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BOPPPS Lesson Planning Framework

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Do you fret about having too much teacher-talk-time in your lessons? Do you worry about whether or not your students are actually learning what you are teaching them?

Here's an infographic I made on the BOPPPS lesson planning framework. This framework ensures learners are actively engaged and emphasizes student-talking-time and student-centered learning.

Be sure to click the link in the infographic to be directed to additional resources that will help you stop all the explaining and lecturing. Remember: telling is not teaching.

Hope you like it!


A Lollipop Changed my Life

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A few years ago, I watched a TedTalk by Drew Dudley called “Everyday Leadership”. In five minutes, he was able to capture everything I felt defined me as a person. He spoke about things I had felt and was never able to put into words. Before his talk, I did not define myself as a leader, but according to him, I was and did not even know it.
Everyday leadership is the concept that we all have the power to impact the lives of other people. The simplest of actions could have the power to change the course of someone’s life. That is what leadership is in a nutshell. It might be as simple as offering someone, let’s use Sarah as an example, a lollipop when she is feeling her worst. That lollipop might change her mood enough to have her make a different decision that could change the course of her life. That is truly powerful. The kicker is that the person who gave the lollipop might not even remember that moment. People have that kind of power and they do not even recognize it.
I have been t…

Interactive Teaching

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Active learning fosters understanding rather than memorization of facts, as explained by the University of Waterloo's Centre for Teaching Excellence. It encourages students to apply learning to different problems and contexts; it gives students more autonomy over their learning; and it helps students learn how to learn.

This resource shows nine different active learning tasks that can be integrated into courses to foster engagement with class material and between students, which will energize a class by breaking regular routine.

Of these activities, questioning will be the most useful in improving your instructional delivery if you find yourself relying on traditional methods of lecturing and explanation.

Questions play such a key role in the classroom, from eliciting answers, to concept checking theories, to following up on tasks. When questions are met with silence, often times it is because of the construction of the question. Planning when to ask, who to ask, what to ask and h…

Concept Checking Questions (CCQs)

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“Right?” “Does that make sense?” “Cool?” “OK?”  These are all variations of the question "do you understand?" and these types of questions are ineffective at checking your student's understanding. Instead, it is better to ask concept check questions (CCQs).

What is a CCQ? What can it check for?

A concept checking question is designed to highlight the core the meaning of the lesson's target, whether that's a concept, language, communicative functions, or really, for anytime you want to ask, “Do you understand?” The objective of concept checking is through critical thinking learners will enhance their learning of a target by adding to what they already know.

By using CCQs:
You can draw out what your learners knowLearners get to participate in the learning process of discovering and understanding the new targetLearners articulate their knowledgeYou can clarify and add to their knowledge  Golden rules for using CCQs:
Plan CCQs in advanceAsk questions that are simpleDi…

Instruction Checking Questions (ICQs)

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Concise, logical instructions are crucial to the success of any activity in the language classroom. We have all experienced the results that poor instructions can have: failure from s’s to do/complete tasks, repetition or reprimands,students who “zone out” or aren’t paying attention when instructions are given, frustration from both teachers and students etc.  Through analysis of contextualized examples of instructions, this blog post will look at what to consider when giving instructions and how to follow up with Instruction Checking Questions.

There are many factors that can help or or hinder whether instructions given will be understood. I know, unfortunately though experience, that the instructions we give can make or break an activity.  Without clear instructions, students may become confused, may lose confidence, and may not get the most out of the learning experience you are trying to create.

Let’s take a look at what this essential teaching skill really looks like in the class…

Exit Slips

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Recently, I was one of the facilitators of a professional development workshop for college instructors. I attended the workshops of my colleagues and left feeling excited that even after all these years I have been a teacher and instructional designer, I am able to learn new things. This old dog can learn new tricks.

The topic of the workshop was on andragogy, which was pretty heavy for attendees, but it set the stage well for what followed: lesson planning and lesson planning frameworks, which I have posted about here.

At the end of the workshop, the facilitator used the term "exit slip", which is a much catchier way of saying formative assessment, and gave us a quick task to close the lesson.

It was called "Aha!, Huh?, Argh"
We were asked to jot down  our lightbulb moment (Aha!), something that we are still confused about that we learned (Huh?) and a moment of frustration based on what we learned (Argh.).

I thought this was a great way to provide a reflective clos…

BOPPPS Workshop

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Here is a workshop on a lesson planning framework that works great for college instructors. The instructions for each section of the workshop, including all materials needed, are here in this post. 
The workshop is in the form of a BOPPPS, so as you teach it, participants are experiencing a BOPPPS. If you're looking to help your instructors create more dynamic lessons, or if you are training your staff on how to deliver a lesson, this post is sure to help.

LESSON PLANNING PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT WORKSHOP 120-145 Minutes Materials: ·Post-its ·Skittles x 12 packages ·Handouts oComponents of a BOPPPS Plan, oBOPPPS Framework, oSample Lesson, oObjectives Note Page, oIdentifying and Rewriting Objectives, oBlank BOPPPS Template, o Evaluation Page, and o1 Minute Paper ·Cut outs oSequencing a BOPPPS, and oObjectives Cards o  2 copies of each course book o  2 copies of each course outline
Bridge-In            5-10 minutes REASONS TO PLAN Discuss with in a small group, using Sweets to Speak for face-to…