Training Programme for the #5MinPlan

Here is a simple training guide for anyone wishing to introduce The 5 Minute Lesson Plan to a colleague or their workplace.

It is likely that you have discovered the 5MinPlan online or from word-of-mouth, interactions and evidence from others users. As a result, you may be hoping to introduce the plan to yourself, a department or an NQT you are mentoring; it is quite possible that you are considering introducing the document to all staff in your school. These are a small number of examples we have received when other industries, schools and colleges across the world have wanted to understand, then introduce the 5 Minute Lesson Plan into their practice.

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The 5 Minute Lesson Plan © is developed by @TeacherToolkit ( Ross Morrison McGill ) and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. This means any adaptations are still the copyright of @TeacherToolkit. Based upon all work published at

Creative Commons License

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INSET programme:

  1. Read ‘how it all started the moment I shared my lesson plan online‘ before an OfSTED inspection/observation.
  2. Everything you need to know is here from my blog. Cartoons, video tutorials and the context for each box highlighted in the plan.
  3. A video introduces and explains how to complete the plan.
  4. If it is important to you, OfSTED do recognise the 5MinPlan in this report.

1. Bring a plan:

Ask all staff to bring a current lesson plan to the meeting. This can be used for comparison, as well as a potential exercise for converting information from a current plan.

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2. Impact:

Consider sharing some evidence; use the following statistics in a presentation.

For example:

  • Over 500,000 TES views with just as many downloads.
  • 137 countries – confirmed by TES on 19.4.13 (details here). See my current mapping of use across the world.
  • Now translated into 11 languagesAfrikaansArabicEnglishGermanFrenchNorwegianPortugueseRomanianSpanishSwedish and Welsh.
  • Recognised by Ofsted and individual inspectors. Please ask for contact details.
  • Now used by one mainstream examination board. I can email you this information/evidence separately.
  • Used by PGCEs; NQTs; Tutors; Mentors; Senior teachers and Headteachers with countless variations online for subject specific content: PE; Science; English; Maths; EYFS; Primary; Higher Education. The list goes on.
  • Evidence can be sourced through this Twitter search.
  • I can give you many head teachers who have recently launched the plan in their own school.
  • The NHS are also using this in the UK …

3. Model / Demo:

After the hard evidence is shown to staff; hand out a copy of the 5 Min Plan. Personally, I’d have a blank version on one side and then use a completed example on the other. You could you this photo example as the printed version, or complete one yourself. Perhaps use a visualiser and offer a live demonstration?

4. Offer context:

Once the document is handed out, the key here is that staff are told – that lesson planning is mostly cognitive – that planning any lesson consumes much more than 5 minutes of your time. The actual doing e.g. writing up the lesson plan should just take 5 minutes. Many people type it up – but I say to refrain from doing so, as it defeats the purpose of scribbling up notes in less than 5 minutes. We should also know that learning to lesson plan is an on-going craft, despite some schools – and inspections – no longer requiring lesson plans, there will always be a need for lesson planning.

Below are some of the Frequently Asked Questions I’ve received since 2008.

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Is The 5 Minute Plan designed for Ofsted inspections?

No, the 5-Minute Plan was never designed for Ofsted inspections and was not designed to belittle the cognitive process used in the lesson planning. It was originally designed for new teachers to the profession, to help formalise the process needed to improve practice in the classroom – to focus on learning, rather than the activity – whilst aiming to reduce planning time that so many teachers report as a burden in their early years.

Do Ofsted accept its use?

Yes! But remember, it was never designed for this purpose and Ofsted do not expect to see a lesson plan! “Do not focus on the lesson structure at the expense of its content or the wide range of other evidence about how well children are learning in the school.”

Will The 5 Minute Lesson Plan help me achieved Outstanding teaching?

No! A lesson plan is only a tiny part of the enormous range of components needed to become a ‘good’ teacher. It is also not my place, to define to you what is a ‘good or outstanding teacher’.

Can anyone use it?

Yes, feedback from many teachers working in many sectors and in many countries, report that the format can be applied to any given context.   It was created to reduce planning time and give teachers the time they needed back! To provide every teacher with a *suggested overview of what is important in the classroom. To place the focus on learning and not the activity. Remember, it’s not for everyone!

5. Video:

Consider showing this video circa. 2012) below which is about 2 minutes long – made using Sparkol software – and demonstrates how the lesson plan can be completed. This is based on the same lesson I used in my photograph, tweeted 5 minutes before I had an OfSTED observation.

Good luck and keep me posted.


Why not try these supporting resources for staff to take away?

The 5 Minute Lesson Plan © is developed by @TeacherToolkit ( Ross Morrison McGill ) and is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. This means any adaptations are still the copyright of @TeacherToolkit. Based upon all work published at

Creative Commons License

5 thoughts on “Training Programme for the #5MinPlan

  1. Hi Ross
    What fantastic resource. I am a functional skills and employability tutor and see this as the future for planning lessons within this sector.

  2. Brilliant !
    I’m just about to carry out aload of lesson observations and it will be great to go in with ‘gifts’ in the form of the 5 minute lesson plan for so many teachers who spend so much time writing lesson plans in preparation for lesson obs but also forget that the heart of a lesson is learning…… what is/has been learnt and more to the point, how do we know!

  3. It is a remarkable resource for teachers ,indeed! I am very passionate towards teaching and my vision for teachers resonates with yours .I want to build such a platform for teachers. I started with a you tube channel for now. It is Teachers ‘world.

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