Chapter Two: Planning that Ensures Academic Achievement
Great lessons don’t just happen. They must be planned well in advance. Chapter two provides techniques that will ensure good planning before a teacher walks into the classroom to teach the lesson.
6. Begin With the End in Mind – Not what will my students do today but what will my students understand today (Pg 57)
• Progressing from unit planning to lesson planning
• Using a well-framed objective to define the goal of each lesson
• Determining how you’ll assess your effectiveness in reaching your goal.
• Deciding on your activity
• I’ve rewritten my essential learnings in plain English and will always start with them at the beginning of my lesson planning.
7. 4MS – 4 Criteria for Effective Objectives (Pg 61)
• Manageable (objective met in a single lesson)
• Measureable – Write your objective so you can measure it at the end of class. (Exit ticket, outcome sentence)
• Made First – Write your objective to guide your activity. Begin with the end in mind.
• Most Important – Focus on what’s most important on the path to college.
• I have never thought of writing an objective to be met in a single lesson as I’ve always associated objectives with unit planning but of course this makes complete sense. It’s not that I didn’t have outcomes for daily lessons, just never thought of them as objectives.
8. Post It – Post your objective so everyone can identify your purpose for teaching (use Plain English.) (Pg 63)
• The 4MS resonates with me. I always post the day’s for all to see but fail to mention the objective. From now on this will be the first item written.
9. Shortest Path – Activities should always be the most direct route to the goal (mastery of the objective) (Pg 64)
• I’m having a hard time accepting this one 100% of the time. Sometimes most direct may not be most authentic, then what?
10. Double Plan – Always plan for both teacher and student for each phase of the lesson. (Pg 65)
• T-Charts work well for this
• I’ve always used a t-chart type idea for planning my lessons only they look more like outlines instead. Teacher phase at the top, students below. This makes sense to me. I want to know and want to communicate, in advance, what my students will be doing when I am teaching. That way, they know what I expect of them.
11. Draw the Map – Always select the appropriate classroom layout for all lessons. (Pg 67)
• When should students interact?
• How should students interact?
• Which kinds of interactions support the objective?
• How does the seating layout support the above?
• Doug Lemov prefers students in pairs, in row fashion, and I couldn’t agree more. I like the proximity this arrangement provides to each student. I don’t quite agree that the primary focus is the teacher/board especially in a student-centered classroom.