This is the Teachers Talk Live precast for our episode 13: Maximizing Coach – Teacher relationships. I’m Oscar Cielos Staton. @TeachCow
What we hope to achieve through our upcoming program is to provide tips and ideas for teachers, coaches and their administrations on how to foster healthy and collaborative relationships as these two roles interface.
We asked for online input and we received some wonderful responses from teachers and coaches alike. Building trust seemed to be an important component along with transparency and organization. One of my favorite responses comes from Gretchen Schultek @GSchultek who said “Realize that you both have something to offer to the relationship so it’s a give and take…not a tell and do.” I really appreciate the insight that a coach may have just as much to learn from a teacher.
Karly Moura @KarlyMoura makes the important point that a coach must listen or as she says “Really listen” to the teacher before giving advice, tips or resources because they may be ina completely different place than we assumed them to be. “We” meaning coaches. I thought this was important to know because just like with our younger students, you never know what might be going on without taking the time to listen and understand.
Colin Ward @ColinWard18 said that “building on successes is always more productive than merely
Highlighting errors to be corrected.” That also struck a cord with me because it speaks to the tone of all the responses…meaning positivity.
It happens at many schools that coaches are suddenly thrust onto a campus with the idea that they will correct the shortcomings, deficiencies in some teachers and totally do a 180 on labeled problem teachers.
I think coaches face the difficult delicate task of somehow gaining the trust of teachers enough to come in their classroom, observe, provide input and maybe even take over some of their lessons. They must do this in a way that doesn’t seem invasive and doesn’t affect the pride of that teacher and their craft. They must also be able to navigate a relationship where they don’t project themselves as the subject matter expert to a more seasoned teacher while at the same time exude that expertise with a teacher that needs that support and confidence.
Teachers on the other hand, need to be open to assistance. They need to be able to be reflective in their teaching and be able to communicate this to a coach. Teachers shoudl be open to the idea that it isn’t a challenge to their professionalism or expertise to receive help from others, especially those who have been trained to provide this assistance.
The help can come in a variety of ways: organization, time management, behavior management, lesson planning, resource gathering, technology, etc. There are many ways a coach may be able to help a teacher, but the teacher has to be open to this type of collaboration.
We look forward to our talk on our next episode on this very topic. We hope you’ll listen! This is Oscar Cielos Staton with the Teachers Talk Live Precast.
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