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NAEYC Lesson Plans

  • 1.  NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-11-2019 03:59 PM
    Hi all,
    We came up with bi-weekly lesson plans for each classroom to meet some accreditation criteria and I'm wondering if the lesson plans are required to be weekly or could be a longer time-frame. For our infant classroom I don't actually want our teachers changing all the toys every week; it can be disruptive to the children's exploration of what's there and can be overstimulating. I looked through the NAEYC website and can't find a requirement about the amount of time a lesson plan has to cover and am hoping it is flexible! I'd also be interested in seeing some successful lesson plans that are developmentally appropriate for infants! Thanks in advance for any evidence, thoughts, or resources you have.

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    Christa Edwards
    Assistant Program Director
    BlueSkies for Children
    Oakland CA
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  • 2.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-12-2019 09:45 AM
    Can you explain where this emphasis on "lesson plan" is coming from? The usual lesson planning that you find in public school classrooms is not appropriate, in my opinion, in a center serving infants and toddlers as well as preschoolers and kindergarteners. There are many different ways to show what you are doing each week that do not follow the "plan book" type of planning that most people associate with lesson planning.

    For infants and toddlers, I would hope that the thinking about what to do would focus on developmental tasks and social development appropriate for these age groups.

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    Nora Krieger, PhD
    Associate Professor Emerita/Past Chair NJEEPRE
    Bloomfield College/NJ Educators Exploring the Practices of Reggio Emilia
    Highland Park, NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-12-2019 12:20 PM
    Sure!
    The NAEYC accreditation criteria 2J.6 (show two lesson plans that help children appreciate visual arts from different cultures), 2J.7 (show two lesson plans that help children appreciate dramatic arts from different cultures), and 2J.8 (show two lesson plans that provide infants, toddlers, or twos with chances to explore and manipulate age-appropriate art materials) all require that we have lesson plans.
    Our curriculum isn't generally lesson plan based for children this young but because it is required to be re-accredited we are trying to figure out something appropriate to use.

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    Christa Edwards
    Assistant Program Director
    BlueSkies for Children
    Oakland CA
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-19-2019 06:35 AM
    Whether we call the preparation for teaching/guiding/educating infants/toddlers/young children  "lesson plans" or "learning plans", should not bother us much as long as we all understand the process of learning for infants/toddlers/young children. As a trainer for  practitioners, I have experienced over and over that the students who understood the real purpose of preparing to teach/guide/educate these age groups, become more experienced to deliver enriched and developmentally appropriate presentations to their classes. I have also find that they feel more comfortable to follow children's interest and link (link, not smother!) these interests onto the topic/theme they are busy with.
    I think the same can be said about " guided play". The idea is not to suppress the children's play but to "scaffold" it and give children more or wider scope for their play.
    Sophie. 





  • 5.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-19-2019 01:44 PM
    Labels matter as we know from other areas. The picture in people's heads when we use the term lesson plan will drive how learning unfolds in the classroom. We need new terminology to change the paradigm.

    ------------------------------
    Nora Krieger, PhD
    Associate Professor Emerita/Past Chair NJEEPRE
    Bloomfield College/NJ Educators Exploring the Practices of Reggio Emilia
    Highland Park, NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 6.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-23-2019 08:35 AM
    I agree completely!!! Great point! We have just made a switch, center-wide from Theme-based curriculum to a more emergent curriculum philosophy. We are in the process of finding a template that meets the "lesson plan" requirement, but accommodates a classroom that is more guided by children's interest rather than teacher's ideas. We have created one ourselves to us that includes a box for each area of the classroom, what materials/experiences are offered, expansion of learning (how teacher scaffold learning in that center... to be added as the day/week unfolds), and the developmental standards that are addressed in that center. Our challenge is figuring out how to use these over the course of a week, or if they should be created/changed more or less frequently than a week.

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    Leah Mangrum
    West Nashville Cumberland Presbyterian Preschoool
    Nashville TN
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  • 7.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-13-2019 02:29 PM
    I prefer to think of "plans for learning" rather than "lesson plans". I think this encourages thinking and being intentional about the experiences that are being provided for the children. (As a college professor, this language worked.)

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    Mira Berkley
    Quality Improvement Specialist
    QUALITYstarsNY
    Fredonia NY
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  • 8.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-13-2019 03:33 PM
    I completely agree with Mira. If the accreditation standards use the term Lesson Plan, it should probably be changed. It conveys a way of thinking about teaching young children that will steer teachers' thinking in the wrong direction. Plans for learning makes more sense and will lead teachers to think about "the why" of the experiences that they are planning for children. Teachers should be able to answer "the why" of what they are planning for children. As Mira said, thinking about planning as planning for learning should lead to intentionality when planning.

