Find effective strategies that teachers, home visitors, and coaches can use in their efforts to support children with disabilities or suspected delays. The webinars in this series include:
- Preventing Suspension and Expulsion of Children with Disabilities or Suspected Delays
- Supporting Interactions for Children with Disabilities or Suspected Delays
- Environments That Support High Quality Inclusion
Separated, But Together: How to Strengthen Collaboration in a Virtual World
Separated, But Together: How to Strengthen Collaboration in a Virtual World
Separate, But Together:
How to Strengthen Collaboration in a Virtual World
Dr. Jennifer Fung: Hi, everybody, and welcome to the first webinar in our four-part inclusion webinar series for 2021. In today's webinar, we are going to focus on strategies that disability services coordinators, program managers or administrators, and others who are in coaching roles can use to build collaborative partnerships or to support others to build collaborative partnerships while we are all living in this virtual world. So, I just want to remind everybody that even if you don't have the word "coach" in your job title, we all use these coaching and collaboration practices to be more effective in our work. So, we're really excited to be here and to talk about these strategies with you. We think that many of the important lessons we've learned while adapting our practices to virtual or remote learning will still be really valuable even when we return to more typical schedules and routines. So, my name is Jennifer Fung. and I am the new inclusion lead for the National Center on Early Childhood Development, Teaching, and Learning, or DTL. I just joined the DTL team, and I am really excited to be here with you. For a little bit more information about me, you can check out an introduction video that I posted in the Head Start Disabilities Inclusion Community on MyPeers. A link to the MyPeers community is on the webinar resource list, which you can find by clicking on the green resource list widget. So, I'm thrilled to be joined today by two presenters who are experts in the area of early intervention and education for young children with disabilities, Dr. Angel Fettig and Dr. Ragan McLeod. Angel, would you like to introduce yourself?
Dr. Angel Fettig: Sure. Hi, everyone. My name is Angel Fettig, I'm an associate professor in early childhood special education at the University of Washington, and I'm very excited to be here with you.
Jennifer: Great. Welcome, Angel, and thank you. Ragan, would you like to share a little bit about yourself?
Dr. Ragan McLeod: Yeah, thanks, Jenn. My name's Ragan McLeod, I am the program coordinator of the Early Childhood Special Education Program at the University of Alabama, and I have also worked with that Head Start National Centers for the last 10 years on developing materials and presenting trainings and practice-based coaching.
Jennifer: Great. Thanks, Ragan. And thank you both so much again. I am thrilled to have you here with us today to share your expertise in creating thoughtful and respectful partnerships with families and education staff and really, in particular, to hear what you've learned over the past several months about what's most important to focus on right now as we work to adapt these strategies to virtual settings. As we move through the webinar, one common message will be carried throughout, and this will be that focusing on the needs of families to support their children is a top priority right now. We know that remote services and virtual learning really have changed what services look like for children with disabilities, and this has changed the needs of families. The support needs of education staff have also changed as they've worked to adjust their practices and their ongoing support that they're providing for families. We'll start the webinar off by talking about what's most important as education staff and coordinators are adapting their practices to remote formats. And just a quick note. I want to clarify that when we use the term "education staff," we are referring to many different roles that are involved in caring for and educating young children with disabilities or suspected delays and their families. This might include teachers, family childcare providers, home visitors, and disability services coordinators. So, you'll hear us use the term "education staff" to be inclusive of all these roles. Then we'll talk about the needs of families and how education staff can support them virtually. And last, we'll talk about using virtual tools to coach education staff, including the use of video during the coaching cycle and tools you can use to support your virtual coaching work. So, let's quickly review our objectives. By the end of this webinar, you should be able to describe strategies to help educators plan for virtual family visits, and you should also be able to discuss strategies and tools, including the use of the Head Start Coaching Companion, to incorporate the use of video into your coaching work. This will be able to help you support education staff to provide focused support for children with IFSPs and IEPs. So, before we really get started, will you all do me a favor? Right where you are, right where you're sitting, will you raise your hand if you've already started collaborating with colleagues or working with families using a virtual format? So, I have. I do a lot of trainings and workshops in my work. And while I'm grateful for the ability to still be able to do these trainings remotely, replacing in-person connections with virtual interactions has been one of the hardest adjustments for me personally during social distancing. I really love the energy that comes from being in the same room with the educators I work with, sharing ideas and strategies, and I'm really, really missing that right now. So, if you have your hand raised, take that same hand and give yourself a big pat on the back. Though we love technology, we know that it's not always easy to connect in the same way as being together in person. So, kudos to you for all the hard work that you're doing right now. OK, let's get started. Before we dive into our main topic, let's take a quick big-picture look at what's most important when it comes to adapting collaboration practices to remote or virtual formats. So, we