During the year, I always keep a running list of books I want to read. They’re an assortment of titles I hear about on podcasts, come across online or in other books I read, or are recommended from friends and colleagues. I may not have time to read them right then, but I know I’ll want to come back to these books at some point, so I write them down.
Since I usually build up a pretty long list over the school year, and don’t have time to read every one (even with the added leisure of summer days…ahhh), I have to decide which ones I’m going to invest in.
So. Here’s what I think about to help me decide which books will really be worthy of my summer time reading:
- What did I struggle with this past year? What felt challenging?
- What am I feeling really excited about for next year? What’s going to motivate me to keep getting better? What additional opportunities and experiences can I create for myself and teachers next year?
I’ve found that my answers to these two questions most always steer me in the right direction.
I think this is one that all of us who have ever done any kind of coaching have struggled with at one point or another: teacher motivation, buy-in, or change.
I worked with a teacher at the beginning of the year who I just couldn’t get off ‘go’. Even though we worked together through a full 6-week coaching cycle, we couldn’t get to a place where next steps were consistently implemented and a change in practice was supporting student achievement.
And it bugged me all year.
Not the teacher, but me. I bugged myself, because I knew I could have done better as a coach.
So to support myself with the skills and tools I know I’ll need to get better in this area next year, I’m going to check out the books shown below.
Tackling tricky conversations and teacher change, here I come!
One thing I’m getting myself pumped up about for next year is PD. I know. Kind of an odd area to get excited about, but it’s a big part of my role as a coach at our school. And our PD time and structure needs some shaking up!
I’ve got some good ideas for our PD Pad in mind that I’m getting excited about (think disco balls and whiteboard tables…woot woot!). And I’ve also got some ideas for how to take better advantage of technology to better differentiate and support teacher learning. I’ve fiddled with this in the past, but there’s so much more I could be doing.
Something else I started to get more into this year was Twitter and becoming a “connected educator.” Just this year, I’ve connected with so many other amazing educators on Twitter, and have been introduced to lots of great resources. Not sure how it took me so long to get on the Twitter train, but I’m on it, so let’s get connected! If you’re just getting started, here’s a really great guide that I read to get me up and going.
And back to books. Here are two I’ve picked out that I think will really align well with my “let’s get excited” goals for next year:
I really believe in the saying that “Leaders are Readers”. So let’s choose a few books to dig into this summer, shall we?
Let me know your book picks in the comments below.
By the way, have you checked out my “Walk Through a Coaching Cycle Workshop” yet? If not, make sure to take a look!
Talk to you soon,