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Haley23 Haley23 is offline
 
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How long does it take you to plan?
Old 11-05-2017, 12:20 PM
 
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We had a PD day on Friday. My school got a literacy grant from the state that came with this person who does most of our PD. I do respect her and I can tell she knows what she's talking about (unfortunately that's not always the case with the PD we get), but Friday's session has been bothering me.

She was talking about how we need to "plan more deeply." She said that when she does model lessons, people assume that she's so knowledgeable she can essentially walk in and teach, but it takes her HOURS to plan ONE lesson. She then gave us about 90 minutes to plan one subject/class so we could "plan deeply." She wanted us to really think about engagement strategies and visuals.

Am I the only one who thinks taking hours and hours to plan is totally nuts? Personally, I feel that if one truly "gets" teaching, these things kind of come naturally. I don't feel like I need to write down "turn and talk about ____ at 9:03" in my lesson plan. I know to do those things while I'm teaching. Even for my observation lesson, I only spend about 30 minutes really thinking through to make sure everything is exactly how I want it. Wouldn't everyone burn out VERY quickly if they were spending even one hour planning each lesson (I teach 10 lessons a day)?


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Uh...hell to the NO!
Old 11-05-2017, 12:31 PM
 
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Hmmm...let's say you teach 5 subjects a day. If you schedule one hour for planning each lesson, that's 5 hours just in planning a day...25 hours a week...just for planning. That's BS!

I love my job, and I'm still passionate about it after 20+ years. BUT...big but here, I have a life. I have family and friends that I love to see, I am active in my church, and I enjoy my exercise. No way on God's green earth am I going to tack on ANOTHER 20 or more hours to my already crazy busy work week to plan lessons like that. Nope. Not gonna do it!

That's just crazy.
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No!!!
Old 11-05-2017, 12:35 PM
 
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That's just crazy. Her passion is literacy, which is all well and good. But we have so many other things to teach and do. If, say, you are working on doing stronger read alouds, then sure, it makes sense to spend a bit more time planning those. But otherwise, it's overkill. We. Do. It. All. We can't put that much time into planning every little thing. You are right.

I estimate that writing plans takes between 2-3 hours for the week. I spend more time on the actual prep than on the lessons.

Last edited by Munchkins; 11-05-2017 at 03:07 PM.. Reason: Answering the question!
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Ridiculous
Old 11-05-2017, 12:39 PM
 
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This person really sounds out of it. Teachers already spend so many hours working unpaid just to barely get the basics done. I am at the point now where I spend a few hours planning on the weekend and a few hours during the week and that is it. We use canned programs in every subject. The first year I spent a ton of time trying to figure out what I was doing and why. Now, I just do the best I can. "Engagement strategies and visuals" sound like what we already do. This presenter really has no sense of reality.
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Old 11-05-2017, 12:47 PM
 
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I think it's just the other end of the pendulum swing from teachers whose planning consists only of "Math: Lesson 12". As a literacy coach who leads PD (and who also has experienced people expecting me to model a lesson or co-teach a class with no time to prepare), I would guess her intention was to encourage thoughtful planning and some thinking about what that might look like if you had plenty of time to plan your ideal lessons. With that time you have outside the box thinking, engagement, etc. If you are already planning for engagement, differentiation, etc. then you are probably not the target audience she's been asked to reach. If I were leading PD like that at my building, the hope would be that our teachers who aren't actually considering their lessons or students would have the chance to practice mindful planning, that hopefully would translate to more effort on a regular basis. (Hours per lesson - no)


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Old 11-05-2017, 01:26 PM
 
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Quote:
I think it's just the other end of the pendulum swing from teachers whose planning consists only of "Math: Lesson 12".
Hah. That's exactly what my lesson planner looks like.
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Old 11-05-2017, 01:36 PM
 
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When I tough every subject, my weekly planning would take two to three hours a week. This included getting the materials organized. There is no way any teacher should take 90 minutes per lesson to plan. That's just not possible.
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Old 11-05-2017, 01:51 PM
 
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I'm a 1st--5th resouce teacher and have 13 overlapping literacy and math groups a day. I do more prepping than planning--LOTS of prepping!
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Old 11-05-2017, 01:55 PM
 
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Just say "NO!".
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Old 11-05-2017, 02:46 PM
 
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I plan a little each day so itís hard to say exactly how long. I also donít have super detailed plans, but I like them fairly well laid out and if I want to do something specific (or: exit slip with a specific prompt, etc) I make a note in my plans or Iíll forget.

I will NEVER spend 25 hours on plans. Thatís insanse. Apparently Iím just not that dedicated.


