Instructional Coaching

Instructional Coaching

Friday, July 25, 2014

Coaching Cycle

To Get Started...
*Get a clear picture of current reality.
*Identify a change you want to see in students.
*Identify a measurable student goal/outcome.
*Identify a strategy to try in reaching this goal/outcome.

Questions. to ask...
*On a scale of 1-10, how close was the lesson to your ideal?
*What would you need to change to make it closer to 10?
*What would you see your students doing differently?
*Describe what that would look like.
*How could we measure that?
*Should that be your goal?
*If you could reach that goal, would it really matter to you?
*What teaching strategy would you like to use to achieve your goal?

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tuesday Teaching Tips - Guided Math

How can we meet the needs of our students in math?  In reading, many educators are using guided reading (small group).  Why not do the same in math?

Why guided math?
The benefits of guided math are similar to the benefits of guided reading.

  • Flexible grouping based on ability/needs/interests
  • Scaffolding of more difficult concepts
  • Reteaching and exploration of math concepts in a smaller risk free environment
  • Increased teacher knowledge of student abilities

Here are some guided math management systems:

Daily 5 Math

Sample Daily 5 Math Routine:
Math Meeting/Warm-up - “Problem of the Day” Math Focus Lesson (introduce math vocabulary & concepts) Daily 5 Choice Daily 5 Choice
Meet About Math (closing/discuss the day of math)

B = Buddy Math U = Using Manipulatives
I = Independent Working/Reading
L = Learning About Numbers
D = Doing Math

Sample BUILD Routine:

Group 1-

1) 30 minute puzzling lesson.

2) 30 minutes of BUILD time.

Group 2-

1) 30 minutes of BUILD time.

2) 30 minute puzzling lesson.

The important thing is finding a management system that works for you and your students.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Tuesday Teacher Tips - Digital Texts

There are SO many digital text resources.  Many are free!  This is a list that I received at the Literacy Retreat.  My favorite is NEWSELA.  You can choose a topic and differentiate the article by Lexile level.  Many of the articles have quizzes too!

Resources for digital text
  • offers FREE articles on any subject at a variety of Lexile levels.
  • NEWSELA is a FREE website for current news event articles. Lexile range can be manipulated to make the text easier or harder. You can add students to your group and assign certain articles to the group. Want to know how to use NEWSELA? Read the Reading Today article that explains all the benefits to teachers and students.
  • Time for Kids is a news magazine geared toward students in grades K-6 that offers age-appropriate news stories.
  • National Geographic Kids has a FREE website for information and games related to current news around the world.
  • Starfall is a FREE website to use with primary students. It is filled with interactive e-books and activities.
  • Would you love to use digital text, but you don't own a Kindle? No worries. The Kindle app is free for any device. Order e-books through Amazon, but send the books to any tablet or smartphone.
  • At, books are scanned and can be projected up on a full screen. Use interactive white board tools to annotate the text. It offers loads of nonfiction texts. Kristi's tip: Don't always go by age level. The text might have high-level content even if it is labeled "ages 4-7." Yellowstone Moran is a perfect example. This site is sponsored by Pearson.
  • TumbleBooks is a subscription website for digital recordings of books. Most public libraries have links to their subscriptions and can be accessed by any computer with an IP address from the same state. Check it out before you pay for a subscription. Example:
  • houses classic literature in a digital format perfect for middle school and high school students. The books are free due to the fact that their copyrights have expired.
  • Search for old children's books like the original version of The Tale of Peter Rabbit by Beatrix Potter in Gutenberg's children's picture book section.
  • The Teacher Created Materials explor-ebooks app gives 4 free books when you sign up. Then you can purchase e-books to add to your "bookshelf." They sell books for a single classroom copy or many copies with a site license.
  • Scholastic is a great resource for teachers to get economical books in the classroom. The Storia app allows teachers to buy digital copies for their virtual "bookshelf."