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Who Are “They”? Word Choice and Student Learning

Gretchen Taylor finds that these kids and everyone are key words to focus on in coaching, because they can signify sweeping assumptions in lieu of a close look at individual behaviors.

The Children Are Communicating. Are We Listening?

Melanie Quinn realizes our classrooms are filled with mini-coaches. The students in front of us are clearly communicating their needs; we just need to do a better job of paying attention.

No Substitute for Owning the Learning

Karen Terlecky finds herself in a fitness class with a bunch of angry participants. The experience causes her to reflect on the disconnect between coach and teacher expectations when coaches think their role is to fix classroom issues.

Be Someone Who Writes

Melanie Meehan shares some practical suggestions for helping teachers (and literacy coaches) build a writing habit and get over their feelings of inadequacy as writers.

Kid-Watching as a Coaching Move

Dana Murphy explains why kid-watching is often the most effective strategy for her time in classrooms, and how she uses her notes with teachers.

Starting a Coaching Cycle: The First Meeting

Dana Murphy outlines a simple process for building trust and shared vision in the first meeting before the launch of a coaching cycle.

Authentically Curious

Matt Renwick is stunned when a teacher complains that he doesn't take the time to know the staff. After getting over his initial anger, he decides on two strategies to address the problem.

Coaching Purposeful Classroom Design

Gretchen Taylor helps middle school teachers rethink their instruction by considering areas of the classroom as “zones” for learning, and redesigning them accordingly.

Paraphrasing to Let Teachers Lead

Matt Renwick talks about the importance of paraphrasing and meandering in conversations after classroom observations so teachers can take the lead in their learning.

The Thin Line Between Mentoring and Coaching

Matt Renwick resists the urge to console a teacher who is disappointed in a student assessment. Instead, he considers whether taking on a mentoring or coaching role would be most helpful.

Rocking the Boat

Ruth Ayres recalls a humorous canoe trip as a teenager when a group leader had to rescue her and she didn't like it. She realizes sometimes this is just the role literacy coaches need to take on, even if it sparks initial resentment in teachers.

Grammar Instruction in Fourth Grade

Melanie Meehan coaches a fourth-grade teacher who is trying to improve his grammar instruction.

It’s Not About Us

Matt Renwick realizes that sometimes we have to ignore our path as learners to help teachers find their own way to better instruction.

Choosing Our Words Carefully

Heather Fisher and Kathy Provost reflect on how just a few words can define relationships between literacy coaches and teachers.

Learning Through Listening

Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan provide some simple listening and questioning strategies to help coaches focus on the specific needs of each teacher.

No More Whack-a-Mole Coaching

Cathy Mere shares strategies for avoiding distractions and staying focused while coaching.

Maintaining Teacher Ownership in Coaching Conversations

Cathy Mere ponders the unspoken messages we can send other coaches and teachers, and how to make our work more collaborative through the language we use.

Making Classroom Visits a Habit

Matt Renwick examines the cues, routines, and rewards that are necessary for making classroom visits a regular part of his daily routine.

Helping Struggling Writers in Second Grade

Melanie Meehan chats with second-grade teacher Nadia Egan about creative strategies for helping struggling writers.

Making Coaching Meaningful: Establishing Goals and Roles

Gretchen Taylor finds that her coaching cycles are much more rewarding for everyone when goals and roles are defined at the start of the process.

Planning a Coaching Cycle

Kathy Provost works with a third-grade teacher to plan long-term and daily goals in a coaching cycle in this video.

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