So far, we have looked at how the look-for text and the CLASS language charts can support teacher learning. For part 3 of this series, let’s examine how the reflective questions in myTeachstone can encourage teacher engagement and reflection.
Did you know that every myTeachstone resource includes its own set of open-ended, reflective questions? Here is one example.
But before we dig into myTeachstone, let's begin with a few of our own reflective questions.
The answers to these questions will begin our discussion on why reflection is an essential component of professional development.
But here’s the catch. Asking effective questions is hard. For everyone. Even seasoned coaches can struggle with asking effective questions. Many coaches don’t have the time to devote to planning conferences as they would hope. Teachers’ responses to questions can vary and coaches may not always know how to follow up.
The reflective questions included with each myTeachstone resource can help. The questions are already created for you. These questions can be used as conversation starters or as follow-up to teachers’ thoughts on the resource.
We’re going to end this series a little differently. We’re giving you homework!
Watch the video Itsy Bitsy Dog (if you have been keeping up with previous posts, you've seen this video before!), and think about how you might use this resource to engage teachers in conversation. Think about each of type of bonus content: the look fors, charts, and reflective questions.
Now think about a teacher that would benefit from watching and discussing this resource. Recommend it and use the look fors, charts, and questions to start your discussion. Encourage the teacher to use each part of the content to extend learning.
Don’t be shy! Please let us know how it goes. What was helpful? How did the teacher respond to the strategies you used and questions you asked?
...And keep on the lookout for a series on how to create your own reflective questions!
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.
As coaches, we've all encountered resistant teachers. Resistance to coaching can take many forms. You might encounter a teacher who is direct, making it clear they don't want your help. Or a teacher who is passive, putting off your meetings and recommendations, or acting like they're open to coaching but never actually changing their behavior. While this can be frustrating, you shouldn’t assume the teacher is to blame.