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Conducting Observation

Once you have determined the focus of your observation, you are ready to observe a shared reading session. An observation also includes debriefing with the adult reading partner. Plan to do the following: 

  1. Observe and record what happens
  2. Facilitate adult self-reflection  
  3. Provide descriptive feedback

You are encouraged to observe (i.e., face-to-face, virtual, or recording) and debrief at least once a month throughout the school year in each participating classroom. 

Refer to the appropriate section(s) of the Coach Observation form (i.e., Shared Reading, Follow the CAR, or Putting the CROWD in the CAR Observation Form).

Observe a shared reading lesson. Use the Big Ideas and the guiding statements to support you in looking for teaching behaviors that will maximize engagement and interaction with students. Indicate “Yes” if the guiding statement was observed or “No” if it was not.  If applicable, consider previous observations, areas of growth, or areas that have consistently been marked “No”. 

During the debriefing, your goal is to foster the adult reading partner’s thinking and problem-solving skills so they can discover their own solutions. The way an adult conducts a shared reading lesson will be influenced by their knowledge and experience, as well as student needs. Listening and allowing time for the adult to think and respond is necessary if they are to come up with their own aha moments that shape their shared reading practice. 

To facilitate self-reflection, initially refrain from sharing your thoughts. Instead, for the first 10 minutes or so, let the adult talk about what happened during the lesson, what worked, what was successful, and how certain students responded. Then, follow up with a question about something the adult reading partner commented on. If the adult is having trouble reflecting on the session, suggest having them look at the adult self-reflection form to give them ideas.  

By listening closely to what the adult reading partners are saying it will help you make decisions about whether to co-plan, provide a personalized coaching session, or provide additional information through a content activity. The goal is to provide support that will help the adult move forward in maximizing student engagement and interaction. 

At the end of the debriefing session, determine together with the adult partner areas of high, medium and low priority. As a coach your goal is to help the adult set their own instructional priorities for learning. For each high priority, the coach and adult reading partner will determine the type of follow-up support that is needed: co-planning, personalized coaching, or content activity.

Share descriptive feedback that is supportive, constructive, and promotes self-reflection. Describe rather than evaluate. A non-judgmental relationship with the adult reading partner will allow for open discussions.

Include specific information that will help the adult think through what they need to do to improve their implementation of shared reading. 

Use the Big Ideas and guiding statements on the Coach Observation to guide descriptive feedback to the adult reading partner. Below are some examples of how you might approach descriptive feedback on a few of the guiding statements.