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Coaching Vision

Coaching Vision

Vision is important. The first section of the Coachmark Criteria and Portfolio of Evidence asks for a written Vision Statement for Coaching in your school – one that has been arrived at collaboratively.

A vision galvanises people into action. It creates a point of focus and direction. It inspires and injects enthusiasm.

 

Sometimes!

 

Not always, as I’m sure you’ve experienced! A vision can be perceived as too demanding, too big, too distant and therefore not motivating. If arrived at collaboratively, a vision has a stronger chance of success because of the intellectual investment offered by participants and the value placed on each opinion.

 

What conversations and ideas are you sharing in school discussions that build a shared vision?

What understanding, skills or experience do people seek in order to be fully part of this conversation?

What is the timescale for your vision? What would the ideal be? Too close and it can seem a pressure, too far and it can lack energy and motivation.

What will be the milestones along the way? How will you share and celebrate these? What differences do you envisage as you move forward? What might the obstacles be and how would you choose to navigate and overcome them?

As you look into the future to a point where the vision has become a reality, what will you actually be seeing with regard to coaching? What will you be hearing? What will you be feeling?

We’d love to hear about your school vision for coaching and the steps, small and large, that are in place to turn this into a reality.

 

The Coachmark Team

Coachmark supports schools in achieving excellence and recognition through the use of their coaching practices. Contact us for further information: info@coachmark.org.uk

 

How to deal with doubt

How to deal with doubt

Nothing gets in the way of peak performance more than doubt – the little voice inside your head that says:

‘What will they think?’

‘What if it doesn’t work? What then?’

‘I don’t know what to do and everyone is looking for my lead.’

Timothy Galway (The Inner Game of Tennis/ The Inner Game of Work 1974) called these thoughts ‘interference’ – usually based in fear and doubt.

One way to increase our own performance and to support others in the same way is to reduce interference. As interference lessens, more potential becomes available to us.

Which of the following cause interference for you? Which do you notice might be hindering colleagues?

Fear? Lack of self-confidence? Trying for perfection? Anger? Resentment?

A powerful way to reduce interference is to focus your attention on what you ‘re currently doing and on what’s going well. Focus on strengths and solutions rather than the ‘What if’ anxious thinking that may be currently swirling around in your head. Start to notice where things are going well and how you can build on this. Notice what your strengths are and put them into practice more of the time. Reframe the interference. Once you’ve taken note of any negativity and reflected on where this might be the voice of caution speaking, choose to look at things from a different angle and ‘flip’ the thinking, eg:

From ‘What will they think?’ to ‘What positive things will they think?’, ‘What positive results might come from this?’

From ‘What if it doesn’t work? What then?’ to ‘What if this works brilliantly? What will happen then?’

From ‘I don’t know what to do and everyone is looking for my lead.’ To ‘Everyone is looking for my lead because I’m best placed to know what to do and which choices to make.’ Or simply ‘I know what to do.’

Play with your words so that they work for you – sometimes when we ‘flip’ a thought it becomes too strong, in which case tweak it instead so that it becomes a milder, non-critical thought.

We’d love to hear from you!

 

 

The Coachmark Team

Coachmark supports schools in achieving excellence and recognition through the use of their coaching practices. Contact us for further information: info@coachmark.org.uk

Gold again for first ever Coachmark school

Gold again for first ever Coachmark school

Congratulations to all at West Ewell Infant and Nursery School in Surrey for retaining the highly-valued Coachmark Gold Award!

 

 

 

The school is an inspiring 4 form entry infant school and nursery with a preschool and infant specialist centre for children with speech, language and communication needs (SLCN).

 

 

 

The minute you walk into the school you feel a sense of purpose, positivity and togetherness. The coaching vision for the school can be seen in every aspect of school life and creates a really positive environment. The coaching ethos and approach is described as ‘revealing’, ‘exciting’, challenging’, ‘focused’, ‘reflective’, ‘decisive’, ‘valuable’, ‘beneficial’. The vision: ‘To further develop our coaching culture at all levels. To strive continuously to self improve, challenge and exceed expectations’ underpins the school Mission Statement which led to the creation of their unique School Promise:

 

 

 

The Children’s Promise:

 

 

 

I will always try my best and never give up.

 

 

 

I will treat my friends and teachers with kindness and respect.

