LESSON PLANS The importance of planning
It is very difficult for Mrs. Jones to get to work on time. She teaches preschool because she didn’t enjoy the preparation involved in teaching first grade. As she arrived at work, there were many children and their parents waiting outside the locked door, She gave them a friendly greeting, telling the parents they were dismissed and that she had everything completely under control. As everyone entered the classroom, it was obvious that Mrs. Jones had done no preparation for class that day. The chairs were still on the tables and the toys were all neatly stored in a locked cabinet. The children began running wildly around the room. After yelling at the children until her voice was hoarse, she finally got their attention. She asked them to help get the chairs off the table and help her get organized. While they were getting the chairs down, she quickly dashed to the toy cabinet and grabbed a few toys for the children to play with. As she returned to the table, everyone began fighting over the toys and complaining that they wanted something to do. Mrs. Jones felt frustrated. WHAT WERE HER MISTAKES? REST OF DAY LIKE?
IMPORTANCE OF PLANNING: • BENEFITS TO YOU • Following the day in an organized manner is easier and more fun for everyone in the preschool (teachers, kids, parents) • Allows the teacher to relax and be able to focus on the kid’s needs because everything is already planned for. • Knowing what to expect reduces stress. • Allows the teacher to be able to enjoy time with the kids. • Allows you to have the required materials and be prepared. • Gives more flexibility to say that plan #1 is not working so move on to plan #2. • Conveys professionalism to parents. They trust you with their children. • Provides a sense of accomplishment & well-being when the day is over.
IMPORTANCE OF PLANNING: • BENEFITS TO CHILDREN • Children know what to expect • Reduces tension thus reducing misbehavior • Will probably nap more restfully • Sense of time and sequence is developed • Children learn the skill of predicting, which helps with problem solving
IMPORTANCE OF PLANNING: • BENEFITS TO PARENTS • Parents feel more secure when they know something about daily plans. • Encourages them to discuss with their child what is going on at school. • Helps educate parents on appropriate growth and development activities for their child. By Janna Forsgren, Training Specialist, State of Utah Office of Licensing
No planning: • Creates aimlessness and wandering
Who does the planning? 2 basic roles in a preschool: • Lead / Head Teacher • Plan what activities will take place during the day. • Responsible for the pace of the activities. • One step ahead of the children by thinking about and getting organized for what is coming next. • Organizing, planning, and administering the preschool program. • Support Teacher • To make the lead teacher “look like a star” by doing their responsibilities. • Offering suggestions in planning activities, helping with activity preparations, fulfilling assignments, cleaning up their assignments, ……. • Works directly with the children and assists them in finding places and getting involved. • Monitors students behaviors so the lead teacher does not have to stop a story or discussion to quiet a child down. • Knows the finger plays and songs so that they can, participate, assist the lead teacher and help the children. • Both teachers clean up and evaluate the day’s activities.
1. PICK A THEME: • Brainstorm what a preschool child would like to study? Hats Puppets Colors Dogs Shapes Animals All about me Occupations Cowboys Harvest 5 senses Nursery Rhymes Families Hygiene Other Cultures Foods Music Oceans Love/Valentines Transportation Bugs Rainbows Dinosaurs Seasons Weather Sports
Guidelines for choosing a Theme • Choose a theme that has enough information for 1 big topic and 4 subtopics. HORSE? • How long will it take to teach it? • Enough variety to not bore you or the kids? • Decide why you want to teach it? • Meet the needs of the children. • What are the children interested in? • What are you interested in? • Choose a theme that allows a child to learn through the use of all of their senses. This is always the easiest and most enjoyable method of teaching. • Keep the unit of study close to the child's comprehension level and abilities, but still challenge their cognitive state. Let's Choose a Theme!
2. MAP EVERYTHING TO LEARN ABOUT THEME subtopic Map out the theme!
3. IMPORTANT TOPICS TO TEACH • Choose a theme broad enough for 3-5 days • Must be able to elaborate and build on it. • Generally 1 big topic and 4 subtopics • Opposites: day and night, up and down, cold and hot, in and out • Seasons: Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall • Rooms of homes: bathroom, bedroom, kitchen, living room • What do the children already know about this topic? • Are there any new concepts to introduce? • What will I need to know to teach this theme? • Are there enough creative activities that will teach children about the topic? • Small group Cooking experience Field trips Whole group Learning centers Speakers Narrow Down the ideas
4. What are the concepts to learn? • Concepts are ideas or notions that you want to teach the children about the theme. • Write these in complete sentences or statements. One word concepts are not clear enough and are usually more like mini-themes. • Theme – Autumn • Concepts: • Leaves on trees change color in the fall. • Fall leaves turn orange, brown, yellow, and red • Leaves fall off the trees after they turn colors • The temperature cools down in the fall
Theme: RAIN • Rain falls as liquid from clouds • A rainbow sometimes appears when it rains while the sun is shining or after a rain storm • Wear clothing to keep us dry in the rain • People, animal, and plants need rain Class Create Concepts
5. DECIDE ON OBJECTIVES • Overall goals for how you will teach the concepts. • What you want the children to have accomplished and completed by the end of the lesson. • Blooms Taxonomy list of verbs • 3 parts to the objectives.
