The Stride Professional Development Center wants to add value to you as a teacher or school leader; so, we have an entire course of nothing but free resources. Some of these include samples from our on-demand courses while others are templates that you can download and use immediately. This blog will highlight a couple of those resources and provide you direct links to access and download them for immediate use.
All of us as educators, at times, need a template or resource or idea from someone else that sparks passion for a lesson activity or unit plan. Currently, we have 18 resources in our Free Course; and these materials vary between leaders (5) and teachers (10) – with 2 designed for both teachers and leaders.
This blog will describe and point out two of our newest resources while also sharing some of our most popular. If you have a suggestion for a freebie, then send us that idea via email to firstname.lastname@example.org!
Gathering Student Input – one of our newest resources, shared with us by teacher Tara Brown, is a simple “exit” strategy at the end of a lesson.
You can use this form in an online tool or pass out individual papers for students to complete. This concludes a lesson with a non-threatening way of gauging where students are in their understanding as they move through 3 simple questions. That final question – “How do we prove our knowledge?” – is critical as students are pressed to share evidence to match a previous response.
Feedback Form – this simple one-page document is another one of our newer resources. Far too often we solicit or provide feedback to students but never take the step to ensure it is implemented. This form gives you a way to track the receipt of feedback and how the student reflected upon it. It is when we wrestle with constructive feedback that we grow and develop. We have a short, YouTube video that explains this further; so visit our YouTube Channel for more.
The two topics below are some of our popular teacher resources and these have existing blogs. We will list the topics and provide links for you to go back and re-read the previously published blogs:
Coaching – the best leaders are good coaches in that they draw out the best in others. School leaders do the same things with teachers, paraprofessionals, support staff, and students. The key is to leverage collective wisdom to halt an impulsive preference that will jeopardize a shared purpose. Everyone needs a coach because everyone can be better tomorrow than they were today.
This tool offers a series of coaching questions in the seven coaching phases. You do not need to cover EVERY question but a couple of them will really help you dig in with the other person in the conversation. The most important part is to help the person being coached think differently about their situation as questions will guide them to deeper thinking and better solutions.
If you go to our YouTube channel and check out our “Leader Learnings” playlist, you will find a 9 video series that walks you through this tool, and the last video specifically focuses on using coaching within schools.
Check-in – regular check-ins with everyone in the school is a powerful way to stay focused on priorities Recently, a Twitter poll appeared on our regular feed that asked school leaders how they build and maintain school culture: (1) school assemblies, (2) check-ins, or (3) another way. In a nearly two-to-one result, check-ins were the most popular answer. The reasoning is simple because check-ins are individualized and focused.
For a better understanding of the check-in process while also getting the free template, check out our blog from July 22, 2022.
Teachers and Leaders
Responses to Trauma – research shows that trauma, and its effects, are becoming more prevalent in schools than originally believed. Sometimes, we misinterpret a student’s behavior as rebellion or disrespect rather than considering other options. In our 2 courses focused on trauma-informed classrooms, we look at signals that teachers and leaders need to consider.
Part of supporting students under trauma is measuring our responses. This takeaway document is split into two parts. For leaders, this considers more of a whole-school approach to ensure that everyone has the right mindset. The teacher suggestions focus on the classroom and “in the moment” setting when students need you the most.
Professional Development Plan (PDP) – right now, you should already be thinking about professional development for next year. If you need a systematic tool to help you plot and plan, we have a template that will do just that. We posted a blog on this topic back in April and provided access to our free resource. If you want to learn how to Create Your Own PDP, that link will teach you how.
We do not just want you to check out the resources, but we want you to use them! When you do, reach out and tell us your story!