Teaching is so many things. It is fun, exhausting, creative and time-consuming. It is learning, and laughing and getting annoyed. It often feels routine, but yet is ever-changing. But above all, teaching is an amazing job where we have the privilege of educating children. In this job, we have so much of which we are responsible, each and every day. We are not only teaching our students, but are supposed to be constantly learning ourselves. I can't imagine being a teacher who did not lean on others for support, knowledge and guidance. Luckily, we are able to work with other teachers who very often provide all of these things. However, when fellow teachers are also trying to do all the same things that you are doing, it isn't quite the same as having someone whose purpose is to provide those things for you.
Having an instructional coach is something that every teacher not only needs, but DESERVES. Many professions utilize coaches to help support and improve their practice. Instructional coaches are not only utilized for "low-performing" teachers, just as sports coaches are not only needed for "low-performing" players! Having an instructional coach means having someone who sees your strengths and praises them, supports your reflection and growth, and collaborates with you to increase knowledge, improve practice and meet individual, as well as school goals.
My experience with a literacy coach (including the training provided by the company itself) was, by far, the best professional development I received in my career. It was a bit of a rocky start, but only because of my own fear of being "judged" or finding out that I wasn't doing things the "right way". However, once I opened up and trusted my coach, my growth began, and my confidence and effectiveness improved immensely. I so enjoyed the opportunity to really collaborate with a fellow professional not only before and after lessons or observations, but right there in the thick of teaching. The times where we were both in the middle of the lesson and had the chance to talk through each situation was invaluable, and extremely effective. Every teacher deserves to have such support in their work.
So, how can I, as a literacy coach, help you? I will listen. I will listen to your worries and doubts and struggles, as well as to your accomplishments. I will listen to your experience, and to your questions. Then, I will work right alongside you to face the doubts and worries with a plan that works for you. We will find ways to meet the needs of your students with best-practices and confidence. I will give you the mirror to show you how awesome you already are, and then provide the guidance and support to allow you to become even more awesome!
Couldn't help myself! I don't make it through many days without a quote from my favorite show!
So, whether you find me in your school, or would like to find a way to work with me independently, I'll be there for you!