So, let’s help our instructional leaders and coaches get over their fear of how to talk to teachers about their instruction.

I mean, our teachers are pretty reasonable and mostly on-board with the coaching work, but sometimes principals and instructional coaches tip-toe around the first conversation that jumpstarts the coaching relationship.

Here are four really simple lead-ins your team can use right now to approach any teacher.

  • “You know, as I was reviewing our school data I noticed that your department was struggling with helping the kids master the vocabulary portion of the weekly assessment.  Talk to me about that.  Did you notice that?  Why do you think that is, where can we start to work on that?”
  • “Tell me, what are the things you said you picked up from our math training on Thursday?  How can I support you in getting started on that?”
  • “I was working with the seventh grade English teachers on getting students to respond in writing to an open-ended prompt – would that be something we could work on in your English class?”
  • “Hey, I wanted to follow up with you on our last team meeting.  How is your pre-teaching of the vocabulary to the English Language Learners going?  Are you seeing improvement in their comprehension of the text?”

Notice, we aren’t being weird or springing a weird convo on a teacher like a stranger jumping out of a bush (ha!)…we’re tying it to something we’re already doing, which keeps things feeling really natural…a key to getting teachers into the idea of coaching.

What do you think?  How might this info help your instructional coaching team?

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