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Saturday, October 1, 2011

A Good Lesson / A Good Life

Here are ten important things for any good lesson.   I suppose, "lesson," could be used metaphorically.  Maybe these thoughts could work for any day in our lives, and all of those days taken together-- our lives--- show what we have learned.  Just a little philosophy for a sunny day in fall.

A Good Lesson
1. Is relevant. It links to what was done the day before, connects to what will be done in the future. It is part of a continuum of learning that makes sense to students.
2. Is presented in a systematic way. Anything is easy when broken into parts. It is up to the teacher to break it down and then put it back together for (and with) the students.
3. Gives time for kids to use the concept themselves. First, the concept is modeled and drilled, then it is available for the kids to “run” with.
4. Has ongoing assessment---question / answer, exit pass, partner work, quick write and check, speak and check, etc.
5. Has some surprises. Leaves kids excited about what awaits them the next lesson BUT has some predictability so that kids can understand what is expected of them.
6. Always instructs. Always teaches something new. 
7. Spirals. Should mix in the new and old. Each concept or vocabulary word is like a lego: not much on its own, but once understood, able to be used to build again
and again. 
8. Piques curiosity. Encourages students to further investigate on their own. 
9. Is primarily in the target language with the teacher taking care to mostly use
vocabulary the students understand and mix in new words here and there. 
10. Garners respect from the students. They know when they are learning and when the teacher is putting it all together in a professional way. When the teacher cares, the kids care.


  1. As a former teacher and now tutor, I agree with all of the points you have there. I would add at the beginning, motivates the child to listen to what you are saying. Motivation is probably the one thing that will cause a child to learn anything!!