Creating lesson plans can be very time consuming and I often found myself creating long lists on paper or a google doc only to feel overwhelmed and start over on a clean sheet after I'd become frustrated enough. When I was at Kent Innovation I was shown a very visual and user friendly way of organizing my thoughts with a google spreadsheet. A link can be found below. But this format does have it's draw backs. Every week you need to copy a new blank sheet and if you have multiple classes you need to have multiple google docs for each class.
That's where Common Curriculum (CC) comes in. After a quick initial set up of telling CC your daily schedule and the layout you would like for each class it generates every day of the school year into a template. You can add days that your school has off or other reminders to show those within the schedule. If a lesson goes slow and will require another day lesson's can easily push one day back to make room for a rap up session.
Lastly the best part for me is all of the standards that are in the CC library. If you have a standard's card in your daily schedule you can look up a list of all the standards that are required for your course and select the standards you are hitting each day. On the flip side then there is the option of looking at the standard list and seeing when each one was covered and if you missed anything you were hoping to hit.
There are many other features like a classroom website for parents, collaboration with a co-teacher, attaching documents or handouts to lessons, printer friendly PDF's and so much more that make this tool one that will be using for a long time to come. If you are interested in checking it out just to see if it's the right planning tool for you all of the pro features are available for one month free but even without those CC is an amazing tool for planning your classroom activities!
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