How To Plan An Open Lesson: 7 Easy Steps
As we all know, teachers definitely have a lot of stuff to juggle. Considering most of us hold regular meetings with parents to keep them well informed, why would inviting them to participate in an actual lesson even be needed? Consider this: your classroom is a world of details, sometimes too many to handle, but you can make things much easier in your classroom by using parents as partners. Take a look at some of the benefits of holding open lessons:
- Parents can be very powerful allies in any child’s education. Keeping parents informed and inviting them to become part of the educational process can significantly influence their child’s progress.
- Parents have an amazing opportunity to see first hand how you work and how you connect with the kids
- Parents can get to know you and their child’s academic program. They can see how kids work and what is challenging for them.
There are different types of open lessons, most of them occur sometime in the beginning of the school year or at the start of the course. All of them provide parents with an “inside look” into the daily activities and occurrences of your classroom. However, it is important to keep in mind that being ready for such an event is extremely important. After all, you want to show parents that you are an organized teacher who is on top of things, not that you are simply winging it. Here are some tips and ideas that can help you make this annual event successful and full of purpose.
1. Send out personal invitations
Parents need to be well informed of when the open lesson will take place ahead of time. Remember they might need to make changes in their busy personal schedules in order to be able to attend. You can have your students make the invitations themselves using art materials. All invitations should include the following information: name and address of the school, date and time of the event, your room number, your name.
2. Plan your presentation
What you will be saying to parents should be meticulously planned beforehand. Parents will want to know about the kids and the curriculum but they also want to know a little about you. Share something about yourself (where you grew up, your education, your family, your educational philosophy). Make sure to mention what goals you have set for the year. Your presentation should be no longer than 10 to 11 minutes tops, after all, parents are there to see how kids work.
3. Tidy and clean
Your image, as well as the classroom’s reflects on you as the teacher of that course. A jacket and tie or at least a dress shirt and tie along with pressed slacks are considered very appropriate for men. Pantsuit, blouse and skirt, or a dress are a great choice for women. Where the classroom is concerned, make sure it is clean and tidy. Also, prepare everything you will need for that lesson and keep it handy. You can hang a “Welcome” sign outside the door, with your name and the room number on it. Prepare a sign-in sheet for parents and leave a list with the activities and any other useful information for parents to take as they come in, as well. Decorate your classroom and bulletin boards, and make sure you have enough chairs for everyone
Additional student work (be sure to have samples from all students) can be posted on bulletin boards. Photographs of students and activities can also be posted there. Put up lots of colorful posters and charts with some of the content kids have seen. Make sure the classroom is vibrant and full of the kids’ work.
5. Welcoming your guests
It is ideal to stand at the door and to greet each and every parent with a handshake and a smile. Be pleasant and courteous, and if there is someone you haven’t met, make sure to introduce yourself. It is also a good idea to have parents use name tags 24 with their name and the names of their kids.
6. Your presentation
Your presentation should be brief since it is only meant to provide some information about yourself and to cover what children have worked on so far and what they will work on in the future. Afterward, make sure to invite parents to stay to work on the activity you have planned for that evening with the kids and also look at their child’s work
Make sure to give a lot of thought to what activities will be done that lesson. This is not a good time to teach anything new. After all, parents want to see what their kids are able to do in English. Choose activities your students are good at and familiar with. Also, fun activities you know the students like and do well will keep them motivated. Circulate around the room, smile, and make positive comments about the students and what they are doing.
Remember, it is not the time for personal conferences. Those should be set up a different day. Make the experience enjoyable and don’t forget to have fun.
Brief source: YOU, THE SUPER TEACHER