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Learning Plan Preparation and ICT Integration

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All is set for the official roll out of the Standards-Based Curriculum [SBC] at all public SHSs/SHTSs/ STEM schools throughout the country. Ahead of the roll out in September-October, 2024, stakeholders led by the National Council for Curriculum and Assessment [NaCCA], Ghana Education Service [GES], National Teaching Council [NTC] and their partner organization, Transforming Teaching Education and Learning [T-TEL] are taking teachers through Departmental Professional Learning Community [DPLC] sessions with a focus on how to populate or fill learner planners.

The learner planner is not an entirely new thing. It is an upgraded version of the lesson notes that teachers currently use. There are, however, some key features of the learner planner that are not found in the lesson notes. Let us take a look at the key features of the learner planner. The features include the strand, sub-strand, content standard, learning outcome(s), learning indicator(s) and essential questions. Others are pedagogical exemplars, teaching & learning resources, key notes on differentiation, key words, starter, teacher activity, learner activity, assessment based on depth of knowledge, lesson closure and reflection & remarks.

A key departure from the existing lesson plans is that the soon-to-be introduced learning planners will come half populated with teachers expected to populate it to make it a learning plan.  This means that features such as name of the subject, week, duration, strand, sub-strand, content standards, learning outcomes and learning indicators will be pre-populated. Teachers will, however, be required to populate the essential questions, pedagogical exemplars, teaching & learning resources, key notes on differentiation, key words, activities, depth of knowledge, lesson closure and reflection & remark columns.  

Meanwhile, the nature of the learning planner is such that it will be better for teachers to populate them on their computers. This will require a basic knowledge in Microsoft word. For better understanding and filling of aspects such as essential questions, pedagogical exemplars, teaching learning resources, key notes on differentiation, starter, and lesson closure, teachers will also require some basic digital literacy and knowledge. For example, they will need to locate some appropriate short videos for their starters. Teachers may need to search the internet for proper examples of essential questions.

Another important departure from the existing lesson notes is the key notes on differentiation. This is one main crosscutting issue and game changer in the standard-based curriculum. In the SBC, there is a recognition that in teaching every focal area or theme under a sub-strand, teachers are likely to have at least three groups of learners: those approaching proficiency [AP], those who are proficient [P] and those who are highly proficient [HP]. These categorizations are not cast in iron; they are subject to change based on a given focal area. In other words, there is no fixed categorization of the learners.  A learner who is AP in a given focal area may be a P or HP in another focal area or lesson. Teachers are also not expected to disclose these labels to the learners.

Under the key notes on differentiation, teachers will be expected to show differences in three main areas. The first area is the learning tasks. This will require that teachers vary their tasks in a manner that it caters for the needs, abilities and interests of all learners including the gifted ones. The second requirement is the pedagogy. Here, teachers will be required to deploy varied student-centred pedagogies to cater for the diverse needs of their classrooms. The third and final part is the key assessments which are also expected to be varied based on the four levels of depth of knowledge. When this is done and done well, no learner in our classrooms will again be left behind as was the case in the past. This will be a true measure of learning in our schools. It is, however, important to say that these key assessment questions are not the same as the essential questions nor the depth of knowledge.

Another thing is that teachers will have to ensure that there are clear alignments between their choice of pedagogical exemplars, teaching & learning resources and activities. This means that a teacher cannot just indicate a pedagogical exemplar or resource that he or she knows will not be used. Time management is another key feature of this learning planner. Depending on a subject, a lesson may last for one hour or two. Each aspect of the learning planner is timed from the starter to the lesson closure. This means that teachers have no luxury of time to shift focus unnecessary from the focal area or theme being facilitated. More significantly, teachers need to recognize that the era of teacher-centred approaches to teaching and learning has given way to student-focused and student-led learning and knowledge discovery. Teachers, are, therefore, not expected to impose themselves on the lessons. Teachers are to guide, assist, help, and direct the learners. This is one area the teachers may need the help of the internet. They may need relevant videos on learner-centric classrooms or pedagogies to guide them.

In conclusion, ICT and digital literacy will be indispensable in populating the learning planners to make them learning plans in readiness for teaching and learning. Against this backdrop, supervisors including headmasters, assistant headmasters and SISOs (where possible), SIAs and Regional Inspection school teams must not be insistence on the use of hand-written plans. In fact, it will be much more flexible and convenient to populate the learning planners by using computers.  

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12 thoughts on “Learning Plan Preparation and ICT Integration”

  1. Jerry Agbenyo

    This is a positive development, personally I thought lesson notes were a bit much for teachers, I would make three suggestions

    First, some teachers aren’t proficient with the use of IT devices, here Provide targeted professional development sessions and work shops to improve teachers’ digital literacy and proficiency in using tools like Micros oft Word.

    Secondly, Teachers can arrange collaborative planning meetings where they can share best practices, resources, and strategies for populating learner planners.

    Lastly, I recommend that teachers adopt Google Docs for file management. Unlike Microsoft Word, which is primarily a local software, Google Docs is cross-platform, allowing access across multiple devices and locations. Its collaborative features enable teachers to easily share and edit learning plans together, fostering teamwork and ensuring consistency in implementing the Standards-Based Curriculum.


    I think this should be introduced from KG through to where it is being targeted at because our teachers are sourcing these Lesson Plans from people who are not even teachers..

  3. D'Rex Edmund Ohene Kesson

    In fact l am impressed about this explanations given to clear my mind on some information l was searching for myself. Thank you very much

  4. I am glad to see the traditional approach to lesson preparation and delivery evolving with the introduction of the Standard Based Curriculum. This curriculum will help both learners and educators adapt to the changing world. Incorporating technology and digital skills into our daily routines is truly transformative. However, my concern lies with assessment methods. While the Standard Based Curriculum offers comprehensive assessment procedures, I believe utilizing digital devices could improve the assessment process. With classrooms becoming increasingly crowded, leveraging ICT tools for assessment and scoring could be beneficial. Unfortunately, in the Ghanaian context, students are often not allowed to use these tools in school. For instance, I organized an online class for my first-year students during holidays, and despite lower than expected attendance, 287 students participated in an assessment that was automatically graded upon completion. Providing correct answers to those who answered incorrectly was also possible. In conclusion, integrating digital tools into assessments could enhance the grading system and provide timely feedback to learners.

  5. Benjamin Owusu Mintah

    This is a positive development which is really needed in the 21st Era Teaching.

    I’m actually impressed with the new paradigm shift in the curriculum at the SENIOR HIGH SCHOOLS (SHS) .

    The revamped course structure, learning planer preparation and emphasis on practical skills are really going to help learners stay engaged and motivated. Teachers should be more enthusiastic and show a supportive move as well to embrace the new face.

    Though Change is not easy to accept, with gradual steps, we shall soon get there.

  6. Wisdom Kwabla Amegah

    As a professional teacher am ready to serve my nation to provide learners with the requisite skills, knowledge, social and moral training through the n new standard bases curriculum come September-October, 2024.

  7. Azagsiyire Elizabeth Abokua

    This new development is interesting and if well implemented, our classrooms are going to be lovely more engaged than it use to be.
    I will suggest two things
    1. An intensive refresher training on the integration of ict should be organized for ict co- coordinators in our SHS
    2. After the workshop, monitoring and evaluation theme should be set up to go round the schools and ensure it’s implementation by observing lessons. I think this approach will help.

  8. Parents/Guardians are major stake holders in education. There should be some level of awareness out there to also prepare them for this change, so that they can support their wards.

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