How to write a lesson plan
Once the Social studies structure is understood and the problem of defining the scope and determining the sequence of the content of the subject are resolved, the next stage is the actual selection of contents. The selection of social studies content at any level of education can be made from any or all of the following:
- The learner’s experience
- The experience of the people in the immediate community of the school
- The experience of the people in the other communities distant from the school environment
- The relevant academic discipline of the social sciences, arts, sciences etc.
A close look at the current social studies programme shows that both the contents and course outline of the subject are drawn largely from the concepts, generalizations, objectives and the method of the academic discipline of the sciences. This practice has badly affected the image of the subject as many people believe that it cannot stand on its own, that it has no identity of its own.
In an attempt to tackle this problem, a school of thought has suggested the paramountcy of the relevance of the Social studies education given in terms of experiences of the people in the immediate environment or community where the school is located. Following this suggestion, teachers are advised to select social studies content of their various schools from within the experience of the people in the immediate community.
Another school has on the other hand advocated that the selection of the content be drawn from the experience of the learners themselves in conformity with the current world educational philosophy of childe centeredness or learner centeredness. But a more formidable and articulate move tends to support the use of the problems approach in selecting the social studies content.
The argument for this is that social studies is essentially a problem solving approach discipline and that if the contents are drawn from the problems experienced by the learners and people in the immediate community, the social studies education given will be real and comprehensive. The whole of these have posed a lot of issues to How to write a lesson plan.
However, whichever approach that is adopted, the final determination of the social studies contents should be to meet the following criteria:
- They should make clear contribution to the achievement of the educational goal of the nation
- They should be able to meet all the cognitive, affective and psychomotor domains of social studies objectives
- They should be able to provide a variety of experience capable of contributing to the total and balanced development of the learners
- They should be appropriate to the general level of development of the learners
- They should be relevant to the real life of the learners
- They should be interrelated and;
- Learners should be involved in the planning
Now, the state is set for the formulation of specific and instructional objectives in collaboration with the general objectives and the content selected for the subject.
How to write a lesson plan: Specific Objectives
From the general objectives of social studies, numerous relatively specific objectives are generated. It will be of a great assistance for a practicing teacher of social studies to get himself familiar with a good number of these objectives as they are fundamental to the effective teaching and learning of the subject at all levels; primary, secondary, postsecondary, and university.
Some of the specific objectives as listed in the Nigerian primary School social Studies syllabus for instance are as follows:
- Children’s self confidence and initiative based on an understanding of their own accomplishments, potentialities and their own worth
- Their power of imagination and resourcefulness
- Their desire fie knowledge and continued learning
- Their appreciation of the dignity of man and of labour
- Their sense of compassion for the less fortunate
- Their sense of respect for, and a tolerance of, the opinions of others even in disagreement
- Their willingness to accept necessary changes within a system of law and order deriving from the will of the people. Such attitudes that are favourable to social, physical, cultural and economic development which will enable children to participate in the life of the community, and when they leave school, to be able to function as innovators and doers of “good” in the society.
- Social attitudes and values such as co-operation, contribution, participation, interdependence on others, open mindedness, honesty, integrity, trustworthiness, hard work and obedience
- A spirit of national consciousness and patriotism through interest and involvement the the local, national and world heritage; and
- The creation of their social awareness, critical judgement, as well as constructive and effective thinking.
Social studies teachers should cultivate the habit of developing their own specific objectives relevant to their own teaching and learning situation as future guide and reminder of their intentions to enable students to accomplish certain learning tasks within a relatively short and specific time; be it one week, two weeks, one school term or even one year.
Such specific objectives should, however always be made known to students in order to motivate and summon up in them the state of preparedness and learning readiness in the school. This habit would undoubtedly contribute positively to the effectiveness of the teachers.
How to write a lesson plan: Instructional or Behavioral Objectives
These are the objectives in which the teacher expresses his intention in respect of what he expects the students to achieve inna lesson period of thirty, forty, or sixty minute. Instructional objectives sometimes are also referred to as classroom or lesson objectives.
It is important to stress that the construction of instructional objective is somehow technical and requires deep reflection on the part of the teacher. But with constant practice, a social studies teacher soon acquires the needed competence.
Meanwhile, a number of principles such as those discussed bellow have been developed to guide teachers in the construction of their objectives because of their technical nature. Therefore, an instructional objective should be:
The following is an example; At the end of the lesson, students should be able to:
Demonstrate attitude of good citizenship.
This is an ambiguous objective. What is citizenship? What is food citizenship? Which of the relevant thousands of attitude do we expect the students to demonstrate? How do we expect the students to show such an attitude of good citizenship? Those are some of the fundamental problems that make the above objective ambiguous. Again, An instructional objective should be:
Stated in simple language, clearly understood by the students so that effective learning may occure in the process of teaching.
An instructional Objective must be expressed in an unambiguous terms
For instance, the students should be able to ‘know’ the duties of the government to it’s people is an instructional objective that capable of several interpretation. For example, to be able to consider a student as having known the duties of the government, does he have to demonstrate his knowledge in synthesizing, analysing, adapting and understanding these duties.
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