Restart Recharge Podcast

009 - New Coach, Who Dis?

June 15, 2021 Forward Edge Season 1 Episode 9
Restart Recharge Podcast
009 - New Coach, Who Dis?
Show Notes Transcript

Listeners will gain an understanding of how to transition to a coaching role with confidence. They will hear from two first year coaches on their experience transitioning from out of the classroom, and out of an administration role, into a coaching role. Veteran coaches will enjoy relatable “flashbacks from the past” as Mallory and Mark relay their experiences and new transitioning coaches will learn tips and tricks to make their path to coaching smoother. 

Links mentioned in the show: 

Follow Mallory on Twitter

Follow Mark on Twitter


Podcast Team

Hosts- Katie  Ritter & Justin Thomas

Editing Team- Megan Whitacre, Mallory Kessen, Michael Roush

Social Media/ Promo Team- Annamarie Rinehart, Lisa Kuhn, Molly Lutts

Creative/Content Team- Brooke Conklin, Emily Cowan, Tracee Keough

Research & Logistics Team- Mark Gumm, Tyler Erwin

Producers- Tyler Erwin & Katie Ritter

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Katie Ritter:

hit the restart button to recharge those batteries Aloha I'm Katie Ritter.

Justin Thomas:

And I'm Justin Thomas. And this is the restart remarks podcast, a podcast for coaches, by coaches, we're bringing you tips and tricks to help in your everyday work as an instructional technology coach, or you know, whatever they call you and your school district.

Katie Ritter:

So hopefully you're gonna leave here today with this episode feeling a little bit less on your own coaching Island.

Justin Thomas:

And today's episode is kind of a fun one it's called new coach who does you know, like when you get a new phone? We got a couple of new coaches with us here. You know, we say no, but you guys have been you know, you've been to your school year all school year long, but for this episode, we want our listeners to be able to gain an understanding of how to transition from the coaching role with confidence. So you're gonna hear from both of our first year coaches on their experiences transitioning out the classroom and have an administration role and into this coaching role. So veteran coaches will enjoy relatable flashbacks from the past, you know, like a throwback Tuesday in this case, as Mallory and Mark are going to relay their experiences and nutrients this evening coaches are going to be able to hopefully learn some tips and tricks on how to kind of navigate this new world of tech coaching here today. So

Katie Ritter:

did you say throwback Tuesday just throwback Tuesday Yeah. Thursday. Friday today, throwback is always more with it than

Justin Thomas:

in some cases, not all the time. But let me introduce Mallory Kelson she is on here today with us. Molly taught middle school English and high school computer science for six years, working with grades seven through 12 in both rural and urban settings. A true believer in learning as an adventurer. She completed her quest to become Google level one in two certified educator as well as a class craft Nearpod and Screencastify. Certified educator Mallory is now a technology integration coach in a large public school district in the Cincinnati area. Outside of coaching you can find Mallory running the teaching gamers YouTube channel, which focuses on all ways that people can teach and learn with games and you can catch her at the hashtag games for like the number for Twitter chat on Thursdays throwback Thursdays.

Katie Ritter:

Thank you. Welcome Mallory could be here and I have the pleasure of introducing Mark gum on our team Mark has a total of seven years of teaching experience as an elementary teacher in Georgia and Ohio. He earned his bachelor's degree in psychology from Morehouse College and a master's degree from the University of Dayton and educational leadership. Immediately before joining our team as a tech coach here at forward edge, he worked as a school administrator serving as the dean of discipline and behavior at a charter school in Dayton, which if you know Mark, it's a little hard to see him. He's so friendly all the time. Um, he's earned his Google level one in two certifications, as well as his apple teacher certification. And he is currently pursuing his doctorate at Antioch University with a focus on critical pedagogy. Mark also works as an adjunct psychology professor for Wilberforce University, and he is happily married with a father or and a father of three boys in Centerville, Ohio. So welcome, Mark, we're very excited to have you with us today for the first so

Mark Gumm:

happy to be here. And Justin.

Katie Ritter:

Oh, crew. Awesome. So we're gonna dive in, I'm talking about your first year as a coach, it's always a little bit scary. And so we gave a little bit in your guys introductions and the bios that you provided us that we could introduce us. But if you both take just a couple of minutes and just sort of share, because I always think it's so interesting to hear people's journey into the role of a tech coach. So share kind of that path and that journey and sort of what was that spark or that flame that led you to wanting to move into this role?

