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Lesson planning

Discussion in 'NQTs and new teachers' started by jarndyce, Nov 2, 2011.

  1. jarndyce

    jarndyce Occasional commenter

    What's your subject?

    Give yourself a break - use textbooks for a bit. Don't have textbooks? Get one off Amazon, claim it off expenses, photocopy/scan/rewrite what you fancy. I actually taught some really good lessons last year (English) in which I used the extracts from the books but made the lessons my own - eg, did a few questions using whiteboards, made up my own tasks, etc.

    Some of your colleagues must have an idea for "a project" the kids can do - a task that they can be getting on with for a week or two...

  2. Why are they taking so long...well its because during my PGCE i was mainly stuck teaching KS3 and a little gcse, My new job is teaching all three sciences at gcse level, and it is all stuff I haven't really looked at since I was at GCSE. So I dont really know how to teach it. Yes I have SOW, which do help, but it is finding the correct "story" for the lesson which I find hard, what questions do I need to ask etc....I also find that I need to write down lesson plans.......because I plan them so far in advance I cannot remember "the story" if I do not write it down....and my lessons do no flow as well and I get anxious. Everyone has been in those lessons where the teacher pauses all the time, uses filler words all the time, I do not want to be like that..........

    I don't know perhaps I am just not cut out for this job..or my memory/ i am too stupid to do it. I also have ADHD so concentration is a problem and I have always been quiet slow at working....but i do produce PPTs for each lesson (sort of act like que cards) and my own worksheets.

    Plus my final moan, i promise, teaching is making me into a negative person I feel like I want to moan all the time and I am doubting my ability constantly, my anxiety seems to be increasing.....probably because I work all the time...

    Sorry y'all i just needed to vent there....................I have spoken to alot of people but for some reason none of it helps...I simply cannot speed up............hence why I doubt myself.

    THANK YOU ALL FOR THE ADVICE and taking time to write it!
  3. GloriaSunshine

    GloriaSunshine New commenter

    Our Science dept has detailed lesson plans for every unit KS3-5 that teachers are able to use or adapt. They are the envy of the school. In our (English) dept, we all plan as we go along but obviously reuse materials because we have all been teaching a long time. I would suggest you google because some schools put these plans online and there are lots of websites that have powerpoints etc that you could use.
    It takes a while to gain confidence in your teaching abilities and subject knowledge so don't judge yourself too harshly. Two hours per lesson is over the top. Science can be taught from text books. I'm not saying you should do it all the time, but you could use text book activities and exercises in some lessons to cut down on the planning.
  4. barneystinson

    barneystinson New commenter

    First of all, you have completed your PGCE year succesfully so you must be good at what you do. So you need more confidence when it comes to teaching.
    Secondly, I think you are putting far too much pressure on yourself to be "perfect" in every single lesson, which is impossible. You need to relax and not stress so much.
  5. slstrong123

    slstrong123 New commenter

    I am an NQT too and in Maths not science. Mythree bits of advice are (1) only plan a week in advance - that way you don't have to remember what you planned ages ago, (2) unless its a formal observed lesson, can you handwrite your plan onto half a sheet of A4 (this is based on the planners we use at our school) and (3) use text books for KS4 . If you have good ones, you can be sure you are covering the correct material for your GCSE spec. Not sure if you can do this so easily in science, but it might be worth thinking about. And finally - if you find an NQT who says its all a beeze and they are not finding anything difficult - they are probably lying :)
  6. I'm primary and it took me ages to write lesson plans too. What I have done is downloaded loads of different plans so that I can adapt and change them to suit my class. It has sped me up considerably.
    Another thought, which is up to you to use or not, is the bbc science site. This was fundamental in getting me through science GCSE equivalency tests a couple of years ago. Maybe it has lessons that you can adapt.
    We all want to be the best teachers we can be but remember we are NQTs and are allowed to make mistakes. So don't be so hard on yourself. I hear what you say about having ADHD, I have dyslexia, we have to work to our strengths and forget about our labels. After all we both have degrees and PGCEs additionally what we have is a good understanding of overcoming barriers to learning that other teachershave to study to understand.
    Make sure you have a night off and relax and try hard not to think about work. You will feel so much better for it.
    Good luck.
  7. veni_vidi

    veni_vidi New commenter

    I was like this is in my PGCE, i haven't got an NQT job yet but i'm sure i'll be just like you. Surely after xmas though you'll have a routine and get quicker. Perhaps speak to the rest of the department too.
  8. Hi all,