    ------------------------------
    Nora Krieger, PhD
    Associate Professor Emerita/Past Chair NJEEPRE
    Bloomfield College/NJ Educators Exploring the Practices of Reggio Emilia
    Highland Park, NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 9.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-15-2019 10:50 AM
    Mira,

    I really like that language - "plans for learning", rather than lesson plans.  It does lean more toward what we want to be, intentional!
    Thank you for sharing that.

    Tawanda Brown
    Family Child Care Provider
    Crestview, FL

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    Tawanda Brown
    Crestview FL
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  • 10.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-12-2019 12:40 PM
    Hello Everyone,
    A lesson plan that is theme based would be easier to adjust for the very young to K. It also gives you an opportunity to extend the children's learning into many areas within a developmental milestone approach to learning.I find that using theme based as well as project based lesson plans gives the children as well as the teacher room for rapid change within the scope of active learning. You can have room for teacher discussions in what the children are learning and how they are learning.

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    Milagros Neu
    Pre-K Teacher
    French American Academy
    Edgewater NJ
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  • 11.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-13-2019 01:00 AM
    Hi Christa,

    I have been a part of several reaccreditations for centers which serve birth through kindergarten. While the centers I worked in used weekly lesson plans, I do not believe it is "required" to be weekly. Bi-weekly sounds fine for infants, especially since most of the time our infant teachers would be doing similar activities over the course of a month. I'd like to mention that just because it is a new lesson plan doesn't mean that new additions to the environment or activities have to take place. The philosophy behind NAEYC is that we are providing children with developmentally appropriate and engaging experiences that enrich their days/lives. With that comes flexibility in the day and lessons, we must always respond to the children's wants and needs. Sometimes we plan active days and realize the children are not up for it, in that moment we adapt and select a different activity.

    The goal of lesson planning is to ensure that intentional experiences are being planned for all children. This can mean both structured and open-ended activities. Teachers take the time to plan activities and environment additions based on the needs and interest of the children. For example, there may be an infant who loves throwing balls and the teacher will plan to add different types of balls into the environment for them to explore. As that infants are touching/throwing the balls, the teacher will ask them questions about their experiences and practice self-talk. Another activity that can be done with balls is painting. Maybe the teacher plans an activity where there is paint on a paper and balls get bounced on top, or the infant paints their own ball.

    I'd be happy to answer any other questions you have about what I've written. I've worked with many infant teachers and have written my own infant lesson plans over the years.


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    Erin Daddio
    Carlsbad CA
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  • 12.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-19-2019 06:32 PM
    Hi! Thanks to everyone who has responded. I agree the terminology is misleading. Our teachers do follow the children's lead, and also set out materials thoughtfully to stimulate their development in various cognitive domains, but they usually aren't all tied into a "theme."

    ------------------------------
    Christa Edwards
    Assistant Program Director
    BlueSkies for Children
    Oakland CA
    ------------------------------



  • 13.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-20-2019 07:00 AM
    What about "developmental themes"? 

    I found that term, from Margie Carter and Deb Curtis's Reflecting Children's Lives, curriculum book, to be helpful. It was the first edition that presented themes especially effectively: 

    Reflecting Children's Lives : A Handbook for Planning Child-Centered Curriculum by Margie Carter and Deb Curtis (2002, Paperback)

    Of course, all of their work is great!
    Carry on!!





  • 14.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-20-2019 10:27 AM
    I'm also concerned with how the words "lesson plans" and "curriculum" are used and agree that Margie Carter and Deb Curtis's books are great resources. I also urge everyone to give feedback on this area in the NAEYC proposed DAP statement.

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    Margery Heyl
    Chicago IL
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  • 15.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-20-2019 11:04 AM
    I agree. I gave feedback. Maybe I should give more feedback.

    Check out Ann Pelo and Marge Carter's new book: From Teaching to Thinking. There is a lot about reframing how we think about teaching.

    ------------------------------
    Nora Krieger, PhD
    Associate Professor Emerita/Past Chair NJEEPRE
    Bloomfield College/NJ Educators Exploring the Practices of Reggio Emilia
    Highland Park, NJ
    ------------------------------



  • 16.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-20-2019 12:14 PM
    Yes! I just finished this book and found it very thought provoking.

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    Margery Heyl
    Chicago IL
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  • 17.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans

    Posted 07-22-2019 01:31 PM
    I appreciate the opportunity to be part of this important discussion. I, too, am inspired by Ann Pelo and Margie Carter's book about "Reimagining Our Work". I agree it's time to re-think the terms we have used for many years, such as "lesson plans", that give educators, families, and those who hold us accountable mental images that are no longer valid. I believe this discussion is as critical as other discussions about "Power to the Profession". Exploring and questioning terms we use is a reflective practice I plan to initiate in my college courses. Those of us who are responsible for the professional development of educators can model the same process of "inquiry" we expect directors to foster with their staff and educators to engage in with the children they support.

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    Linda Boss
    Instructor
    University of WI - Platteville
    Lewistown PA
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  • 18.  RE: NAEYC Lesson Plans