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Planning Time
Old 11-05-2017, 02:59 PM
 
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I once had a "consultant" model planning a lesson for me. He shared that it took him about 90 minutes to plan. I looked at it and nodded my head that I could see how it would take about that long, while wondering how he would manage if he had to plan 25-40 lessons/week (like I did) instead of 1 or 2?" I didn't bring it up for discussion or debate. Like everything, I just strived to glean what I could from him. As the year progressed, he began to rave more and more about my "awesome" lessons. Ha! If he had just observed more than a few minutes in the first place (and not during a transition), he would've seen that my instructional days, like most other teachers, are full of "good lessons." But not everything can be 110% all the time. Those who look for that, either never taught or forgot how life really is. And yes, teachers are burning out way too fast. The senior ones are leaving faster than ever and the newer ones are staying shorter than ever. (IMHO.)
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Old 11-05-2017, 03:13 PM
 
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But not everything can be 110% all the time.
I'll go a step further and say not everything SHOULD be 110% all the time. Not only does it lead to teacher exhaustion, it leads to student exhaustion too. Your engagement lessons will work much better if they're interspersed with quieter, more structured lessons.
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Planning
Old 11-05-2017, 05:23 PM
 
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On a good day I might spend 90 minutes on a weeks worth of lesson plans. I've been at it long enough to know what to do.

Our literacy coaches did the same thing and it used to tick me off because they were all long time classroom teachers only a few years ago.

If you multiply 90 minutes for just reading, writing and math for 5 days that's about two days of work.
Ain't nobody got time for that.
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Old 11-05-2017, 06:07 PM
 
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That's just ridiculous. And I would have had to call her out on the time that would take each week. If we don't call these people out on this crazy stuff, they will keep preaching it and some poor new teacher will go off the deep in trying to implement it.

I remember how sick in the stomach I would get every year for beginning of year PD and the other PD throughout the year. Then I learned to just roll with it and it would be gone within 2 years. Saved my stomach and my mind!
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Planned to the Minute
Old 11-05-2017, 06:18 PM
 
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Most of my lessons are...but they take me 10 - 20 minutes to write. I just use Excel and cut, copy, and paste a lot of the lessons.
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Old 11-05-2017, 06:31 PM
 
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Thanks, glad to know it's not just me! The funny thing is, last year (this is a multi year grant) my school started using a canned reading program for the first time in years. A lot of teachers were upset about it. This same PD leader explained that the whole reason behind the program was to make sure we were doing something research based without having to put in hours upon hours to make sure we were hitting every aspect of reading in research-based ways. She said in order to truly make your own programming that did all of those things, it would take hours upon hours. Except now she's saying you need to spend hours upon hours with your canned curriculum ?

Last edited by Haley23; 11-05-2017 at 08:16 PM..
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Old 11-06-2017, 06:49 AM
 
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That is crazy for sure! I agree with the PP who said you are likely not the target audience. There might be some who put very little effort in and the lessons are not engaging or don't differentiate or whatever...so she is trying to reach them.

I am working with a new teacher and she has very little idea of how much effort things take, especially the first time round. I want her to have a work/life balance, but the first few years are very busy as you have so much planning.

As with many PD opportunities, take what you feel is useful and roll your eyes at the rest...
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Old 11-06-2017, 05:30 PM
 
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When I have a lesson I've done before it takes me about 5 minutes to plan. Something new I might spend 20-30 minutes. But 90? Nope. My partner and I can plan and prep for 2-3 weeks in about 5 hours.

And my plan book must look like Zia's. It will say a letter and a sight word for language arts, or the title of a book, or a number and a little note to myself (rainbow boxes or something of the sort) if I need to remember a specific tool that I don't always use.
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Old 11-06-2017, 06:03 PM
 
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And my plan book must look like Zia's.
That's because you're my teaching doppelgšnger!
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Old 11-07-2017, 07:32 PM
 
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I must be a horrible kindergarten teacher already. I use online software and I didn't even type out Math: Lesson 12... I copy and pasted Unit 3 Day 12 three times and then edited to make it say 12, 13, 14, 15, 16 . Sometimes I put in a little descriptive sentence. When I print my online plans I want a week to fit on one page back to front so it works for quick reference. Tons of companies make big bucks selling teacher planners. Most of them a whole week is displayed across two pages. Obviously many teachers don't have highly detailed plans and at least some of us must be successful. Now that being said often my lessons have binders, books, notes, etc. that go along with them that I use for reference while teaching or the morning of to remind me of things. These tend to be more detailed and some of my curriculum is even somewhat canned.
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Ha
Old 11-08-2017, 04:28 PM
 
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My plans are written on a post-it...
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