Mallory Kessen:

So for me, I moved into it from the classroom role. And I for as long as I have memories have always been a tech nerd, and a little bit of a geek and everything and have while you're in good company. That's I've found my people, um, but part of what led her to what happened with that was that I've always been really drawn to tech, whether it was through games, computers, whatever it was, and So for me, I would say that my journey kind of started with, when I was first teaching, I was trying to pull in all of these different tech resources and bring them into some of the rural schools that I was working in, where they weren't really used to having as many of the resources readily available. And I will never forget that my, my eighth graders at the time actually said, they're like, why do you teach English, you should teach computers like you are a computer teacher. And I was like, no, like, career wise for me. So when I moved down to Cincinnati, I actually I started an English teacher. And then I was asked to teach one of the computer science classes, because I have a master's in edtech. And I was like, Sure, cool on it, got it. And it was partly through that, that I really got to see some of like, the fun and excitement of like, you don't really know what the problems are, that are gonna pop up and that you're learning right along with people. And so then after about five years with that, I was looking for a new challenge, new change, things like that. And ended up becoming a tech coach. So for me, it's really pulled on a lot of my, I guess, my career advice from the eighth graders. They were right, I'm with I'm working with tech and computers now. But a lot of it too, is kind of that journey of realizing how much I love getting to not only work with people on problem solving, and things like that, but in some of my classroom work to one of the things that always meant the world to me was anytime someone would show kindness to teachers, and show that they were there to help support teachers too. So I feel like I get to do that on the daily now and I get to like be the support that I wish I had kind of thing. Yeah.

Mark Gumm:

Nice. Yeah. So yeah, I I was a disappointed behavior coach. And I think, you know, thinking back, you know, you run into kids who gets suspended, expelled, you're asking yourself, Well, did they do what did they do that bad to get suspended or expelled? And I think a lot of that kind of turned into thinking, Well, what can we really do with curriculum itself? What can we do with education? itself? How do we really even think about it? And I started thinking, well, I need to challenge myself more, in that it's not just about getting the kid out the room, suspending them, you know, maybe we need to look into something. So I kind of wasn't looking for a new role, but kind of like, realize I wanted to do more self journey, I wanted to figure out, you know, how can I even build myself more in education. And so when the opportunity came, knocking, it was almost like I gotta run through this door. And in doing so, I'm so happy I went, because I was able to see that there are many ways to stop or curtail some of the behaviors other than just suspending kids. And I think you really got to kind of look at, you know, well, what is happening in the classroom and all those dynamics. And so that kind of led me to this point where I'm able to kind of see if I can take my, this former self and put me into self as an administrator or disciplined behavior coach, I think I would find that there are probably less kids in the room. So I think that that was something interesting, I think if people kind of began to just think about what are those dynamics? And you know, what does the classroom structure really look like? Or even can look like? So yeah, nice.

Justin Thomas:

Awesome, two really good.

Unknown:

Totally different pathways to coaching.

Justin Thomas:

Let's talk a moment about perceptions. Because you both have had kind of a different background leading you into this path. So prior to becoming a tech Coach, what were your kind of perceptions or thoughts on what a tech coach was, maybe you saw them roaming around your building? Like I don't really know what they what they do. 100%. But then after your year, as a tech Coach, what has changed from that perception you initially had? And maybe before you came into this role?

Mark Gumm:

Yeah, Justin, originally, you know, I thought that a tech coach was just a tech person, and a building that just kind of like hooked up devices and make sure things work. You know, I never seen and it wasn't until I realized, oh, my gosh, they do a lot, you know, we we do so much more than what and just hooking up or plugging in. I mean, we're there to build relationships. And I think that that's something you would think, well, computers don't build relationships. They're two different universes, but essentially, they do. I mean, a lot of times, you know, it is about relationships and teachers, you know, some of them feel like they're islands. So having that connection to build with people other than plugging in. You kind of look forward to that. And I think that that was something as a coach now, as a tech coach. Now, that's something that I've found amazing and I think that I build so many new relationships with coaches and teachers and And everybody in the building you are, you're really an asset to a larger group of people. And I think that that's something that you can't trade. You

Mallory Kessen:

know, what's interesting, you say that too, with the idea that with technology, we don't always think about the human component of it. And with computer science we always talked about, and we will I always teach my students that computer science isn't just technology, it's how humans interact with it, and how people interact with it. And that sometimes, like, you know, because tech by itself, it just kind of chills there, and doesn't really do too much. But it's when we add that human component into it, that it can change. So I think that that's kind of ties in a little bit to that point about building those relationships and seeing that you can show people that they can do this too, they can make this happen, they can make this magic work and everything. I always tell my my teachers, I work with that I'm telling them the magician secrets, like so like, we're going to tell you the magic secret. So you got the magician too. I like that.

