interested in the topic.  It’s very visual and stimulating.
  4. It’s very easy to differentiate work for the Chinese New Year. Children can express themselves through images and drawings, in addition to writing about the topic.
  5. It’s a very inclusive topic which teaches children how different countries have different celebrations, cultures and traditions.
  6. You can integrate this topic very well.  You could use it as a stimulus in English as a creative writing exercise. In art you could make lanterns, design a calendar or make an alternative Chinese New Year Calendar. Furthermore you could link it to China in Geography or dance in PE. The list and opportunities really are endless.

Teaching Practice tips to help with school placement

Teaching practice and school placements are in full swing this month.  Regardless of whether you’re completing your first , second or third placement here are some tips to make it that little bit easier.

  1. Be organised with your photocopies, printing and folders.  I know it sounds like an obvious one but when you’re on teaching practice placement you are expected to have all resources ready at hand. This means you have to do all the photocopying, printing and laminating at home and not using school resources.  Without a doubt teaching practice is an expensive couple of weeks.
  2. Implement your own behavioural system as opposed to using the class teachers.  Inspectors and supervisors will want to see this.
  3. To save time try and get your reflections and observations done during the day in school.  You might get time straight after a lesson or near lunch time.  Doing this will save you vital time in the evenings when you are planning for the next day.
  4. Questioning is a word that inspectors and supervisors love.  Try and ask a wide range of both higher and lower order questioning from day 1 when teaching lessons.  This will get you in the habit of doing so and when you are being observed it is something that won’t go un noticed.
  5. If you are teaching to a theme and the class teacher has requested a subject or topic to be taught that doesn’t fit your theme don’t stress about it.  Write clearly on your plans that it is “teacher request” .  Inspectors are very aware that it’s not possible to theme everything and there is nothing worse that forced linkage.
  6. Differentiate your lessons. Ask lower or higher order questions to children who need it.  Create a worksheet that is more or less challenging for children when necessary.  Supervisors will be looking to see differentiation
  7. Remember that everyone had to complete teaching practice to get where they are . Don’t be afraid to ask the class teacher for advice during your teaching practice.
  8. Lastly teaching practice and school placement is nothing like real life teaching.  Just think it’s a couple of weeks and then it will be another hurdle passed and you will be one step closer to the finish line.

Good luck to all going on teaching practice or school placement now or in the near future.

Lessonplans Team 🙂

Parent Teacher Meetings

Key Things to Remember for Parent Teacher Meetings:

  1. Keep your cool. Parent-teacher can be daunting for anyone.
  2. Understand the schools scheduling policy and understand the flexibility you have around it.  
  3. Preparation and prioritisation of messaging for the meeting is key. There can be multiple updates you can share with a parent but what are the most important messages you need to communicate. 
  4. Ensure you cover aspects beyond lesson progress including social interaction skills. friendships and general motivation in the classroom.
  5. Behavioural concerns should not be ignored. Although these conversations can be the most difficult they are also the most critical not to avoid. When feedback is communicated in the correct way you have a much higher chance of it landing effectively.
  6. Positive and constructive feedback on a student is best shared with correct context. Give an example of the behaviour and impact so a parent can understand the feedback. In addition, bringing examples of class work can be helpful to communicate feedback.
  7. Think about any asks you might have for parents in terms of facilitating homework at home or additional study support that might be needed. This is a key opportunity to put asks on the table. 
  8. Invite any questions and concerns a parent might have. It is important parents also feel they have air time with you and are not simply feeling they are being ‘talked at’. Encourage the parents to come with questions in advance of the meeting. In addition, it is helpful to kick-off the meeting by hearing from the parent and their impression of progress.
  9. Make sure you have a notebook handy to take notes on parents questions or concerns. This will make it easier to remember any follow-ups needed. 
  10. Remember to dress smart and professional that day, all interactions start with first impressions.