Today was one of those great coaching days. I spent the afternoon moving from classroom to classroom, trying out different ideas with different kids and teachers. In the first classroom, I demonstrated a mini lesson on how writers can use mentor texts to make their own writing even stronger. This teacher has been working with mentor text, but felt that the teaching wasn’t really transferring, so we tried to push for more transfer into student writing. Then I moved on to work with a teacher on small groups in writing. She has some students working on poetry and wanted to push them to do some revision. I modeled a small group showing students how they might write two or three different poems trying to get a similar feeling. Then she tried it with another group using some of her own writing. In the next classroom we tried out a student-led Read Aloud. These teachers are working on building student talk and I had seen this idea in the upper grades. We tried it out in second grade and the students were “on fire” with their thinking and talking. Finally, I ended the day coaching a teacher as she tried to build a better partnership conversation with two of her students.
I spent some time this evening reflecting on why this afternoon of coaching felt so good. I think it was the positive energy coming from the teachers (kids too). These teachers are so open to learning new things and willing to try things out in their classrooms. This work can be messy and difficult, but today I felt like I was working shoulder to shoulder with teachers to try to improve student learning. We were in this together. We were working hard. We were learning. And we were really enjoying it.
I hope tomorrow goes like today did.