Wednesday, August 8, 2018

The Coaching Cycle: say this, not that: Growing as an Instructional Coach

The coaching cycle. We hear about it all of the time.

It's a best-practice approach to working with individual teachers, honoring that they are learners in their own place in a learning process and valuing that we are all constantly growing.

But if you haven't really used the coaching cycle with a teacher before, it might be a little bit daunting.

You might be worried that you'll say "the wrong thing" and end up with a teacher who's not too happy with you (or excited about your support). 

Here are some things I've learned that have helped me use the coaching cycle effectively with teachers in different places in their learning process.

The Pre-conference 
During the pre-conference, you'll meet with the teacher to discuss what he or she is interested in working on or growing in. You'll identify a specific area to focus on and set a date or time for a classroom visit and the post-conference. You can also plan together for this lesson, if the teacher is interested in trying out something new.

The classroom visit 
During the visit, you'll take detailed notes. You can interact with students in a limited way to find out what they're working on and to have them verbalize their thinking to you. Be sure to arrive on time and watch closely for the focus the teacher asked you to look for.

The post-conference
During the post-conference, you'll debrief with the teacher and help him or her think through their lesson and their goal. You can discuss next steps and offer support as needed.

I am so excited to offer this giveaway again this summer!
Coaches work hard. Which tools will help you do your job? Well, obviously tools with pineapples on them. Pineapples mean "welcome," so flaunt your pineapple gear and people will know you're approachable!

One lucky duck will win the Instructional Coaching Must-Haves Kit (over a $165 value)! This kit
* Inbox tray
* My favorite notebook: Eccolo
* My favorite daily planner with a monthly view
* Frixion Ball Erasable pens
* Handmade pineapple pencil pouch
* Rae Dun "piƱa" mug
* To-do notes and assorted sticky note set
* Thank you cards
* Pineapple notepad
* Fancy pineapple thumbtacks
* Erasers
* Lotion
* Hand sanitizer

Four more lucky winners will get the Instructional Coaching Resource Bundle, over $50 worth of coaching resources!

Enter using as many of the options below as you like! You can enter again with every blog post in the series. 

But wait! There's more!
Hee hee
You can sign up for my all-new Start-Up Course for Instructional Coaches!
It's a free email course, right to your inbox, that will give you the essential steps for getting started as an instructional coach. You'll get videos, links to posts, and even a free resource or two, and follow-up emails to help you along your coaching journey!
Just enter your email address in the box below. You'll also be signing up to receive periodic emails about instructional coaching as part of my mailing list!
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  1. This was a great post. I am hopeful to become a coach and these were helpful reminders of dos and donts.

  2. I love these mini posters-great reminders! Can’t wait to print them out for this year!

  3. Recently found you and enjoy the daily supports! Probably need to keep this in front of me this year!

  4. This is so great! Glad I found you over on Instagram!

  5. This is a great reference tool! It is a daunting task as a new coach to start the actual coaching process rather than just popping in and out asking what teachers need.

    1. Hello Karener. My name is Tori. I am a coach for K-1st grade and would like to know how soon are you planning to begin your coaching cycle?

      Looking forward to hearing from you soon Thanks in advance

  6. Thanks for this awesome post! Any chance the questions can be condensed into one printout?

  7. Providing on the spot feedback and navigating coaching conversations is one that I continue to work on. These charts are an awesome resource to support me in this area!!

  8. I love the say this not that suggestions. So important to be relevant and respectful.

  9. I love the visuals for "say this, not that!"

  10. I am super excited to have come across your blog!

  11. I am a new middle school coach this year and your posts have been so helpful! I wish I had you on speeddial!!

  12. So excited to give coaching another go. This time around I'm going to trust myself and do what's best for teachers and students.