Lesson Study

Lesson Study is a process by which teachers collaborate to plan, observe, and refine a lesson; it is a continuous process of professional development and structured reflection on teaching that leads to the measured improvement of student learning. The Lesson Study process starts with the clarification of a lesson's learning goal and then focuses on the design of instructional experiences that move toward achieving the goal.

Learning About Lesson Study

Description: The resources in this section are intended to support groups involved in Lesson Study and/or interested in learning more about conducting lesson study. We suggest that first-time visitors to this section start by reviewing the PowerPoint file "Introduction to Lesson Study." This presentation and the accompanying notes serve as an excellent overview of the core principles of Lesson Study and creates connections to many of the Lesson Study resources presented on this website.

The Northwest Regional Education Laboratory (NWREL) has developed an extensive set of resources for conducting Lesson Study (these resources are tagged with NWREL in their link). There are protocols for conducting pre-observation meetings, classroom observations, post-observations debriefings, and a log for teacher notes during the debriefing. Resources for this section include links to the NWREL website home page and lesson study section.

Integrated Curriculum Topic Study and Lesson Study, abridged version (Orange Book)

Description: The Lesson Study - Orange Book (pdf) is a tool to guide teams through a step-by-step process utilizing science Curriculum Topic Study (CTS) as the basis for a lesson study. This section includes the Orange Book (in pdf format), a companion electronic template to record your work in the Orange Book, a PowerPoint presentation designed to introduce the lesson study process, and a "flow chart" to be used in a lesson study workshop.

PowerPoint Preparation: 90 min
PowerPoint Presentation: 2 hr

Integrated Curriculum Topic Study and Lesson Study, Facilitators Guide (Purple Book)

Description: The Lesson Study Facilitator's Guide - Purple Book(pdf) is a tool for facilitators of CTS/Lesson Study. It is a companion guide to the Lesson Study - Orange Book including background information about lesson study, guidelines for facilitation, and reflective questions for participants.


Additional NCOSP Lesson Study Resources

Description: NCOSP relied on the work of the Lesson Study Research Group at Columbia University to inform our exploration of Lesson Study. The result of this early exploration was the Integrated Curriculum Topic Study - Lesson Study Green Book(pdf) which is a full-fledged process of lesson development. The Orange Book, referenced earlier in this section, is an abridged version of the Green Book. This section includes the Green Book and a detailed sample lesson on Moon Phases reflecting the Green Book process.

Other Recommended Resources

Description: Resources in this section include The Teaching Gap, a text comparing results from traditional US and Japanese teaching systems, a lesson study handbook, videos of teachers in the US and Japan engaged in lesson study, journal articles, and additional web resources.

Note: The Lesson Study website at Columbia University is no longer updated. It is being kept online for archival purposes.