In the majority of educational programs offered at accredited universities, we are taught that a lesson or unit plan is a teacher’s detailed description of the course of instruction for one class. Traditionally, well-developed lesson or unit plans will Initially focus on objectives. The teacher would create the “students will be able to do” and plan the lessons according to the objectives that reflect the interests, needs, and learning styles of the students.
As we are working towards the end of a unit, the Ochs then shifts towards creating and studying for the unit test. Traditionally, the teacher will create the summarize assessment based on the lessons covered in the unit. However, my approach to lesson and unit planning deviates in some aspects from the traditional approach. I design my lessons and unit plans by setting goals before choosing instructional methods and forms of assessment.
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My priorities are to identify the results desired, determine acceptable levels of evidence that support that the desired results have occurred, design activities that will make desired results append. In order to achieve this, I set out to Identify which standards can be applied to the unit and pretzel the standards by organizing them Into three categories; T 1, TO, and TO. The TTL standards are the driving standards In the unit and have first priority. TO and TO have lesser priority and are grouped according to the TTL standards.
This is the crucial part of the planning stage and I have to ensure that all the TTL standards are covered in my objectives. In December, I will be teaching Ancient Greece and I am currently in the planning process of the unit. I am creating and defining my objectives based on the standards. In identifying the TTL standards, I look at higher level Bloom type questions and analyze which standard will cover and answer them. I have identified the following standard as a TTL standard based on my criteria. “6. 2. 8. A. 3. Compare and contrast the American legal system and the legal systems of classical civilizations, and determine the extent to which the early systems influenced the current legal system” An example of a higher level objective on the tankard could be; compare and contrast the political systems of Spartan and Athenian society In order to explain which had the larger Impact on our current political system here in the United States. This objective is important as it deals with subject of legacies of Ancient Greek society and how it relates to our society.
It enables the students to compare and contrast, evaluate, and apply critical thinking. With my objectives created and organized, I set out to plan and create my assessments for the unit. This deviates from the traditional way of creating the Essen plans as the assessments are usually created and based on what was planned for in the actual lesson. However, creating the assessment first and then base the lesson on the assessment tends to create more focused lessons.
The idea is to teach toward the end point, which typically ensures that content taught remains focused and organized. This, In turn, aims at promoting better understanding of the content or processes to be learned for students. I am able to focus on addressing what the students need to learn, what data can be collected to show that the students have earned the desired outcomes, and how to ensure the students will learn. Now that I Each lesson follows the same format to a certain degree.
I adhere to the military doctrine of teaching in regards to lesson planning and execution of a lesson. The lesson follows a basic four step format; introduce the skill, teach the skill, supervise hands-on training of the skill, and finally test the skill. The introduction typically includes a question related to the objective/TO standard taught that day and can include testing student’s prior knowledge or making the topic relevant. Utilizing Cornell Notes, I teach the topic in a lecture style format with focus on Socratic type forum.
I create the essential questions with the students and through questioning and investigation of the topic we set out to answer the essential questions. This can be supplemented with video clips and documentaries on the topic. This is finalized by the students writing a summary of the lesson topic and tying the main ideas together in a paragraph. Practicing the skill is the student’s chance to explore the topic even further. I typically provide the students with a primary source reading long with an assignment.
In this unit I plan to utilize readings from Plat’s Republic in order to explore the terms such as citizenship, Justice, and political systems. Another assignment that will be included in the unit is a compare and contrast of Spartan and Athenian society. Students will use pads to research and put together a Venn diagram. The assignment will conclude with an essay. Graphic organizers, posters, and essays also serve as a means to evaluate student’s comprehension and level of mastery of the subject. Towards the end of the unit, I set aside a day dedicated to test preparation.
This includes assigning study groups, review games, and class discussions. I assign the groups according to ability with focus on student mentoring. I ensure that I have one above average student in a group with one below average student. The unit review will culminate in the students taking the unit test created in the early stages of unit planning. The assessment will test the student level of mastery of the topic and will typically consist of multiple choice questions, short answer, and an essay topic.