Pennsylvania Institute for Instructional Coaching — A Partnership Between the Annenberg Foundation and the Pennsylvania Department of Education

Every month we PIIC the brains of one of our mentors and ask them to write about topics related to instructional coaching and mentoring.  See what they have to say...

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LEADING WITH A PURPOSE PDF Print E-mail

Leadership is a daunting task, even for someone with legitimate authority or power.   “Following one step ahead” of one’s peers can be even more challenging for a coach or mentor.  But in the scheme of things, who is better to lead when they have already walked a mile in one’s shoes?


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Instructional Coaching and Teacher Evaluation PDF Print E-mail

By RMC Tom Sebastian

Although the PIIC Instructional Coaching Model is a non-evaluative vehicle for providing differentiated professional learning, it has the potential to positively impact teacher performance as measured by most teacher evaluation systems.  In Pennsylvania, where the teacher evaluation process is based on Charlotte Danielson’s Framework for Teaching, the four components/quadrants of the PIIC Model of Instructional Coaching, combined with its use of the B-D-A process, provide a structure for professional learning that effectively addresses the four domains of teaching responsibility as defined by the Danielson.


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Reflection IS a Gift PDF Print E-mail

By IU PIIC Mentors Teri Everett and Donette Porter

Reflection IS a Gift. As we roll through December and into January, we naturally start to reflect on the year that has passed and set resolutions for the New Year. Taking time from our hectic schedules and lives to allow for self-reflection is a gift we can give ourselves this time of year. John Dewey said, “We do not learn from experience…we learn from reflecting on experience.” As mentors and coaches, one of our roles is to support teachers and administrators in reflective practices.


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How can Mindful Leadership Enhance the Coaching Conversation? PDF Print E-mail

By IU PIIC Mentors Amber Molloy and Carol Adams

When we are mindful, we pay attention and see clearly whatever is happening in the present moment. When we operate from leadership, we paradoxically work from both our sources of strength and our blind spots.  So, to bring mindful leadership into the coaching conversation, we, as coaches, pay attention to our own experience AND we evoke the emerging story of the coachee.


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"Listen" is an anagram for "Silent” PDF Print E-mail

By IU PIIC Mentors Rae Ann Crispell and Gail Porrazzo

Picture yourself in a conversation with a teacher you are working with or a coach you are mentoring.  You ask a question and the person responds.  You pause.  A few seconds go by and then a few more.  Silence.  “It is a phenomenon of our times that, for many people, silence is almost unendurable.  Silence makes us nervous...Many people feel silence is a form of nonparticipation, signaling a lack of interest,” writes Susan Scott in her book, Fierce Conversations: Achieving Success at Work and in Life, One Conversation at a Time (2004).  Do you often feel the need to say something when there’s silence in a conversation?  Does silence make you feel awkward?  There are times when silence can not only be comfortable but is essential in the conversations coaches have with teachers and mentors have with coaches.  


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