One of the things I loved most about teaching was creating lesson plans.
Yes, I said it.
I loved creating lesson plans.
Not just any lesson plan, however. I loved taking a boring topic and creating a fun and interesting way to deliver it.
I’ve always considered myself a creative person, so it was something that I found pleasure in doing.
Sometimes, my great idea of a lesson plan bombed, and took time to figure out what went wrong.
Most of the time, however, kids were engaged and enjoyed the time they were in my class.
One of the problems that I ran into was that creating those “cool” lessons (as my kids would say), was time consuming.
As creative as I thought I was, I still had to sit down and plan out the plan.
Sometimes I had to buy props or other supplies to make the plan work.
It wasn’t easy. It took a lot of time and effort.
There were some days, I admit, when I chose to just pass out a worksheet or have the students read from the book and answer questions. It was much easier.
What I found, however, was that on those days when I came in with a boring lesson plan, my 8th graders were less engaged and more likely to be disruptive.
It actually caused me more work to keep the class on task.
Now that I’m in administration, I miss those days when I would let my creative juices flow on an especially boring concept that the kids needed to know.
I do my best to let my teachers know how much I appreciate their creativity in lesson planning. I need to do more.
I want to use this post to encourage teachers to keep being creative.
Your efforts, unfortunately, are not being recognized enough. The time and work that you put into making a lesson memorable is not being appreciated like it should be, but please don’t stop.
Your kids do benefit from all your efforts.
If you are a school or district administrator, I would encourage you to do what you can to acknowledge and even reward those teachers who doing more than just what the textbook recommends.
Wouldn’t it be great if there was a “Creative Lesson of the Week” award?
We need to make creativity in lesson planning something that is valued and rewarded.
To all you amazing teachers who spend hours of your own time designing lesson plans that are memorable and engaging, I want to say, “Thank you.”
You make your classrooms a place where students love to be.
Please don’t stop.
If fact, if you have a really engaging lesson plan that you created, I would love to hear about it. I would love to create a page of creative lesson plans that teachers can use as a resource.
Feel free to send it to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you in advance.
A great resource for being creative in the classroom is the book, Teach Like a Pirate, by Dave Burgess. Dave was a guest on my podcast. After reading his book, I had to have him on the show, and he was truly inspiring. You can hear that episode here: http://theamazingteacher.com/amazing-teacher-dave-burgess/
Here’s a link to Dave’s book:
Until next time, here’s to your Success in the Classroom!