Lesson planning in special education can be complicated. We often have multiple grades in one classroom not to mention the wide variety of skills and needs. Right?! I have tried many different lesson planning options and have never found the perfect fit. Here is how I write and organize lesson plans.
Once I have a schedule in place, I type it out in a word document. I put one day one each day. I type out the whole day even if I don’t have to plan for a specific activity or time slot. Here is what a single day’s template might look like:
Typing out the whole schedule and not just the activities I need to plan for allows teaching assistants, therapists and subs to follow the schedule without any real explanation from me.
I use thematic units in my classroom. We work on each theme for 2 weeks. This allows me to really immerse students in the vocabulary and concepts while keeping the materials fresh and novel…even when we are targeting the same skill over and over. Click here to read more on how and why we use thematic units in my classroom. Want a closer look at the theme unit materials we use? Click HERE.
As we prep the theme unit materials, I store them in this organizer right next to my desk:
Once the materials are prepped and sorted this way, it is super easy for me to plan activities for our day. Her is an example of how my lesson plan sheet looks for a whole group lesson:
Under the time, I write the initials of the student(s) that won’t be in the room along with the therapy. This helps me quickly set up and call people to tables.
Here is what my lesson planning sheet looks like for small group planning:
Once I have decided which materials I will need for the lesson, I move them to the folder designated for that lesson on that day. Click HERE for more details on the easiest lesson organziation system. Seriously…. it is so easy!!!
Each day is color coded and each folder is designated for a specific lesson on that day. It is simple and easy for staff to quickly get set up for lessons. Win! All you need for this super easy system are magazine holders and colored folders.
This post has more information on how I decide which type of instruction I use and in my classroom: Instruction Options Post.
Do you have a different way to write and organzie your lesson plans? Add a comment below.