The focus of this quarter in the DEL program is on peer coaching. This would involve working with another teacher in my building to integrate a piece of technology to affect student outcomes. By collaborating with another teacher in my school I will be helping to plan, develop, and implement technology integration, which correlates with ISTE Coaching Standard 1 – Visionary leadership.
The prospect of this is very exciting to me but raises a lot of questions about how I can be an effective coach and help them to integrate technology in a way that is approachable and not overwhelming. Therefore, my question for this module is:
What should the role and responsibilities be of my job as a peer coach and how do I help my peer understand their role and responsibilities?
The first part of this question was easier to find a direct answer to. However, helping another teacher to understand their role I have found is a much more subtle process. In our class textbook, Peer Coaching: Unlocking the Power of Collaboration, Foltos describes a set of standards for the roles that a coach should assume while peer coaching.
In general, a peer coach is there to support and help their peer grow without feeling like they are relying on their coach as an expert. These four coaching roles reflect that idea, and if peer teachers feel like they are working alongside their coach instead of underneath them then more authentic learning and growth can be reached.
Another resource that I found, called Mentoring and Coaching Models, gives another distinct list of characteristics of a peer coach.
• Teacher • Resource • Problem-solver • Advocate • Facilitator • Coach • Collaborator • Learner • Assessor • Trusted Listener
This list of traits I think are also in line with working alongside a peer teacher as not an expert, but a friend who can provide resources.
Peer Teacher Role
In Peer Coaching (2013), there is also discussion about how to communicate with their peer teacher. It seems as if the best way to help the teacher understand that their role is to approach the relationship from the point of friendship and allow open communication. In this way, the peer teacher will be able to become comfortable with sharing and the peer coach can talk about what they need from the teacher without feeling threatened. Peer teacher roles are something that I would like to do more research on in the future. I am very excited to see how the next steps of this process will operate
Foltos, L. (2013). Peer coaching: Unlocking the power of collaboration.
ISTE Standards Coaches. (2014). Retrieved from http://www.iste.org/docs/pdfs/20-14_ISTE_Standards-C_PDF.pdf
U. (n.d.). Mentoring and Coaching Models. Retrieved October 09, 2016, from http://education.qld.gov.au/staff/development/performance/resources/readings/peer-coaching-models.pdf