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Coaching Minute: Building Rapport with Teachers

Principal Lee Snider talks about how he built rapport with teachers when he was new to the role of principal in the building.

A Heart for Coaching

“Do you miss the classroom?” Cathy Mere has answered this question often. It makes her think about the differences between coaching and teaching, and how it takes time to develop a coaching heart.

Coaching Minute: Collaborating with Principals

Literacy coach Jen Court explains how she collaborates with principals.

Using Supplies to Inspire

Heather Fisher shares her favorite tools to share as gifts for a new literacy coach.

A Little Bit of Clarity

Matt Renwick goes out to buy a new pair of glasses, and gets a stern lecture on taking care of them. The experience makes him ponder how we get clarity for best practices in literacy instruction.

Creating Coaching Visions

Vision boards are a marvelous way to help teachers and coaches reflect in positive ways on their professional goals and passions. Stephanie Affinito explains how she helps colleagues create them.

Brain Dumps for Clarity in Coaching

Too much email, too much paper, just too much. David Pittman finds “brain dumps” are a useful tool for helping teachers sift through and clarify what’s important to work on with a literacy coach.

Unleveling Classroom Libraries

Moving a classroom library from levels to themes and authors is challenging and rewarding. Tara Barnett and Kate Mills share how they take teachers step by step through the process of reorganizing their classroom libraries.

Best Intentions with No Assumptions

Matt Renwick considers how assumptions about teachers and students can stymie leaders and learning in schools.

Celebrations Across the Year

Cathy Mere discovers her routine for celebrations at the start of staff meetings is leaving some colleagues out. She revises her thinking and practice for celebrations among literacy coaches all year long.

Encouraging Teachers to Write

One of the biggest challenges literacy coaches face is getting teachers to write. It’s worth the effort, because nothing else is as effective in helping teachers understand and implement successful writing workshops. Ruth Ayres shares three practical strategies for helping teachers put pen to page.

Finding Time for Classroom Walk-Throughs

Matt Renwick is surprised when teachers evaluate his school visibility as weak. He decides to make his classroom visits more purposeful, and shares the strategies he implements.

The 15-Minute Meeting

Ruth Ayres uses key questions to keep her lesson debrief meetings only 15 minutes long, and finds that the limits provoke rich conversations and reflection in a short amount of time.

Meeting with Building Leaders

Melanie Meehan shares her agenda items and strategies for productive regular meetings between literacy coaches and principals.

A Literacy Foundation

A literacy community is only as strong as its foundation. Matt Renwick uses discussions around mission statements and shared texts to build a collective vision for literacy instruction in one school.

Classroom Visit Protocols

Jennifer Schwanke shares tips for ensuring your classroom visits aren't unexpected or unwelcome.

Outreach by Reaching Out

David Pittman begins a morning resenting bus duty, and ends with insights into how literacy coaches can use chance encounters to build connections with families.

Literacy Audit (Part 4): Building a Strong Team

We continue our series on literacy audits. Jennifer Schwanke explains why it is essential to build a strong team if you want to see real change after completing an audit and deciding on next steps.

Rethinking Morning Announcements

"Are you going to read one of your stupid quotes again?" This question from a "frequent flyer" in the principal's office got Matt Renwick to consider ways to change up the morning announcements with a variety of literacy-related components.

Literacy Audit (Part 2): Taking Your School’s Pulse

Jennifer Schwanke continues her series on literacy audits. In this installment, she provides some key questions for taking the "literacy pulse" in your school.

You’re New to Coaching. Now What?

Cathy Mere remembers her early days as a coach and shares her top seven strategies for having a fulfilling first year.

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