Peer coaching refers to a process whereby professionals, managers or even students come together to facilitate learning from one another (Hosack-Curlin, 1993).
The groups that come together often form trusting environments to facilitate their learning process. The group would create two kinds of subgroups, mainly peer coach and peer client. At any given point the groups will have the two simultaneously playing their roles for the groups to become active. Moreover, every member of the group must at one point be either a peer coach or a peer client. As a peer coach, an individual assumes the role of educating a member of the groups on concepts that they feel well acquainted. The peer clients, however, would, therefore, play the part of the learners, trying to exploit every new information that they come across. The benefit entails the fact that the peers feel comfortable with one another as they speak a common language. Therefore, explanation of concepts would not get cumbersome (Joyce et al., 2002).
Peer coaching adopts varied models, exploitable to groups that wish to conduct the coaching strategy. Some of the models would entail internal peer coaching groups, internal peer coaching networks, external peer coaching groups as well as external peer coaching networks. Peer coaching groups would mean that students from a particular grade, in a specific school, would come together to form a group where they would have performance-based discussions. In such groups, often small in size, one of the students would pick the role of a peer coach and discuss one of the subjects, say algebra. Internal peer coaching networks, on the other hand, entails students of the same grade, but different institutions are coming together to form discussion groups among themselves (Hosack-Curlin, 1993).
Among students, peer coaching assists them to receive more time for their individualized learning often. Students get engaged in peer coaching groups to feel free with their peers and can ask questions for clarification in a way that the peer may understand and reiterate back with proper explanations to the question. Moreover, students feel more comfortable relating to their peers. Arguably, peers have a specific language they know best. Therefore, in a peer coaching group or network, the peer clients would appreciate the peer coach better if the peer coach would use the language they prefer for explanations instead (Hosack-Curlin, 1993). This way, the peer clients get more chance at understanding the concepts deeper than they would if the teacher explained the concept. Additionally, peer coaches stand a better chance at understanding the concepts they portray better when they try to teach them to their peers in the language that the peers would understand best. The freedom that the groups come with allows for asking any questions in those forums. This feature of the peer coaching groups often challenge the peer coaches to understand the concepts better. While explaining an idea to a peer client, the peer coach would stand a better chance at viewing the concept from a different perspective, thereby making them comprehend the concept from two or more different angles. Also, peer coaching forums, provide financially practical alternatives that would cut down the need for hiring more teaching staff. Instead, the coaching groups would act as platforms to educate the slow students who did not get the concepts in class (Hosack-Curlin, 1993).
While peer coaching may work for students in enhancing their performance for the better, the strategy does not work for them alone. Teacher evaluations also require that teachers to these students perform in their various disciplines. As a result, the teacher also conducts peers coaching strategies. Among teachers, peer coaching entails regular observation among themselves and providing support companionship feedback and assistance to one another (Joyce et al., 2002). Similar to the coaching strategy among students, the coaches' knowledge of course curricula, department relationships and norms and the student learning capacity add up significantly to the potential impact of the coaching.
In departments, for example, where daily lessons, assessments, and shared reflections from the norms, coaching one another proves beneficial. During free time, teachers with good practice in collaboration and continual feedback would often banter back and forth on the effectiveness of lesson activities. At this point, the teacher would assess whether the activities needed more support while starting up or whether it took off smoothly. If it did take much scaffolding to take off, the teachers would assess further to know what areas they could uplift for such activities to pick up smoothly (Joyce et al., 2002). Additionally, they would examine whether students understood the work they opt to have shown and the reasons why that would come up as an issue. If the students did not understand, then they would deliberate on whether they put efforts at trying to make the students understand the concepts that they needed to have grasped.
To teachers and students alike, peer coaching works through the mutual respect and the trust that each teacher accords the other to acknowledge their capacity to teach their concept. Also, the joint respect recognizes that teaching improved each day and never ended and further accords each participant equal opportunities to act as coach and client at different times without either party purporting to possess expert knowledge regarding the subjects of discussion (Joyce et al., 2002).
Statement of Problem
On a daily basis, teachers work tirelessly to try and ensure their students understand the concepts they teach. Sometimes these shows work without assistance from co-teachers or other professionals. More often than not, students to these teachers depict a wide array of character regarding learning differences regarding skill, content knowledge, background experience, interests, parental support, learning challenges and self-confidence. The reason for variation depends on the cultures from which the children come from and consequently, the perspective from which they view the world (Garmston, 1987) measure.