Writing the OBJECTIVES • (1) The children will ___________ • (2) Add your verb from Bloom’s Taxonomy that explains how the children will learn. • Never use “teach”, “learn”, or “talk about”. • If the verb is not on Bloom’s list, do not use it. • (3)Write your idea of what the children will learn or do. • You will be able to evaluate or test a child’s learning based on the objectives. • Children will perform the forms of rain from a drizzle to a storm. • Children will identify the colors in a rainbow. • Children will select the clothing worn for protection from the rain. • Children will recognize the people, animals, and plants that need rain. Write objectives
Mr. Sims wanted his preschool class to share in the joy he had while visiting a zoo. He began to describe the animals to the children. As he talked, the children quickly lost interest. They could not understand his descriptions of the various animals. • How could he have involved the children more? • Bright pictures, field trip, played recordings of animals, stuffed animals to show differences between these and the real ones.
6. Determine the best ways to present the concepts and activities to the children. • Small Group – children are divided into groups of 4 or 5 and each group does the same activity • Rotating small groups- children are divided into groups of four or five. Each group does something different and the groups rotate to different activities. • Large Group – The children all meet together; perhaps for circle time or a large group activity. • Learning Centers – the children are allowed to choose any activity and may change at any time they want. • Field Trips – take the children to an actual site and let them see firsthand what you are discussing. • Guest Speaker – bring in a person who knows about your topic.
It’sRAINING its Pouring • Math – Skittle Math. • Science – Tasting Water (tap, distilled, soda, mineral) • Art – Waxed Paper Rainbows • Dramatic Play – Rainy Day Clothing • Music – Itsy Bitsy Spider • Language – The Puddle BY: David McPhail • Food – Rainbow fruits • Field Trip/ Speaker – Weather Person • Large Muscle – Worm Wiggle • Large Group – Jump in the Puddle (musical chairs) Your Turn To Plan
Skittle Math • Guess the number of Skittles you have. • Check the number of Skittles you really have. • Measure with your Skittles : • Your finger is _________________ skittles long. • Your crayon is ___________ skittles long • Your pencil is ____________ skittles long • Your ______________ is _________________ skittles long. • Make a 2 color pattern with your Skittles and draw your pattern. • Make a 3 color pattern and draw your pattern • Graph your skittles: sort by color, count how many of each color, graph them. • I had the most______ I had the least______ ______ orange _____red ______ purple _________green • Make a Rainbow with your Skittles and draw what it looks like.
8. DAILY SCHEDULE • Schedule needs to be flexible so children can finish projects and activities. • Activities are designed to develop self esteem and positive feelings about learning. • Gives children a feeling of power and control because thy know what is going on • Gives a feeling of security because they can predict what will happen next. • Children feel more competent and teachers feel relief because kids are independent. • If there is resistance, then the schedule needs to be adjusted. Single Activity Plan
RESPONSES TO: “What would you like to do?” • “I don’t know.” Give ideas and show centers • No answer. See where they are looking, notice gestures • Same every day. Encourage variety, show what others are doing
9. TRANSITIONS: • How you get a child from one activity to another in an organized, safe, and stimulating manner. • Reduces confusion and disruptive behavior between activities. • If well planned and smooth, more gets done because it keeps activities moving. Expect 2-3 minutes to get settled. • Clearly signals end of times. Give a 5 minute warning though. • Those not finished can hear and see what is going on and will come soon. • “We’ll start after you are all quiet, sit still and listen” is better replaced with catching children’s attention. • Capture it within 30-40 seconds or they will be lost. • Ideas: • Tip Toe (or other action) to the activity, Follow the leader, Touch each child with a feather on their nose, Choosing an object out of a sack that matches their nametag, Describe each group. Clean-up song Your ideas
10. EVALUATE THE DAY: • How did things go? • What went well and what didn’t? • How would I do things different next time? • Were the children allowed to choose activities and pursue them in their won ways? • Was social interaction encouraged? • Were there positive feelings?
ASSIGNMENT: • Create a daily schedule • Alternate active & passive • Snack mid morning with time to prepare • Outdoor play (20 minutes) • Small group (10 minutes) • Snack time, recall (10 minutes) • Story time (10 minutes) • Free play (20 minutes) • Circle time (20 minutes) • Work time (30 minutes) • Planning time (5 minutes) • Sharing time (10 minutes) • Song time (10 minutes) TOTAL TIME: 150 MINUTES (2 ½ HOURS) 9:30 – 12:00 AM