know collaborating with other adults is a huge part of our work as disability services coordinators or other program staff who are focused on inclusion supports. And this collaboration really relies heavily on forming relationships and strong partnerships as the foundation of our practice. Many program staff have traditionally relied on in-person sessions and in-person meetings to form these relationships and do collaborative work. Some programs, however, have already been using technology and virtual tools in a variety of ways, such as using video observations or text feedback or other types of virtual practices as part of their collaboration. But last winter, we all found ourselves needing to figure out how to rely on only virtual tools and strategies. Our colleagues from around the country have shared the reflections on what's worked in adapting to a new remote world. So, let's take a quick big-picture look at what's been working. So, really what we've learned throughout all of this is that connections and ongoing communications are key, especially considering all of the stress that families and education staff are under. Connecting with education staff for families might help ease isolation and can serve as a constant during these uncertain times. But we also know that we need to adapt how we're connecting. In order to be most supportive, these connections should be ongoing. So, this might mean that we're making small connections more often rather than relying on making connections during traditional meetings or during family visits. We might also need to vary how we're making connections, and that might be by phone, by text, by mailing a letter, by dropping something off at someone's home or their office, or maybe by using a video call. While we're making these connections, it's likely that we'll need to allow more time for personal interaction to check in with one another emotionally and to provide general support. In terms of connections, early intervention specialists, or your LEA, can support education staff to stay connected with other service providers and to really help families understand the roles of the different providers during virtual or remote learning. This can help improve coordination and communication and really help avoid duplication of efforts during a time that's already overwhelming for many families. Disability services coordinators and other education staff can make connections with service providers to ensure that everyone is aligning their support and outreach to families and to help families understand who's doing what and the goal of each provider's outreach. In addition to the importance of those connections, we've also learned that not all coaching or collaboration practices will be able to be used the same way in a remote format as they are used in person. So, to address this, we need to be flexible. This might mean that we're being flexible about how we're conducting family visits, how we're supporting education staff to provide virtual learning activities, how we're collaborating within an IFSP or an IEP team, or what our coaching sessions and observations look like. We may also need to be flexible about how we're doing reflection and feedback during coaching sessions. It's really critical to focus on the strategies and components of collaboration that can be used remotely and really to build on those. So, what we've learned -- many lessons have been learned, but really connection is the common thread. So, take a look at the green resource widget for our resource list handout. This handout has information that can help you learn more about specific practices and strategies that might help you adapt your collaboration practices to a remote format. So, Angel Fettig is one of the researchers who's doing this work every day. She's been supporting programs and education staff to make a big change in their practice, especially in the area of supporting families using virtual formats. As you listen to Angel, reflect on the information that she's sharing and use the purple Q&A widget to ask questions as they might come up. We will try to answer some of your questions towards the end of the webinar. So, Angel, we know that the needs of families of children with disabilities and suspected delays really have changed during the pandemic. Where do families need the most support right now?
Angel: Yeah, so when thinking about supporting families, it's important to consider the experiences, strengths, and challenges that they are bringing to the table. Our research team recently completed an interview study with families and educational staff to understand family experiences and educational staff experiences in supporting the young children that they're serving, and they're learning during these times. Here are some of the themes that we heard in our interviews. So, the first thing is that families share that the mental health challenges and stress the pandemic has brought up is really, really critical. Education staff also share that they notice parental stress through the interactions they have with children and families. Educators are also experiencing these stress themselves. Families are also experiencing challenges with resources and the time to support their child's learning throughout the day. During the day, children might be under the care of others, such as the grandparents, older siblings, other relatives, or caregivers when parents are essential workers. Limited access to technology at home might limit children's engagement in online learning events, as well. Parents have been juggling multiple responsibilities as they try to address the needs of their children and family. All of these challenges may leave little time for families to support their young children's learning. Regardless of the barriers they reported, families of children with disabilities have concerns regarding their children's skill regression during this time, and that's a pretty big concern. Families really wondering, "Are my kid's going to be OK, you know, during this time?" And then families also sharing that -- that understanding the need to engage their children in learning right now is very critical. They told us that many of their interactions with educators right now have shifted to parent coaching. So, these are the big things that we found in our study.
