Lesson Plan Evaluation
Tracy Walsh, Laquesha Wilkins, Tameka Yancey
Grand Canyon University
EED 503N- Curriculum & Methods: Mathematics
November 24, 2010
Lesson Plan Evaluation
Many schools require their teachers to follow a specific curriculum and pacing guide as they teach mathematics. The mathematics expectations, or standards, vary from state to state in the specific concepts addressed, the way the concepts are presented, and the grade level which specific concepts are expected to be learned (Reys & Lappan, 2007). The lesson a teacher presents to the students should also have certain characteristics if a teacher strives to meet the expectations of National Council of Teachers of Mathematics (NCTM) Standards. NCTM Standards recommend five process standards which students should acquire as they develop math knowledge (Van de Walle, Karp, & Bay-Williams, 2010). These five process standards are problem solving, reasoning and proof, communication, connection, and representation. Team Purple evaluated a lesson plan found in Envisions Math which is published by Pearson Education; the curriculum is being used in a North Carolina public school fifth grade classroom. Upon evaluating a lesson on fractions from Envisions Math, Team Purple discovered some positive aspects of the curriculum as well as some places in the curriculum where changes need to be made in order to make the lesson more in line with the NCTM Standards. During the evaluation, team members discussed the objective alignment of the lesson with the NCTM Standards, differentiation in the lesson, manipulative usage in the lesson, the assessment process, and student reflection. After the discussion, the team made suggestions for how the lesson could be adjusted to be more in line with the NCTM Standards and to better meet the needs of the whole classroom. The original lesson is found in Appendix A and the worksheet is in Appendix B. The modified lesson plan is in Appendix C.
Lesson plans should be designed to meet specific goals and objectives that are appropriate for the students and coordinated with the state’s standards. The Envisions lesson entitled Meaning of Fractions states that the objective is that the students will be able to identify and show fractional parts of regions and sets. Ediger (1998), states “objectives need to be chosen which are vital and relevant” (p. 11). The objective connected to this lesson supports Ediger’s theory and the activities throughout the lesson support the relevance and importance of students being able to identify fractional parts. For example, as part of the lesson students will view several images and identify the fraction being represented by the image after this concept has been model by the teacher. The team agreed that the objective of the lesson is clearly defined. Conversely, there was a little debate in reference to how well the lesson aligns with the NCTM Standards and standards for teaching mathematics. The lesson appeared to align with the NCTM standard of Number and Operation as it provided skills for the students to gain number understanding, ways of representing numbers, and relationships among numbers (Van de Walle et al. 2010, p. A-2). For instance, the relationships among numbers were presented as the students learned the connection of wholes to parts and how this can be represented with a fraction written numerically or with number words. Meanwhile, the lesson lacked support of NCTM Standards for Teaching Mathematics in other ways. There was not sufficient content in the lesson to support the following standards of teaching mathematics: Standard 3-Worthwhile Mathematical Tasks, Standard 5- Discourse, and Standard 6-Reflection on Student Learning. The lesson fails to meet the guidelines for the above stated standards because it was lacking activities that keep the students engaged and...