I Can't Help It, I'm Already Planning

By on May 8, 2019

It's May, and I am already planning for next year. Many teachers find themselves doing the same thing, looking to next year as the current year comes to a close. Part of my planning process includes reflecting on the year. I want to know what worked and what didn't. I want to take the best of what I did this year and continue building a "greatest hits" list of activities, assessments and projects.

Every year, I ask my students about my teaching. I have them fold a piece of paper into four quadrants. In the top left, I have my students write about one activity that must stay. This is something that they loved. In the top right, I ask them to share with me something that must go. This is something they think should not continue next year. In the bottom left quadrant, students write about an activity or project that helped them become stronger readers this year. In the bottom right, they write about one activity, task, or project that helped them become confident writers.

Something that

Must Stay

Something that

Must Go

Helpful Reading

Activity or Project

Helpful Writing

Activity or Project

I talk to my students about how important their feedback is to my teaching and how I use it to shape what I do the following year. They love that I listen to them and ask questions about their feedback.


Inevitably, every year my lessons need updating and revising. I might add an activity, clarify directions, or include links to student samples or supporting videos. (I find tightening my lessons now reduces stress in August). I might also add a lesson or two to fill the gaps that I saw during the year. This May, I am working on mini-lessons to support a wide range of writing skills and techniques. I will certainly share with our LTA Community once I am done.  

Don't be too hard on yourselves. We should always try to improve. That's all this is. Looking at what we did, evaluating what worked, and making adjustments to ensure our instruction gets better each year.  

Happy planning!



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