Wednesday, September 7, 2011


“Change cannot occur without professional learning.” Whoo, hoo! This will keep Instructional Coaches in business for a long time! Change is always happening in education and with change comes new learning, discomfort and maybe obstacles. How do we support teachers (and students) in developing new understandings and acquiring new skills?

Part of my role as an Instructional Coach is to support teachers’ implementation of new curriculum and improved instructional practices through job-embedded professional development. Hopefully, I can be the bridge to forge the implementation dip that occurs when one learns something new. This leads me to the Concerns Based Adoption Model (CBAM) as a tool to assess progress and support implementation efforts.

First, I have to be aware of how the change will impact teachers; thus, the personal/affective aspects of change. Where are my teachers on this continuum?

Stages of Concern:
Awareness – not aware of change or doesn’t want to learn it.
Information – heard of change, needs more information.
Personal – main concern is how change will affect me.
Management/Task – main concern is about the scheduling, tasks to be one, management.
Consequence/Impact – main concern is how to make the change work for student success.
Collaboration – main concern is how to make it work even better by collaborating with colleagues
Refocusing – seeking out continuous improvement to make the change even better.

Typically, teachers’ comments in meetings and even in hallways, give insight to where they are on this continuum. I have seen teachers move several stages in one professional development session. I have seen other teachers camp out on one stage for a while. My goal is to meet them where they are. Tomorrow, I’ll post about how to help teachers move forward.

Hall, G. E., Hord, S. M. (2011). Implementation: Learning builds the bridge between research
and practice. JSD, 32(4), 52-57.

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