"5 Reasons Why You Should Stop Using A Word Processor For Writing Lesson Plans"
In my fourth year of teaching, I had become fed up with the lesson planning requirement imposed on me and my colleagues. The documents my administrators expected of us seemed beyond reasonable. At my school, we were asked for a lesson plan consisting of sixteen fields, a unit plan, and curriculum map. I was using a word processor to write up these documents, a tool that I found was utterly inadequate but I could find no better alternative. In 2012, I began to build my own solution.
There are five ways by which a word processor fails to fulfill the needs of a teacher. I designed Spliced to fulfill each of these needs.
- Teachers write documents that cross reference each other. Curriculum maps, unit plans and lesson plans should be linked documents.
- Lesson plans make references to tools and strategies that are used repeatedly.
- Teachers often need to create their own presentation slides for use in the classroom, but administrators often will require a separate lesson plan. For the teacher, this extra document seems redundant.
- Lesson plans must be more malleable than a static document allows. Items should be easily rearranged and components of instructional documents should be easily swapped.
- Lesson plans are often organized by fields. Writing a lesson plan feels more like filling out a form.
Spliced is a lesson planning tool. Using Spliced feels more like filling out a form than using a word processor. But unlike any product I have ever found, after writing your lesson plans, every other document – curriculum map, unit plan, and presentation slides – is generated automatically. Furthermore, any changes made to any of these documents is automatically reflected in every other document.
Spliced is fully customizable. Not only can the user define every document model, but the user defines every field and mode of entry. Do you want your "criteria for success" component to be taken from the standards? a selection from recently entered items? a manual entry? Would you like it to be shown in your unit plan as well as your lesson plan? What about your presentation slides?
Finally, Spliced is designed to save time. The information for all of your lessons is stored in a single database, which means loading lessons and moving between documents is much faster than loading individual documents. Furthermore, because Spliced is available on mobile devices, it means your lesson planning tool is more readily available. All of the information is saved on your device, so you don't even need a wifi connection to access your work. Finally, I can write my lesson plans during my train commute.
I am immensely proud of how Spliced has cut down my prep time. The time I spend preparing my lessons is almost negligible, especially considering that, with Spliced on my phone, I can get my plan done whenever, wherever. Spliced is a free download on the App Store for you to try and see what I mean.