Skip to main content

Tools for Coaches

The work of a content area coach or teacher leader addresses dilemmas of education reform, pedagogical change, relational and collaborative work, and reflective practice. If you work as a mentor, coach, department chair or district leader, you can find resources here to help teachers begin and sustain the work to improve math teaching and learning in their classrooms. The materials assembled here will help you lay out a year-long professional learning sequence, observe classroom practices and help educators reflect on their teaching, and work to support teachers in raising student learning outcomes. Inside Mathematics also gathered together several experienced mathematics coaches to discuss signature elements of their practice in working with teachers.

Pre-Lesson Conversation

Coach & Faculty Debriefing

Student Debriefing

Professional Teaching Innovation Configuration

The Professional Teaching Innovation Configuration is a tool to gauge current teaching practices at a school. It provides a description of the "ideal" state of professional teaching, then moves along a continuum of progressively less fully realized states, focusing on 6 dimensions: Worthwhile Tasks, The Learning Environment, Teacher Role in Discourse, Student Role in Discourse, Tools for Enhancing Discourse, and Analyses of Teaching and Learning.

Based on the data gathered, a team of educators from a school can then determine where on the Innovation Configuration the teaching practice most closely aligns. This becomes a starting point for conversations by the team to best support the teaching staff on moving forward to the next level as defined by the Innovation Configuration. You can learn more about this resource in the book Making the Most of Your Coaching Investment (2011) by the Charles A. Dana Center. Download

Mathematics Teaching Rubric

This document includes leveled descriptions of teaching performance organized by worthwhile tasks, the learning environment, teacher's role in discourse, students' role in discourse, tools for enhancing discourse, and teaching and learning analysis. Download

Classroom Observation Guide

This Observation Guide is a two-pronged tool used by coaches. Drawing heavily on the vision of math teaching portrayed in the SVMI math teachers rubric, the guide can be used both to help focus classroom observations and as a discussion guide to help focus pre- and post- conferences between teacher and coach. Download

Professional Development Calendar

This document provides a sample for how teacher learning around the MAC tasks might unfold over the academic year. Download

Improving Our Craft as Coaches

Presentation given by Noyce Professional Development Faculty to participating coaches (2009). Download

Supporting Teachers in their Classrooms to Increase Student Achievement

Presentation given by David Foster at the CMC-N Administrators Conference at Asilomar (2007). Download

Pedagogical Content Coaching

The key to improving student achievement in math relies on improving teaching and learning in the classroom. SVMI sees pedagogical content coaching as a promising method for actually getting into the classroom and providing interventions to help teachers improve their instruction. Download

Videos of Coaching Conversations by Grade

Coaches reflect on Lesson Study

Coaches reflect on their role in teacher learning

Coaches reflect on the MARS tasks