 

 

 

I will have the confidence to try new things and find the answers for myself.

 

 

 

The Teachers’ Promise:

 

 

 

I will inspire, motivate and challenge.

 

 

 

I will always aim for excellence.

 

 

 

I will seek the best for every child.

 

 

 

Coaching is fully embedded at West Ewell Infant School and Nursery and simply a way of life at all levels. In line with the promises, the school regularly explores how it can continue to improve as a whole school and is not afraid to challenge or change as a result – everyone has a voice, including most importantly of all, the children.

 

 

The Coachmark Team

Coachmark supports schools in achieving excellence and recognition through the use of their coaching practices. Contact us for further information: info@coachmark.org.uk

 

 

Collecting evidence

Collecting evidence

Part of the Coachmark application process is to complete the Coachmark ‘Criteria and portfolio of Evidence’. This document has been designed to support you in evaluating, celebrating and developing your school’s coaching practice and will assist you in achieving the highest standards in coaching at Bronze, Silver and Gold levels.

A highly effective method of evidence collection is to gather views from colleagues via a survey. Even better if the survey can be completed anonymously. In this way colleagues will give their honest opinions and you will have a snapshot of how well this approach is working.

We’d like to share a free tool that you can use for this purpose:

It’s a FREE and easy-to-use, online survey tool. You can create your own simple survey and then invite participants to log on and complete it. Surveys are VERY easy to create.

It works well to conduct a survey at the beginning of a stage in your coaching journey and do the same again further down the line. This gives a real insight into the changes that result and the impact of coaching on individuals, teams and the whole school.

We’d love to hear how this works for you.

The Coachmark Team

Coachmark supports schools in achieving excellence and recognition through the use of their coaching practices. Contact us for further information: info@coachmark.org.uk

Southfield Park Primary School SHINE

Southfield Park Primary School SHINE

Southfield Park Primary School has high expectations of success where every child can SHINE not just in their academic life but in their personal and social development as well. Their mission statement promises that if children are SUCCESSFUL in their learning, are HAPPY, are INSPIRED and are NURTURED they will EXCEL.

The coaching approach is woven into the fabric of the school and is integral to the SHINE mission statement. We met the head teacher, Kate Gee and the Coach Lead in school, Sally Smith alongside other members of staff and the Year 6 Coaching Crew! Such enthusiasm and commitment for the coaching approach shone through in all the conversations we had. Congratulations Southfield Park Primary School on achieving the GOLD Coachmark!

Southfield Park Primary is one of a growing number of schools in the country who have achieved the Coachmark GOLD Award.

The Coachmark Team

Coachmark supports schools in achieving excellence and recognition through the use of their coaching practices. Contact us for further information: info@coachmark.org.uk

Coaching in the classroom

Coaching in the classroom

Here’s what a group of Year 2 children and their teachers shared with us about their experience of using a coaching approach:

Naomi told us she had learnt, ‘…that I’m definitely more kind than I was and I’m happier!’

Naomi had been very low in confidence and held her head and eyes downwards when with peers. She felt subject to criticism from one particular boy, who said he was ‘only teasing’. Interesting! How often have you come across that response?

Slowly, Naomi became more sure of herself and assertive through the simple coaching tools used – including starting to notice and collect compliments. She started to smile again and became more aware of her strengths. The boy became more aware of the negative impact of his teasing and stopped. Naturally, in the way that happens with young children, they now talk of getting married and pay each other plentiful compliments!

Another boy had a problem with anger linked to low self-esteem. Visualization, using his ideas, was used to assist in dissipating the anger. At the height of his anger he felt as if he was burning like a fierce fire. He visualized blowing the fire out and then kept a self-drawn laminated picture of a fire in his pocket as a reminder that he was in control. He said, ‘It makes me stop being angry at home and in class.’ His parents were so impressed with the change they wrote to the school.

Teachers told us there was a clear growth in confidence in pupils and it fostered a sense of belonging and positive communication. Verbal feedback from children, teachers and parents was very positive.

Let us know your experiences with using coaching techniques and tools with pupils! We’d love to hear. If you have any questions, get in touch!

The Coachmark Team

Coachmark supports schools in achieving excellence and recognition through the use of their coaching practices. Contact us for further information: info@coachmark.org.uk