At the Fall In Love with Close Reading Workshop yesterday I had a brief conversation about support and the community of instructional coaches with several talented ladies which got me thinking on the almost 5-hour drive home.
The coaching community has been on my mind for a long while. I originally started my blog with the idea of connecting with other coaches. I had a need to connect with other coaches especially in my first year. At the time, I was a TAP Master teacher and although there are many master teachers spread out across the state and country, I had limited interaction with them. It was usually limited to face to face meetings twice a year. I had looked for blogs of other teacher coaches to see how they structured their PD and what connections they made. I had hoped to find a post on field testing at the time too, but came up empty.
Luckily, there have been people and resources that have come into my circle of influence and I now know about The Art of Coaching, Elena Aguilar, and other coaching organizations.
I currently have a writing community and I have a reading community, but I really don’t have a solid coaching community. I’m wondering if there are coaches out there that would desire to have Coach Collective.
The Coach Collective in my mind works like the writers collective where you work independently but then you get to talk about coaching in between work time, but also could share resources and conversations online.
I am considering making a survey to get people’s thoughts so I can determine a plan to move forward. I will then be contacting some other coaches I have connected with through Twitter.
Here are my initial thoughts:
Is there interest for a Coach Collective?
Do you feel you have enough peer support?
Would you like to have a network of people across the United States to touch base with?
Would you like to have access to a bank of resources shared and created among coaches?
What framework of coaching do you operate from?
Which coaching frameworks are you aware exist?
What is your best coaching tip?
What are the areas of refinement you need to be a better coach?
Lately, I’ve been quietly reflective about my life and what I want to do moving forward in the next five years. At the end of the workshop yesterday Chris Lehmann said a few words that resonated with me. Hearing them jolted me to attention. To paraphrase, he said the work of teaching is hard, but don’t give up. The kids need us. He had made several references to the less stressful environment to work at Starbucks and just worry about lattes – and only while you are at work.
But that wasn’t who the people are in that room. The educators there were not the people who just want to put in their time and then go home and not think about learning and students. We are the ones who make a difference in kids’ lives and believe in the mission.
Sometimes we need a little help and I think a Coach Collective might be a good step for additional support. Let me know your thoughts!