While teacher grapple with the need to make each one of their students understand concepts in class, the schools, where these students learn in, struggle with changes in response to state and federal initiatives. The initiatives focused on the intention to enhance teaching and learning, conduct accountability initiatives, teacher evaluation and benchmarks for performance. The institutions struggle with updating students skills regarding relevance to the 21st-century skills, preparation of students for college and their careers as well as improving the schools. With all these, the school and the teachers may get overburdened at attempting to perform and get their students also to perform as well (Joyce et al., 2002).
The need for peer coaching would ease the burden that teachers face every day. With the incorporation of peer coaching, teachers would cease worrying whether the teaching strategies they use in class reached out to all the students or whether each student understood the concept taught in class. The teacher should feel relieved once one of the students in their classes understands the point. They should assist the other students who lag behind in grasping the teacher's concept while in class (Garmston, 1987). Therefore, the need for peer coaching grows each day as one of the strategies that would relieve teachers from the burden of trying to ensure every child in their classes understand the points they convey in class.
Both mentoring and coaching seek to try and foster affiliations that can encourage positive learning involvements for both parties included. The qualities that each member of the coaching group brings out shape the relationships for mentoring. Many professions adopt mentoring strategies from healthcare to education systems. Many types of research exploring the effects of mentoring and coaching have discovered both processes significant (Garmston, 1987). While mentoring presents as the more effective of the two, exploiting coaching, and especially peer coaching, could uplift the development in students (Garmston, 1987). New priorities, however, emphasize the advancement of mentoring and coaching abilities for tutors as well, with the national strategy for Continuing Professional Development suggesting the use of mentoring and coaching in teachers continuing professional development (Garmston, 1987).
Coaching depends on five primary competencies: establishment of connection and trust among members, listening for sense, asking for understanding, initiating action-reflection and comprehension; and developing conviction and observing triumph (Garmston, 1987). Since the focus on student-teacher relations encounters criticism, promoting confidence and celebrating success becomes a significant area of focus. Teacher and students should at least recognize when things go well and when the mentorship bears fruits. One can define confidence as being sure of one's skills or having belief in individuals and a constructive belief in the prospect (Garmston, 1987). It, therefore, presents a multidimensional ides linked to self-efficacy, self-esteem, and positivity. The importance of confidence stands out for teachers as one of the elements of substance in classrooms. It marks how students react to guidelines and communicate to tutors. Directly, confidence relates to performance. It increases motivation perceptions and the processing of thoughts. Moreover, confidence allows people to try new things and get more ready to acquire knowledge, relish demanding tasks, risk committing errors, articulate themselves as personalities, ask for help when they don't understand concepts and concentrate without fearing to fail (Garmston, 1987).
In research conducted to resolve the efficiency of peer training in support of the growth of professional qualities, the results depicted that students esteemed the associations with their peer coaches. Also, students admitted that the process of growing the association itself affected training (Garmston, 1987). Student teacher admitted that their relationships had both positive and useful effects on the development of both features of their training and written components of the program. From the study, peer coaching seemingly caters for a forum for student teachers to heed and deliberate their rehearsal in a different setting. Consequently, they grew their listening abilities and their skills to assist, share thoughts and communicate. They also developed the ability to reflect on both their classroom preparation and relations within their institutions. Through coaching, the students managed to appreciate the value of teamwork (Garmston, 1987).
In entering their profession, the teacher seems to desire guidance concerning the selection of materials, content, and methodology. Additionally, teachers wish the abilities to express and evaluate themselves concerning their abilities, assistance in classrooms and the opportunities to observe and interact with other teachers. The traditional procedure of giving teachers responsibilities and leaving them on their own proves to cause anxiety in teachers that begin their careers. Traditionally, teachers only got schedules or classes, textbooks and room assignments (Garmston., 1987). The traditional system assumed that all the teacher needed entailed books and assignments to classes, which proves not entirely the requirements, especially for beginners in the teaching profession.
With the traditional treatment of teachers, the anxiety that came with it got transferred to the classrooms and proved...
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