Typical Coaching Session
I want to know how the student is both personally as well as in school. Together, we review the student’s Active Learning Plan (Google spreadsheet). We celebrate the student’s successes and identify any questions they have about their school work or challenges they want to problem-solve together. Throughout this check-in process, we reflect on the student’s learning, what’s working and what’s not so they can develop and deepen their own understanding of who they are as a learner.
2. Make a Plan for Success
Student’s update their planning tool to match the due dates listed on their online school management system. We then discuss what is required to complete each assignment and decide what items would be best for us to work on together. To make this decision, we prioritize assignments based on when they are due, how much work is required to complete them and most importantly during coaching sessions, how well they fit with the goals the student has established for coaching. For example, if one of the student’s goals is to study more effectively for tests, we will prioritize an upcoming test so we can focus on new study strategies.
3. Track Habits
I help students create trackable habits and support them to do the hard work of learning how to establish new habits. Each week, the student gives themselves a number from 1 to 10 indicating their level of success in implementing the habit throughout the week. When things don’t go as planned as they inevitably do, we troubleshoot and tweak that habit. Creating positive changes is hard. One of the reasons we may be unsuccessful at making changes is that we don’t know how to build habits. Sustained change requires repetition to build neural pathways that eventually form new habits. Coaching is designed to help you determine the changes you want to make and provide the support you need to consistently build habits that empower you to reach your goals.
4. Build the Toolbox
If we have identified a specific skill that is needed in order to complete a task, I ask the student if they would like to learn a new system, tool or strategy. We then choose some school work to practice applying what they have learned. During this part of the session, I often share a mini-conversation from the Anti-Boring Approach toolkit that combines information about how the brain learns alongside effective strategies for academic success. I weave these conversations repeatedly throughout our sessions until students can apply the strategies on their own.
WHAT IS THE NEXT STEP YOU ARE WILLING TO TAKE?
5. Wrap Up
We spend the last few minutes of each session reflecting on the most helpful takeaway, what small step they want to focus on and how they are planning to use strategies in the upcoming week. Finally, we decide what type of support (e.g. accountability nudges/encouragement) they need outside of the session to have a successful week overall.