Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Linear Systems Lesson Plan Critique

I found the following lesson plan on Solving Linear Systems by Graphing.

This lesson plan is clearly more detailed than the lesson plans which I currently use ... in fact, it is very comprehensive. I use many of the same elements in the lesson plans that I create. The Warm-Up used here is similar to what I call a "Please Do Now" or PDN for short. I begin almost every class with a PDN activity, which recalls prior knowledge and generally links today's lesson to the prior day's lesson. Though I do have a daily agenda for my students, I do not post that for the students. However, I do have on my whiteboard the day's Essential Question, the state standards being taught for the day, and the day's homework assignment. The closure of my lesson each day usually includes either time to begin working on a homework assignment or a "Ticket Out the Door", or TOD, which the students will hand to me before they leave class.

As a way of tying a lesson together, all of the classes in our school use the "Essential Question" (EQ) format. If done properly, the EQ is a question that the students cannot answer at the start of the lesson, but can answer at the completion of the lesson. In the lesson presented here, there are multiple assessments as part of the lesson, which (hopefully!) will ensure that each student is able to answer the EQ at the end of the lesson.

In this lesson, I do like the practical example presented. Certainly, "When am I going to use this?" is one of the most common question asked of math teachers, and this teacher addresses it well! I also like the supplementary video presented here. Granted, it is 45 minutes long, which is far beyond the attention span of most students. But there are many great teaching videos online, and with today's generation of students, it is wise to take advantage of the ways in which our kids learn!

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