Once a focus for a unit has been developed, a teacher can think in terms of the lessons within the unit. As we have seen, three types of lessons occur in a unit: (1) lessons that focus on new knowledge—that is, lessons that involve a critical-input experience (Design Question 2); (2) lessons that focus on practicing and deepening knowledge (Design Question 3); and (3) lessons that focus on tasks involving generating and testing hypotheses (Design Question 4). Each has a different structure and, therefore, involves its own type of planning.
In addition to the types of lessons within a unit, effective planning involves considering the routine activities that will be part of a unit, such as reviewing learning goals and tracking student progress, as well as reviewing rules and procedures when necessary. Planning also involves being ready for things that might come up in every lesson, such as monitoring the extent to which students are engaged and taking action when they are not; acknowledging when rules and procedures have been followed, as well as when they have not been followed; attending to teacher-student relationships; and ensuring that students are given the message that high levels of achievement are expected from all of them. Finally, planning involves creating a flexible draft of daily activities.
Reflecting on Your Current Beliefs and Practices