Weekly Coaching Roundup, Week 2: January 15, 2021

Weekly Coaching Roundup - January 2021 (Seasonal)

This week we walked through a day in the life of a student learning coach, explored the six levels of listening and why they're fundamental skills for all ICs, learned a few additional benefits when educators collaborated with their peers, and more. Enjoy! 👍

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Must-Read 👉 A Day in the Life of a Student Learning Coach

Julie Nelson walks through a day's work in her ever-changing role and the many hats she wears. 🎩

"As a student learning coach, I can be the extra set of eyes for a teacher by making observations and collecting data. I can be the resource provider that offers options of strategies to increase teacher and student feedback, or questioning strategies that might lead to improved student learning. I can model a strategy or co-teach with the teachers I work with. Together, the teacher and I can reflect on current practice and plan instructional activities to move the learning forward."

The Benefits of Building a Team

CJ Reynolds encourages educators to collaborate with their peers (either online or in-person) if they truly want to be their best in the classroom.

"Teaching is a communal activity. The popular narrative of a passionate teacher walking into a school and single-handedly changing the lives of its students is false and can be destructive. It makes teachers feel worthless because they dream of that impact, only to find that passion isn’t enough. Superheroes work in teams for a reason."

Developing the Coaching Mindset

Jonathan Mueller covers the six levels of listening and why they're fundamental skills that all ICs should have.👂

"Active and deep listening is also a huge support in gaining and developing trust, when coupled with empathy. When this trust and intimacy in the coaching process is present, there is a direct connection to learning, self-awareness, and ability for growth in their own capacity."

Everyone Deserves a Coach

Jen Loescher suggests that ICs should find ways to work with a mentor, coach, or PLC outside of their organization to help build their coaching knowledge and skillset.

"Many school districts offer a coach or mentor to new teachers, and some even offer support to veteran teachers; however, most do not offer similar services to the coaches themselves. . . . Let’s provide them the ongoing, personalized, high-quality training and support needed to become effective in this role."

How Do We Handle Difficult Conversations in the Classroom?

Steph Sukow recommends not only listening to the concerns and fears of students right now, but to find ways to make those students feel empowered and heard as well.

"I have a duty to my students, who are all seniors in high school, to make them feel safe, validate their feelings of anxiety/fear/confusion, and to help them to find credible sources on which to draw a deeper understanding of the world around them. As a speech teacher, I cannot allow voices to be silent. . . . Once students feel validated and safe, they are more likely to speak."

Virtual Walk-Throughs

Steve Barkley believes ICs should hold back teacher feedback until they can take the time reflect together.

"I have never been a promoter of giving teachers feedback in written form following walk-throughs. No matter how strongly a supervisor feels that the feedback is non-evaluative and coaching focused, without the teacher’s engagement in a conversation, it is interpreted as evaluation. . . . I have historically proposed that the purpose of walk-throughs should be to educate the leadership team of a school about what is occurring in the teaching and learning process."

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Topics: Teacher Observation, Feedback, Coaching Roundup, PLCs, Collaboration, Listening Skills, Coaching Roles, Virtual Coaching, Crisis Skills

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