Instructional Rounds - Sanford Inspire Program Learning Library

(Back to Table of Contents). Coordination with Mentor Teachers. Low. Medium. High. Pre-Planning. Low. Medium. High. Time in Higher Education Classroom.
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Instructional Rounds


Instructional Rounds Protocol


Observation Form

Note to users: This protocol was originally designed to be used with pre-service teachers who are completing their field practicum (i.e. student teaching). However, the activities described here could easily be adapted for use with in-service teachers in professional learning communities. The term “TCs” is used repeatedly in these documents and refers to teacher candidates, or student teachers.

Copyright © 2017 Arizona Board of Regents, All rights reserved •

Instructional Rounds Protocol (Back to Table of Contents)

Coordination with Mentor Teachers Low Medium High


Time in Higher Education Classroom 15-30 minutes

Pre-Planning Medium


Time in K-12 Classroom 15-30 minutes

Lesson Outcomes What type of thinking or reflection is this protocol designed to get teacher candidates to do?

This protocol allows teacher candidates to learn best practices from exemplary teachers in a supportive and non-evaluative environment and to benefit from the ideas of others - including their course instructor and fellow TCs. Instructor Preparation What up-front preparation will the instructor need to do to prepare for this protocol?

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Determine the focus of the observation (this could be an instructional strategy, TAP indicator, etc.) Find strong teachers who can model the observation focus in their classrooms. Communicate with the teachers to determine which teacher behaviors or competencies will be modeled (For example, in an upcoming lesson during which he/she will be observed during instructional rounds, the classroom teacher will make it a point to demonstrate high-quality academic feedback). Coordinate logistics: determine the date(s), time(s) and duration of visits. Create groups of 5 or fewer TCs. Create guiding questions or materials that may aid TCs’ observations. Steps What is the procedure for completing this protocol?

1. Background: Instructor uses class time to build background knowledge for the focus of the observation. 2. Guidelines: Instructor creates guidelines for the activity, emphasizing the non-evaluative nature of the observation. 3. Observation: TCs observe mentor teachers and take notes only on the focus area. (The instructor may provide guiding questions or points of focus for the observation. See the addendum for an example.) The observation may be 15 – 30 minutes and is determined by the focus of the observation. Attached is a sample observation form. 4. Repeat: Depending on the number of classroom teachers the instructor has coordinated with, TCs may “rotate” to different classrooms to observe different teachers. 5. Debrief: TCs debrief the observation. This discussion should focus on specific teacher and student actions and outcomes. TCs should also take note of similarities or differences between what they noted and what their classmates or instructor noted. 6. Individual Reflection: After the discussion, TCs should specifically reflect on how their new learning will impact their own teaching. Copyright © 2017 Arizona Board of Regents, All rights reserved •

*NOTE: If TCs rotate to multiple classrooms, they may observe different mentors for different things or the same thing. For example, TCs might observe how two different mentors give academic feedback, or how one gives academic feedback and how the other designs aligned activities and materials. Reflection What will teacher candidates be prompted to think about upon the completion of the protocol? What questions will they consider?

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What are the similarities and differences between how you _____________ and how (observed teacher) does _______________? What changes, if any, would you make to the way you ________________? What are your takeaways fro