Question Detail

What is the recommended frequency for coaches to meet with teachers to discuss curriculum and/or professional learning?

Nov 8, 2014 11:18am

I am an Instructional Coach for a PK-5 school. This is my third year in this position. I do multiple duties including RtI/SST/504. I often meet with teachers to discuss students' progress or interventions needed. I feel that aspect of my coaching is strong. I want to make my classroom support role stronger but my administration, although supportive of my role and initiatives, does not like asking my teachers to meet frequently. I believe that we need to be digging into the standards they are struggling with to understand the depth of learning they should be building.

  • English Language Arts / Math
  • Coaching

6

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    • Nov 9, 2014 6:48pm

      I do a lot of communicating through email and my teachers usually respond in a timely manner. I just feel that there are times that we need to be able to discuss standards, strategies, and teaching techniques to make sure we are aligning our instructional and assessment practices. My school provides common planning time but it is only 30 minutes so it does not lend itself to deep and rich conversations.

      • Nov 10, 2014 8:52pm

        Nancy, I'm with you. If coaching is just on the surface, it runs the risk of not making a difference. My friend Joellen Killion has written an article that talks about coaching light and coaching heavy and I like using that language. Coaching light runs the risk of wasting everyone's time. You can read her article here: http://www.pps.k12.or.us/files/teaching-and-learning/Coaching_Heavy_Light_.pdf

        • Nov 10, 2014 9:24pm

          Mr. Knight--thank you. I have actually read that article because my school district has monthly Instructional Coach meetings and we used it for a close reading exercise. I think I will share that with my administrator.

          • Nov 10, 2014 10:11pm

            I'm a big fan of once a week for an hour at least. I believe that coaching can be transformational when we coach around behaviors, beliefs and ways of being -- and in order to engage in these kinds of deep, vulnerable conversations we need time and regular contact. We need time to reflect, process, and practice the new skills we're trying to build--and so I don't believe that quick coaching works. I haven't seen any evidence of it working.

            • Nov 10, 2014 10:35pm

              Thanks Elena--I agree that frequent contact seems to work best and definitely hope that I can move in that direction. I am hoping to meet every two weeks to begin with starting in January. I have been meeting every four weeks so far. I am scheduled to meet with them this week and again the first week in December. I definitely am not someone to meet just to be meeting but I do think we have important work to do if we want to improve our student achievement. My only wish is that as we increase our face-to-face time to every two weeks (moving to weekly), that my teachers see the value and benefit from our meetings rather than feeling like they are missing out on planning time.

              • Mar 4, 2017 3:11pm

                Next year, we will be getting an instructional coach. This is good information for me as well. I would think meeting every week or every other week with grade levels.