Thursday, October 22, 2015

Literacy Coaches Roles and Responsibilities

Sebastian Wren and Deborah Reed published Literacy Coaches Roles and Responsibilities in response to the emerging demand to meet NCLB requirements that all students read at grade level and the recognition that all teachers need to improve their ability to teach reading to all kids. They produced the following list of recommendations for coaches and one for principals:
  1. Coaches are resources not evaluators
  2. Most time working with teachers--> some time on PD
  3. Coaches work with teachers not students unless demonstrating a lesson
  4. Areas of instructional support: theory, demonstration, observation, feedback/reflection, facilitating collaboration
  5. Facilitating examination of student work
The fifth point really is incorporated in the fourth point. The fact that it is given its own point reinforces it's importance. As an itinerant support provider this is an area where I am limited. I can help teachers look at their individual student's work, but am not employed to consider department, building or district issues.
My personal areas of expertise are research and curriculum development/modification. The idea of an emphasis on PD not only appeals to my interests, it is a sensible mechanism for maintaining on top of changes in standards and assessments, research, and resources. Education creates many of these changes that people need to keep up with in order to provide the best learning environment possible.
An area I hope to develop is observation. While I have completed many formal observations of students in classes, I have far less experience observing teachers. I have attempted some and need to figure out how to best record ideas and organize a debriefing meeting. I did find an observation form on the Literacy Coaching Clearinghouse. I need to try it a few times and see how it works for me. I have recorded an observation on my iPad, and I need to see how I can leverage that tool as well.

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