    So I have survived my first year of teaching......how has it been damned hard. All your comments helped though.

    I worked very hard. I am still slow at lesson planning and I have had to resign myself to the fact that in the holidays I have to plan 4 weeks of lessons in advance so that I have a buffer of lessons to last me until the end of term. Without this I would not survive as I can only manage about 2 lessons and evening and in a 29 lesson week that is clearly not feasible.

    I work late because of the school I am in where each day finishes at 5.30...it is a boarding school and my weekends are taken away due to sport. To top things off the time table has all changed for next year, where they have reduced the lesson length but increased the number of lessons a week.

    I have enjoyed teaching and I have recieved good feedback. But I do not know if I can do another year like this one where I had 5 days off at Christmas, no weekends at and all due to planning, my relationship has gone down the pan to because of the amount of time i spend working. This summer I will have to do four weeks of planning as I am now teaching A level.

    This sounds like one big moan and I guess it is. But I suppose I am just venting. I am a hard worker and I am sure I will crack this lesson planning thing. I have managed to get down from 2 hours to 1...so hopefully going by trends I will improve another 50% this year.

    Thanks again for the all comments they have helped alot!

  9. PinkHelen

    PinkHelen New commenter

    Glad to hear you made it through - you must have put in a phenomenal amount of work, so it is very well deserved!

    It's always a pain when the school changes the length of lessons e.t.c. but now you hopefully have lots of brilliant plans make sure you do not plan from scratch next year - it can be a massive time-saver to spend a few hours reviewing your plans from each unit a week or so before you start to teach them, and this can still mean that you improve your teaching year on year. If I were you I would set aside a small amount of time just to see what you need to do to arrange your lessons into the new timetable that your school has - try not to change the activities too much unless they don't work for the abilities of the pupils in your new classes or really really won't fit in to the new timetable.

    I also find that what they said on PGCE about reflecting on teaching being important is very true, so it can help to put a little note on your plans after you've taught them if you think the lesson didn't go so well so you know to re-plan next year. Nothing long-winded or time consuming, maybe just something like "didn't work - too much of me talking" - that means you know what the problem was the next year when you come to plan, and don't end up trying to teach something that you didn't like the first time around.

    Hope that helps - I've by no means got this lesson planning thing sorted myself, and have always been a perfectionist like yourself, but I do live in hope that I'll continue to get quicker with planning too!
  10. I am a teacher, moderator and literacy coordinator living in Wiltshire who has been delivering my lessons for the last year using an interactive web interface. In essence it helps me to remember what I am delivering in terms of the Ofsted criteria and fits perfectly with the current Ofsted lesson plan expectations. It is web based and the students can also progress themselves using ipads/pods/phones or android phones and tablets. I can plan my lessons where ever I have WiFi or 3G and they are all stored and ordered for me to access anytime. Amongst its many features it has the capacity to create question papers and quizzes which are marked and graded at the touch of a button. There is so much potential for this interface that I have begun to share it amongst colleagues. It is now at a beta testing stage and we require up to 10 teachers to test it along side us? It is a new and exciting way to deliver lessons outside of using power point. You are able to effortlessly track students, take feedback, give feedback, show exemplar materials and clearly deliver strong, clear and fun lessons. If you are interested in helping us within this testing phase please complete the form at the following web address www.structuredlessons.co.uk/ContactUs
  11. KS2History

    KS2History New commenter

    I agree with others that you should make good use of the many teaching resources out there to help you with the planning load.

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