Welcome to “Ask the Tech Coach,” a podcast for Instructional Coaches and Technology Integration Specialists.
In this episode of “Ask the Tech Coach,” Jeff and Susan discuss 10 things about your coaching program that you might wish to work on this year.
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Question of the Week
Our favorite part of recording a live podcast each week is participating in the great conversations that happen on our live chat, on social media, and in our comments section.
This week’s question is:
How can I improve my Coaching Program and be more successful this year?
10 Key Areas That May Be Holding Your Instructional Coaching Program Back.
- Your coaches are focusing on every teacher in the building equally vs having a grade level or subject area to focus on.
- It’s ok to be supporting an entire building.
- Come up with a goal between the coach and administration and the teachers so that everyone is on the same page and the teachers know that they are the focus on the coaches attention.
- You don’t have a common vision from your administration on what the coaching program should look like.
- If your coach is the one to introduce the concept of coaching or a coaching cycle … it will be an uphill school year.
- The principal must be the one to set the stage for your coaches so that your teachers know that your program is not an optional program.
- The principal must be setting goals for their teachers that will allow the coach to become the “answer” for the teachers in getting support in meeting those building goals.
- The coach can then set up their welcome message and coaching menu to help teachers meet the needs of building and district goals.
- Your coaching website and newsletter are not designed for maximum Return On Investment and your teachers are not motivated to read them or visit the website for help and support.
- If you create a massive website dedicated to edtech, your teachers might not know what the focus is and won’t find it appealing to visit.
- Your newsletter might not have a common focus based on the theme of the school. It also might be filled with edtech randomness that has no meaning to teachers.
- Your Newsletter and Communications (emails) are not being designed as marketing materials
- It’s easy to set up a weekly newsletter, it’s more impressive when your newsletter is designed to entice teachers to find coaches for additional help and support.
- All newsletters and emails should be designed as “calls to action” to get teachers to sign up for coaching support or coaching conversations.
- Are your administrators consistently promoting you when they are having observations and other grade level and department meetings?
- You are not converting passive conversations into active coaching opportunities.
- When traveling from classroom to classroom in the morning, try to focus less on “the job” and more on “building relationships”
- Morning conversations should be about getting to know teachers and having them build trust with you … not “in your face commercials”
- You are not using your districts vision and your principals voice as your doorway into the classroom.
- Coaches often lead with “this is hot and new” rather than “how can I help you meet your goals to keep the principal off your back”
- Coaches are often sharing their badges and accomplishments rather than focusing on being the support that teachers need individually with their students.
- You aren’t creating Generals in your building.
- Coaches need to be finding 2-3 “Generals” that will be the teachers whom you visit every day and will be your voice in meetings and the breakroom when you are not around.
- The Generals in your building do not have to be extremely tech-savvy teachers. They just need to be easy to work with and motivated to have you work with them.
- You aren’t closing your coaching sessions by scheduling additional conversations that are followed up by some type of communication.
- At the end of your coaching conversations, send an email to the teacher with a wrap-up and review of what was discussed and what the next steps are for accountability.
- You aren’t collecting data after your coaching conversations to keep track of the who, what, where, when, and why of the position.
- Using a Google Form or Microsoft Form, create a data tracking system to be able to record and analyze coaching data.
- The data can be used to support future coaching opportunities with teachers.
- You don’t have a district plan for what coaching should look like and what coaches should be doing to standardize your district.
- When you have coaching happening across multiple buildings, you must have some type of district plan that is shared by district administrators to building principals so that all coaches are doing the same things no matter where they are in the building.
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Check Out Additional TeacherCast Programming
- TeacherCast Podcast (http://www.teachercast.net/tcp)
- Educational Podcasting Today (http://www.educationalpodcasting.today)
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