Jennifer: Thanks, Angel, so much. This is such great information to have since working with families to determine their priorities is such an important part of the partnership process. So, right now, we know that education staff have the need to focus their support on meeting the biggest needs and stressors that families are experiencing. So, supporting families to learn and use strategies to support their child's learning while they're at home is so critical, as you mentioned. We know that families and education staff are connecting in many different ways, whether that's by phone, through text, over email, on social media, through video calls -- whatever that might be. Angel, what tips do you have for education staff who are providing support for families virtually?
Angel: Yeah, the emphasis of this type of family support is how to guide families so that they can support the development and learning of their young children with disabilities. We know a lot about this type of support and family engagement, but most of us have always done this in person. We've had to learn how to transform interacting and supporting families through tele-intervention. So, in the green resource widget, you'll find an article titled "Inside the Virtual Visit: Using Tele-intervention to Support Families in Early Intervention." This article is published in "Young Exceptional Children" and has a virtual visit checklist, and you see a screenshot here on your screen, as well as virtual visit strategies that provide helpful tips regarding how to focus the time you have with the family. Be sure to download this checklist to help you as you plan your time with families. When we're planning to provide family support virtually, there are few key things we want to consider. Setting up the environment, relationship building, caregiver coaching. While the article uses the term "caregiver coaching," in the context of this webinar, we are focusing on the guidance and support we provide to families. Caregiver-professional reflection, and lastly, collaborative planning and follow up. The article describes each of these considerations in detail, but there are a few key things that I want to highlight here. Before we move on, I want to remind everyone that the article uses the term "caregiver," and we're talking about families in this webinar. So, first is the importance of helping with access when setting up the virtual visit. It's important to make sure that families have access to whatever they need so that the time together is productive and helpful. This can include technology support, expectations during the visit, and goals to accomplish during the visit. Next, I want to briefly touch on the importance of building relationships. As Jenn mentioned, this is more important now than ever. During virtual home visits, we can connect with families to build relationships by discussing strengths and challenges they are experiencing, including situations that aren't directly related to the child's learning. An important part of building relationship is providing space for families to share, which might be in the form of silence as acknowledgment. It is OK to embrace silence and allow observation and self-reflection. I also want to talk about family guidance, which is one of the critical ways to provide support and share strategies during a family visit. This guidance can be provided in many ways and works best when matched to the needs and preferences of the family you're supporting. Some critical considerations are effectively communicating strategies using simple and direct statements, breaking down tests into steps, demonstrating strategies, and inviting families to try out a specific strategy. This guided practice sets the foundation for families to be able to use the strategies with their young child throughout the day. It's important that families and educators reflect on their virtual family visit experience together. This will help education staff understand effective ways to support the family before, during, and after a virtual home visit. Consider using reflective questioning, such as, "How do you feel right now?" "What do you think your child's experience is like so far?" "How can we work together to support your child during this time?" Last, educators and families can work together to plan goals or plans that are based on family priorities. Educators may gather a lot of information during a family visit. It's important that we follow up with families with notes, decisions, or next steps after the visit.
