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Teachstone Blog

Nikki Croasdale

Nikki earned her BA in Psychology and Cognitive Science from the University of Virginia. She has been using the CLASS tool since 2010, when she worked as a Pre-K CLASS coder and research assistant at the Center for the Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning. She is now the Observer Support Manager at Teachstone and loves being able to support others in conducting classroom observations with fidelity. Her expertise is in live and videotaped CLASS coding, and she is certified on all age levels of the CLASS tool, Infant through Secondary. In her free time, Nikki likes going to the movies and wine tasting with her friends and family. She also enjoys yoga, puzzles, and playing with her Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Neo.

Favorite Teacher: Mrs. Everett, 5th grade

Recent Posts

How to Keep Your Data Accurate with CLASS Calibration

27 Oct 2016


So, you’re a Certified CLASS Observer. Now, what?

You recertify once a year to make sure you are staying true to the tool—that’s essential. But what happens between annual recertifications, during the course of each year? The data you collect is a crucial component of a comprehensive professional development plan and research. So, how can you really be sure you are conducting fair and accurate observations at all times? We have the answer for that: CLASS Calibration!

Topics: Reliability & Certification, Announcements, Products and Trainings, Observation Training Read More

Guidelines for CLASS Video Coding

12 Sep 2016

Conducting CLASS observations via video is valid and acceptable and can be a good fit for many organizations’ needs.

Topics: Implementation, Observation Training Read More

Feedback Loops and Tootsie Pops: They Might Have More In Common Than You’d Think

11 May 2016

Quick quiz! Mentally select your answer.

How many back-and-forths are needed for an effective feedback loop?

  1. One
  2. Three
  3. Five
  4. Seven
Topics: Teacher Tips, Pre-K, Observation Training Read More

How to Create a CLASS Observation Plan

23 Dec 2015

The first thing to consider as you develop a CLASS observation plan for your organization is the purpose or goal of your observations. Are you more interested in teacher-level or program-level data? Will you be using the data you collect to inform professional development? What kinds of decisions will your data help you make? Knowing why you’re conducting CLASS observations and what you hope to accomplish will help you decide on plan specifics. 

Topics: Implementation, Leadership and Policy, CLASS FAQs, Observation Training Read More

Making the Best of Meal Times in the Cafeteria

10 Aug 2015

In preschool programs, meals can take place in the classroom or in the cafeteria. The CLASS Manual tells us that meal times are perfectly acceptable times to observe. But, does this hold true across settings? Are meal times in the cafeteria just as observable as meal times in the classroom?

Topics: Teacher Tips, CLASS FAQs, Observation Training Read More

Cookin’ Up a CLASS Score Report

17 Jul 2015

The CLASS score report is a vessel for providing informative and constructive feedback to teachers about the effectiveness of their classroom interactions. The report can vary depending on your goals and resources, just like a recipe for chocolate chip cookies (fun fact: you can substitute bananas for eggs if you want a low-fat or vegan option or you’re just out of eggs!), but here’s a tried and true recipe for the CLASS score report cooked up by the chefs at Teachstone.

Topics: Professional Development, CLASS FAQs Read More

Is the CLASS Tool Subjective?

18 May 2015

Have you ever thought that the CLASS tool seemed subjective? Perhaps you’ve coded with another certified observer and come up with very different scores for the same classroom? Maybe you’ve struggled with the reliability test or CLASS Calibration and felt that it was due to you seeing the classroom in a different light or interpreting certain situations differently? You’re not alone. Many observers have been there.

Topics: Implementation, Data, CLASS FAQs, Observation Training Read More

Cracking the Code: How to Interpret the CLASS Score Report as a Coach

29 Apr 2015

Does the CLASS score report look like gibberish to you? Are you unsure of how to interpret the data and turn it into a usable form for coaching purposes? Let us be your Rosetta Stone.

Topics: Professional Development, Coach Tips, Data Read More

The Great Power and Responsibility of Reliability

10 Apr 2015

We often talk about CLASS observers and observation data as being reliable. But, what does reliable really mean? And, why do we make such a big deal about it?

Topics: Reliability & Certification, Implementation, Data, Observation Training Read More

Challenges & Solutions to Observing in Mixed-Age Classrooms

25 Mar 2015

So, you’re dual certified on the Infant and Toddler CLASS tools. Congrats! Not only can you observe in Infant classrooms (birth to 18 months) and Toddler classrooms (15 to 36 months), but you can also observe in classrooms that contain a mix of the two age levels! Observing in mixed age classrooms may seem daunting, but I’m here to tell you that it’s completely doable. If you’re preparing to do Infant/Toddler CLASS observations, read on. This blog presents solutions to three of the most common challenges dual Infant/Toddler observers face when observing in a mixed-age setting.

Topics: Infant, Family Child Care (FCC), Toddler, CLASS FAQs, Observation Training Read More
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