Being an Instructional Coach can be taxing to say the least. We are teachers of teachers. We are data bases. We are advocates for students. We wear so many hats that sometimes the ones that are most important get put on the backburner. It’s important we remember to pull out the “I’m still a person” hat, “mom/dad” hat, or any other hat we previously enjoyed wearing before school started up again. Not getting to wear all the hats you want to can be frustrating, but wearing too many hats can be downright stressful.
Being an instructional coach is all about helping teachers maximize their time and resources to create engaged students who become life-long learners. The best way to accomplish that is through taking a dive into a nice pool of data!
As Instructional Coaches and Leaders, we have busy schedules that keep us on our toes and watching the clock. Because we are so busy, sometimes we forget we should be doing different types of “observations” for our teachers and each one has its own purpose.
The biggest and most important job we have as instructional coaches is to give feedback to the teachers we work with. While it can be easy to focus on the areas teachers need to improve on, it is always important to provide teachers with positive feedback. There are many ways and reasons to provide positive feedback to teachers and in doing so, you will create stronger relationships with those you work with.
Now that we are wrapping up the end of the year, I like to think about how I can improve my coaching for the next school year. One of the questions I start with…
Who am I coaching for? Am I coaching for Me? Teachers? Students? Community?
This question is more than just a quick reflection for current coaches. If you just snagged your first coaching gig “Congrats!” and this is the question you definitely need to get answered...
With summer quickly approaching, we are all hustling and bustling to get everything wrapped up before the end of the year. Before you hit that “end” button, make sure you take time to do one of the most important jobs in education: reflect.
During my training as a teacher, I learned instructional strategies to teach lessons and deal with my students in the classroom. When I transitioned to being a coach, I soon realized that coaching was similar to teaching, my teachers became my students and I had to figure out strategies to best support them.
As an Instructional Coach, many times I work with new teachers and teachers who are struggling with classroom management. Of course, I do a full baseline observation, tier my teachers and start coaching cycles. But sometimes that just takes too long.
It takes a long time to earn someone’s trust, and it can be lost in an instant. As an instructional coach, earning that trust can take even longer. Even as a teacher or administrator, earning your colleagues trust takes time, and unfortunately can be crushed with one mistake.
Feedback can be intimidating to some, so I’ve put together some helpful tips to make the most out of those meetings that we may not always be looking forward to having! Keep this in mind: the purpose of a feedback meeting is to positively influence student learning!