Successful Lessons

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  1. artlader profile image61
    artladerposted 8 years ago

    There are all sorts of opinions about what constitutes a good lesson plan, aren't there?

    I teach high school German, and in my case, a simple plan with a clear beginning, middle and end with lots of opportunity for student interaction/engagement above the knowledge level seems to work best.

    It does not seem to matter if my plans are aligned with state or national standards, if I take into account multiple intelligences, learning styles, etc.

    After more than thirty years as a high school teacher, I have found that simple just works best in my classroom.

    German 3 Example

    * Beginning: Before we listen to a German song about a relationship that has gone bad, students will interview each other. They will find out if their classmates think that love is important and will report to the class on their findings.

    * Middle: As we listen to the song, students will complete a handout that accompanies the song. We will then discuss the handout.

    * End: Students compose and perform little skits based on the song. They will portray the break-up of a young couple.  Students will fill out evaluations of their classmates' performances and will turn them in to me.

    For me, that's a pretty good plan. It might take two classes to get through it, in fact, but that's okay.

    What about you? Are your lesson plans a lot more sophisticated than mine?

    Just curious.


    1. artlader profile image61
      artladerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Oh, for any German teachers out there... This song might work well -

      Die Sterne - Wahr ist, was wahr ist

      Ich bin auf Beinen, ich hab keine Schmerzen
      Ich bin bei Verstand, ich hab nichts mit dem Herzen
      Ich kann mich bewegen, ich muss mich nicht quälen
      und ich kann ein und eins zusammenzählen

      Ich richte den Blick auf die wichtigen Dinge.
      Ich messe den Druck und spüre die Zwänge.
      Ich nehme sie wahr, die räumliche Enge
      und sage nein ich will hier nicht sein.

      Ich bin fest entschlossen, diesen Ort zu verlassen,
      die Fesseln zu sprengen und alles zu hassen,
      Was ich hier geliebt hab und was mich.
      Es tut mir leid - inklusive dich.

      Wahr ist, was wahr ist,
      Das dass was war nicht mehr da ist.

      Ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich,
      ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich, ich,
      ich, ich, ich, ich, ich.....

    2. shellyakins profile image68
      shellyakinsposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      When I taught language arts, my lesson plans revolved around specific state standards and/or skills students needed to know to be able to do what the standard asked of them.  I planned daily assessments to checked the progress of my students.  I also planned in large units of study with a major assessment at the end.  The daily lessons were broken down into the steps students needed to get to the end assessment.

      1. artlader profile image61
        artladerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

        Thanks for replying, shellyakins,

        It sounds like you were very methodical and thorough in your approach.

        Was that something that evolved over time as a necessity, or was it more an extension of your personality?

        - Art

        1. shellyakins profile image68
          shellyakinsposted 8 years agoin reply to this

          It started out that it was required by the principal I worked for.  It wasn't all as detailed as it sounds.  We were required to link everything that we did to a state standard needed to be able to show mastery (or not) of a skill.  I found that I worked better when I had a long range plan (like a whole unit over several weeks.)  I also sent home calendars with my students to share with their parents about the units we worked on so everyone knew what was coming up.

          I always stated with the assessment in mind and worked backwards.  I guess that's just how it evolved to work for me.

          1. artlader profile image61
            artladerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

            "I always stated with the assessment in mind and worked backwards"

            Yep, that's a great way to go.

            Of course, I probably say that because that's what I do, too!

            - Art

  2. Evan G Rogers profile image73
    Evan G Rogersposted 8 years ago

    I'm a soon-to-be World Language teacher going through grad-school.

    We've had lesson plans crammed down our throats, and it's only going to get worse.

    The main points to focus on are:

    *What do you want your students to be able to do?

    *How will you achieve this goal?

    *In what way will you assess if they are able to do what you want?

    *Do your goals match up with national and state educational standards? (in Ohio we have "the five C's": Communication, Culture, Connections (to other subjects), Comparisons (to L1), and Communities.)

    *Focus on transitions -- you don't want dead time in your lessons.


    Anyway, those are the major aspects of our lesson plans.

    1. artlader profile image61
      artladerposted 8 years agoin reply to this

      Hi, Evan,

      I hope that you enjoy teaching. My wife and I both teach high school German and it can be very rewarding.

      I am, of course, familiar with the five C's you mention.

      Looking back, do you think your best language teachers seem to generally embrace them? Or did they have a different way of doing things?



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