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Teachstone Blog

One School. Two Classrooms. Two Vastly Different Experiences.

18 Jan 2017

 

What does quality teaching look like in an early childhood classroom? Twenty-five years ago, it was providing a safe place for children to play, with stimulating materials and books to read. Today, we have provided those basics in most early childhood classrooms, and our focus has shifted to the hows of quality—how teachers interact with children, how they use time and materials to get the most out of every moment, and how they ensure that children are engaged and stimulated.

Topics: Research, CLASS FAQs Read More

3 Rules for Nurturing Creative Children

13 Jan 2017

 A couple weeks ago, a friend shared this short video below from The Atlantic with me. Turns out, this video was everything I love about good media: it was concise, included simple takeaways, and gave me something to think about (long after the video ended).

Topics: Pre-K Read More

Self- and Parallel Talk: Not Just for the Non-verbal

12 Jan 2017

I was quite taken aback recently when an intern completing her first semester with a group of young toddlers told me, “My goal when I started the semester was to use more self-talk and parallel talk, but the toddlers are now talking, so that’s no longer needed.” 

How to respond? Clearly she assumed that the self- and parallel talk supported language for very young children, and the effectiveness ended there. But that's not really true.

Topics: Teacher Tips, Coach Tips, CLASS FAQs Read More

What Is an Open-Ended Question?

05 Jan 2017

The scenario: A teacher is sitting with several children having snack, and the teacher asks a student, “What are you going to be for Halloween?” 

Is this question open-ended or closed-ended?

Topics: Teacher Tips Read More

The 5 Coaching Strategies that Helped Me Connect with Resistant Teachers

28 Dec 2016

"I’ve just begun my journey into the world of coaching. I am eager and excited about this opportunity to help pave the way for more effective teaching. I’ve recently been given my list of classrooms that I will be working with and I’m anxious to get started. I get ready to meet my first teacher, Ms. Linda, and I just know that she will be excited to meet me and we will form an instant bond and work together for the benefit of the children in that classroom.

"I will not get many opportunities to have face to face visits with Ms. Linda, so I know this first one is crucial. I walk through the door, introduce myself, and am immediately brushed off. Ms. Linda does not have time to talk to me right now, she explains that several children need her assistance. She’s also got to get the morning snack ready, and her assistant is out for the day so she is flying solo. Ms. Linda does not seem as excited about this meeting as I would have hoped.

"She quickly shares that I’m the third coach that has been in to work with her, and although she knows that I have to do my job, she’s fine and really doesn’t see how I can help her. A CLASS observer was in her room last week, and she doesn’t understand what the big deal is. She’s been teaching for over 10 years and she’s tried it all. So, anything I have to share with her is stuff she’s already heard."

Sound familiar?

Topics: Professional Development, Coach Tips Read More

The 7 Deadly Sins to Avoid When Taking Teacher Learning Online

27 Dec 2016

If you’re a Teachstone blog-reader, you may have noticed that we focus on being “strengths-based” instructional coaching all the time. But sometimes it’s equally healthy to reflect on the stuff that didn’t go so well so we can avoid it next time. (By the way, if you’re looking for something purely strengths-based, Gina Gates recently wrote this fantastic post for the myTeachstone blog on ways to support resistant teachers using an online platform.) 

This post is about what not to do. These are the seven deadly sins of taking teacher learning online:

Topics: Professional Development, Coach Tips Read More

The Complete Guide to Incorporating Regard for Student Perspectives at Circle Time

22 Dec 2016

Understanding how to effectively employ Regard for Student Perspectives while maintaining a constructive learning environment can be challenging. In the following paragraphs the fictional preschool professional, Mrs. Jones, will illustrate the indicators of Regard for Student Perspectives at circle time. I’ll then discuss her exemplary examples:

Topics: Teacher Tips, Pre-K, Observation Training Read More

Why Have CLASS Pre-K CLASS Observation Training in One Language When You Can Have it in Two?

15 Dec 2016

 

Have you heard the news? Teachstone has just launched our newest training—Pre-K CLASS Observation Training in Spanish! We kicked off this training just this month in sunny Miami, Florida. That's right, two whole days of learning how to become a CLASS certified observer, all delivered in Spanish.   

Topics: Announcements, Products and Trainings Read More

The 7 People You Will Meet at InterAct2017

13 Dec 2016

InterAct 2017 is not too far away. If you didn't attend last year, you probably don't know what to expect, or have a good idea of who you might might meet. Read our list below to find out who you will you be. And which of these people are most like your favorite work colleagues?

Topics: Events, Just for Fun Read More

The Best Way to Incorporate More Concept Development in Your Lessons

12 Dec 2016

As you know, CLASS is a tool that captures teacher-student interactions. When it comes to the dimension “Concept Development” the focus is on the method the teacher uses to provide instruction in the classroom. While the interactions are what get measured with CLASS, as a teacher you can plan for Concept Development to be present throughout your lessons.

Let’s look closer at how to do this. 

Topics: Teacher Tips, Pre-K Read More
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