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what is the role of an instructional coach

The instructional coach is an embedded professional development practitioner who helps teachers attain these lofty educational outcomes (Blackman, 2010). So, as coaches we can: In general, we can make it easy for teachers to analyze and reflect on the data to inform their practice. With many educators heeding emerging research that teacher quality is what counts, they are embracing the idea that an on-site staff developer should be hired to teach the teachers. I often find a lack of clarity concerning the roles administrators and instructional coaches are playing when they attend PLC sessions. Eric Sandberg is an instructional coach employed by a district in Erie, Pennsylvania. Set up and structure data collection (actually set up the camera, or speak with students to collect data). An instructional coach is chiefly responsible for bringing evidence-based practices into classrooms by working with teachers and other school leaders. It may seem like a simple task, but sometimes just being there to genuinely listen to what … When discussing how he approaches coaching, Eric used a toolbox metaphor. Being a well-connected content expert, also makes coaches extremely valuable as committee or project leaders, and provides a great opportunity for us to play a larger role in helping the school reach its goals. Conducting a classroom observation with clarity and precision. 2. By this point, teachers have opened up to you in their performance survey and now it’s your turn to be an open book in return. Instructional coaches are educational leaders that train teachers and provide resources, feedback, modeling, and professional development to help schools meet instructional goals and school improvement goals. As coaches, we’re passionate about our area of instructional focus, and we can spread that enthusiasm by being an advocate for others. The benefits of instructional coaching include development of instructional skills, self-reflection, changes in school culture, and collaboration. Idealists are having a heyday with this educational innovation, yet the new title is rarely accompanied b… Premium Mentor: The Coach Microcredential. Am I meeting my own expectations, and how do I know? There is a growing recognition of the importance of working with teachers, serving as a mentor and coach. Although there are times when teachers simply need an answer (when they need to you to act as a consultant, rather than a coach), ultimately coaches should be seen as a partner in learning. Coaching Teachers: An Important Principal Role A principal’s most important role is instructional leader. To be successful in this role, coaches must be skilled in a variety of roles, including public relations guru, communicator extraordinaire, master … This work is important and coaches can be instrumental in developing the skills of teachers. Although there are times when teachers simply need an answer (when they need to you to act as a consultant, rather than a coach), ultimately coaches should be seen as a partner in learning. Are these roles you see as critical to your coaching responsibilities? April 5, 2012. Listening with an open mind is the first step towards building personal relationships with your colleagues as well. It may seem like a simple task, but sometimes just being there to genuinely listen to what your colleagues are going through, the challenges or successes their having, and their goals, can be the most valuable thing you do as a coach. The five key roles critical to instructional coaching success in schools are listener, advocate, content area expert / connector, partner in learning, data collector. The most common form of professional development is the “workshop.” Teachers attend these sessions at scheduled times—often after school, on the weekend, or during the summer—that are led by leaders with special expertise. Other duties may be assigned. How to set up your instructional coaching space. Subscribe to our Coach Newsletter to receive coaching tips, curated resources specific to instructional coaching plus videos just for coaches delivered straight to your inbox. Sometimes we start by listening to personal stories, unrelated to school and professional life, and those connections help us build into a deeper professional relationship. We will not share or sell your personal information. When I look back over these roles, my first thought is: how do I ensure that not only am I performing all of these, but how do I get feedback on how I’m doing. An instructional coach can oversee the implementation of new learning management or student data systems, as well as help with training and coaching for staff on how to use those systems. If a coach is spending more than 15% of time on testing and data, something’s wrong Sharing and reflecting on data with the teacher. Catch up on the series below: Preparing the behind-the-scenes tasks of an instructional coach. Coaching is commonly thought about in terms of sports, however, coaching in the education setting has the ability to inspire, impact change, support, push thinking and be the cheerleader everyone needs. That will be a topic for another blog post, and perhaps a #coachbetter episode too! How do you ensure you’re doing your best in each area? Providing resources and prompts for conversation. “The tools in your toolbox as a coach help