As a CLASS Group Coaching (MMCI) instructor, the sections of any given two-hour session may feel, at times, very goal driven. These sections titled "Know," "See," and "Do” are interconnected. In particular, it is possible to consider "Do" within "Know," and "See." When an instructor supports in-the-moment experiences that connect new knowledge to current practice, they make the CLASS dimensions more relevant to the educators' daily work. But how can we infuse more “Do” into “Know” and “See?” First, let's re-cap what happens in each section.
In the “Know” section, you introduce the new dimension of focus, and help your educators understand the importance of effective interactions. You share relevant examples as you introduce each of the indicators, and you lead them through the example scenario slides. Before moving onto the guided videos, the educators will know what the indicators are, why they are important, and the developmental impact on the children.
Now it’s time to move onto the guided videos, in which the educators develop their skills for identifying effective interactions. This is the “See” section. The videos are there for participants to not only identify evidence in each indicator but to also recognize how less effective interactions impact children and how they can enhance upon this interactions.
This section focuses on encouraging educators to take action and to implement the strategies they just learned into their everyday teaching practice with more depth, duration, and frequency. Participants will choose an indicator to focus on for the following week, and make concrete next steps on how they increase interactions specific to this indicator.
As you introduce the indicators with examples, consider adding these questions:
As you facilitate effective and less effective videos, try these questions:
The importance of this section is to help build upon the reflection that has started in the "Know" and "See" sections. Our goal is for the participants to choose an indicator to focus on improving, to create some concrete next steps on how they are going to accomplish their goal, to think about the impact on the child due to their intentionality, and, finally, to visualize what successfully attaining this goal would look like.
Let’s look at this in steps from an example from Infant Toddler MMCI:
Another way to help participants visualize their success is to say, “Everyone, close your eyes for 30 seconds and imagine you are in your classroom; what does it look like as you are implementing this goal, and how do the children respond?" If time permits, allow 2-4 minutes for your participants to role-play and act out their indicator of focus! This step also helps them see any challenges that may arise, and they can brainstorm how to overcome these barriers.
Let us know if you have other open-ended reflective questions that you currently use in your MMCI cohorts!
Many teachers and leaders associate CLASS® with preschool. And we get it! It’s used in early childhood classrooms across the country, including Head Start programs, and it’s been more important than ever for young children as they begin to return to in-person learning.
But the principles of CLASS - Emotional Support, Classroom Organization, Instructional Support - are important for children well beyond Pre-K. The ever-increasing research base shows that interactions matter for children’s social-emotional and academic development. That’s why CLASS is organized to support children from infancy to high school with the developmentally appropriate interactions that drive learning - and why K-12 leaders are embracing CLASS in their schools.
As you jump in to help your teacher, working side by side as a collaborator, everything seems clear at the beginning. There are some obvious areas to address and both you and your teacher have tons of energy, ready to change the world. After a few visits, however, an unsettling feeling begins to creep up on you.
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.