“I’m losing my passion.”
“I don’t know if I can do this anymore.”
“We’re out of subs.”
These are just a few of the phrases that are filtering the world of education right now. Omicron has definitely taken over the school community. People are mentally, physically, and emotionally drained. So how can we continue to do our job as instructional coaches amidst all of this chaos?
I think this is our MOST important time to coach. We need to show our staff support, love, and motivation. So… How can we keep teachers moving forward? Keep them passionate about their job?
Here are my 5 tips for coaching during the pandemic.
1. Celebrate the small wins – Teachers and staff need to know that they are seen. The progress, no matter has small, needs to be acknowledged. Affirmation in their profession is pertinent right now.
So take the time to say, “You did it.”
2. Focus on the big rocks – Try to ignore all the day-to-day craziness that pops up without notice. Fixate your eyes on the prize. What is the one big rock, the one major goal, the one necessary feat that needs to happen? Post that goal somewhere visual where you can see it every day. Remember the bigger purpose and plan, and ignore the noise. Focus can give you intention and motivation. It also shows teachers that there is one major priority, not 100 million things. They can’t handle all the things right now.
3. Own servant leadership – Servant leadership is focusing on the growth and well-being of the people and communities in which you belong. Show your staff you care about them and the stress they are under.
Let them Speak. Listen. Collaborate. Find Solutions.
Show Recognition. Acceptance. Flexibility.
Offer Support. Time. Resources. Help.
4. Coach Mindsets – I’m a firm believer that a happy teacher, makes a happy classroom. If your teachers are struggling with stress, anxiety, fearfulness, etc, they are not bringing their best self to the table. They are also not in the right mindset to “be coached.” Therefore, coach mindsets! What does that look like? Consider it therapeutic. Support teachers in analyzing their current reality, then decide what support you can offer.
Do you need to take the role of a:
Next, challenge their perspective. Are they focusing on:
- Circle of Control
- Student-Centered Thinking
- Growth rather than Mastery
- Grace over Grades
By challenging teachers’ mindsets, you can help them grasp attainability. They need to re-focus, adjust their thinking, and find comfort in what is acceptable, achievable and expected right now. The world we’re living in needs a new reality. And teachers need to adjust too.
5. Utilize Self-Care – Take care of yourself! Just like a happy teacher creates a happy classroom, a happy coach, leader, admin creates a happy staff. What is exactly self-care? Nourishing your body, mind, and soul. Investing time in your mental, emotional, social, and physical health. What gives you a break? What brings you happiness? Take time for that! Fill your bucket, so you can fill others! If you don’t put on your oxygen mask first, then you can’t help others survive either.
Servant Leadership: https://coachingaccess.net/new-year-new-resolutions-new-perspectives/
A different perspective on data: https://coachingaccess.net/what-is-data-really/
Building Relationships: https://coachingaccess.net/structure-and-safety-after-covid/