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Tom DeRosa - I want to teach forever blog:
The Perfect Teacher Coach by Jackie Beere and Terri Broughton is a concise, thoughtful guide to becoming an effective instructional coach. The two UK-based experts draw on years of teaching and coaching in a variety of settings, providing a clear blueprint of what coaching is and isn't.
I found their framework for coaching very similar to what I learned both from Teach For America and in graduate school, In short, coaching is not about telling teachers what is wrong and how to fix it, but giving them the tools and encouragement to do so themselves. Coaches are great listeners who ask the right questions and provide a positive, unwavering belief that teachers can find the right answers within.
It should come as no surprise that the elements that make a great coach of teachers also make a great classroom teacher. I was always taught to constantly reflect on my practice, get feedback from my students and outside observers, identify weaknesses and find solutions. When I did a good job of all of those things, my classroom was at its peak effectiveness. This is also the message of The Perfect Teacher Coach.
Whether you already coach teachers, have such a role on the horizon for next year or beyond, or are still just trying to improve in your own classroom, there's a lot to learn from this new guide. I highly recommend it.
Reviewed by Elanor Westbury , SENCo and English Teacher, Kings Lynn Academy.
Very friendly and easy to navigate layout, which allows you to follow the book and take a step by step approach to techniques and theories or “dip into” and refresh skills that you haven’t used for a while.
Jackie and Terri are clearly passionate about the difference that coaching can make in an educational setting and this comes across loud and clear. The references to Ofsted and CPD give an edge of authority and make The Perfect Teacher Coach as an essential tool for a busy teacher not something additional and almost optional.
Reviewed by Phil Loveday, Headteacher, Bridgnorth Endowed School.
As a school we are certain that coaching is an incredibly powerful tool in teacher and student learning. The authors provide a book that is easy and clear to read, that covers the basic premise behind coaching as well as developing strategies. The way the book is written creates a positive mindset for the reader in imagining what they might do in a particular situation. The wealth of suggestions and solutions coming from real examples and scenarios provides a real grounding for the skills that it develops. The chapter on questioning was one of the best that I have read - it provides clarity around the types of questions and when and where they are best used. It also makes coaching look easy!
This book very cleverly made me realise that I often coach effectively and that this happens when I have genuine empathy with the coachee, also it has also given me the confidence to think beyond a prescribed set of coaching questions as I develop my coaching still further.
This is a book that will support the development of coaching skills in all teachers, young or old, experienced or NQT, but it also highlights the importance of coaching skills in support staff and teaching assistants. A thoroughly enjoyable and informative read.
Reviewed by Elizabeth Barratt, Teaching Coach, The Nottingham Emmanuel School.
A well-structured, focussed and informative read, which still manages to maintain a conversational and highly enjoyable tone! Interspersed with opportunities to reflect on personal practice and to experiment with coaching techniques; the authors balance research, up-to-date educational practice and points of introspection extremely well.
I found myself nodding along in total agreement; furiously making notes on what we could immediately implement in school. The short plenary sections at the end of key chapters focus thinking and the carefully-worked examples are easy to follow and emulate.
This book puts into clear language, the nuances and central essence of effective coaching within a school-context whilst maintaining a realistic and pragmatic understanding of school systems, performance management and school improvement.
I would heartily recommend this book to anyone embarking on coaching work for the first time or equally the experienced teacher-coach who wishes to re-articulate, consolidate, develop and reflect on their own personal and institutional practice.
Reviewed by Hayley Lockey, Kings Lynn Academy, SEN Teaching Assistant and Advanced Coach.
An excellent teaching and learning guide for prospective coaches, with step by step guidance and information about coaching. The Perfect Teacher Coach clarifies the differences between counselling and coaching and the importance of good feedback from colleagues and fellow coaches. It provides a great way of reflecting on performance and management and questions the methods and ideas that we use within the classroom and structures coaching conversations.
Reviewed by Charlotte Johnson, Vice Principal (teaching and learning) Thomas Clarkson Academy Wisbech, Cambs.
The Perfect Teacher Coach is just like the authors, solution focused and easy to follow. It’s a book you can read from to cover to cover and know what you want to do next but it's also a good book to dip into if you've done coaching before to give you new techniques to try and sometimes it's also good to have reassurance that what you're doing is right! In the absence of having one of the authors at the end of the phone this book is the next best thing!
Reviewed by Dame Tamsyn Imison Former Headteacher Hampstead School 1984-2000, Editor 'Comprehensive Successes' 'all our geese are swans' Institute of Education 2013 publishing date September 2013.
‘In good schools learning is fun, exciting, active, creative and developmental for teachers and for children. We all learn by mirroring ways of doing things from others who are excited by learning, positive, non-judgemental, keen to share and above all to listen.
Learning needs to take place in a secure environment where we have permission to take risks, experiment and at times make mistakes. Under these conditions all our learning journeys could be greatly enhanced by what I have described as a 'lead learner' someone brought into sharp focus in Jackie Beere and Terri Broughton's book -'The Perfect Coach'
In my school this approach was developed through colleagues training in counselling at the Tavistock Clinic, taking part in the In- house Masters programme delivered for us by the Institute of Education, experiencing our many home delivered inset sessions such as teachers becoming students for the day, following students, teaching other teachers or planning, discussing and team teaching together on a regular basis as well as engaging in the many cross curricular events that took place. The staff rooms became hives of learning conversations and the school a learning community as well as a community of learners.
What this book does superbly is provide an aide memoire for leaders at all levels in schools both teaching and associate staff too, colleagues who are supporting staff development, middle managers and all teams such as departments, years/houses as well as senior leadership, in how to conduct constructive learning conversations. It will also be of value for students training to be peer tutors or mentors.
The value of this approach is well documented in this book and will certainly lead to successful learning for all. It is the means of keeping a school climbing ever upwards, one of the greatest challenges for all schools especially those that think they have arrived. You never arrive! But that is was makes the whole learning game so exiting, creative and rewarding. This book provides a crucial tool for raising the achievement of staff and students in all schools.
Reviewed by Eliza Hollis, Executive Head Teacher, Stoke Bruerne, Tiffield and Whittlebury Primary Schools.
A must for any head teacher looking to use coaching to enhance their school improvement journey. Coaching must be part of the schools culture for continuous improvement. Some great tips for all staff, teachers and teaching assistants, looking to embark on the role as a coach. Great top tips , I will be using with all my staff.
Reviewed by Andy Vass, Professional Coach.
This is a book that will have a real impact on the development of coaching within schools. The authors present a straightforward yet powerful way of exploring and understanding the key aspects of building high quality coaching throughout a school.
Its simple, jargon free approach captures the concepts and practical elements that will help any school move towards a successful coaching culture.
Written from a “reflective and emotionally intelligent mindset” the style of the book is utterly congruent with a coaching approach encouraging the reader to question and challenge their own behaviours and thinking and become even better. Throughout, the passion and belief are evident and yet clear links to Ofsted and performance management frameworks ground it in the reality of today’s schools.
Any school leader seeking to build sustainable progress in pupil learning at the same time as developing wellbeing and resilience in their staff will have a better journey with this book at their side
Reviewed by Shona Walton, Learning Improvement Manager, Secondary and Special Schools.
The Perfect Teacher Coach provides techniques that are well described and supported by good recognisable examples. Difficult tasks and roles are made to feel manageable - a good resource text for a peer development group!