An Introductory Guide to Lesson Planning

Start creating impactful lesson plans for your students with this guide.

What’s in this guide?

In this introductory guide, we will introduce you to the topic of lesson planning. We are going to provide you with key concepts and considerations to keep in mind when designing impactful lesson plans. We will provide you an overview of the importance of lesson planning, what makes a great plan, and how to create plans that work for your instruction. 

This guide is for any educator looking to create plans that work for them, their students, and school. Apply the concepts from this guide to any part of your planning process. Whether you are a new teacher or an experienced teacher, this guide is for you.

We have divided this guide into multiple chapters, so don’t forget to bookmark to revisit these concepts consistently. We are so excited to share with you all the big questions around the planning process for teachers and help guide you to be the best teacher you can be!

Let’s begin with the basics!

What is a lesson plan?

A lesson plan is a roadmap teachers create to structure daily activity in their classrooms. It outlines what students will learn during each class period, how the lesson will be taught and how student progress will be measured. 

Typically, a lesson plan is a document about one or two pages in length, split into different sections that describe what will happen during each day in the classroom. While no two look exactly alike – the specifics will change depending on the subject being taught, the grade level, the teacher, the students and the school – effective plans share the following key components: 

  • Lesson objectives: what students will learn or be able to do after the lesson
  • Materials: the resources needed to support their learning
  • Learning activities: the activities students participate in to achieve the lesson objective
  • Time requirements: the amount of time set aside for each learning activity
  • Related requirements: how the lesson lines up with national, state or school standards
  • Assessment: how teachers will measure student learning
  • Evaluation and reflection: a summary of what worked, what didn’t and why

Lesson plans are a core component of teaching, and part of a broader series of classroom organization and management tools. They cover just one lesson, compared to other kinds of plans that cover a whole unit, subject or curriculum. If a curriculum is like a world map, a lesson plan is like the directions that get you from point A to point B. 

Quick Tip: Lesson Planning Digitally through Planboard can help you get organized and help align your schedules with your colleagues. Sign Up for Free! 

Chapter OneWhy Lesson Plan?