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For the past 35 years, Steve Barkley has served as an education consultant to school districts, teacher organizations, state departments of education, and colleges and universities nationally and internationally, facilitating the changes necessary for them to reach students and successfully prepare them for the 21st century. A prolific published author, his weekly blog has evolved into a go-to resource for teachers and administrators all over the world. Visit BarkleyPD.com to learn more.
 
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show series
 
When are you more of a managerial leader verses an inquiry leader in the classroom? There are important times for each. What do students learn from your approach? How conscious are you of the practices you are implementing? Jessica Vance, the author "Leading with a Lens of Inquiry: Cultivating Conditions for Curiosity and Empowering Agency," descri…
 
Two teachers with experience as members of a high functioning team share some of the processes that were implemented as their team developed and now focuses on continued development. They explore the need for trust, tapping members’ strengths, sharing responsibility, flexing the schedule, and planning for new members joining a team. A learning comm…
 
Parent, teacher, and inquiry consultant to schools, Trevor MacKenzie, provides definitions for and explanations of why student agency and inquiry are increasingly becoming a focus for schools. Trevor connects these practices to an understanding of students’ cognitive needs and provides some areas for important teacher/parent conversation. Send your…
 
Our "coachability" increases as we develop confident humility. Coaching leaders should be models of confident humility - continuously presenting themselves as a learners. Continuous teacher growth requires teachers to be vulnerable and risk discovering that their current practice can be improved. Building teachers’ confidence and offering challenge…
 
“Focusing on autonomy, mastery, and purpose helps my classroom be a place where both my students and I want to be. And that makes all the difference.” reported Mary Davenport, a high school English teacher. She shares her insights and examples as she is guided by the concepts of autonomy, mastery, and purpose from Daniel Pink’s writing in "Drive: T…
 
Trevor MacKenzie, the author of "Inquiry Mindset Assessment Edition," describes the incongruity that can exist in some classrooms between co-designed inquiry learning activities and teacher-controlled assessment activities. How do we move to teacher/student co-designed assessments that build “assessment capable learners?” Trevor provides some thoug…
 
This is the last episode of a three part series for parents and kids around nurturing creativity with Dr Joanne Foster. She describes capital and lower case (C/c)reativity. She reinforces that we need to value creativity in order to tap it. Let’s work together to reap the benefits of our personal and collective creativity. Visit Dr. Foster's websit…
 
“Making the first 2-3 minutes of a conversation curiosity-based will change your conversations.” -Michael Bungay Stainer. How does your natural curiosity about teaching, learning and leading guide your coaching? How can curiosity help you avoid the advice giving that can be detrimental to coaching? Listen to Michael Bungay Stainer with Jim Knight. …
 
As teachers, we learn to consciously add a pause after our questions and after students’ responses to increase student thinking. We can increase the thinking students do by teaching and coaching students how to use the time. What are the learning production behaviors that empower students for future learning? "Applying Think Time to Formative Feedb…
 
Jessica Vance, the author of "Leading with a Lens of Inquiry," describes how instructional coaches and administrators can guide teacher growth through inquiry. Leaning in…listening…and asking with curiosity. She describes the importance of modeling and maintaining spaces that honor agency, curiosity, reflection. and collaborative learning. Connect …
 
This is the second part of a three part series for parents and kids around nurturing creativity with Dr. Joanne Foster. Find out why we sometimes struggle with creativity and how we can create an environment that supports creativity. Connect with Dr Foster here. Subscribe to the Steve Barkley Ponders Out Loud podcast on iTunes or visit BarkleyPD.co…
 
Students are watching and interpreting each move and decision we make. So in effect, our classroom management approach is a curriculum. “What are students learning from your classroom management?” is a great coaching question. To what extent is learning the elements of community built into your classroom decisions? Is management even a word you wan…
 
How are you purposefully planning for shaping the learning environment with your students? How much focus will be placed on having control vs how much focus will be on generating opportunities to learn freedom? Can students learn from a behavioral mistakes rather than be punished for them? How comfortable are you with your decisions about control, …
 
While buy-in is necessary for long term implementation of instructional practices that impact student learning, it occurs later in the process not early on. Especially for experienced teachers, it's only after the changes have produced improvements in student learning that significant changes in teachers’ beliefs and attitudes occur. Consider how t…
 
This is the first episode in a three part series of podcasts with Dr. Joanne Foster for parents and their children, especially designed so families can listen and learn about creativity - in particular, what underlies creativity; keys to nurturing creative expression at home, school and elsewhere; and strategies for building a more creative and ful…
 
The word "team" is frequently used in schools to describe various groupings of people that are working under different understandings of what the relationships among group members should be and what is required of group members. Teams are accountable for the collective performance and work toward a common goal and shared rewards. Listen to the podc…
 
