In Pursuit of Coaching

Marzano & Simms (2013) shared four practices they believe to be essential for an effective coaching relationship : establish a model for effective teaching, use a scale to measure teachers progress, conduct a self-audit, establish a coaching perspective (p. 52).

Gamrat, Zimmerman, Dudek, & Peck (2014) reported on a digital badging system that personalized teachers professional development activities to support aspects of their workplace setting by customizing their content choices and level of assessments (p. 1145). Once their content choices were selected and level of assessment was completed, they were placed in a community of educators with a paid professional mentor. Gamrat et al., 2013 concluded that successful online professional development within a mentor relationship allowed learners to make decisions based on their needs while gaining access to resources and practices valued by the community of educators in their professional learning group (p. 1146).

Image result for teacher technology coaching

This digital badging system utilized the four practices Marzano & Simms believe to be essential for an effective coaching relationship. They established an online professional development and badging platform for effective teaching, used an assessment to measure the teachers progress,  conducted a self-audit of the teacher by narrowing their content choices as well as level of assessment for their personal profile, and established a coaching perspective through a community of educators that included a paid professional mentor.

teacher coaching

The cartoon image above does a great job illustrating the roles of a coach and coachee.  In reference to the digital badging scenario, the mentor in the community of educators plays the role of a coach while the teacher plays the role of a coachee. Educators are accustomed to completing yearly observations on digital platforms such as Talented’s Perform .  In addition to observations, evaluations, and professional learning, perform encourages educators and leaders to form partnerships for improvement rather than using it strictly for documentation. Marzano & Simms (2013) concluded by emphasizing that in order for a coach to help a teacher, they must learn and continue to learn from research, theory, & strategies associated with the growth-goal element.


Aguilar, E. (2016). The Art of Coaching Teams: Building Resilient Communities that Transform Schools. Jossey-Bass: San Francisco, CA.

Gamrat, C., Zimmerman, H., Dudek, J., & Peck, K. (2014). Personalized workplace learning: An exploratory study on digital badging within a teacher professional development program. British Journal of Educational Technology, 45(6), 1136-1148.

Marzano, R.J. & Simms, J.A. (2013). Coaching classroom instruction. Marzano Research Laboratory: Bloomington, IN.

2 thoughts on “In Pursuit of Coaching

  1. I absolutely love the cartoon that illustrates the roles of the coach and the coachee. The best part of the cartoon is the repetitive listing of listening. The coaching and teacher dynamic is so important to ensure everyone’s goals are achieved. When coaches help teachers, they are improving the effectiveness of the educators in the classroom. “if the desired responses [from the students] are not being elicited, the coach reexamines the teacher’s actions and helps the teacher make adjustments to achieve the preferred outcome” (Marzano and Simms, 2013, pg. 62-63). A coach must realize the importance to ensure they have provided a safe and efficient environment for the teachers to receive feedback and critique for the stratifies they provide for the coachee. The coach can accomplish this by following the important step in your illustration of asking questions. By asking the coachee questions, we as coaches can make sure that we are providing helpful resources and strategies. Thank you for providing this illustration in your post! I may print it off & place it on my desk as a reminder of my role to my students and teachers.

    Marzano, R.J. & Simms, J.A. (2013). Coaching classroom instruction. IN: Marzano Research.


  2. I really enjoyed reading your blog. I also agree that there is great importance in the four practices suggest by Marzano and Simms. What stands out to me the most is the assessment of teachers’ progress. From my personal experience, I feel that this an area in which a gap is typically left behind. Sure, we complete surveys and self-assessments, etc., but how often has then been true follow-up and assessment of progress after PD completion, for example? I can’t count the times that I have been shown a strategy or tool and never really had follow-up assistance. Not only can teachers use the scale presented by Marzano and Simms (2013) for self-auditing and goal setting but coaches can use the scale to measure teachers progress, as well.

    Marzano, R.J. & Simms, J.A. (2013). Coaching classroom instruction. Marzano Research Laboratory: Bloomington, IN.


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