As more school districts begin to implement the Common Core State Standards (CCSS), MyLivePD coaches are ready for the challenges and successes teachers will have in their classrooms. Stephanie B. from Colorado is a certified math teacher who has 18 years of coaching experience. Most recently, she’s been helping implement the CCSS in her school district. Stephanie shared her coaching philosophy, what she likes about the CCSS, and most importantly, what teachers need more of – time!
Why were you interested in participating in MyLivePD?
Most teachers want to learn and want to be the best they can be, but we just don’t have the time in a regular school day. I thought this would be a great chance to help teachers find alternative ways to get the professional development they want, without sacrificing time at work. I’m excited to be part of this ground-breaking opportunity!
How would you describe your coaching philosophy?
I think the best teachers are the ones who collaborate and reflect. Collaboration is tough sometimes, but it helps give us a new perspective. It also gives you permission to try new things and be able to reflect with a group to see what worked and what didn’t.
What is your favorite aspect of coaching?
I love the feeling I get when I have helped a teacher think through his or her question and find resources to use and modify for their classroom. I love doing the research and finding new activities to use in my class as well.
What do you think is the most challenging issue for math teachers today?
Teachers today have no time to make the changes we would like in order to be better teachers.
How are you involved in the implementation of the CCSS in your district?
I have been instrumental as a teacher leader in my district with the implementation of CCSS. We began implementation in the fall of 2011 and we are continuing with the staggered implementation this year.
Are you involved with Formative Assessment Lessons (FAL) at your school?
My district has just started being more thoughtful about using these types of lessons, though I personally have been using this method for a good part of my teaching career. I love using challenges (lessons) that allow the students to build on what they already know, as well as dig deeper into the standards themselves. I will say, as a teacher leader, this is the most difficult part in leading a department. It is a change in thinking about how we teach.
Have you begun implementing the eight mathematical practices (part of the CCSS) in your district?
Our district just finished a document that outlines this for the teachers. I have used it personally in a literacy and comprehension writing cohort I am part of for my district. I love how these practices tie all aspects of a learner and teacher together.
What do you hope teachers get out of using MyLivePD?
I would like all of the teachers to be able to say, “WOW – that was really helpful. I am going to try out that activity, lesson, test, or strategy with my students tomorrow and see how it goes.” Then come back for more conversation and reflection. Hopefully our service will give them little chunks of time to be able to learn new things and apply them in the classroom.
Want to ask Stephanie B. or any of our coaches a question about the CCSS? Sign in to your MyLivePD account Sunday to Thursday from 2 p.m. to 1 a.m. ET. To learn more about getting MyLivePD for your school, go to tutor.com/mylivpd.