Happy New Year and a big welcome to 2021! Indulge in the first Weekly Coaching Roundup of the new year to learn how you can shift your coaching focus from reactive to proactive with coaching "launchpads," how one organization made a look-fors framework built on a shared vision of high-quality instruction, when authentic praise matters most, and more! Enjoy 😀
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Shift from Reactive to Proactive Coaching with Coaching Launchpads
Stephanie Affinito shares how coaching "launchpads" can help shift your focus from reactive to proactive coaching.
"We all need a command center for our work, especially as we are all teaching and coaching in new ways. . . . A coaching launchpad is an online space that invites teachers into your digital learning community, links them to resources they need, and plants the seeds for future coaching cycles. Creating a central spot for all of your coaching materials makes it easy for teachers to access what they need when they need it most."
Must-Read 👉 A Long Look at Look-Fors
Caleb Allen reflects on what it took to create a look-fors framework built on a shared vision of what high-quality instruction looks like within his organization—plus how he uses it with teachers to provide timely feedback.
"The core idea is that using look-fors as an observational and feedback tool leads to richer, evidenced-based conversations which, in turn, impact student learning and success. Developing this shared language has given everyone in our building clarity around what successful teaching and learning looks and sounds like. . . . Shared confidence among staff not only encourages students to perform at a high-level, but also promotes instructional leaders to make this excitement visible to teachers."
Strategies to Help Teachers Thrive
Elaine Margarita Mendez suggests school leaders keep an ear low to the ground, gather feedback, and find ways to differentiate growth opportunities for their teachers.
"When you plan a framework to support the new teachers whom you coach and supervise, start by gathering their feedback so that you know what they need and have a data set to work from. . . . Moreover, by asking what new teachers need and listening to their answers, you reinforce the mutual understanding not only that you are listening, but also that they have a responsibility to collaborate, identify, and ultimately generate ideas that may help solve problems."
Vicki Collet encourages ICs to be mindful that authentic praise is an appropriate response when affirmation is not necessary.
"Instead of reframing a suggestion a teacher makes during planning and describing how it aligns with best practice, just say, "Wow, what a great idea!" Instead of drilling down to why something you observed in a lesson worked, tell the teacher you'll be recommending this practice to others."
Steve Barkley looks back at the shift to remote coaching by providing his top blogs and podcasts from 2020.
"As schools begin engaging in teaching and learning in 2021, some teachers will be totally online, some back in school with masks and distancing guidelines and other in a hybrid model with various designs of teaching face-to-face and virtual. . . . I believe that our reflections on our experiences and our willingness to frame and test out hypotheses around educator learning can increase our schools' successes with student learning."
🎉 Bonus: The Best of 2020 from the LaunchPad! 🏆
Before we left 2020 and all that came with it, we took a moment to look back at the top 10 most viewed coaching articles from our blog written by your peers. Heads-up: you're not going to want to miss out in 2021 so be sure to subscribe to our blog.
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