Editor's note: This post was originally published in August 2014, but has since been revamped for accuracy.
I recently listened to a podcast titled, “The Three Hardest Words in the English Language.” Contrary to what you might think, those three difficult words were not “I love you,” but rather, “I don’t know.” In a world where confidence is valued, saying “I don’t know,” sometimes has a negative connotation—potentially revealing confusion, ignorance, or worse, apathy.
However, I’m proud to say that here at Teachstone, we’re not afraid to say those dreaded words. In fact, we live them, constantly trying out our latest product developments and strategies with people out in the field in order to test, and subsequently, know, the answer to the magic question: Does this meet the needs and solve the problems of coaches and teachers?
One of the reasons our Instructional Support Strategies online course is so valuable is because we’ve vetted it with coaches in the field.
I spoke with Lori Butler, an early learning mentor coach for a Head Start program, about her experiences with the course. Here’s what she had to say about it:
“I’m just really excited … it helped me support teachers to see what they need to see and to really, truly understand what these dimensions are about, rather than relying on big words. I was able to see coaching in action through modeling videos and through practice in the classroom.”
She went on to say:
“I think this program will help me focus. When I walk into a classroom, there’s so much to see. [The Concept Development portion of the course] helps in knowing how to narrow it down, how to interact with the teacher and engage her in a positive way, and how to encourage the teacher to come up with goals. It helped me to understand how to develop and use questions to be more effective. It felt like a lot of pressure was taken off … it gave me a way to talk about Concept Development.”
Want to know more about what this program could mean to you? Find out here!
And while you're at it, sign up to be the first to know about Teachstone's newest product, myTeachstone, an online platform that simplifies CLASS implementation and includes online professional development resources like the one described in this article!
When I first learned about CLASS Group Coaching—a training for early childhood professionals about building relationships with children—I was more than a little interested. This, I thought. This is what teaching is all about. It seems to be an obvious concept, but once we dig deeper, we are able to identify the whys and hows of our interactions. CLASS Group Coaching allows us to identify the benefits of our classroom relationships with our students and helps us be intentional in our daily practices. It allows us to utilize each moment we have with our students to deepen our understanding of their perspectives and genuinely connect with them as people. It helps us see the world from their view and guide their learning in a way that is relevant to them.
Since the coronavirus has disrupted many of our in-person plans, you might be trying to figure out how you can transition in-person coaching to online coaching. Online coaching can open a number of doors for coaches and teachers that might not be an option in face-to-face work.
Even top athletes rely on the support of a coach to improve their game. Players need coaches to help identify their unique strengths and grow their talents while increasing their skills in areas of challenge. To do all this, coaches spend lots of time observing athletes while they practice—giving real-time feedback based on current efforts, breaking skills down as needed to cultivate mastery, and encouraging players to keep trying in pursuit of their goals.