Instructional Coach Weekly Update

Week of October 17-21

Strategy Spotlight

We teach our students how to behave appropriately during school - PBIS (Caring, Positive, Upstanding) and we spend a lot of time teaching, re-teaching, modeling, and reinforcing these behaviors in our classroom. But how much time do we spend teaching students how to be good learners?

How much more successful could our students be if we explicitly taught these skills to our students?

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Ways to Make Team Planning More Effective

I came across an article titled, "6 ways to make team planning more effective," by Angela Watson this weekend and I thought it had some good pointers and things to consider when coming together to team plan. Several of the things she discussed I felt like we at the intermediate have already mastered (e.g. using the cloud to share ideas, plans, etc. and sharing the burden of material preparation). Below are some of my take-aways from the article.

Lesson planning is too important, challenging, and time-consuming to try to do ALL of it on your own. Many teachers already plan with their grade level or subject area teams, but in many cases, it's not working particularly well. Either the meetings consume massive amounts of time or personality conflicts keep the endeavor from being productive. Here are 6 different ways to efficiently co-plan.

1. Give each group member a clearly-defined set of responsibilities according to individual strengths: The idea here is for each team member to choose an area where she or he feels knowledgeable and has valuable ideas and activities to contribute. Co-plan the official lesson plans and then each of you can tweak the implementation to fit your personal teaching style.

2. Keep team planning meetings on track with a planning template and an effective leader: Each team member brainstorms a number of effective strategies/activities for teaching each skill in the coming week or unit, and comes to the meeting with that template already completed. This prevents you from wasting time brainstorming ideas during the meeting.

3. Collaborate more efficiently with the cloud: CHECK! All teams here at the intermediate are already rocking this one!

4. Share the burden for photocopying, laminating and other material preparation: CHECK AGAIN!

5. Make the best of whatever your team members offer and consider their lessons a framework: Don't resist the idea of co-planning just because you have a different teaching style than your colleagues. Stay focused on what you CAN use from them!

6. Create your own separate co-planning strategies apart from your grade level team: Co-planning with just one or two colleagues you respect is also an effective strategy when you officially co-plan with the whole team but end up finding your own activities, anyway.

This Week

  • 7:45-8:45 Meeting with Barabara, Jessica Q, and Susan O.
  • 5th grade team planning
  • Help new interventions start - preparing materials, scripts and training teachers
  • 12:00-3:00 Meeting at the primary
  • 3rd grade team planning


  • All day training for Instructional Coaches at GWAEA


  • All day training for Instructional Coaches at GWAEA


  • 7:45 staff meeting
  • 8:30-11:30 Reading strategy site work @ primary
  • Fourth grade team planning
  • Work with staff
  • Work on standards books


  • 7:30 special education meeting
  • 8:30-11:30 meeting with Jessica Q.
  • 12:00-3:30 weekly IC/lead meeting

12 Months as a Teacher...

12 Months As a Teacher