Want Feedback? I have the Answer!

For my digital project assignment in my Professional Practice course, I have created an animated video on Peer Coaching through observation using the website www.powtoon.com

I selected this strategy because it is important to me to attempt to change people’s misconceptions about peer coaching. I am hoping to convince teachers that the purpose of the observation is not to make the teacher look bad or to place blame, but to help. There are many benefits that go unnoticed because they are overshadowed by fear.

I learned that Peer Coaching, as mentioned by the Center for Professional Development at Peak to Peak Charter School, can:
  • improve teaching practices and student performance,
  • enhance sense of professional skill,
  • increase ability to analyze lessons,
  • help teachers understand best practices in teaching and learning,
  • provide teachers a wider range of instructional strategies/resources, and
  • improve teaching performance.
As a program manager, I hope to use this project to help change minds about observation. I would like to build a culture of sharing with open door classrooms.

There are disadvantages to this feedback technique with the main downside being that the struggle for teachers is not learning new approaches to teaching but implementing them. Also, experienced teachers struggle with new instructional techniques in the beginning and it takes, on average, 20 separate instances of practice, before a teacher has mastered a new skill. This number of instances increases along with the complexity of the skill they are trying to use (Gulamhussein, September 2013).

As I can understand how this feels, structuring the observation process to include a self-assessment before the pre-observation meeting allows the teacher, no matter how experienced, to think about what area they would like feedback on.

To overcome the implementation challenge, I made sure there were steps added to the best practices section of the video to help with this. The most important step, and I have implemented this myself with the teachers I work with, is to develop an implementation and follow up plan. When the coach and the teacher make a plan of action items, and schedule a follow up observation, it gives the teacher concrete steps they can take to lessen their possible feelings of being overwhelmed.

Take a look and let me know what you think!


Peer Coaching Powtoon Video

References:
Gulamhussein, A. (September, 2013). Teaching the Teachers: At a Glance.  Center for Public Education. Retrieved  from http://www.centerforpubliceducation.org/teachingtheteachers

Peer Coaching. The Center for Professional Development at Peak to Peak Charter School. Retrieved from http://www.cpdcolorado.org/services/peer-coaching

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