“The bad news is that time flies, the good news is you’re the pilot.”  This quote comes from Michael Altshuler, a successful businessman, and I believe it summarizes what I know about time.  For a teacher, time is precious. You only have so many minutes in a day to plan lessons for students. I have compiled a list of resources that teachers can use to minimize how long you spend searching for instructional ideas, and maximize your time.  

  1. I love listening to Podcasts. There are so many shows that are meant for teachers that can provide you with ideas for lessons.  In addition, you can do other things while listening, like washing the dishes, working out, or driving the kids to their activities.  Here are some shows that are worth checking out:

    2. Did you know that Facebook can also be used as a resource to get teaching ideas and access to lesson plans? Here are some groups that are definitely worth following:

   3. Pinterest can be a very valuable resource to search and find teaching ideas.  However, you can also find yourself in a rabbit hole trying to find a certain idea.  That is why it is smart to follow a few accounts that you know are educators. Here are few Pinterest pages that are worth the time investment:

  4. Talking about relevant topics in class helps to increase students’ engagement.  Check out Google Trends to know exactly what is current and popular.  This site summarizes what are the most searched topics on Google.  Using Google Trends can spark great ideas for teachers to design discussions, debates, or find articles for students to read.  

  5. PBS Learning Media is another great resource for teachers to find ready-to-use lesson plans.  Activities are standards based and available in all sorts of different grade levels and content areas.  Why reinvent the wheel folks?!

 6.  Finally, Twitter is one of my favorites sources to find great ideas.  If you have something specific you are looking for, use a hashtag with that specific topic to filter through Twitter.  Or, try the advanced search feature to narrow down the resources.  Here is a list of educators that are excellent to follow:

Education has changed for the better through technology.  Now teachers have access to thousands of different resources to help develop strategies or create lesson plans.  It can be very overwhelming and time consuming if you aren’t looking in the right place. Hopefully my six suggestions will help you navigate the waters and save you some of that precious resource we call time.  

Written by: Jeff Jackelen

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