Jennifer: Angel, thank you so much. These are great strategies and really important points to remember. Establishing expectations and goals, supporting families to learn and to try new strategies to teach their child, and encouraging them to reflect on what they need to be successful will be really helpful for staff who are providing family support in many different contexts. One thing I keep thinking about is how important it is to encourage education staff and disability services coordinators to stay connected with one another as they're using these practices, whether this is problem-solving together, locating supports or resources for families, or figuring out how to support families to try new strategies. I think these connections will not only help education staff use effective practices when they're providing remote or virtual support, but it might also help with feelings of isolation when programs are providing remote services. So, Angel, you mentioned that families of young children with disabilities are really worried about their child's continued learning when educational programming is taking place through a distanced learning. Some programs are able to offer remote-learning lessons as part of their virtual support. But those experiences may not be possible for some families, depending on their Internet access, access to technology or location, among other factors. We know that it's important to make family child activities as easy as possible for families to use. Right now, families -- or I'm sorry -- education staff are really focused on helping families incorporate learning into the home throughout their daily routines. So, in order to help these be as family friendly as possible and as easy for families to use as possible, activities or strategies should be low stress, should be built into natural routines, and should use materials that families already have in the home. Or they could use materials that are provided by programs. Also, materials and instructions for activities should be provided in the language that children and families understand best. Angel, I'm wondering, what other considerations should education staff keep in mind when they are planning to support families of children with disabilities to use learning activities at home?
Angel: Yeah, so at-home learning and learning within routines has always been important for children with disabilities and suspected delays, and now is more important than ever. So, when programs aren't meeting in person as often, or even at all at this time, we need to maximize the learning opportunities that children have in their daily activities and routines and transitions. If familiar community routines, such as grocery shopping, are no longer available, education staff need to work with families to identify new routines to embed instruction in. So, really helping families in thinking about what are some typical routines during this time? So, an activity matrix is a great way to help guide families to think about their daily routines and how to support their child to learn targeted skills from their IFSP or IEP during those routines. Education staff can help families create an activity matrix by having the conversation with the family about their routines. The activities and routines identified create the first column in the matrix. Then review the current IFSP or IEP goals and work with the family to decide what routines will be good to teach certain goals. This becomes the second column in the matrix. A link to a sample activity matrix is included on your resource list. For example, for a child who has a language goal to use descriptive words, the matrix might have suggestions of how to encourage language during meal, bath, and play times, such as talking about shape of foods during meal time, talking about the colors of bath toys, and talking about the size of cars during play. It is important to remind families that the matrix is not a lesson plan at all. It is a tool to offer suggestions and should be based on family priorities -- what feels most important, and what feels manageable to them. At a time when families already have many demands on their time and resources, it's important that we're not overwhelming them with our support.
Jennifer: Great. Angel, I love the idea of an activity matrix to help families plan to really maximize the learning opportunities for their child throughout their day and throughout routines that are already taking place. Another big focus for education staff who work with families of children with disabilities or suspected delays is helping families learn specific teaching strategies. What are some tips from you on how education staff can plan to support families to learn these new strategies?
Angel: Yeah, this is an important part of our work with families of children with disabilities or suspected delays. To help make sure that the support is as helpful as possible, education staff should ask families what they want to focus on or where they need the most support. Then, education staff can share tips and resources on strategies that families can use throughout the day. The resources should show families how to use the strategy to embed learning opportunities on their child's goals throughout the day. It's important that these resources are accessible for families, as well. The type of resources and how it's provided should match how the family best learns and is able to access information. For example, an educator may take a photo of a handout or tip sheet and text that to the family. They might create a short video of themselves demonstrating the strategy, then send it to the family. Or they might drop off a packet with a tip sheet, visual supports, and learning materials at the family's home.
Jennifer: Thanks, Angel. That is a really great point about sharing resources in a way that's accessible and meaningful to the families. We know that our supports and our guidance should always be culturally responsive, but this is really important during remote learning, when families may face challenges accessing information. And any materials that we provide should be in the family's strongest language and should be shared however the family can access them, whether that's through email, text, or providing paper copies. So, Angel, thank you again so much for sharing that helpful information. And before we move on, I'd love to check in with all of our participants to see what format you're all using to connect with families most often. So, if you wouldn't mind, please take a quick second to participate in the poll and tell us how you're making connections. Are you using mail? Are you dropping off materials? Are using the phone to text or call families? Are you emailing? Are you using video calls? So, take just a second to share with us how you're making connections with families. Great, so it looks like some feedback coming in. I see lots of "text." See some "mail." Some people who are dropping off materials. Thanks so much for checking in. Looks like there are a lot of family connections being made in many different ways, so thank you so much. OK, now let's check in with Ragan, who is also doing work in this field to support coaches, to adapt their practices to this new virtual world we're living in. And remember, even if you don't have "coach" in your job title, we can all use these practices as we're supporting education staff to adapt their practice to best support families of children with disabilities. So, Ragan, what are you learning about how coaches are adapting their practices, and in particular, how are coaches using video and other technology to support education staff? So, quickly -- remember, again, if you have any questions for Ragan as she's talking - please use the purple Q&A widget to ask away. We will try to get to as many questions as possible throughout the webinar and at the end of the webinar.
