The lessons are based on 1 hour, which is the time required as stipulated in the curriculum. Legally, in Life Orientation the students have a right to 3 x hours per week for Life Skills and 2 x hours per week for Computer training. This means there should be 5 hours per week allocated for Life Orientation.
However, some colleges cut the periods, so they are shorter. If this happens at your college, try to cut a few minutes from each activity, rather than leaving out entire activities. Students will soon get used to working fast by getting into groups quickly and being co-operative. Please keep on using group work as the students do get used to this type of method and soon learn how to work faster!
Time Wasting: Observe yourself. Do you perhaps waste time by:
- Not being prepared e.g. searching for flipchart paper or marker pens?
- Leaving the class to make photocopies of Worksheets?
- Taking time to sort the pages of Worksheets because these are not stapled?
- Using class time to make visuals?
- Talking too much/lecturing at the students instead of asking questions?
- Taking too long to get the students into groups?
- Reading the Worksheets to the class?
- Reading Lecturer’s Help to the students?
- Using a great deal of time to reprimand the students?
- Allowing the group presentations or feedback to go on far too long?
- Allowing role plays presentations to be longer than 1-2 minutes?
The time indications in the Lesson Plans are a guide only. You may wish to use more or less time per activity. If you think that a lesson will take longer than expected, divide the lesson into two parts prior to beginning to teach it.
Teach the first half on one day and the second half on another day. Be sure you cover all the parts of the lesson during the two lessons. Some lecturers may prefer to use two periods for each lesson plan provided. However, there may not be enough time in the year plan to do so.
Should you decide to divide the lesson and have extra time with the class, use the extra time for large group discussions, small group or paired practice sessions, and/or the Reflection sections on the lesson. The students are likely to benefit most if additional time is spent on these activities.
You will have to create an introduction for the portion of the lesson that will be taught during the second session. This introduction should include a review of the topics discussed and activities accomplished in the first session. This recap will help those students who attended the first session remember what was discussed and accomplished. It will also help those students who did not attend the first half of the session gain insight into the content of the first half.
Please note that most of the students’ learning will take place in the Group Activity/Skills Practice and Reflection sections. It is vital to present the Ice-breaker, Asking Questions and African Wisdom in a brief and clear way to save time for the rest of the sections. However, never leave them out completely.