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The following essay will explain the importance of why teachers conduct lesson planning. When teachers create a unit or lesson by choosing activities and learning resources, that can be incorporated to benefit students' interests. In inquiry-based learning, as part of the International Baccalaureate programme, it is important to consider what instructional approaches to use. These will be greatly beneficial for students to achieve their outcomes, goals, objectives, and aims.
Keywords: Aims, Instructional methods, International Baccalaureate, Objectives, Outcomes.
Lesson planning is essential when it comes to executing a variety of activities that will stimulate the students. Getting them enthusiastic about learning and exploring their inquiring minds would encourage collaboration and cooperative learning.
It is important to differentiate for students in your classroom and offer them a variety of instructional approaches to understand, and comprehend a concept taught. They need to be able to internalise what they have learned and then apply these skills taught in a practical context. When they have understood how to apply these skills they were taught, they will be able to improve in different areas of the literacy programme. The IB curriculum offers students the opportunity to become effective “communicators” and be “principled” as outlined by the learner profiles as directed by IBO (n.d., p. 1).
According to Ullman (2011), that explains that: “An effective lesson gets students thinking and allows them to interact and ask questions, tap into their background knowledge, and build new skills. This article offers practical tips for planning engaging lessons that will help your students retain more of what they learn” (para. 1). As educators, we need to be open-minded and open to new challenges and changes to the curriculum presented, hence the reason why it is important to consider the following when planning lessons accordingly:
- Determine the purpose of the lesson, if one sets clear aims/objectives/outcomes students are likely to be highly engaged in the lessons and actively participate.
- Creating space for student thinking and discussion, using these instructional approaches will benefit students greatly in promoting critical thinking, and classroom discussion, where they will be actively engaged.
- Preparing to push that student's thinking further, taking your student to the next level and expanding their knowledge and understanding is imperative in any educational platform.
- Make time for reflection, through means of reflection students can gather their thoughts and process what they have learned, and areas of concern. It is important to know what students understand and what needs to be recovered (Ullman, 2011).
It is crucial to conduct lesson planning and prepare what you are hoping to achieve with your students. Standard lessons plans should have some of the following elements to motivate and encourage students to reach their full potential:
Incorporate students' interests into your lesson planning, it is always good to include things that will highlight the culture of each student and raise awareness for student participation.
- Select purposeful activities and engagements, catering for your student’s educational needs is important, hence the reason to get them actively engaged and participate consistently in lessons.
- Make your lessons relevant, incorporate things that will keep your students eager and enthusiastic about learning, and what they hope and intend to learn.
- Share your lesson plans with colleagues, getting a second opinion helps your teaching become more exciting and challenging for students to understand. Your main objective is to get them motivated, highly engaged, and wanting to actively participate in your lesson.
- Refine lessons based on feedback, value the information shared with you, and try to make the necessary changes as needed and advised, to accommodate your student's educational needs. Feedback is very important and by identifying the issues and challenges students are facing you can adapt your lesson accordingly (Ullman, 2011).
The benefits teachers gain from involving colleagues and other educational professionals, they see things from a different perspective and light. You can make changes, adapt accordingly and ensure that everyone is involved in the process of learning. Enlightening your students about the educational benefits is very important to share with them. Asking them to reflect on their learning allows you as the professional to cater for their specific educational needs.
Making the necessary changes will impact students in a positive light to be more proactive in the classroom, to ask questions, to share opinions, and ideas and highlight the areas of concern, and what they feel comfortable learning in your classroom. Being open-minded, and a good listener will empower you greatly as an educator to seek what is right, good and effective to make their educational journey safe and stimulating and foremost create a positive classroom environment, where students want to learn, engage, participate, and deliberate.
IBO. (n.d.). The IB Primary Years Programme.
Ullman, E. (2011). How to plan effective lessons. ASCD Education Update, 53 (10).