Teachers selling lesson plans is a hot topic lately for a number of reasons. I recently saw a report on CNN that talked about a teacher, Deanna Jump, who posted a lesson plan on a teacher share site and made over a million dollars selling it for about $9.00 each time. Andrew Rotherham also wrote about this subject and this teacher in a recent Time magazine article.
Since watching the show on CNN, I keep seeing this subject come up which leads me to believe that it’s a popular subject.
It sounds like a great idea, a way for teachers who, in my opinion, are severely underpaid, can make some extra money. However, it’s not without problems. There are legal issues that are being debated regarding whether or not this lesson plan should be considered the intellectual property of the school where the teacher works.
It will be interesting to see how this pans out since teachers are always looking for material to supplement what the textbooks don’t cover or to make their lessons more interactive – again what the textbooks don’t do. Especially now that many states have adopted the new Common Core Standards and with these new standards, textbooks haven’t been rewritten yet. So, the teachers are working with the older versions of the textbooks by supplementing their lessons in creative ways.
I think it should be thought of this way;
Standards and testing may hog the spotlight in education, but they spell out only what students should be able to do, not how to get kids to learn those skills. Lesson plans are teachers’ tools: lend someone a better hammer, and he’ll do a better job. But a lousy carpenter can’t fake it even with the greatest tools money can buy, and the lesson plans that come with textbooks often aren’t very engaging or aren’t in line with the Common Core State Standards that 45 states recently agreed to adopt.