Katie Ritter:

We'll get Mallory, would you do you? Did you have a separate option? Oh,

Mallory Kessen:

yeah, I would probably say, um, for me, the schools that I was working in, we didn't have a tech coach in particular, like, we kind of like a lot of teachers, I think we had people in the building who were our, like tech support. But for me, there was one of the was the Tech coordinator we had at my last school, she was phenomenal. Like I put her in category of I want to be her when I grow up. And I remember like, I would just like watch what she does. Because yes, she would do some things like helping do like a little bit of break, fix or trying to help with that. But there would be teachers who'd come in and say, I want to have this kind of project in my class, like have like, what can I do? How can I make that happen? I'd frequently walk like walk into her room and bounce ideas off of her and things like that. And she was always just this like, very, like excited. But also calming force for everybody, like, tech wasn't a problem when you went and talked to her. And so for me, she was like 100%, kind of like what I had in my head of like, what a tech coach would do. And I think that if anything, what I've seen over the last year is that I'm excited because I get to do some, like I get to do quite a bit of that. But then it also takes that next step further towards even more change and things like that. So yeah.

Katie Ritter:

Nice. Yeah. So big change, going from teaching English and computer science and middle and high school and Mark teaching elementary to moving more into more of a discipline role. to Now you guys are serving in this tech coach, really supportive role. And Mark, I think you said it really nicely that you're kind of this force that supports, you know, everyone in the building. So what what was, what was the biggest, or the or the most difficult adjustment that you had to make to switch into this new role?

Mallory Kessen:

I think I think I kind of had two that were pretty big for me. One was, and I think this is a little this might be a little different from you, Mark, because you had some of the admin experience for sure. But for me, my interactions with admin were as a teacher, and my interactions with people, like you know, superintendents, or curriculum directors were like, minimal if they ever happen so they can complicate. Occasionally, they say good luck. Thank you. All right. We're seeing them at graduations or something like that. So I think that was one of the big adjustments for me was now I was working with those people, weekly, daily, whatever it may be. Um, and for me, at first, it was like, oh, okay, hello, hi, like a little nerve wracking and everything. But something that I've kind of gotten used to over time, and something that like, I still find myself having to tell myself sometimes I'm like, they're people to their people. And they're people who want things are like, do things outside of work more than just their job. Breathe, you're good. So that was one of the big adjustments for me, I think. And the other thing I'd say to it, you're gonna crack up over the smart elementary band. Oh, my goodness, my background is so Elementary, and I'm like, this is a whole new thing, a whole new beast that we're dealing with. So I

Katie Ritter:

they say the same thing about us.

Mallory Kessen:

Okay. It's been nice though, because I feel like I've gotten to do a lot of work with elementary teachers. And it's cool because I go into it telling them like y'all are teaching me just as much as I'm, I'm teaching you the tech stuff, but you're teaching me about your world too. And I learned way more about elementary this year than I ever thought I would know in my life. And so that's probably been one of the other big adjustments was kind of learning how to tailor some of what I knew about middle school high school and what I knew about technology and find ways to bring it to the elementary as well. was a big was a big step for

Katie Ritter:

me. Yeah. Ah, I totally agree Mallory. I think the first time I went from like, supporting K 12 As a coach, mine was huge. You know, you're like, oh, just have them log in. And like my, my colleague who was a former teacher, she's like, they don't even know their letters. Yeah. How are they just gonna log in? Right? And then you're like, this really is a problem. Okay, you know, so it's definitely, definitely totally. Like, okay, well, I'm a jerk. I take that back. Yeah, yes.

Mark Gumm:

Yeah, definitely. I mean, right. Right. On the note there Mallory evaluations, I think, you know, going in, you know, you see, you know, you see, students, you know, acting up or what have you, like, I was so used to watching the classroom turning into chaos very quickly. And so you get that witness, they call it you get kind of that spunk of knowing this is how you correct his behavior quickly. I think the adjustment was seeing that you can walk into a school, that's completely opposite of what you've known for years, you know, I taught an urban district for so long, I was used to seeing certain behavior. So walk into a district, and it's like, oh, my gosh, everybody's sitting down. They're learning. This is happening, you know, I was like, this is this is great. So it definitely was a learning curve that way. And that I've had to learn very quickly, how to help every different type of learner, that's an educator. So you know, helping teachers kind of navigate their own paths, and figure out what's best for them. And their own way, I think was interesting, because I was used to a certain typical type of teacher based on a student's response. So I think that was really cool to kind of change my lens, my perspective, I think that you have to be, you know, very adaptable, and and just really see the good, the positive, and everybody, because I think that that really helps your role as a coach. And I think for me, you know, going into the school I'm at now, I can clearly see like, wow, like, the little bit you do each day really does count. And I think as a coach, you know, some people just want that person, you know, that they can just rely on and being there every day. You know, I'm, you know, we talked earlier about that a tech support is, you know, they may come to your room, maybe once, you know, every three days, but I'm going in every day. So it was like that, you're that partner, you're that extension, you're that person that need. And so they look forward to seeing me and you know, when they don't see me on Fridays, they're like, Hey, Mark, I was trying to find him on Friday, but I have no Monday. Listen, you know, and before you know it, you're just opening this, this wonderful door of learning. So yeah,

