Observing Teachers

What to Look for in an Observation


If an instructional coach doesn't have a plan going into an observation, she could find herself overwhelmed by all she could capture during a lesson. We think there are three priorities.

First, a coach should be looking for evidence that the teacher implemented her advice from their last coaching meeting. After all, promoting change requires accountability.

Second, coach should be providing real-time advice on the instructional moves the teacher is working on. This needs to be unobtrusive and precise, but on-the-fly coaching can pay big dividends.

And third, coach should be scanning for major impediments to student learning. If teacher has mastered the moves he's been asked to implement, coach will need another issue that he can shift focus towards.

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Observing Teachers

Additional Resources

“Coaching Teachers: Promoting Changes That Stick” MOOC

This free, open-enrollment Coursera class helps instructional coaches and school leaders practice strategies for coaching teachers to make meaningful, long-lasting improvements in their instruction.

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