Ragan: Thanks, Jenn. Before I jump into kind of ways that we're using technology and coaching right now, I wanted to just give a quick overview of practice-based coaching, which is the type of coaching that many of our Head Start and Early Head Start programs are using to support their education staff. So, practice-based coaching is a cyclical process for supporting education staff use of effective teaching and learning and home-visiting practices, with the idea that using those effective practices leads to better outcomes for children and their families. As an inclusion or a disability specialist, you may be supporting teachers, home visitors, and our other education staff who work with young children with IFSPs, IEPs, and their families. Practice-based coaching is one way that you may be providing some professional-development support to those education staff. So, the components of practice-based coaching that are really important are, one, this collaborative partnership, which we call the foundation. So, it's the idea that the coach and the coachee are working together to develop the rest of the coaching cycle. The first piece of the coaching cycle is really developing shared goals and action plans towards meeting those goals. Once that shared goal and action plan is developed, then the coach conducts a focused observation of the coachee implementing those practices. And then the coach and the coachee reflect on the implementation of those practices, and the coach provides feedback, both supportive and constructive feedback on the coachee's use of those practices. When we think about coaching, when we're considering working with children with IEPs and IFSPs and their families, what we think about are effective practices that we pull from the DEC recommended practices. So, if you're interested in more information about the DEC recommended practices, practice-based coaching or you want some resources to share with your staff, please take a look at the materials that we've included in the resource widget. So, one of the tools that many of our Head Start and Early Head Start programs are using right now is the Head Start Coaching Companion. This is a tool that was built around the practice-based coaching cycle to support implementation of practice-based coaching. Many of you may be familiar with the Coaching Companion or even be using it currently. One of the great things about the Coaching Companion is it really allows for coaches to provide feedback on video clips that the coachee's upload, and this can really lead to a back-and-forth conversation around the practices in those focused-observation videos. Programs have really started using the Head Start Coaching Companion to support this kind of virtual coaching or even hybrid coaching, where you might be using video and onsite coaching. The Head Start Coaching Companion is a great benefit to providing virtual coaching because it gives you the opportunity to include those virtual coaching components. The Head Start Coaching Companion also gives you an opportunity to work with multiple coachees. You can even have goals that multiple coachees are working on, where they can talk to each other and have conversations around implementing those practices, almost a community of practice within the Coaching Companion. And then there's also a wonderful resource library in the Coaching Companion that has videos of effective practices. It also has a number of other resources that are available to coaches and coachees. For more information about the Coaching Companion, we've included a link in -- to the Coaching Companion overview and the Coaching Companion FAQs in the resource widget.
Jennifer: Great. Thank you for that information on P.C. and also on the Head Start Coaching Companion, Ragan. So, I'd love us to pause for just a moment to think about and reflect on how the Head Start Coaching Companion can be used to support inclusion. So, if you wouldn't mind, everybody, just take a moment to reflect and note your ideas. In what ways could you use the Coaching Companion to help education staff individualize for a child with an IFSP or an IEP? Just take a moment and think about that, jot down your notes on a piece of paper or something that's handy nearby. OK, so thanks everybody for taking that time. Please continue to think about that, continue to jot down ideas as you think of them as we move through the rest of the webinar. We know that there are many different ways that you can use the Head Start Coaching Companion to support individualization. And here are just a few possible examples. So, a coach and a coachee might look at a video clip together to see what works and what doesn't work in terms of a specific practice being used with a specific child. How did that strategy meet their needs? How did they respond? You might look at an exemplar video together to learn about a specific instructional practice that an educator might want to learn and use more of. Or you might work with a small group of educators who are working, like Ragan mentioned, on a similar goal or on the same goal and form a small community of practice to help improve their use of practices that support inclusion. So, Ragan, before we move on and talk more about virtual coaching, can you tell us -- what are some of the benefits of virtual coaching?
