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Literacy Planning How Coaches can guide the way to school change. Rebecca Derenge West Virginia Department of Education.

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Presentation on theme: "Literacy Planning How Coaches can guide the way to school change. Rebecca Derenge West Virginia Department of Education."— Presentation transcript:


2 Literacy Planning How Coaches can guide the way to school change. Rebecca Derenge West Virginia Department of Education

3 Goals of Presentation Whats this coaching role? Keys to successful leadership and coaching Issues we face

4 Where do we begin?

5 What Leadership Roles Are Part of Your Responsibility? Resource to teachers, parents, and other professionals Share ideas and materials with teachers? Plan with teachers for classroom instruction? Discuss needs of students with special educators? Meet with parents and do workshops for them?

6 What is Leadership? A position with authority Traits (caring, charismatic) Set of behaviors

7 A Definition to Think About …any activity or set of activities associated with working with others to accomplish a common goal, that of improving reading achievement. Leading by influence – encouraging, guiding, facilitating, and coaching Bean, R.M. (2004). The Reading Specialist Leadership in the Classroom, School, and Community. New York, Guilford Press.

8 Coaching: Is this different from the leadership role of the reading specialist? There is an acknowledgement that the literacy coach is to work with teachers. May or may not work with students Seen as responsible for professional development Most continue to lead by influence


10 Forms of Coaching Level 1 – informal; helps to develop relationships Informal conversations, study groups, assisting with assessment Level 2 – more formal, begins to look at areas of need and focus Co-planning lessons, team meetings Level 3 – formal, more intense Classroom visits; co-teaching lessons

11 Know Your Responsibilities Is there a job description? Has everyone seen it – and have you had opportunity to discuss it with teachers, etc.? Was principal involved in developing it or at least supports it? Is it reasonable in terms of workload, etc.?

12 Work with the Principal Principals can make or break the coaching position. Must understand the role Must value the role

13 Current difficulties in reading largely originate from rising demands for literacy, not from declining absolute levels of literacy Report of the National Research Council

14 Know your Research! Is the Research Based in Science? Was there an independent evaluator? Use of experimental design: control group? Use of standardized tests to measure growth? Gains sustained over time? 3 or more years?

15 Be a Lifelong Learner Importance of self-reflection Network with others

16 Where to begin the planning process? At the beginning! As a beginning Coach, set both your short and long-range personal goals Form a Literacy Planning Team (by invitation) Create a Staff Survey The Literacy Planning team will set goals for the school in terms of Literacy Develop a menu of services


18 So What is a Literacy Team? A Literacy Team could include: Classroom Teachers Administrators Counselors Parents Special Educators Librarian Coaches and/or Specialists

19 What is the role of a literacy team? To begin and keep conversations going To assess and understand the current reality at your school To set priorities To establish and carry out staff development To create both a short and long-range literacy plan To monitor your program and student performance Adopted from the work of John OFlahavan, University of Maryland

20 Working with Groups Create Team Power: No one of us is as smart as all of us! Create a Clear Purpose and Vision Develop Skills (Build Bench Strength) Keep the accent on the positive! Blanchard, K., Bowles, S., Carew, D. & Parisi- Carew, E. (2001). High Five! The Magic of Working Together. HarperCollins Publisher, New York.

21 CREATING THE STAFF SURVEY Design questions to fit the needs of the school(s) youre assigned. Ask questions that are a direct result of looking at both formal and informal needs.

22 CREATE A MENU OF SERVICES The Menu of Services could include: Research Based Learning Strategies (before instruction) Research Based Learning Strategies (during instruction) Research Based Learning Strategies (after instruction) Cooperative Learning Non-fiction Book Talks

23 Make Haste Slowly. Start with those who are eager to see you Use low-risk activities with those who may be hesitant – reluctant – or resistant.

24 Getting to Know you (Building Trust) Characteristics that help to develop trust: Being a good listener Acting in a nonjudgmental way Keeping commitments Being interested in the person

25 Getting to Know You (Building Trust continued ) Start with the teachers agenda! Maintain confidentiality Stay away from evaluating teachers performance Respect ideas and views of teachers

26 Concerns from WV Coaches Need for principal trainings to emphasize importance of their support How to conduct study groups Time management That they arent abandoned Opportunities to network

27 Issues in the Field Need for selection of coaches who are prepared to handle the responsibilities Need for Training Balance between working with children and working with teachers (not ignoring the need for providing instruction to struggling readers) Getting evidence about effectiveness of coaches – K-12.

28 GOOD LUCK Coming events: October 28, 2004 – Tamarack – Beckley -Robin Fogarty – Literacy Matters November 9, 2004 – Marriott – Charleston - Jane Hill – McREL – Teaching Reading in Social Studies Questions? or 304-558- 7817 x

29 Some days…………. Coaching can seem like herding cats………..


31 monitoring is the key to successful implementation of any plan. Remember

32 Lets begin our activities in assigned rooms! You are going to…. 1.Develop a set of goals for the 1 st yr. and continue on to the 2 nd yr., if you are comfortable doing so. 2.Create your ideal Literacy Planning Team 3.Begin your staff survey with what you know about the school before sitting down with the literacy team and looking at needs 4.Begin your menu of services

33 Keys to Effective Leadership

34 Be prepared for the unexpected No day is the same Understand that each teacher has different expectations, different needs, and may require that the coach function in a different way.

35 Leading Professional Development Sessions Create a strong beginning and ending. Create an atmosphere conducive to adult learning (relaxed, opportunity for interaction) Provide for the physical needs of participants Less is More!

36 Develop Skills that Enable You to Observe and Provide Meaningful Feedback Plan for your visit to the classroom with the teacher. Plan for your conference with the teacher: Coach as expert Coach as collaborator Coach as mirror (Robbins, P. Peer Coaching, ASCD)

37 Feedback to Teachers Focus on what you see, not on what you infer Share information before providing advice Suggest alternatives Focus on what teacher requests Focus on what teacher can manage Use the data you collected from your visit

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