The first days and weeks of school with new students are important in impacting future learning. Purposeful plans for learning about students and having them learn about you are valuable. Setting the stage for building trust and relationships are worth the investment in time and energy. Listen to Tara Brown's podcast episode here. Watch Kent Pekel'…
 
Adam Grant, the author of "Think Again," states that the term best practice can create an illusion that we have reached an endpoint where there is nothing left to top. It’s unlikely that any educational best practice is the best for ALL students. As educators, we need to be exploring what’s better. Do we want to implement an improvement or a change…
 
Learning is generated by the actions that learners engage in. I can’t teach you how to play an instrument, I can teach you how to learn to play. You need to do the learning actions to reach the results. Parents as learning coaches are empowering their children for future learning. Learning how to learn is a critical life skill. Listen to the Debra …
 
Lindsay Deacon, a co-author of "The Educoach Survival Guide," explores the relationship elements of coaching. How do the coach and the principal build a trusting relationship? How do coach and principal support each other’s relationships with teachers? Lindsay shares the value of starting the year listening and looking like a scientist. Visit the E…
 
Emotions and learning are inseparable. Positive emotions generated as students and teachers begin their shared learning experiences can shape the learning days that follow. Steve shares how “wow” experiences can tap the desired emotions along with examples from teachers. Subscribe to the Steve Barkley Ponders Out Loud podcast on iTunes or visit Bar…
 
As teachers assess students' current levels of skills and knowledge, planning ahead with acceleration rather than remediation is critical. Understanding learners is key and you cannot understand individuals while focusing on group averages. Coaches cannot plan for the "average" teacher. Watch Todd Rose's video here. Subscribe to the Steve Barkley P…
 
Parent, educator, and technology futurist, Frances Valintine, provides insights for parents concerning our role in supporting children to develop an ongoing confidence and passion as learner. What should a parent be considering around guiding youngsters concerning learning pathways? E-mail Frances: frances.valintine@themindlab.com Visit The Mind La…
 
Reflection is key to teachers ongoing growth and empowerment. Too often, "quick feedback" misses the mark because of insufficient dialogue and therefore, too little reflection time. Steve shares some of the tips he has found helpful. Read the article, "How to encourage reflective teaching in your school" here. Subscribe to the Steve Barkley Ponders…
 
Experienced teacher, professional developer and Chief Learning Officer of Empower the Learner, Kathleen McClaskey, shares the importance of teachers asking and listening to guide students exploration with these three key questions. She stress the role of identity for empowered learning. Visit the Empower the Learner website. Email Kathleen: kathlee…
 
Dr. Shira Leibowitz, author, university doctorial professor and pre-school/childcare founder, shares insights from her new book, "Havens of Hope: Ideas For Redesigning Education From the Covid-19 Pandemic." She describes how a crisis can be a catalyst, accelerator, anchor or sculptor. The questions “Why hope?” and “Why redesign?” are explored. Visi…
 
Parent, educator, and CEO of Empower the Learner, Kathleen McClaskey, shares the need for parents to empower learners with knowing their strengths and challenges in order to take actions that lead to their hopes and dreams. She highlights her personal parenting and educating experiences that provide clear understanding of our important role. Visit …
 
The listening principal, Dr. Kambar Khoshaba, shares how student voices impacted leadership and staff as well as the students themselves, all leading to increased equity. Hear how equity in middle school honors classes was achieved by focusing on student strengths and possibilities. A personal approach to parents and students has produced results. …
 
Educator and technology futurist, Frances Valintine, describes teachers creating and facilitating learning opportunities that tap learner passion and agency. How does technology create new and empowering ways for teachers to create possibilities for learners and allow teachers to focus on the ever-extending human needs of students? E-mail Frances: …
 
Natalie Ulloa, a secondary instructional coach with a background in instructional design and Steven Baule, a professor in the Leadership Education Department at Winona State University, discuss coach and principal roles in building a collaborative culture for continuous growth. Building and maintaining trust is highlighted. Read the article, "How t…
 
Deborah Farmer Kris, child development expert and author, shares the Pomodoro Technique and how parents can use it to assist learners in starting a task. Lowering anxiety and decreasing what, at times, becomes a youngster-parent struggle. Parents can use the strategy for themselves too. Visit Deborah's website here. Read Deborah's article, "Teach Y…
 
Kathleen McCloskey, CEO of Empower the Learner and co-author of "Make Learning Personal" and "How to Personalize Learning," identifies the need to develop student capacity to support their own learning, achieve agency, self-advocate for their learning and realize their hopes and dreams. As leaders, we need to create the same for staff. Visit the Em…
 
Tara Brown, The Connection Coach, shares the need for relationships to precede relevance and rigor. The author of "Different Cultures - Common Ground," shares beliefs and strategies that guide us to communicate the needed messages to students. She stresses the need for students to understand that they can be in the driver’s seat for their future. V…
 
