September 2017 Instructional Leadership Must-Reads

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Your friends at TeachBoost rounded up a hefty compilation of intriguing articles this month! Learn about "the beauty of failure", simple ways to support teachers at the start of the school year, centralizing the work around a common vision, using video to enhance professional development, the benefits of technology and how to adapt it, plus more. Enjoy!

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The Beauty of FAILure, via The LaunchPad

Joy DeFors, a returning guest blogger of TeachBoost, shares the "beauty of failure" when working with teachers as an instructional coach and how to use it as a means of feedback and growth.

"If you approach your coaching with a growth mindset, you understand that FAIL stands for: First Attempt In Learning. With a growth mindset in place while coaching, teachers realize that when they encounter a roadblock, it is not a dead end. Instead, that roadblock is viewed as an experience to embrace, ultimately leading to professional growth. It is in the moments of FAILure that we find our greatest opportunities for growth!"

Simple Ways to Support Your Teachers at the Start of the Year, via edutopia

Support for employees at all levels within an organization is crucial to success. For reference, the article shares four challenges teachers face at the beginning of the year and examples of administrator solutions to each.

"Teachers need to know that administrators care about them, so if you haven’t yet, do make the time to check in on each and every teacher as soon as possible, especially the new ones. [...] The more cared for and supported teachers feel at the beginning of the school year, the more equipped they’ll be to support their students throughout the year."

Centralize the Work Around A Common Vision, via The LaunchPad

Technology is a powerful tool for not only communication, but also for sharing best practices, resources, and exemplars of what strong teaching looks like within the classroom—based on your organizations shared vision.

"Once you have articulated your vision and taken measures to build a culture around instructional leadership, your next focus will be on how you can support your leaders in implementing your Theory of Action. In this regard, the integration of technology into your existing structures and processes can empower all levels of your organization to effect meaningful change."

Video Enhanced Professional Development: Is It Worth The Risk?, via The Principal Center

Time is at the utmost value for teachers and having ineffective professional development is not a beneficial use of time out of their days. However, technology can streamline PD (on their own time) through professional networks, using video to demonstrate/model strong teaching (peer reviews), and more.

"Educators preach the importance of differentiating instruction for students. Why are we not doing the same when it comes to professional learning? The good news: Things are changing. Aided by new technology and a committed group of educators and innovators, professional development is becoming more accessible and more valuable. For those who wrote off professional development as too expensive or ineffective, it’s time to take another look."

3 Leadership Tips for Tech Adoption, via EdTech

Now-a-days, students are adopting technology at a rapid pace outside the classroom—sometimes even at a rate faster than their leaders. With the growing push of technology within the classroom it's important to be open for adoption within your school or district.

"Educational leaders must create an environment at the building level where teachers are trained and empowered to incorporate technology into all their endeavors when applicable. The beginning of the school year is a good time to set the parameters for such an approach."

Using Technology to Streamline the Process, via The LaunchPad

Technology can provide the backbone of your plan of action around a system which is designed for usability and provision of centralizing your processes and documents—here's some tips to get started.

"Taking a long, hard look at your current processes and evaluating them for efficiency, usefulness, and adaptability may be a daunting prospect, but one which should be viewed as a real investment in your program. [...] One fundamental way you can streamline your instructional leadership program is utilizing technology to gather all documentation and notes in a single, centralized location."

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Topics: edtech, PD, Must Reads, Growth Mindset, Classroom Technology, Teacher Support, Mission and Vision

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