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Lesson Plan Examples - Synchronous Virtual Crew

Part of the Virtual Crew Collection

When getting started, the goal is provide simple and accessible tools for leading Crew and creating moments of connection.

Key moves towards this goal:

  • Evaluate access to technology
  • Pick a platform/format
  • Decide on live/synchronous or recorded/asynchronous
  • Adapt or create a planning template, and begin planning

In planning virtual crew lessons, the priority is simplicity. Every time, students and staff simply need to connect. Over time, they need to sustain their senses of belonging, purpose, and agency. Here, we offer some examples of lesson plans at the secondary and elementary levels: for "synchronous" times when a group will all be on the same virtual meeting.

Below are some single sample lessons. For an example of a two week series of lessons, click here.

Secondary Example: Coronavirus and Racism Crew Plan

Note that these plans would probably unfold over multiple days and this is an overview. For the complete plan, designed by NYC Outward Bound schools, click here.

Learning Target: I can describe how COVID-19 and other pandemics have led to increases in racism and xenophobia (fear or hatred of anything foreign, including people from other countries).

Overview of the activity: Examine how COVID-19 has led to racism and xenophobia toward Chinese and Chinese Americans, as well as other Asian Americans. Learn how other pandemics have also led to racism and xenophobia toward other ethnic groups throughout history. Consider how you can respond to and combat this hate.

Resources:Coronavirus Racism Infected My High School, The New York Times. Notecatcher.

Elementary Example: (Google version, click here)

Topic & LT:

Check in. "I can share my feelings with my crew members. I can use my arms or hands to demonstrate what Integrity means.


  • Good morning crew! Good morning ______(crew members say your name)!
  • What smiley face describes how you are feeling this morning? (if you have two, feel free to share).
  • What made you choose this smiley face?


Feelings Book (For TK-1 and possibly all elementary grades)

  • Why do we have different feelings at different points in the day?
  • What type of feelings have you had since we have started school at home?


(for 2nd to 5th)

  • What words help us understand the message of the reading? Explain your thinking.
  • What is the message of the reading? What makes you say that?
  • Activity: What does integrity mean?
  • What is a hand or arm gesture that shows others what integrity means?


Share out and discuss:

  • What does integrity mean during this time for you and your family? Brainstorm a list of ideas.

Crew Work for the week

  • Ask your parents, aunts/uncles, or grandparents for an example of integrity. How do they define integrity?
  • Draw a picture of integrity. If you need help, here is a video example: how to draw integrity.
  • Keep your drawing in a safe place so you can show us your picture next week (Or ask crew members to share drawing with you on Flip Grid, See Saw, or by texting you a picture).

Check out

Let’s end with our chant or giving a high five to each other virtually!

Check in example:

Some teachers are scheduling 1:1 check-ins with students in their crews. The crew may meet as a whole a couple times during the week, and then the teacher meet with individuals during the other days. 

Week 2 Individual Check In’s (7-10 minutes)

Topic & Target:

Individual 1 v 1 Crew Check in’s. I can reflect on my first full week of remote learning.  I can set a self care goal. 

Check in Prompts:

  • One a scale of 1-10, how are you feeling this week? Why? 
  • How have the first two weeks of remote learning been going for you?
  • What needs do you have on the school end that I can assist with?
  • What does your daily schedule look like? 
  • Set a new self-care goal

For a sense of how a check in can fit into larger rhythm of crew, look at these two-week plans

Have an example to share? We are learning alongside you about what virtual crew can look like, and welcome your contributions. Use this form or email Sarah Norris at

And for treasure hunters out there, we are maintaining this public folder with everything we find.


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EL Education

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