This week we covered the importance of timely and positive feedback, a few changes schools can make to go from teacher-centered to student-centered, strategies for building relationships with teachers new to coaching, and more!
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"One of the biggest mistakes made in coaching is not delivering positive feedback. We may make a note of the positive things we saw in the classroom for a future conversation or just as a note, but often times we don't communicate that with those we are working with. . . . By opening up positive communication with your teachers, you are opening the door for better communication all around."
5 Student-Focused Tips to Prepare for the School Year
"At the beginning of my career, I can state that I built lessons and units first and then, hopefully, adapted the learning to the students during the lessons. As I reflect back on this approach, I should've thought about my students first, identified their barriers to learning, and used their interests to plan more effectively. After all, it's my job to understand my learners and plan accordingly. . . . We must assess, make observations, and have conversations. We cannot be too rigid in our long-range vision as our students may not achieve at the speed with which we have planned."
Learner agency is about moving students from passively responding to acting with purpose to reach a desired goal or outcome. When students have an authentic purpose and audience beyond their teacher to share what they are learning, they are more motivated to learn and often go above and beyond. . . . We can teach necessary skills while creating experiences that allow learners to take ownership of the process."
"When we critique, evaluate, or provide feedback to them in such a manner that raises their defensive walls for self-preservation, there's little to be gained; the interaction isn't constructive. . . . Let's empower teachers (ourselves) by getting these reflective coaching skills and insights into their (our) daily repertoire. The ultimate goal here is our self-efficacy: We can self-monitor/analyze/reflect, revise practices based on those reflections, grow professionally, and ultimately, improve student learning in our classrooms."
"It's important for the beginning teacher to discover that making him or herself vulnerable to input from colleagues is a career-long path to great teaching. It's critical that the beginning teacher not see the mentor as an evaluator, not see the mentor holding some measuring stick up in front of the teacher saying when you meet these criteria, mentoring will be over. . . . Coaches can work with mentors to introduce coaching and mentoring as a gift. All teachers deserve coaching vs need coaching."