Ragan: Definitely. So, we know right now, many programs are providing coaching or other kinds of professional development supports virtually for lots of different reasons. Those who are newer to this delivery method may have discovered some of the true benefits of coaching and supporting staff virtually. And now is really an opportunity to think about what you want to continue doing virtually if you're returning to in-person coaching or as you're planning for the next year of coaching. So, one great advantage of using video for observations of education staff is that it provides an objective view of what practices the staff are and are not using. It's not just the coach's perspective or their written notes, but actual footage of what the coachee is doing and how it's affecting the children and families that he or she is working with. One really important consideration for virtual coaching in this context is that the coaches and coachees really need to talk to and reassure family about the privacy policies and advise them about the confidentiality of coaching done virtually. So, they need to reassure the family that the focus of coaching is really on the coachee and not on the family and that any video footage collected will be kept confidential in accordance with your agency's privacy policies and safeguards. And again thinking back to the Head Start Coaching Companion, it can be a great tool to use to stay connected and to maximize the time by allowing coaches and coachees to communicate and upload videos. So, using the Coaching Companion, you can also share your own resources or use the Coaching Companion resource library that's accessible to everyone who's using the Coaching Companion. You know, another really great benefit of having those video recorded observations is that it really gives the coaches and coachees opportunities to observe and reflect on the use of practices before they meet together to talk about it. So, the coachees have an opportunity to go back and watch themselves using those practices. And that can really help them to think about the reflection and feedback that's going to happen in that debriefing meeting. And on the same note, the coaches have the opportunity to go back and watch the video more than once. When you're coaching live, when you're doing that focused observation live, it's really easy to miss things. And so, if you have it videotaped, you can go back and look, and you can find great examples and really specific moments that you want to share with the coachee as you're providing that feedback and supporting reflection.
Jennifer: Great, thank you, Ragan. So, I have another question for you. When we're talking about coaching virtually or remotely, what should we consider when it comes to focused observations?
Ragan: That's a great question, Jenn. So, when we're thinking about those focused observations, one thing is that we have a lot of people that may be using technology that they haven't used before. So, whether that's the video cameras or the iPads that they're using for filming or if they're using the Coaching Companion for the first time, we need to provide training on how to do that. So, we need to train the coaches, the coachees, and if other people are helping out -- like your paraprofessional may be videotaping -- any of those people involved need to be trained on the equipment that you'll be using and any of the other kinds of virtual resources they'll be accessing. So, the other piece of that is if the coachees are clipping videos to upload. So, they're there filming their own focused observation and then identifying a clip to share with the coach, they need to be taught how to clip those videos if they're expected to do that. So, just making sure that there's training provided on any technology that the coachees or the coaches need to have to be able to perform the coaching functions. Additionally, there needs to be a conversation ahead of the focused observation to really plan for it, so the coach and coachee need to be specific about what activities to record to make sure that they're really seeing the coachee implement that action plan. Also, how long that recording should be to really be able to see all of the aspects of the action plan the coach is observing. If the focused observation is going to be, again, in the family's home, then the coach and the home visitor should really discuss filming with the family before that focused observation happens and make sure that the family gives permission for the filming to happen. Additionally, we mentioned training on all of these aspects of technology that the coach and the coachee might be using, but there also needs to be ongoing support as coachees are trying this out. So, as they're recording their first focused observation, or uploading, there needs to be someone that they can go to for support with any of those technology issues. One example of this is that the coach, as the coach, you could record a short video showing how to film or how to clip or how to upload a video and then make that available to the coachees.
Jennifer: Great, thank you, Ragan. And then thinking about reflection and feedback, that component of the PBC cycle -- what tips do you have for getting the most out of reflection and feedback virtually?
