Easy and Effective Lesson Ideas for Any Unit - EB Academics

Easy and Effective Lesson Ideas for Any Unit

We’re about to drop something that is simple, but also a complete GAME-CHANGER in getting your students to master the standards …

Are you ready for it?

After you hook your students with an engaging Into Lesson at the start of a unit, you must strategically plan standards-aligned lessons. You might be thinking, “Duh! I already do that!” 

But, ask yourself THIS:

Are you rinsing and repeating the standards in multiple activities throughout the course of your unit?

Meaning, are your students doing at least 2-3 different activities FOR EACH STANDARD that you are covering during the unit?

Because friends, this is where the magic happens in the EB Lesson Planning Approach

So, after participating in an engaging Into Lesson (like the ones we covered in this post), your students are excited to see what’s next! 

Enter, Through Lessons! 

Your #1 goal with these lessons is to provide your students with multiple opportunities to master the standards you’ve selected for a particular unit!

So, to help get you started, we’re sharing four different through lessons you can use with virtually any literature-based unit.

Here are some awesome Through Lesson ideas:

  • Do a close reading of a text. Yes, this absolutely counts as a through lesson, especially if students are working on their ability to annotate a text with thoughtful analysis!
  • Complete a Character Analysis Activity.
  • Participate in a Socratic Seminar. We suggest you repeat this every few chapters with new questions or use various informational text articles, so students are consistently practicing those Speaking and Listening standards but in a highly academic way.
  • Search for evidence and fill out an Evidence Tracker. (Seriously, if I had to choose just one activity to take with me to a deserted island where I had to teach 35 8th graders, it would be this!) Our Evidence Tracker has students write their essential question at the top of their paper, formulate opinions, and collect and synthesize evidence as they read the text.
  • Play “Choose a Side.” Give students a claim. Students choose a side and must support their reasoning with evidence. Great for novels and short stories!
  • Host a Speed Dating Game. This one is super simple and always gets students fired up defending their position. Here, students debate text-dependent, critical thinking questions.

Whatever Through Lessons you use, it is an absolute must to rinse and repeat the activities and just change out the content itself! 

Not only does this save you time and ensure you don’t have to reinvent the wheel for each lesson, but your students will become more and more proficient as they experience similar lessons with different content!

So, with all that being said, START NOW! It’s great to read this blog post, but start to actually implement this concept in your lesson plans. It makes the world of a difference.


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Then, pick the date you’re going to teach it in your classroom, and sit back while you watch as your students show up to your classroom pumped about what the day holds…and gush about your class to their parents on the car ride home!

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