Learn six signs of an effective IC, how admins can wear a "coaching hat" while observing staff, questions that spark reflection at each stage of a coaching cycle, and more in this week's Weekly Coaching Roundup.
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"It's important for instructional coaches to see the full picture of what is impacting instruction in classrooms and the results of that instruction. . . . Starting with a strength creates the conditions necessary to change people's minds about change. When we emphasize what others are doing well already, people are motivated and more likely to believe they are capable of doing things better or doing other things well, too."
"Through this two-year mentoring program, new teachers were provided with intensive support to assist them in making a smooth transition from pre-service activities to their new profession, as well as opportunities for continuous instructional improvement in a collaborative environment."
Observing Through a Coaching Lense
Lauren Kaufman urges admins to wear a coaching hat when working with their staff if they truly want to build a culture of collaboration.
"Approach conversations as a thinking partner. There are no titles in teaching and learning discussions. Keep the conversations focused on the learner and the learning. . . . . Allow the teachers to guide the observation conversations. Let them talk about the teaching and learning that transpires in their rooms. Let them share what they are most proud of and what they feel are areas of growth based on student evidence."
What Was Your Fail Today?
Stephanie Affinito believes ICs can level up professionally when they take time to reflect on their areas for growth and shortcomings daily.
"Through failures, read or perceived, we learn about ourselves, the results of particular actions and how we might make things go differently in the future. And if we find out how to make our future selves better, personally or professionally, is that really a failure after all? Game changer. If we change how we think about failure, from one of negativity to one of gratitude for having the chance to grow, then we change the culture for learning."
My First Year as a Coach
Amy Foley recalls the importance of a growth mindset, trust in herself and others, and the value of relationships when stepping into her coaching role.
"While I understood that it would take time for our new coaching model to be fully implemented, I also had to practice patience with respect to waiting for teachers to ask for support. It is not up to the coach to determine what changes or improvements could be made."
"As we discuss ways of explaining to staff 'what coaching is,' I frequently use the phrase, coaching is a tool. Rather than a program, I envision coaching as a tool or process that we use when reflection with a colleague would be valuable. I have increasingly seen my coaching role as a supporter of reflection. Reflection generates learning, individually and collectively."