November 2020 Instructional Coaching Must-Reads

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2020-11 November Must Reads header

We hope you saved some room! We're serving up the best dishes from November's Weekly Coaching Roundups. πŸ¦ƒ Read on to learn some quick and targeted PD ideas, how to set the right kind of goals for your upcoming coaching cycles, tips for helping teachers with their stress and anxiety, a few ways to craft engaging virtual professional learning sessions, and more. Enjoy! πŸ˜€

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How to Set the Right Kind of Goal for Your Coaching Cycle

Samantha Shields combines elements from both Jim Knight and Diane Sweeney's work to help you set targeted goals with your teachers, every time.

"Over time, I realized that the driving force of a coaching cycle is the type of goal we work towards with teachers. I picture these types of goals building on top of each other, ultimately leading children and their teachers to be more successful when working towards an academic goal. . . . Students' basic needs should be met before we can turn our attention to standards-based goals, which focus more around the skills, content, standards, and knowledge that we want our students to learn."

One Minute PD

Rachel Mane makes her PD sessions quick and targeted through short videos. πŸ“Ή

"Teachers' schedules may look different this year, they may be teaching fully virtual or on a hybrid schedule, so finding the opportunities to attend full day professional development may be slim to none. I have seen a few quick tip PD videos or stories on Instagram before and thought it was a great way to share a strategy or idea without a flooding of information , so I created 1 minute PD videos and house them through youtube. Each of these videos is in the one minute range, maybe up to 1 min and 30 seconds, and shares a strategy that can be used in both a virtual and in person setting."

Coaching with Google Jamboard

Stephanie Affinito showcases three ways to use 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."

Your School Librarian: An Unexpected Coaching Partner

What's the key to success in our buildings? Collaboration! Keitha Hernandez believes that magic happens when ICs work with staff outside of their normal circle and shares some of the extraordinary work that she and two ICs have done together through their collaborative partnership. πŸ™

"When the ELAR coach and I began our work together, we wanted people to know we were a team. To do so, we presented a united front whether we were running professional development sessions, attending team meetings or advocating for teachers and students at leadership meetings. . . . The ELAR coach and I were able to put our brains together and come up with solid ideas to support our teachers."

TeachBoost is here to help with your virtual coaching!

TeachBoost Coach supports remote coaching by helping ICs manage their coaching cycles, goals, meetings, and evidence. Additionally, coaches can upload resources and videos to keep everything in one place. Sign up below to try it out!

How to Help Teachers Manage Their Stress and Anxiety

Being an educator can be incredibly stressful at times and the shift to remote work has only amplified this. Luckily, Shelby Denman and Kaila Albright generously provided a few ways to identify teacher stressors as well as some different techniques for coping with them. πŸ’†

"Both stress and anxiety take a mental and physical toll on the individual. . . . To care for teachers, you must first care for yourself. A burned-out match is useless for igniting a fire: In the same way, a coach who has nothing left to give is no help to those around them."

Building Teacher Skills in a Remote Environment

Tricia Miller passes along three of her tips for creating virtual professional learning that's both engaging and reflective.

"We've learned to make sure that we don't spend time together on things participants can easily do on their own. For example, participants should read excerpts from professional texts and work on math problems in preparation for a discussion independently. This leads to deeper discussions and effective collaboration in the virtual space. . . . Just like in classrooms with students, it is vital for us to seek consistent feedback and make adjustments in order to achieve expected learning outcomes."

Time Out!

Vicki Collet provides 10 stress-reduction techniques that can help you and your teachers relax during your next coaching session.

"Teaching has never been a more stressful profession. And ongoing stress has serious consequences, affecting the area of our brain responsible for memory and learning. . . . Talking about stressful situations to a calm listener relieves, relaxes, and creates opportunities for problem solving."

Crafting Your Coaching Approach

Katie Biggs and Hanna Schramm explore three ways to tailor your coaching approach to your teachersβ€”learn tips on building relationships, diversifying your toolkit, and empowering educators.

"We encounter a wide range of expectations and needs, and it's up to us to equip each educator with a coaching plan tailored to their needs. . . . Whether it's increasing meta-cognitive skills through critical writing, building conceptual understanding using differentiated centers, or increasing inquiry through questioning stems, our teachers must feel they have autonomy and the capacity to take risks and advocate for what is best for their students."

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