One of the most important tasks a teacher has is done outside the classroom and before a lesson is ever taught. It is planning curriculum and time.
Make every effort to map out the year so that you will teach all the requirements for the class. Be realistic about your time frame; know that you can’t do everything you would like to do. Choose wisely and carry out only the most effective lessons to get the learning accomplished.
EZ Writing is a complete one year curriculum for grades 5-8. If you download the lessons weekly you will cover all the state standards for each of these grade levels. The difference is in the expectations of the work the students produce. There are two ways to use EZ Writing: you can be the teacher and evaluate and guide your students/s or you can join a class at EZWriting.net and the EZ Writing teacher will tutor your student/students.
Sometimes it is necessary to cover material at a faster pace than you know is ideal. An example of this would be when the state test is given six weeks before the end of school. If this happens, teach the basic concepts of the remaining topics, then come back and do a thorough job after the test. That way the students will at least have exposure to the ideas or information, and it won’t be completely foreign to them. If they have never heard of these topics they can freeze and not do well on the test. If they have even a basic knowledge, it gives them some confidence. That can often help them deduce the answers to the test questions.
When you try to cram too much information in a short time, students sometimes shut down and don’t remember even what they previously learned. Keep this phrase in mind always, “Deeper and relevant.” This is far better than wider and insignificant. Limit the number of concepts taught and cement that learning with concept development. Then students have a well of knowledge and comprehension to draw from. If they only have a broad shallow stream, it may dry up. Long term memory versus short term memory, one stays the other slips away.