Lesson Planning Essentials

As teachers return to school, lesson planning once again becomes part of every teacher’s’ life. Have you ever stopped to really consider what makes a lesson good? This past week I spent time on Twitter with teachers and administrators discussing lesson planning essentials.

Pete Hall and Alisa Simeral authors of Teach, Reflect, Learn: Building Your Capacity for Success in the Classroom joined the chat and they brought great thought provoking questions.  Here are just a few of the questions shared during #ECEchat. 


On my campus our teachers collaborated to come up with a list of what we call “non-negotiable” or “no excuses” items a lesson plan must include.

Here is the list of Lesson Plan Essentials. The list correlates with our students’ needs and campus goals.


q2I  really like this question. I am on a bilingual campus with a large population of ELLs.The moment I read this question ELLs came to my mind.

Because of the age of our students and their level of English proficiency, I think the instructional strategies selected by the teacher is vital in helping students understand a concept.


Reflecting on our practices is key if we want to improve teaching and learning. How often do teachers reflect on the effectiveness of a lesson? PLC meetings and PLN discussions are great venues to have those conversations. Asking questions like, “How many students must master a standard for the lesson to be considered a success?” and “How do you plan for on the spot intervention when you notice students are not understanding something?” are important discussion points.

If we continue to do what we have always done, we will also continue to get the same results. By reflecting on the “why” we choose specific strategies and “how” we determine if a lesson was effective, teachers are able to be more intentional and effective in their lesson design and ultimately improve student outcomes.


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