Educational Coaches @ School?!

Have you ever experientwitterced an educational coach @school?

Last week I started the Eduro CourseCoaching From Theory to Practice. The first readings (amongst others the ISTE Coaching White Paper – great overview & ISTE Standards Coaches) were very interesting read and they gave me a whole new perspective. I have never really experienced a coach at school. Yes, at the last school I worked at there were two educational technology coaches and I’m still thankful that I met them (Thanks Kim and Fred) and I had the chance to ask them all kind of questions. But I didn’t feel I was coached by them. Or coached by somebody else in a different field, f.e. a literacy.

Have you ever experienced an educational coach @school?

Feel free to be part of the poll: https://twitter.com/blaho_blaho/status/707838321263648769 

Following a short definition about coaching and coaches:

Michael Fullan and Jim Knight say:

Next to the principal, coaches are the most

crucial change agent in a school.

The purposes of coaching is

“to help maximising personal and professional potential, while concomitantly upgrading their own professional proficiency. Coaching is customised and focused on providing instruction on what needs to be accomplished. Coaches tailor support, assess each teacher’s progress with observations, use interviews and surveys, and have follow-up visits.

(ISTE Coaching White paper, p.7)

Nothing else we try to do in the classroom, right? And of course it should happen in the context of the current teaching, it should be relevant and meaningful for the teacher and students, and of course it is an on-going process.

In addition to this, learning communities help and support teachers instantly and just in time when they need it. Interactive social learning (becomes more and more) is already a while a valid way to improve your professional goals. Using Twitter and other social media helping us to grow professionally and personally. (ISTE Coaching White paper, p.8)

Wouldn’t it be nice?

These days the demands are changing all the time. Slogans like “Change is the new normal” or “learn, relearn and unlearn” are more and more valid in our profession. Wouldn’t it be nice for us teachers to have a coach, a mentor, somebody who guides us in a trustful and judgement free way?

Wouldn’t it also be nice and a great challenge to be a coach? To get the chance to change, to inspire, to motivate, to improve, to relearn, to unlearn, to shape, to advice, to open eyes, to develop, to help, to support, to cultivate, to excite, to create, … That’s why I want to go that direction.

Btw. …

Unfortunately not many people answered to my poll on Twitter so far. Reasons? Maybe the wording of my question wasn’t good enough? Maybe my hashtags weren’t the right one? The timing of my post? Maybe many people really haven’t thought about the idea of having a coach. Anyways, learning.

Have you ever experienced an educational coach @school? Tell me about it … Thx.

3 thoughts on “Educational Coaches @ School?!

  1. Profile photo of VivianVivian

    Hi Verena

    I’m not a sporty person so the word, “coach” doesn’t work for me so well. It makes me feel a bit stressed as if I’m going to be forced to run 10 times around the field, whether I can or not :D

    I like the word, “mentor” better. If you look at my twitter tag line link to twitter.com , you ‘ll see that “mentor” shows up there in second place. Mentoring can be either formal or informal, but I feel that informal works the best. Informal is often happens “just in time” and both parties (mentor and mentee) are engaged during the entire process.

    Perhaps it would work best if we started out on a formal basis (so that everyone gets a mentor) and then it moves into informal mentoring, later, if it “clicks” with both parties.

    Reply
  2. Profile photo of Verena ZimmerVerena Zimmer Post author

    Hi Vivian,

    I think if you want change on a bigger scale the coaching process has to be formal and supported by the leadership. My experience is that too many people are still to shy, to afraid, to worried, maybe also to proud, to busy anyways to ask a mentor / coach for help. support, feedback and so on. Of course it is a very thin line and there should always be more encouragement rather than enforcement or even pressure. That requires a lot of work on relationships and trust.
    I had a mentor when I did my teacher training. The relationship was very difficult at the beginning. We developed a professional relationship but it was still one sided. Today I imagine a two sided learning experience.

    Reply
    1. Profile photo of Verena ZimmerVerena Zimmer Post author

      Vivian,

      Look what I found (well, maybe you know this already) – Kim Cofino explains the difference between mentoring and coaching:

      link to kimcofino.com

      Have a look at the “The Collaboration Cycle”.

      Reply

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