Last year's shift to remote learning and instruction encouraged many of us to explore new online tools, but with so many options out there it can feel a little overwhelming to choose the right ones. Luckily your friends here at TeachBoost have your back! Here are some of the top web apps for ICs we've found your peers raving about. Enjoy! 😀
Pam Hubler uses Coaching Choice Boards to empower her teachers in the coaching process and choose their level of support. Find out how she's found success with them.
"This process really made me think of the services I wanted to focus on as a coach and how to describe them to teachers. . . . Gathering teacher requests via a Google Form means that I'll be able to see all the data for this school year in one place, which I can't wait to see! It will help me to determine which services are needed the most so I can structure my coaching schedule better and better each year."
ICs are superheroes in the education field but even superheroes need support from a sidekick (or tool!) at times. Hear from TeachBoost's own coaching champion, Dave Reid, about a few ways TeachBoost Coach can be the support you need ;to conquer the upcoming school year.
"Let's face it: staying organized while juggling a ton of programs, papers, or even online tools can be a burden. Luckily, TeachBoost Coach brings all of your coaching work into one place. Whether you use Google or Microsoft tools within your organization, you no longer need to fumble between binders, online calendars (which you can sync seamlessly in your account!), and spreadsheets."
Brandy Alexander uses Bitmojis as a way to build relationships while creating a fun environment with your colleagues and school.
"Creating a positive coaching environment can seem daunting at first, especially on a new campus. Going in with some strategies like Bitmojis can help communicate your openness and willingness to have fun and work alongside teachers to bring out the best in them and their teaching practices."
Bitmojis aren't just a fun way to build relationships with peers, they're also a great way to reach students! Learn from Stephanie Harris about the power of Bitmoji classrooms to engage students in online learning environments too.
" Off-the-shelf learning management systems lack the flavor, creativity, and quirkiness that make so many of our classrooms exciting and welcoming spaces for learning. By contrast, a Bitmoji classroom helps educators bring the warmth and creativity of a classroom space into the virtual world in a way that is functional and fun for students."
Traci Piltz walks through her steps for crafting beautiful weekly newsletters with Google Slides for her teachers as a way to better communicate with them across buildings.
"I created my template in Google Slides. I like using Slides because it allows me to share one link, and update the deck with a new slide each week. Not only does it make it easier for me to "batch produce" these newsletters but teachers can also access the archive of all previous issues by scrolling back through the deck."
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TeachBoost Coach supports ICs by helping them manage their coaching cycles, goals, meetings, and evidence. Coaches can also upload resources and videos to keep everything in one place. Sign up below to try it out!
Stephanie Affinito showcases three ways to use the collaborative whiteboard tool, Google Jamboard, to support virtual coaching.
"While we can no longer pop into each other's classrooms for a quick hello or gather together for social experiences, Jamboard offers a quick and easy way to bring the spirit of collaboration to any learning session. . . . While I love starting sessions with connection and community, I also want to find out about teachers' knowledge, interests, and needs before we get started with the session. Jamboard's sticky notes and textboxes are a great way to do this."
Kenny McKee shares four reasons why he uses coaching menus built with Google Forms to expand his impact while working across multiple buildings.
" The coaching menu can explain the scope of your role as a coach in a friendly way, and help structure conversations that focus on the content that matters most. . . . I also offer a wide range of ways that I can provide support: co-planning lessons, reviewing data for decision-making, modeling a strategy, observing and providing feedback, and more. This can help teachers think creatively about the coaching support that would be most effective for them."
Stephanie Affinito is back to share how coaching launchpads can help shift your focus from reactive to proactive coaching, plus where to get started with creating your own.
"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."
Social media can be a lot of fun, but it's also a great way to grow and develop professionally. Nita Creekmore shares how she uses Instagram to support her role as an instructional coach and why she got started.
"Three years ago, I became an instructional coach and I captured my transition from classroom teacher to coach right on my Instagram page. I soon realized that fellow coaches on Instagram were eager to share their resources and tips, allowing me to learn some of the tricks of the trade from coaches in the field. . . . I could connect with them for help with specific issues I was facing and they also provided a virtual shoulder to lean on for support."
Online professional learning communities are a great way for ICs to nourish and develop themselves on a professional level! Learn from another TeachBooster, Brad Falvey, about how you can use Twitter to move your professional learning forward.
"Twitter has positioned itself as a source for coaches to learn from each other, meet for topic-specific chats, share one's voice and opinions, and create opportunities for mentorship. Coaches are able to lend a supportive hand to their peers while providing a judgement-free space to show vulnerability."
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