What is a lesson plan?

No matter what level or subject you teach, a lesson plan is your guide to facilitating a lesson. It typically includes a learning goal, a plan for achieving the goal, and a way to measure whether the goal was reached. Lesson plans don’t need to be complex or lengthy. However, they need to link clearly to the standard you’re teaching, the expected outcomes, and curriculum assessments. There’s no right or wrong way to plan. You can plan daily, weekly, or longer-term, depending on your preference.

How to format a lesson plan

No matter which format or template you plan in, the first step is to develop lesson objectives that outline the learning goals for students. The second step is to determine the procedures for delivering instruction, including particular activities you will facilitate. The third step is to outline assessment methods, such as tests, presentations, essays, or other means to determine learning goal achievement. Additional helpful information includes seating arrangements and lesson materials.

Where to find great lesson plan ideas

There are countless online resources dedicated to helping you develop ideas for your lesson plans. Official government education websites have many jumping-off points for teachers of all levels, as do educational and textbook websites. ClickView provides ample resources for lesson planning across all subjects and grade levels from elementary to high school and beyond. These lesson plans come complete with various activities and ideas to enrich each lesson.


What is a micro-teaching lesson plan?
Micro-teaching, or micro-learning, is the breakdown of information into bite-sized chunks. This way of teaching makes it easier for learners to absorb content. This method is proven to help convert short-term memory to long-term memory, making it one of the most effective forms of learning. A micro-teaching lesson plan allows your students to easily digest information rather than being overwhelmed.
Should I use a template for my lesson planning?
Well-designed lesson plan templates can help you deliver structured, well-planned, quality lessons. Formatted templates can help you organize your thoughts and turn them into structured content, allowing you to feel prepared for class. Before using a template, you may want to organize your lesson ideas or activities into Google Drive folders, Pinterest, or a similar brainstorming tool.
What’s included in a lesson plan?
Here are some helpful questions you can use regardless of the grade level or subject you teach to guide you in preparing content for your lesson plan.
  • What is the end goal I want my students to achieve?
  • What are my students’ academic, social, physical, personal, and emotional needs? 
  • Which teaching strategies and teaching styles will best facilitate my students’ learning? (It’s usually a mix of strategies and styles).
  • How should I group my students? Would randomized grouping work best for this activity, or are they better off with peers they choose?
  • What prerequisites should my students have mastered, or what prior knowledge do they need?
  • What materials do I need for the lesson to be successful? Consider technology, such as content clips, handouts, supplies, etc.
Reflection is just as important as the planning steps. Here are some prompts to consider as you reflect on a lesson or unit of work.
  • What worked and didn’t work? 
  • What will I do differently next time? 
  • Is there more pre-teaching required?
  • What can I do to build on this lesson or sequence of lessons?
Should I plan my lessons daily or weekly?
That depends on how you work best. Weekly planning sessions may be more useful when you do backward design lesson planning (starting with clear learning goals.) This also allows for flexibility within a particular week while keeping you on track to cover specific content. When you plan daily, it’s challenging to see the big picture – how you plan to get your students from little to no understanding of the standard or concept to achieving mastery.
What other kinds of classroom planning do I need to consider?
Aim to do long-range planning and big picture work once a quarter. This kind of planning can help you map out your lessons according to curriculum units. It’s also a chance to determine how to achieve your learning goals throughout a term or semester as you look at what’s essential to teach and assess to meet those goals. Consider important dates in the school calendar that may impact your planning, such as assessments, report card due dates, holidays, and school breaks during a term.