How to Add Lesson Plans
Before you begin, download a copy of CTE Online’s Lesson Plan Template (PDF) or use the Word version to copy and paste right on your computer. This will be a useful guide for you to layout the components of your lesson plan. Click on the link to Download Document and save to your computer. (You can also view a sample lesson plan designed using this template here.)
Things to consider as you design your lesson plan:
- What is the main idea that you want to teach? (For example, do you want students to be able to describe the process of splinting a broken arm, create a sprite object in a graphic design program, or safely use a chef’s knive?) Try to keep the focus tight so that your lesson doesn’t instead become a unit.
- How can you “hook” students at the start of your lesson, focusing their attention so that they are ready to learn? Start by thinking about your main idea. What aspect of it could be particularly interesting to the students in your class? Things that surprise, excite, intrigue, or raise questions are all good starting points.
Examples of great hooks:
“Guess the Injury”
“Fire Marshall Bill”
- What are the lesson's specific learning objectives? In other words, what should the students be able to do, understand, or demonstrate to indicate that they have grasped the main idea? A typical lesson has between two and three objectives. Too many more and you may want to split your lesson into several separate ones.
- What activities will help your students achieve the learning objectives? Lectures, demonstrations, laboratory work, group work, and student projects are all examples of activities that you may consider.
- How will you assess whether students have met the learning objectives? A test or quiz at the end is only one way to assess learning. Independent practice, discussion, project work and modeling can all be used as assessment.
- Fill out the CTE Online Lesson Plan Template now. When it is complete, you are ready to add your lesson!
How to Add Your Lesson to a Unit (click here to view a video on this topic)
- When you are ready to upload your lesson to CTE Online, you will first need to find the unit you would like your lesson to be in. Go to the course for your lesson and click on the appropriate unit from the list on the left.
- When the unit is opened, scroll down to find the “Lessons in this Unit” section. (Note: If this field is not yet in the unit, click Add in the toolbar on the right side of the page to add the "Lessons" field.)
- Hover your mouse to the right of “Lessons in this Unit.” A blue Edit button will appear. Click on this button to edit this section.
- Once open, click on the blue + Add Lesson Plan button. Here you can fill in the Name and Overview/Details about your lesson. The latter section should be a short synopsis of what your lesson plan will cover. Include the main idea and a brief description of the activities included in your lesson. This is how other instructors will be able to determine what your lesson is about.
- To edit the text, click on the small arrow at the upper left of the text box. This will open up the text editing toolbar.
- To add more than one lesson, click on the blue + Add Lesson Plan button. You can rearrange the sequence of lessons by clicking and dragging the double-sided arrow to the left of each lesson. To delete a lesson, click on the red X. (This will delete the entire lesson plus all of its activities, so use with caution!)
- Click Save when you are done.
How to Format Your Lesson Using the Lesson Plan Template
- Find the Unit where your lesson is located. Your lesson will be listed underneath the unit, on the left-hand side of the page. Click on your lesson.
- To edit your lesson, click the Edit button with the little pencil next to it, found in the toolbar on the right side of the page. (Note: Do not click the blue Edit button that pops up within the text box. You need to first edit using the Lesson Plan Template.)
- The Lesson Plan Template is divided into sections that you can edit. The first section is called Time Elements. This is where you can indicate how much time your lesson will take in the classroom. For example, if your lesson will take one class period, type in “1 period.” Include how many minutes one period is, as this will vary from school to school.
- The next field is Standards. Identify the standards that your lesson will be addressing. Click here to view a video on this topic.
- Below this is the Objectives field. Enter one objective at a time, clicking + Add Item for each new objective. To rearrange the objectives, click and drag the double-sided arrow to the left of the objective that you wish to move.
- Tip: You may wish to scroll down to the bottom and click Save now. Then, scroll back up to the section where you left off. Click Save periodically as you work so that you don’t lose any of your precious information!
- Now we are ready to start putting in the lesson’s activities. Type in the name of your first activity and then select the activity type from the drop-down box. If none of the options describe your activity, select Other. Tip: To see a list of types of activities and their descriptions, click here.
- In the Overview/Details box, you will need to describe your lesson IN DETAIL. It should be very clear what an instructor will need to say, do, and prepare ahead of time in order to carry out the activity. Remember—this lesson will need to be carried out without your help! Include everything the instructor will need to know to make the activity run smoothly.
- If you have a handout or worksheet to be used in this activity, click on the + Find or Upload Document/Resource/Material button. A drop-down box will appear. You can choose from resources you have already uploaded (My Resources), or choose from public resources by clicking on Find Resource and typing in a key word. To upload a new resource, click on Add Resource. You can then add a file from your own computer or submit a link to a Website. Click here to view a video on this topic.
- To add the next activity in your lesson plan, click + Add Activity.
- The final field is called Assessment Information and Materials. This is where you will indicate how assessment of student learning took place. This can include rubrics for grading projects, observation of student journals or portfolios, and any quizzes or final exams given. Be sure to include your assessment resources here.
- When you are all done, click Save & Close.
Congratulations! You have added your first lesson plan. Look over your lesson plan to see how it will look to other instructors. To make changes, select the Edit button from the toolbar on the right side of the screen.
Want to see examples of lessons uploaded by other instructors? Click on the Home tab and scroll down to find Model Curriculum.