A time for our own coaching reflection


I am an EdTech Coach (officially - Instructional Technology Facilitator) at a high school in Collierville, TN. In my role, I work with teachers to help integrate the use of technology in lesson and provide professional development to our staff.

In a little over a week, we will begin the start of testing season in my school. Between end of course state testing, AP exams, CLEP testing, and senior device collection coming up, I know that requests to work through coaching cycles with our faculty for this school year will come to an end very soon. I like to use this time to reflect on what I accomplished over the past year - What worked? What didn't work? What do I want to try next year?

My hope in posting this here was that we could start a conversation amongst coaches and provide support to each other and maybe pick up an idea or two from each other.

What worked?

  • At the start of the 2022 school year, I began implementation of a mini observation plan for the teachers with whom I work. My plan was to observe the student use of technology in short 10-15 minute classroom visits. I had individual discussions with our teachers to explain what I wanted to do and why...everyone was open to the idea. I send teachers an email a couple of days ahead of time to announce when I plan to visit (they are always provided the ability to tell me no) and send an email after the observation with a thank you and suggestion or quick tip for a lesson idea. I want them to always view me as a positive presence in their rooms. After doing this for a second year, I believe that it once again had a positive influence on my impact with our faculty.
  • Always being a sounding board and willing to listen to the struggles of our teachers has been a great way to continue to build relationships. Making myself available and listening when needed is something that we can all benefit from.

🚫 What didn't work? 🚫

  • We relied a little too much on having some things we share to our faculty via email. We had a few things that didn't go as planned because the email was overlooked/not read.
  • To try to make things easier for teachers, I was more willing than normal to make assets/templates for our teachers when asked. If I want to grow their skill capacity, I should have the teacher build the asset/template with me while we sit together in our planning session.

🔆 What is an idea/strategy that I want to try next school year? 🔆

  • I want to pitch an idea to 2-3 teachers to have us work together with regular coaching cycles throughout the year to try grow their skill capacity. This doesn't have to be a full lesson each time...it could be an idea for a quick formative assessment.

So, now that I have shared my reflection...what about you? How do you feel about your year of coaching and what do you hope to do next school year?

Thanks for sharing!

Posted on April 05, 2024 in response to Dragon_Coach

Megan, I loved reading this post. As coaches we are so often caught up in helping others reflect on their practice, we forget about us! Love the idea of focusing in on a few teachers at a time for coaching cycles. I think it will really help you refine your process and provide consistency for those teachers.

What worked?

  • Sharing my Calendar with appointment links! I am shared between three different buildings. Every Monday this year, I shared my schedule and a link to my calendar where they can schedule an appointment with me. This allowed teachers to select a time that worked for them and removed the back and forth of "When are you available?" emails.
  • After talking with you at ADE, I tried your mini observation plan in my buildings and it was very well received. I too scheduled a time to be there and then gave them the opportunity to schedule a 10 minute reflection time. This was huge for me to have a clearer picture of what is happening in my buildings AND it gave me another opportunity for relationship building.

🚫 What didn't work? 🚫

  • At the beginning of this school year I made a goal to meet regularly with every new teacher in all of my buildings. I met with each of them 1st quarter and didn't make it back to them again unless they reached out. New teachers need so much support and I feel like I failed them this year. I would love ideas on how others support their new teachers without overwhelming them.
  • Contract time workshops. Several times during this school year I offered short during contract time workshops on topics such as our LMS, AI, and Apple Teacher. At first I only offered them after school and had zero participation. Everyone is busy, I totally get it. I definitely didn't take it personally. Being on a block schedule, I offered 30 minute plan time sessions. My participants did increase but it was maybe 3-4 teachers the whole day. Maybe I need a new plan or maybe I need new topics?

🔆 What is an idea/strategy that I want to try next school year? 🔆

  • With the size of my buildings, it can be challenging to meet each teacher's needs individually. I would like to prioritize PLC planning and curriculum writing sessions. Teachers already have so much of their plan time taken by these things. Could I be present in these meetings to offer tips and help brainstorm ideas for iPad integration as they are talking about their daily to-do list rather than attempting to schedule individual planning with each of those teachers?

Thanks for the reflection idea Megan!

Question: A time for our own coaching reflection

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