Lesson Design and
A Pedagogy Circle for
Department of Human Performance and
Sports Sciences, WSSU
February 6, 2009
facilitated by Joanne Chesley, Ed. D.,
Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning
The typical components of an effective
lesson include: objectives, standards,
anticipatory set, teaching input, modeling,
checking for understanding, guided
practice/monitoring, lesson closure, and
Let’s talk about each of these.
finite, specific intentions; the
roadmaps for reaching the goals. When
you write your instructional objectives,
you should be sure to write them to
address various domains or centers of the
brain (Bloom, 1956).
The domains are:
Physical or Psychomotor Domain
Cognitive Domain, lower level objectives are seen in
information recall, primarily
Cognitive Domain, higher level objectives are generally
observed through problem solving
Affective Domain objectives
Objectives should also follow the ‘S.A.M. rule’:
Specific means only one objective is discussed at a time.
Attainable describes the parameters for achieving the
Measurable refers to the precise evaluation method that will
Objectives for each lesson should be noted in the syllabus.
These may be established by the US Department of
Education, a state’s department of education, an
accrediting body for your discipline or higher
education in general.
Your lesson should state which standards are
addressed by the concepts taught.
Standards should be noted in the syllabus;
perhaps in the appendix.
This is something you place on the board
or on the desk, or it could be a text
message you send to their phones, about
the lesson to be presented.
It is to get the students thinking; to
encourage their interest in the topic
before the class gets started.
This is what you bring! Will it be a short
lecture followed by a learning activity?...a
participatory lecture which allows students
a chance to demonstrate their
understanding of the work or to ask their
This is the most critical component, for it
establishes what is really important in the
lesson, how the learner is to work through
the learning tasks, and in what ways.
While this may be called Teacher Input, it is
part of the students’ learning time.
Plan for their active involvement
Prepare your questions ahead of time
Share these w/students before class to ensure a
more lively and informed discussion
Connect the learning with their individual prior
experiences or career goals. This creates a sense
of buy-in and personal interest.
Ask thought-provoking questions
What kind of activity would spark interest?
◦ Perhaps you could start with a You Tube video on the subject.
The teacher helps the students to better see
and do each new concept by demonstrating
exactly what s/he expects of the students.
So if it is a math problem, you do one, step by
step while the students watch first--- then
you do one with them--- you modeling, the
students giving you the directions so you can
hear how they are thinking and how well they
can verbalize the concepts. The same would
apply in a computer class, chemistry class,
nursing class, physical education class, art
class or clothing construction class.
Checking for Understanding
We don’t really know when a person truly
comprehends a concept or to what level--
at least not at first. We can however use a
taxonomy of questions and learning
activities to address the different levels of
Here is Bloom’s Taxonomy (1956)
Below is a list of verbs that you can use when
writing your objectives and preparing your
lecture participation questions.
These action words will help you to ask questions
in an order that makes sense cognitively for
most students, helping them to be more
successful in responding.
Guided practice, monitoring, and feedback
This is a continuation of the modeling, except you
are not demonstrating any longer! The students
are working independently or collaboratively to
do what you just demonstrated.
They are using the concrete rules and examples
you provided and modeled for the learning task.
Your job is to walk around and observe very
carefully who needs additional modeling or other
If you are not inclined to walk around the room to
monitor learners’ practice, you can:
Call each student up to your desk to check progress or….
Have each one send a sample assignment in email or
post to Bb Assignments so that you can get an early
assessment of each student’s current learning status
Allow them to do peer support, where each team is given
a set of criteria /rubric to apply to their reviews of each
other’s work. Work can be done by blind review if this
Not finding learners’ errors early enough only
allows them to practice the errors over and over.
At that point, it is both difficult and time
consuming to undo the damage.
We want them practicing accuracy, which means
we must check for accuracy early in the lesson
and regularly throughout the lesson and
throughout the course.
Though a lesson may be continued when the class returns
later in the week, there still needs to be a closure for each
Good closure includes:
Recalling the objective for the lesson
Reminding them of what was important
Previewing the next lesson
Directing students to the syllabus for
assignments and deadlines
Not getting ‘caught by the bell’; saving time for
Independent Practice ; another term for
1. Have you carefully selected homework that
reinforces the lesson taught?
2. Are students getting regular and quick
feedback on homework? (If not, it really is
not ‘practice’ work.)
3. What is your purpose for each assignment?
Is it developmental or summative in nature
(which makes it an assessment vs. an
4. Do students have the opportunity to redo?
Why not? Is it because you don’t want to
review/grade again and again? The reality
is---it DOES take time! How might these
competing interests be addressed?
Fulfillment of each objective should be assessed
according to the measures stated in the
What form of assessment can best deliver the
information that is needed?
Is the assessment for the sake of continuous
improvement or to demonstrate mastery?
How will you change your teaching to address
low performance on an assessment?
In summary, there are 6 questions that should be
answered in your written lesson plan and should be
seen in your actual lesson.
What needs to be taught, and what do students
need to know in that regard?
2. Why am I going to teach this lesson?
3. What resources do I need in order to
accomplish the objective(s)?
4. How am I going to teach this lesson?
5. How will I know when the students have ‘gotten
it’…. and then what?
6. What will I do with the information I gathered
from assessing my students’ learning?
Remember the simple rule:
1)“Tell what you’re gonna tell ‘em
2) Tell ’em
3) Tell ‘em what you told ‘em
Effective lessons include objectives,
standards, anticipatory set, teaching
input, modeling, checking for
practice/monitoring, lesson closure, and
independent practice, informative
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