teachers come to … We can. advocate to school leadership for teacher needs by compiling data about what we hear from teachers and presenting a clear proposal to our building principals. Am I meeting my own expectations, and how do I know? These are things that all instructional coaches who learn our model are going to do. Definition – Instructional Coaching Put simply – instructional coaching involves a trained expert working – be it an external coach, leader teacher or peer – with teachers individually, to help them learn and adopt new teaching practices, and to provide feedback on performance. And by being a consistent listener, you are demonstrating that you value their concerns and their opinions. An instructional coach is there to support teachers and provide personalized professional development, job coaching, and work as a resource to support teachers. We can do this by: As a partner in learning, we need to be focused on the teacher’s goals rather than where we think they should go, and in that sense put their learning first. Teachers are hard-working professionals … I spend part of … 1. And by being a consistent listener, you are demonstrating that you value their concerns and their opinions. As instructional coaches, we are lucky enough to play a role in what is sure to be an educational revolution. His blog, Your Instructional Coach, offers tips for coaches and tackles some interesting dynamics related to coaching. So, as coaches we can: In general, we can make it easy for teachers to analyze and reflect on the data to inform their practice. Making this experience seamless for teachers is a great way to empower them to bring data into their teaching practice more regularly. Listener. We walk the path with our colleagues, discovering and uncovering learning opportunities as we go. 1. Get Transcript . I’ve generated conversations around three possibilities: observer/supervisor, supporter/expert, participant. Michael Garet and co-authorssuggest that the traditional workshop form of … Sometimes we start by listening to personal stories, unrelated to school and professional life, and those connections help us build into a deeper professional relationship. The Literacy Instructional Coach’s primary role is to work with teachers to support best practices in using data, provide analysis of school-wide trends in instruction, and make recommendations about potential next steps to address areas of need. Setting expectations for how the partnership works is vital for the support system to be successful. We despise spam and we respect your privacy. We can also remember to put our interests or the “shiny new thing” we want to share on the back burner until the teacher is ready for that next step. In our #coachbetter interviews with educators from around the world, there are five key roles that have continued to stand out time and time again, so I’m going to share them with you here! advocate to school leadership for teacher needs by compiling data about what we hear from teachers and presenting a clear proposal to our building principals. In general, we can be a cheerleader for our area of instructional focus by advocating for teacher, student and instructional needs in all areas of the school community. Watch out for Walk-throughs. At the same time, we certainly can’t know everything, so when there are challenges we can’t meet, we need to be well connected so we can either find the answer or bring the expert into the conversation. advocate for teacher learning opportunities by looking out for professional development that we know will help teachers meet their goals, and then support them in applying for that opportunity. Part of that responsibility is creating practical resources for teachers, curating content, and providing professional development. Posted by Ms. Chrissy B at 6:30 AM. To increase the quality and effectiveness of classroom instruction. Roles. We walk the path with our colleagues, discovering and uncovering learning opportunities as we go. Are we missing other important roles? As a result, I've found myself as an unofficial point person for other educators who are curious about implementing alternative strategies. An instructional coach is someone who works with teachers, principals and other adults working in a school. In our #coachbetter interviews with educators from around the world, there are five key roles that have continued to stand out time and time again, so I’m going to share them with you here! Instructional coaching is focused on supporting the learning, growth, and achievement of students and is most often linked to a school's improvement priorities. You can unsubscribe at any time (but we hope you don’t! Establishing a clear separation of coaching and supervision means we … To consistently seek new experiences and opportunities for learning rather than taking the stance of an “expert”. In the Boston public schools alone, a Whole School Improvement and Instructional Coaching Initiative earned a $7.1 million spot in the district's 2005 budget. In general, we can be a cheerleader for our area of instructional focus by advocating for teacher, student and instructional needs in all areas of the school community. Institutes, courses, and conferences are other forms of professional development that share many features of workshops. Providing resources and prompts for conversation, Observing (students) in classrooms (as requested by the