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Ms. Brianna 08-09-2019 03:04 PM

Organizing lesson plans for multiple grades
I am a first year teacher and having a really difficult time with lesson plans. I am teaching at a very non traditional and have “instructional groups” 3-8. We do not typically go by “grade levels” because the school is mostly children’s with disabilities from autism to ADHD. The ages of my students range from 8-14. There is almost free range in what I would like to teach as long as they go along with state qualified standards. My issue is... how do I organize for many different levels within the same subject? Should I make one lesson plan and water it down for the lower leveled students or should I put in the extra effort to make separate lesson plans?

K12ENLTeacher 08-09-2019 11:55 PM

Difficult Situation
I understand that you have classes based on the disability/needs of the students, right? If so, it looks like the typical small groups based on the ability level. I think you should treat it just like a regular class where you differentiate your instruction: content, delivery, and product. If you have an assistant, use that person to your advantage. You may want to teach a whole group (differentiated delivery) where you will choose a method of delivery of the content. Think of your students' needs and plan how you want to deliver the content (movie, PPP, chart paper, demonstration, etc). While students are on the meeting area, walk around and start informally planning small groups at this time. After your mini-lesson, announce the groups, explicitly. I think low, on level and hi are enough of groups. As far as planning lessons, I think no need to plan separate lessons. What you can do is within your main lesson you can include modifications to the lesson content (here is where you differentiate the content for each group you formed). You may want to reteach for the low group, but using a different strategy. You may also want to think of a different method of delivery, based on your quick assessment of might have or not worked in your whole group instruction. Such modifications you include in your main lesson. While you work with low group, your assistant, if you have one, can rotate between the on-level and hi groups. Remember, do not spend more than 10-15 minutes with any group.
I think your best bet is to speak to your grade level teachers and ask how they do their lesson plans.

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