Know Your Audience!

When my husband was a kid, he bought his great-grandmother a really, really nice radio with all the bells and whistles with all the latest technology. (Of course this radio to the left is not the radio that my husband gave his great-grandmother. It’s a comparison of the version of the radio that he gave her as compared to a simple radio, circa 1978) His great-grandmother, a big radio listener would even have the option of pressing one button and recording her favorite radio show. However, there was one problem: his grandmother was a very simple woman who liked very simple things. She had no need for all of the extras. She would have been pleased with a basic radio. Heck, she was even pleased with her old one.

She smiled, politely thanked him and put it on the shelf, never to be seen or used again. Poor radio!

My husband didn’t understand. Why didn’t she use it? It had all the latest technology AND it was cute. Not to mention that he’d spent his hard earned money on it.

The Problem: My husband didn’t know his audience. He was only about 8 years old and he thought he was doing something very generous for his great-grandmother. His heart was in the right place, but it wasn’t enough. It’s the same with many teachers- new and old. Their heart’s in the right place but they don’t know their audience. They make beautiful lesson plans for, let’s say, their 2nd grade class. Unfortunately, the plans are suitable for 4th or 5th graders.

So, when making lesson plans for your class, does it really matter if the plans are beautifully written and printed out? Let me answer that for you. No, it doesn’t. What matters is that the children understand the material. Got it? Good!


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