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Making Assumptions

The shift from teaching children to mentoring adults can be difficult for many educators. Ellie Gilbert chronicles the biggest assumptions that harm collaborative relationships with colleagues.

Heather Sisson’s Coaching Space

This "Picture It!" features a look at a simple system to help coaches keep track of materials they loan to teachers.

Teacher and Coach Common Quiet Signals

Coach Heather Rader and Teacher Sean Moore use the same quiet signals to ensure continuity in Sean's second-grade classroom when they share instruction.

Common Core Standards: Spreading the Word

Literacy leaders working in large districts face special challenges when implementing new programs. Suki Jones-Mozenter writes about the strategies being developed in one of the largest districts in the country.

Charting Isn’t Cheating

Jen Brotherton works with secondary teachers to show them the power of charting information for and with students on classroom walls.

“Step Over the Line” Professional Development Icebreaker

This video of the “Step Over the Line” icebreaker activity was captured at a meeting of district-level coaches in Washington state early in the fall led by Amanda Adrian and Heather Sisson.

Planning for a Demonstration Lesson

Clare Landrigan takes a team of grades 3-5 teachers through the steps of selecting a book for a demonstration lesson.

Same Old Books with New Intentions: Reflecting on Rigor and the Common Core

When Jennifer Allen first skims the Common Core, she’s confident there’s not much new in the standards. But after further reflection, she finds rigor and depth in unexpected places.

Picture It: Increasing Comfort with Technology

Franki Sibberson uses an anchor chart to build community and awareness of technical strengths among her fourth graders.

Supporting New Teachers and Appreciating Their Gifts

Melanie Quinn thinks through the two common "phases" of early-career teachers, and creates a checklist of guidance they will need from literacy leaders.

Overwhelmed Coach

When literacy coach Brian Sepe realizes he’s wearing thin, he adopts some practical strategies to deal with feeling overwhelmed.

Coaching Minute: On the Go Follow-Up Tip

Heather Rader shares advice for dealing with teachers who need support when you are in the midst of other responsibilities.

Building Community Protocols

Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan share two of their favorite protocols for building community among educators.

The Road to Rainbow Magic: Hannah’s Story

Instructional coach Linda Karamatic works with Hannah and her classroom teacher to build the reading scaffolds Hannah needs to reach her goal.

Keeping It Real for Students: Never Underestimate the Power of Reflection

Melanie Quinn consoles a teacher who is recovering from a disastrous lesson captured on video, and shows the power of a “do-over” for both teachers and students.

Taking Four Corners of Text Personally

Phrases like close reading, text-dependent questions, and four corners of the text abound in the Common Core. But where is the place for personal connections while reading? Heather Rader’s thinking evolves with the help of fourth-grade students and a text about 14 cows.

Simplexity: Finding Your Focus

Jennifer Allen visits a thriving cupcake store in Boston that doesn’t sell any cupcakes.  It turns out to be the perfect example of “simplexity” – Michael Fullan’s term for maintaining focus on goals and a larger purpose.  Jennifer writes about how simplexity applies to professional development planning for literacy leaders.

Hollering About Informational Text

Literacy coaches Amanda Adrian and Heather Rader plan a professional development activity around a deeper understanding of what is meant by the terms informational, literary, and nonfiction in defining texts.

Off the Dance Floor and Onto the Balcony: Getting the Big Picture in Schools

In the day-to-day triage of our schools and the sense of urgency that pushes us to always be accountable for every minute of the day, we need to keep the big picture in mind. Clare Landrigan and Tammy Mulligan help school leaders figure out how to use their time wisely in the early days of building relationships.

Transcription: A Lens for Reflection

Amanda Adrian develops a new appreciation for transcriptions and the reflection they encourage.

That Teacher Talks Too Much!

Yakety-yak won't bring 'em back to study groups when someone talks far too much. Here is advice from some of your favorite literacy leaders on how to deal with those "overtalkers" with tact and grace.

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