How to Write a Lesson Plan

Young teacher sitting in classroom, writing
Andersen Ross/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Lesson plans help classroom teachers to organize their objectives and methodologies in an easy to read format.

  • Difficulty: Average
  • Time Required: 30-60 minutes

Here's How to Write a Lesson Plan

  1. Find a lesson plan format that you like. Try the Blank 8-Step Lesson Plan Template below, for starters. You may also want to look at lesson plan formats for language arts, reading lessons, and mini-lessons.
  2. Save a blank copy on your computer as a template. You may want to highlight the text, copy, and paste it onto a blank word processing app page instead of saving a blank copy.
  1. Fill in the blanks of your lesson plan template. If you are using the 8-Step Template, use these step-by-step instructions as a guide for your writing.
  2. Label your learning objective as cognitive, affective, psychomotor, or any combination of these.
  3. Designate an approximate length of time for each step of the lesson.
  4. List the materials and equipment needed for the lesson. Make notes about those that need to be reserved, purchased, or created.
  5. Attach a copy of any handouts or worksheets. Then you will have everything together for the lesson.

Tips for Writing Lesson Plans

  1. A variety of lesson plan templates can be found in your education classes, from colleagues, or on the Internet. This is a case where it isn't cheating to use somebody else's work. You'll be doing plenty to make it your own.
  2. Remember that lesson plans come in a variety of formats; just find one that works for you and use it consistently. You may find through the course of a year that you have one or more that fits your style and the needs of your classroom.
  1. You should aim for your lesson plan to be less than one page long.

What You Need:

  • Lesson Plan Template
  • Well-Defined Learning Objectives: this is a key element, everything else flows from the objectives. Your objectives need to be stated in terms of the student. They have to be something that can be observed and measured. You have to list specific criteria for what is an acceptable outcome. They can't be too long or overly complicated. Keep it simple.
  • Materials and Equipment: You will need to ensure that these are going to be available for your class when the lesson is being taught. If you are too ambitious and require items that your school doesn't have, you will need to rethink your lesson plan.

Blank 8-Step Lesson Plan Template

This template has eight basic parts that you should address. These are Objectives and Goals, Anticipatory Set, Direct Instruction, Guided Practice, Closure, Independent Practice, Required Materials and Equipment, and Assessment and Follow-Up. 

Lesson Plan

Your Name
Date
Grade Level:
Subject:

Objectives and Goals:

  •  
  •  
  •  

Anticipatory Set (approximate time):

  •  
  •  
  •  

Direct Instruction (approximate time):

  •  
  •  
  •  

Guided Practice (approximate time):

  •  
  •  
  •  

Closure (approximate time):

  •  
  •  
  •  

Independent Practice: (approximate time)

  •  
  •  
  •  

Required Materials and Equipment: (set-up time)

  •  
  •  
  •  

Assessment and Follow-Up: (approximate time)

  •  
  •  
  •  
    •