Teaching Tip #1 – Lesson Planning

When starting down this road called homeschooling, some things can seem like insurmountable mountains that we just can’t climb. I know that many of my “first time” homeschooler friends feel like they just can’t do it because they know nothing about teaching. Well, if it’s really scary there are ways to get around that. Homeschoolers have so many options today it is almost unthinkable. There are online options that have online teachers, there are video courses that have teachers, and even computer programs that make learning automated. All the scare has been taken out of homeschooling!

However, if you are more of a hands on type of person. You might just want to learn a few “teaching” basics. Yes, just because we are homeschooling doesn’t mean that we don’t use sound “teaching methods.” These methods aren’t scary, they aren’t intimidating, but they are useful. One of the first things that I teach my students in my college Introduction to Education course is the basics of lesson planning. For those homeschoolers who really want to be involved in teaching and learning with their children and aren’t afraid to get their hands dirty… this is for you!

Tips for making your own lesson plans…

Lesson plans are basically a way to focus instruction for maximum effect. It’s our bullseye – and we all know if we aim for nothing we will surely hit it!

1) To start at the very beginning, if you are planning a unit study you will need to begin with your overall BIG goal. What do you want to accomplish/learn for the study. Write your goal.

2) Determine how long you want the unit study to last. If it is a month. Then divide your study up into weeks and write goals for what you wish to accomplish each week.

3) Once your weekly goals are in place, you can make daily or lesson goals which we usually call objectives. These daily goals are more specific and should include “measurable” action words. Teachers will often start these goals off with “The learner will be able to…”

4) Now you’re ready for your lesson plan. Taking each of these daily objectives, you will need to determine how you’ll teach the lesson, which methods you will use and any materials or assessment that you want to include. When I teach teachers how to do this I encourage them to use this acrostic – GOMMA. Β It’s something I was taught in graduate school and I feel it really helps keep things focused.

Homeschool lesson plan

5) I take the acrostic for each day and fill in exactly how I wish to teach the lesson along with any correlating tools. For example, if I am teaching a unit study on science then I might include in my daily assessment some second grade science worksheets. The assessment doesn’t have to be a test, it can be a time of Q&A, a worksheet, or even a drawing. It is simply a way for the student to show that they understood the lesson.

6) I usually keep my lesson plans and all accompanying materials in a three ring binder. That way they are all together and ready to use if I have to teach that subject again!

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4 thoughts on “Teaching Tip #1 – Lesson Planning

  1. Katie February 23, 2014 at 11:05 am

    Great tips! I’m so unorganized by nature…lesson planning is an area where I always struggle. Even if I get plans laid out ahead of time, if something happens during the week and we get off….it’s like the end of the world, lol. Ah well. I will keep trying. πŸ˜€

  2. Jamie February 26, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    It is definitely a “hard” area for us parent/teachers. To be honest, I prefer to use homeschool curriculum that has pre made lesson plans. Yet, there are times when we really want to do our own thing… and it comes in handy just knowing how to put it together. πŸ™‚

  3. Jackie P March 13, 2014 at 10:28 pm

    Hi, it’s Jackie stopping by from the March Let’s Homeschool High School Blog Hop. Glad you joined us.

    You have such awesome tips. I especially appreciate the way you broke everything down step-by-step. I actually love lesson planning, but my daughter uses Time4Learning High School so I don’t actually have to make any.


  4. Kym March 17, 2014 at 8:18 am

    Good tips to get started on lesson planning! My plans are much “looser” than this, but I guess I follow that same general outline!

    Stopping by from the LHSHS blog hop!

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