One critical component of effective teaching is preparation and planning. If the teacher lacks behind in planning, then it will lead to failure. Good teachers are always over-prepared, always thinking about the next lesson and are in a continuous state of preparation and planning. In addition to the working hours of teachers, i.e. from 8.00- 3.00, the time of preparation and planning should also be counted.
Make the Time to Plan
Though there is a planning period given to the teachers in school, that is rarely used for planning rather; it is used to catch up on emails or grade papers, contact parents, conduct a conference. Usually, teachers do the planning and preparation outside the school. Also, they use their weekends, or go to school early and stay late there to prepare adequately. To create an optimal learning environment, they explore options and research new ideas.
Instructional strategies, tactics of classroom management, and good content knowledge are required for effective teaching. Sometimes the best-conceived ideas fall apart when put into practice. So some luck and experimentation are also required to deliver well-prepared lessons. However, if teachers fail, then they should reorganize their approach to attack.
The preparation and planning should be viewed as an investment and not as a waste of time. Such investments matter and surely pay-off.
Six Ways Proper Preparation and Planning Will Pay Off
Make you a better teacher:
Conducting research is a significant part of planning and preparation. Your teaching philosophy gets shaped and defined by studying educational theory and examining best practices. You will also grow and improve when you study the content in deep.
Boost student performance and achievement:
You, as a teacher should always have a piece of good content knowledge. You should create a plan and try to understand “how to teach, what to teach, and why to teach”. The teacher must present the information in such a way that it resonates and students feel the importance of learning it. This is possible when proper preparation and planning are done and will ultimately benefit the students.
Make the day go by faster:
Teachers should always plan enough so that students remain engaged, their learning is maximized, and the day goes by quicker. Free time or downtime is the worst enemy of the teacher. Teachers usually say they didn’t get the time to prepare. This shouldn’t happen; they should plan enough material which could last the entire school day.
Minimize classroom discipline issue:
Classroom discipline issues occur only when the teachers do not develop and present the engaging lessons which lead to boredom. Students enjoy the classes in which teachers provide engaging lessons, prepared and planned carefully.
Make you confident in what you do:
Teachers should always portray confidence for the students to buy whatever they are selling. Every teacher must possess confidence.
Help earn the respect of your peers and administrators:
Teachers who work hard and invest extra time in the classrooms are always noticed and respected.
Strategies for More Efficient Planning
- During the first few years of teaching, you learn the nuances of teaching, so spend lots of extra time in preparation and planning. The sequential years thereafter become easier.
- Always use a binder to keep all your stuff (lesson plans, activities, tests, quizzes, worksheets). The binder helps in making notes of what worked and what didn’t and how to correct the things.
- You need not have the original ideas every time. Instead, you can use the latest teaching resource used nowadays, i.e. the internet. There are lots of excellent ideas on the internet which you can use in your classroom.
- Working in a distraction-free environment, i.e. free from other students, teachers or family members will help you to accomplish a lot more.
- To protect their credibility, teachers should review and experience the material before the students. Before assigning to the students, teachers should read the chapters, complete homework/practice problems, take tests/quizzes.
- Practice the activity before conducting it in the class and also before the students arrive have all the material laid out. Students should be made to follow the guidelines and procedures established by you.
- Planning is crucial. Trying to throw something together at the last minute lessens your effectiveness.