Bigger is not better so share activities not lessons

One is more versatile than the other

In education, salary may be better when it’s bigger. But with learning resources, bigger is much worse than smaller.

At an NSTA event last year, I spoke with a colleague I respect about resources available for teachers. He cited research that suggests that professionally designed unit plans result in the best learning outcomes when teachers are prevented from making adjustments to the plan. As teachers made more adjustments, the results actually got worse.

However, we both agreed that teachers would always make changes unless they were forced to leave things alone. In fact, there was evidence that these unit resources were not used again after the research had been conducted.

The reason that the professionally designed units worked better as a whole, is that all the parts were very high quality, and each part was chosen to work well as a system. My question to him was:

Pick the pieces that fit

“What if we just provided teachers with lots of high quality parts? Teachers could assess the specific student need in the classroom, and then choose the parts they need to build the learning experience that works best. I think teachers would use high quality resources if they have flexibility, and aren’t forced to use what works for someone else.”

My Question: Why are teachers driven to personalize their lesson plans?

My Response: Teachers care about students, and we want as much ownership as possible in decisions affecting their learning. If you give us something that we don’t think will work, we will take the extra time to customize it to our students for success. Some things aren’t worth delegating to others, especially when an awful lesson plan can lead to mutiny.

Teachers need a way to customize resources and take ownership over them. If we share lesson plans, it takes too long to do that. If we share great activities instead, it may fit what we need without customizing. If it doesn’t we need a super fast way to make it fit.

Edufy is a resource that make all this possible and makes it fast. Now, we can share, find, and customize our classrooms in no time flat. What do you think – if you have access to great parts, can you design something that will fit? Are you more likely to use resources if you can customize them? Post a comment and join the discussion!

Best wishes,
Phil

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