We want to give you a peek inside our Coach Certificate & Mentorship Program. Coaches taking part in this academic-year-long journey have graciously given us permission to post some of their learning and reflections from the private coursework they are undertaking during this program. Where possible, we have shared the course and the action task to give context for the guest post.
The Coach Learning Journey Video Reflection
The Learning Journey Video Reflection is a chance for you to reflect on everything you’ve learned and/or discovered throughout this Certificate Program. You will create an 8-10 min video sharing on the goal that you set, documenting the process of working towards your goal, reflecting on your achievement and sharing the process/outcome with our learning community. The most important part of your personal project is that it’s relevant to you, and you can demonstrate, through documentation and video, the impact your work has had on your school.
Watch Nicola’s Video
What goals did you set for yourself at the beginning of the program?
From the outset of this program I wanted to take the year as a chance to step back and reflect on everything I had built up so far. I wanted to find opportunities to plug holes, identify gaps, and enhance elements I already had in place. Quite quickly it became evident that I also had a more specific goal to focus on: collecting and analyzing data on the impact of coaching on teaching and learning.
How did each milestone support you in reaching your goal?
I found that each milestone gave me a chance to look for where opportunities lay.
Milepost 0: PLN Infographic– this was the beginning of my foray into a professional presence on social media, which was something I had been quite adamant about not ever moving into. Whilst I would still prefer not to have expanded my use of social media, I’m thrilled with the connections it has afforded me and the inspiration it provides daily. I recognise how essential it is to my role as coach and coordinator.
Milepost 1: Vision– this was an integral part of being able to go on to solidify all of the individual parts to my coaching programme as it currently stood.
Milepost 2: Coaching Cycle Roadmap– again, this forced me to articulate the practices I had in place for coaching cycles, whilst also encouraging me to refine where necessary. I was able to pull from feedback I was collecting to pick up on what was appreciated and what was working, before making any adjustments.
Milepost 3: Year Overview– though this wasn’t a suggested milestone, it was very clear when I arrived at the final phase that a Year Overview was exactly what I needed to be able to pull everything together to document a (reasonably) cohesive coaching programme at IPS Hilversum. It was the perfect way to end, given my original goals and intentions coming into The Coach.
What has been your biggest area of growth in the program?
I think my biggest area of growth has probably been my intentionality in collecting feedback and documenting evidence from student work and teacher reflections. Changing my feedback form has given me such incredibly valuable feedback and has been both affirming and gratifying.
Where do you still have room to grow?
I feel that I still have a lot of room for growth in the art of coaching itself. I find myself picking up skills and dispositions from here, there and everywhere and aimlessly adding them to my repertoire. What I feel I need to do is develop a certain skill or disposition in its entirety…focus in a bit more on that one aspect being more well rounded.
What surprises and/or challenges have you had along the way?
The challenge that I found the greatest amusement from was that, of the many coaching interactions I have throughout each school year, including numerous with CDP (the teacher I chose to document a cycle with for the In Practice module), this particular interaction turned out to be one of the most contrived and unnatural experiences I have had during my coaching experience to date. This was not to do with the documentation or process (I’ve done that a million times before), nor to do with it being filmed (I often film myself to review and reflect on my own teaching and coaching practices) but because the purpose ended up feeling like it was removed from CDP herself. Rather than being just another one of the next steps in myself and CDP’s professional growth, I instead felt very conscious of each and every word, gesture and thought. And not conscious in a good way, but in a way that altered the experience (probably more for me than anything CDP noticed). It was so strange!
What’s YOUR level of coaching mastery?
All coaches go through various stages of coaching mastery. Once you identify where you’re at, you can begin to build the skills needed to move to the next stage.
This quiz is based on real-life case studies compiled from years of working with coaches inside The Coach Certificate & Mentorship Program!
When you receive your results, you’ll also get your matching case study from the STRIVE Case Studies to see where you fit in the stages of coaching mastery.
Ready to tackle your challenges and move on to the next level in YOUR coaching practice?
The STRIVE Model of Coaching Mastery quiz will help you identify your level of coaching mastery by matching you with case studies compiled from years of working with coaches inside The Coach Certificate & Mentorship Program so you can easily see where you fit!
What would you do differently next time? What did you learn?
Next time, I would film my coaching interactions at set points throughout the journey (perhaps bi-monthly?) so that I could physically see the growth in skills, dispositions and mindset over the course of a year.
How did the Coach support you in your learning journey?
I had reached the point where I needed outside perspectives and a moment to deeply reflect on my programme and my practice. The coach needed a coach! After coaching for 18 years in various capacities, this is the first year I have truly stopped to whole-heartedly concentrate on my own growth as a coach. If I can’t stop to ascertain the impact of my role on teaching and learning, then how can I expect those who I work with to stop and make the time to reflect on their own practice? During the first phases of this course, it became apparent to me that, whilst I wanted to continue diversifying the ways I could support teachers and remain dynamic and innovative in my ways of working, there was a real need to also maintain a consistent approach, which ensured teachers felt a sense of familiarity and, therefore, were comfortable enough pushing their own personal boundaries and leaning into cognitive discomfort. So this year has not been so much about change but about enhancement which still maintained that consistency and familiarity.
How has your learning inside the Coach impacted your coaching practice & program in your school setting?
It’s brought it all to a feeling of completeness and cohesion. I appreciate the sense that the work I have done over the last 5 years can be documented as a complete programme. It almost feels like the justification of my role.
What next for your professional learning?
Moving into a coordinator role next year I really want to continue exploring the role of leaders as coaches and seeing how the two can intersect whilst still retaining the necessary characteristics of each role.
Level Up Your Coaching with The Coach!
If you are ready to develop your coaching practice over the next academic year, and explore topics like transitioning your work from individuals to teams, please join us for our next cohort of The Coach!
Wherever you are in building a coaching culture in your school, The Coach will give you the strategies, skills and tools you need to make coaching a success and will empower you to confidently apply instructional coaching strategies in any situation – from building a coaching program, to having coaching conversations, to being a leader in your school community. We facilitate only one cohort each academic year so we can offer individualized support for each participant.
Registration for our next global cohort opens once a year – check the website for details!
Find out more at: https://edurolearning.com/coach/