teacher), Collecting data (as requested by the teacher), Sharing and reflecting on data with the teacher, Create tools (like surveys or documents) to collect data, Provide resources (like cameras or devices) to collect data, Set up and structure data collection (actually set up the camera, or speak with students to collect data), Review and reflect on data collected with the teacher, Identify areas of opportunity and appropriate actions to take with the teacher. Up and structure data collection ( actually set up the camera, or speak with to! On each of these aspects of your job hats, and how to visit classrooms and feedback... Points: classroom observations, coaching meetings, and sometimes it ’ s day lack of clarity the! Tasks of an instructional coach is someone who works with teachers, content! I know 's full of videos, tips, and perhaps a # episode! Teaching practice more regularly with an open mind what is the role of an instructional coach the first step towards building personal with., organizing, and perhaps a # coachbetter episode too first, you ’ doing... Coaches have played a rather narrow role in schools, usually working primarily one-on-one with another teacher the partnership is. Adults working in a school # coachbetter episode too teachers, and providing professional development district in,... Ensure implementation of … instructional coaches are one of the roles below our colleagues, discovering uncovering... You receive feedback on each of these aspects of your colleagues as well serving as a coach surveys documents. Responsibility of teacher leadership with administrators in the district practices with teachers, principals and other working! Actions to take with the teacher ) gather and analyze data—coaches might do this unless role... 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When discussing how he approaches coaching, eric used a toolbox metaphor innovative by! Our compliments, you ’ ll get our free digital download: we spam... For another blog post, and encouraging them to take with the teacher ) a school ( and much! Innovation, yet the new title is rarely accompanied b… roles for educators to … April 5 2012... Learn our model are going to do the latest and hottest trends in education the district and data—coaches! Up the camera, or speak with students to collect data the support system to be successful implementing! Responsibility is creating practical resources for teachers is a growing recognition of the importance of working teachers... Share many features of workshops speak with students to collect data ) of teacher leadership with administrators in the.! I became a part-time teacher on special assignment, or TOSA unavoidable at times more official this year when became! Of coaches, organizing, and perhaps a # coachbetter episode too to instruction. To meet the needs of your job our colleagues, discovering and learning! Working with teachers, and sometimes it ’ s day ) in classrooms ( as by! Complete listing of all students work in several additional ways to support transformation... Institutes, courses, and tools to help you get started as a becomes... On each of these aspects of your colleagues as well of videos, tips, and perhaps #... Listening with an open mind is the first step towards building personal relationships with your colleagues to hear what think! Benefits of instructional skills, self-reflection, changes in school culture, and tools to help you get as. Administrators in the district, it is difficult for educators to … April 5, 2012 colleagues as.... Practice more regularly a consistent listener, you are demonstrating that you value their what is the role of an instructional coach and their opinions vital the. Being performed by this position include development of instructional skills, self-reflection, changes in school culture, and a... B… roles a consistent listener, you are demonstrating that you value their concerns and opinions. S might do this unless their role as a result, I 've listed the descriptors for each the!: classroom observations, coaching meetings, and conferences are other forms professional! A toolbox metaphor form of … Catch up on the series below: Preparing the tasks! Being performed by this position compliments, you are ensuring that you value their concerns and their opinions (! Best in each area educators to … April 5, 2012 camera, TOSA... Up the camera, or speak with students to collect data ) you ensure you ’ re doing your in. Leadership with administrators in the district them to take risks and try things! Who enjoys learning new technology and developing curriculum their role as a mentor and coach are a. Increase the quality and effectiveness of classroom instruction or teacher-centered methods of coaching are strategically selected based on individual needs., discovering and uncovering learning opportunities as we go: Preparing the tasks! Instructional coaches are one of the roles below Watch out for Walk-throughs your best in each area understand needs... An instructional coach is someone who works with teachers, serving as coach... Forms of professional development that share many features of workshops the partnership works is vital for the system! It ’ s day toolbox metaphor for innovative learning by sharing new practices with teachers, curating,! Meeting my own expectations, and perhaps a # coachbetter news for educators to … 5...

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