Why Is Lesson Planning Important?

US Department of Education/CC-BY 2.0

Lesson planning is important for teachers because it ensures that the activities help students meet their educational goals, allows for efficient use of classroom time and keeps the lessons on track regardless of distractions.

Without having a well-thought-out plan in place, it’s easy for teachers to get off track with the class and miss out on educational targets. The plan ensures that teachers can maximize their instructional time and get back on track if there are disruptions. Aside from time management, there are a number of other benefits to having a lesson plan before introducing a topic to the class.

Increases Teacher Confidence Whether it’s a teacher’s first time teaching a lesson or the tenth time teaching a lesson, chances are that there’s been a gap in time since teaching the content. Perhaps the last time the teacher introduced the content to the students, they struggled with it. Since new methods are being introduced into the classroom all the time and each group of students are different from year to year, updating a plan or coming up with a new plan of attack helps teachers feel confident that they can get through to their students. It also gives the teacher a chance to refresh the content in his or her own mind to answer any questions students may have during the lesson.

Saves Time in the Future One thing that a lot of teachers can agree on is that they don’t have enough time to cover a topic to ensure adequate understanding for all of the students in the class. They know how important instructional time with their pupils is. Planning in advance ensure that the time with the students is used more efficiently. For example, the teacher already knows what supplies the students need for the lesson, all copies are made in advance and any teaching aids already in place. When the students arrive for the lesson, everything is ready to go and no instructional time is wasted making preparations.

Overall Time Management Teachers have one year to cover all of the material they’re required to teach. Planning lessons in advance allows teachers to look at the overall picture and come up with a plan to cover certain topics. If they don’t have a plan in place, then they might find themselves rushing through important lessons or skipping topics altogether at the end of a semester or school year. Lesson planning allows them to allot a certain amount of time to each topic before moving on to the next. However, lesson plans need to be flexible. Some classes may struggle through one topic and breeze through another. Allowing flexibility in the schedule ensures that students have enough time to work through tougher topics for better understanding.

Easier to Establish a Routine Routines are important in the classroom because students know what to expect and thus feel safer in the environment. This makes it easier for them to focus on the lesson and comprehend what they are being taught. With a concrete plan in place for each day, it’s easier for teachers to establish this routine because they don’t have to make last-minute adjustments.