Frances Valintine, the founder of The Mind Lab and The Tech Futures Lab and the author of "Future You", explores learning in and out of schools today. She describes “embracing change” and how leaders support a learning organization with an environment that embraces change. E-mail Frances: frances.valintine@themindlab.com Visit The Mind Lab site. Vi…
 
All of us can learn from reflection. A too often problem is that we neglect setting aside the time to do it. The end of a school year is a great time to encourage your children’s reflections on the past school year, regardless of their age. A set of possible starter questions are included in the podcast. Read Open University's "What is Reflection?"…
 
Past National Principal of the Year, Mark Wilson, identifies the value of gathering student thoughts, feelings, and insights to promote student reflection and provide data that can focus educator reflection. Mark shares several great questions and strategies to guide a process. Use the link to his website to find more sample questions. Visit Mark's…
 
Teacher, author, and child development expert, Deborah Farmer Kris, examines the need for considering balance and purpose for our students. Teens are reporting as running on empty. Striving but not thriving. She discusses supporting students to build optimism, curiosity, and integrity. Visit the Parenthood365 website. Read Deborah's article, "Striv…
 
Why might, "what’s your hypothesis?”be a better question to ask than, "what’s your goal?" A business article suggested that hypotheses create more organizational learning. Several schools have been experimenting with building teachers’ professional growth plans (PGPs) around a hypothesis that the teacher wants to explore. In this conversation, you …
 
The practice of giving glows and grows, like the feedback sandwich, seldom generates growth and change. Frequently, some similar structure is used to give feedback to teachers following walkthroughs. Self-reflection is the key to our decision to commit to a change behavior. Without conversations, these notes rarely generate true reflection. When we…
 
Acceleration and equity require teachers to provide ALL students with engagement in on grade-level or above, complex learning tasks. Too little or too much scaffolding prevents students from gaining the needed learning opportunities. Consider when you might be rescuing students rather than scaffolding. Consider why just-in-time scaffolding is impor…
 
"Strengthening organizations one connection at a time," is the recommendation from The Connection Coach, Tara Brown. Connecting to emotions and being valued is critical among leaders and staff if we want to have it present in classrooms for students. Visit Tara's website here. Subscribe to the Steve Barkley Ponders Out Loud podcast on iTunes or vis…
 
All children are naturally curious and our adult role is to provide an environment where children feel they can ask questions and get support for their explorations. Too often youngsters’ curiosity appears to not be valued as we get more focused on correct answers to questions raised by someone else. How do we model the value and experiences of cur…
 
How does a coach respond when teachers suggest they don’t have an idea how a coaching observation could support them? Why does everyone deserve a coach’s support for reflection? Reflection on surprises, failures, and frustrations are opportunities for insights and growth. Sample coaching questions are shared. View Atul Gawande's video, "Want to Get…
 
Most elementary teachers have dealt with parent questions and concerns about math instruction. Some teachers have been the parent raising those concerns with their child’s teacher. Hilary Kreisberg, the Director at the Center for Mathematics Achievement at Lesley University, and the author of, "Partnering with Parents in Elementary Math," shares fi…
 
What are you finding when you observe discussions in classrooms? Are teachers hearing all students’ voices? Are students’ voices being heard by classmates? What would a student survey tell us? How would you coach teachers to teach and facilitate discussion skills? What’s the quality of discussions taking place in PLC’s and professional learning act…
 
Tara Brown, who has been called the "Teen Whisperer," shares what we know about the teen brain and how that knowledge can support parents in understanding teen needs. She describes the teen brain as a Maserati with bicycle brakes. Tara is an experienced teenager and parent life coach. Visit Tara's website here.…
 
When parents were interviewed about math instruction in school, the four most frequent words that arose were intimidated, frustrated, worried, and confused. The author who conducted those interviews, Dr. Hilary Kreisberg, explores what school leaders can do to support teachers changing those parent concerns. Hilary is the author of "Partnering with…
 
Students have shared that discussion time is scarier than taking a test. How do we create classrooms where students report that during discussions they feel confident to ask a question, feel that classmates are listening to them, and feel connected to classmates? Liza Garonzik, from Real Discussion, provides some immediate steps teachers can take. …
 
The greatest growth from coaching is likely to occur when the goals from coaching have been set by the coachee. Ownership of the goal increases the commitment to the actions necessary for the goal to be reached. Five strategies are presented for a coach’s conscious practice. Similar to being on a seesaw, coaches need situational modifications to ke…
 
Experiencing joy has been described as a tonic for all of us, helping with various ailments and concerns. Joy can be healing and has benefits for children of all ages. How do we increase our focus on experiencing the joyful opportunities around us? Read the article, "How Experiencing Joy Can Help Children and Promote Optimal Development" Watch Ingr…
 
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