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Friday, March 22, 2013

Educators Bringing Life To Lesson Plans

At the core of what education and teaching is all about, quality teachers and administrators will undoubtedly reiterate this fundamental premise.  The mark of an effective and efficient teacher, as well as school, will ultimately come down to how and what has been planned on a daily and period  basis by each and every certified teacher on staff. 

Although the dynamics of what goes on in individual classrooms and disciplines is marked by equally important facets such as accurate attendance and classroom and time management, bringing into the classroom a curriculum aligned and essential questions plan should be the ultimate goal of every educator.   This plan or lesson should  ultimately be engaging, inspiring and a motivating piece of art as a result of outstanding creativity, intuitiveness, mastery of subject matter and content, planning and a keen eye and command of technology resources in which are available and out there.  As part of this strategy,  it will hopefully include implementation of Social Media resources which will open the traditional classroom doors to the outside world.

As a former coach for many years it is not my intention here to dictate or mandate the x’s and o’s of what teachers should be doing each and every moment in their classroom.  If my readers were expecting tools and additional resources to guide them to raising efficacy in their instruction and methodology this was only slightly my lesson plan.

Although I have said many times before not everyone can teach, I do think that teachers, if they really want to be great teachers,  can improve and become better at their profession.  What is at the core of this article and in question is the quality and quantity of teacher’s  day to day instruction to reach, impact and see to it that all students under their charge are maximizing their levels of achievement and success.  To this end, the rhetorical question which invariably comes to mind is “but how?”  The answer simply rests within the mind and heart of each and every classroom teacher.
 Bringing life to lesson plans implies first a teacher must be very passionate about teaching.  They see it as a livelihood as well as a profession.  They realize that developing awesome lesson plans take a lot of time.  They go well beyond the traditional classroom planning hours to work at creating these pieces of art from wherever and whenever they might be outside the confines of the their planning hours AND the school.  They are constantly brainstorming and thinking of ways to engage their students.  They are constantly and consciously thinking of ideas in which will provide relevance and connectedness to the other disciplines as well as current events.  This to some might be a calling but to others it is simply a case of doing all within their power to ensure their kids are getting the maximum effort and attention all great teachers should be providing.  This is not about salary and benefits and what the school or administration can do for “me”.  It is about them, our most precious assets to our collective futures.  We as educators are fortunate to have the opportunity and should feel privileged to be able to direct and ensure our kids of today have a simple chance at the jungle in which we refer to as the real world! 
Equally as important, and not to be discounted, there must be unmistakable regard, care and compassion for each and every child assigned to your class.  Although we live in an often regarded non-compassionate and caring society, it is here in the individual classroom where a teacher’s remarks, words, and attitude can have a long lasting and far reaching impact on not only the education but character of each and every one of their students.  We must consciously see and think about this as we go about our period and daily interactions with our students as we teach them right from wrong along with the three R’s. 
Needless to say and in closing, I hope that it has become apparent that in bringing life to lesson plans an educator has to look deeply in the mirror and within them to see and understand the enormous charge and privilege they have accepted.  To this end, prepare yourselves for a journey like no other, in doing a job and living through the hopes and dreams of others instead of ourselves.  This is what we were brought on this earth to do.   Peace!


  1. Here is a clever tip shared to me from one teacher:

    - she would 'plant' things in other classrooms (ie. a ruler).
    - if little Johnny came in to class and threw his coat on the floor, she'd say "Hey Johnny, when you are done hanging up your coat, can you go to Miss Smith's room and get my ruler'? He would pick up his coat, hang it up, and go to Miss Smith's room to retrieve her ruler! The point she made was to always find creative ways to get them to cooperate and feel helpful and to not place emphasis on the bad behavior.

    There are so many clever ways to engage students. Though I am not a teacher, I always found the topic of how to engage and inspire students to succeed very interesting.

    I process pardons for individuals in Canada. They have criminal records, in my opinion, because they were not inspired enough in all the right ways when they were children.

    I would love to be put out of business because there are not enough people to get pardons for their criminal records!

    Thank you for the topic Bill. I think there should be a website (there probably are plenty already) of short stories of how teachers inspired their students, which include techniques on how to engage them.

    Thanks from Canada
    Canadian Legal Resource Centre Inc.

  2. Thank you Deborah for the reply. A very old but relevant cliche in the teaching profession is students don't care what you know until they know you care... This is so very true and likewise a factor surely in why so many have gone astray and were never attended to adequately. They were shorted and not given the amount of time, respect or caring that young hearts and minds need as part of the educational and learning process. Indeed, there are many websites out there in which discuss alot of what I do here pertaining to education, engagement, inspiration and motivating students. Peace, Bill