Ragan: So, one thing to really consider is that part of the reflection and feedback component of practice-based coaching is being objective, right? So, what's great about doing this virtually, again, is that we have that video, and that is that objective view. It's not the coach's opinion. It's not just their notes. But it is actual footage of what the coachee is doing in working towards that goal and implementing that action plan. So, they can really provide that objective view of how the coachee is currently using those practices. Another part of our practice-based coaching reflection and feedback is being really specific, really pointing out when a coachee is using a practice and pointing out those missed opportunities as well. And so, again, video is fabulous for this because you can show a clip. You can show a clip and be really specific about what a coachee is doing or a missed opportunity to use that practice. So, video can really help us do these things that we know are really effective in our reflection and feedback. Another great thing in thinking about the Coaching Companion and being objective and specific is that the Coaching Companion can really support this. So, one of the great functions is that within the Coaching Companion, you can tag in a video so you can mark a specific place in a video that the coachee uploads in that focused observation and say, "Here's a time when you did this practice perfectly." Or, "Oh, I wonder what would happen if you did this here." And so, that can be a great opportunity for the coachee to see themselves in action. So, really thinking about that self-modeling, right? Of using those practices effectively and also those opportunities where they might use that practice that they might have missed. In addition to the coach being able to tag those videos, the coachee can respond and reply to comments that the coach makes on those videos. So, it's a really great kind of back-and-forth conversation that you can have within the Coaching Companion tied to those specific moments in the video. So, one example of this might be that maybe you are supporting a coachee to provide some prompts to name pictures within a storybook reading. So, after the video of the storybook reading, you can look at what the coachee has uploaded, and what would you tag there? If you were the coach, what might you tag? So, some of the things you might have thought of in your head is that you might tag every time that educator uses a model prompt to support the child to name the picture. You might tag an opportunity where they could have used a prompt and didn't. Or you might say, "Here's the best example that I saw of you doing this." So, there's lots of great ways to use this function in the Coaching Companion, again, to support that specificity of that practice that you want the coachee to be using. So, I just wanted to share with you another resource for this, so if you are interested in learning more about practice-based coaching or more about the Coaching Companion, one great place to go to is the Practice-Based Coaching Group in MyPeers. And there, you'll find lots of great resources about coaching, about practice-based coaching, and it's a wonderful place because it's an opportunity for actual coaches to upload resources they're using, to ask questions, to have conversations with other coaches in Head Start and Early Head Start programs about what they're doing. So, it's a great resource for coaches, or even if you're not coaching, it can be a great resource for other things that people are doing around professional development support virtually. So, please feel free to check out the Practice-Based Coaching Group in MyPeers. Additionally, if you're interested in more information about the Coaching Companion, there is a specific tab in MyPeers around the Coaching Companion. And tomorrow, on January 27th at 1:30 Eastern, we also will be presenting a Coaching Corner webinar all about the Head Start Coaching Companion. So, please check that out if you're interested in more information about the Coaching Companion.
Jennifer: Great, Ragan, thank you so much. That was such helpful information. And with that, now we're at the end of our presentation. So, today we explored many different things, many different aspects of remote services and virtual collaboration and virtual learning, including how services have changed and how learning experiences have changed for children with disabilities and their families, and really how this impacts the need for support for families of children with disabilities. So, we talked about many effective strategies that education staff can use to provide the support for families, as well as many different strategies that disability services coordinators or managers can use to provide education staff who are providing that support remotely or virtually. And these strategies included use of video and the use of the Head Start Coaching Companion. So, we've provided lots of different resources. Again, please be sure to download and check out that resource list in the resource widget. And as you try these strategies out, please be sure to come back to the Head Start Disabilities and Inclusion MyPeers page within the next couple of weeks and check in with us. Tell us what's going well, what your plans are, and how it's going if you're implementing these types of strategies already or if you're making a plan to implement these types of strategies. So, before we move to the live Q&A, I want to say thank you again so much to Angel and Ragan, to both of you for sharing all of this really great, helpful information. And I also want to say thank you to our participants.Close
Additional Resources for Separated, But Together: How to Strengthen Collaboration in a Virtual World
Even when we can't meet in person, we can create strong partnerships. In this webinar, explore how disability services coordinators can support virtual consultation across all program options. Learn to help educators conduct successful online visits with families. Explore this video as a tool to help families support children with disabilities even when coordinators or itinerant educational staff can’t be in programs.
Note: The evaluation, certificate, and engagement tools mentioned in the video were for the participants of the live webinar and are no longer available. For information about webinars that will soon be broadcast live, visit the Upcoming Events section.
Last Updated: January 29, 2021