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This is how our TEFL graduates feel they have gained from their course, and how they plan to put into action what they learned:
Planning lessons is important for the students and the teacher. By planning the teacher has laid out a clear goal of what they intend the students to learn during that lesson, what problems might be encountered and which of their own skills the teacher wishes to improve on. Moreover planning is both a working document, to help with time management and keeping track of equipment, and a record of what has been covered so far. When planning a lesson it is important to keep things simple, avoid scripting the lesson, following the same structure as much as possible for lessons of the same course but at the same time maintaining a certain level of flexibility to keep the class engaged and deal with any unforeseen complications. An added benefit to a lesson plan is that it is a contingency in case the teacher is unable to attend the class and has to be replaced by another teacher.
Overall a plan is important to visualize what a teacher intends to do in class and what they expect to achieve, but if the teacher tries to stick to the plan too rigidly it can overcomplicate things and lead to a boring and unfruitful lesson.