Justin Thomas:

that's great. Yeah, I mean, you kind of talked about a little bit with that. But, you know, sometimes with tech support, you know, you put in your tech ticket, and then eventually they show up, but ours is a little bit different. We're like showing up and they're like, that I call you to see how things are going today, you know, and so I think like you kind of said it is kind of a weird shift where you do build those relationships, but you're working across the entire district in many cases, or the entire building. And I think that is a different role than you know, as a teacher is that sometimes you're kind of just locked into your classroom per se, you know, teaching the students and at the end of day, like, Oh, finally, like, go and talk to some people. But obviously, our role is a little different. Talking about elementary, I mean, that was the same. I was working with a teacher on Google Slides. And we had a cool interactive Google slide where they had like, different coins and stuff and they were gonna be able to like move the coins around. And you know, I went in thinking like this could be pretty simple. The teachers like I don't know, you know, it'd be I think you might need to be here for that. So like you walk them down no problem. I was there for like an hour. It was all sorts of kids be like, Oh, my Alright, what's going on? And they're like, my money's gone. And sure enough, they like deleted their like little coins, or they delete their text box, they could type anything. So it

Katie Ritter:

was my reaction in college.

Justin Thomas:

You know, I love going to the elementary is I love working with him. But it definitely was a little bit of a change, because seven through 12 was my background. And I was like, Whoa, this is a whole I mean, they're running up, they want hugs, they want to talk to him, like what is what is happening right now? Different place. But overall, obviously, there might be I mean, now it's a little bit of a blunder. I thought that you know, things are gonna go a little smoother with some of these cases. Were there any coaching blunders that I want to ask you if there's any coaching blunders that you've had your first year? We'll get to in a moment. First, we want to take a momentary break for a word from our sponsor. Looking for a program that reaches all teachers and learning new tools to integrate in their lessons, and you badges is the answer and she was in anytime anywhere badging program that is designed to take bite sized tools for instruction and teach teachers how to use them. LG has received the STC of alignment for Educator Standards, and each patch in our expanding library is aligned to the STC. nerves and the Samer model. Learn more about the program that teachers call addicting. And for hyphen edge dotnet backslash and you badgers. Welcome back to the restart recharge podcast. We were asking about your coaching blunders in that first year, obviously, we all have some of them, some of them or maybe more than others. You know, sometimes you get in your head that you're like, I'm fixated that this is going to work. And then you go in there and you find out that it's not working. So then reach out to a colleague, and they're like, No, I don't think that's a feature yet. And you're like, Oh, I gotta go tell that teacher that I was just totally way off on something else. You know, that happens at times. But is there any coaching blunders that either you had that you're willing to share?

Katie Ritter:

This longer, so I've got way more than me nervous.

Mallory Kessen:

I think for me, I have a I have two that come to mind. One was, and it was my first big blunder was we were doing a PD day and I had a session, I had a session I was leading on Nearpod and huge fan of it and everything. But that particular day, I don't know if it was internet, I don't know if it was the site itself. I don't know what it was a school high school thing, I'm telling you, the full moon is a thing. Um, but no, it just nothing. It didn't work. Not at all. And it was the day that I was like introducing it to teachers. And full blown like, I freaked out because I was like, I'm sitting at it. We were still working from remotely at the time working from home. And I'm just sitting there trying to figure out like, what can I do from here? And like, is it a me thing? Is it Do I have to move to a new location what I have to do. And I finally told the teachers, I think it was I said, you know, take like five minutes, I'll figure out what's going on. And I said, worst case scenario will work, I'll record the session post for you guys, you'll still be able to view it and still be able to get your credit for it. And I remember I referred back to, we have buddies on our team, and I referred back to my buddy and I was like, help me I don't know what to do. Like, did I just totally screw this up? Like, am I going to be in trouble? Like, I don't know. And she told me to breathe, which is really good advice. When you have a blunder. And then we've kind of talked through like, okay, it's saying that you're gonna go through and do the recording is good, like, you know, make do some kind of follow up with the teachers after and all the teachers said they understood and what I loved was they were even kind of joking about, ah, even the tech coach has those days. And so it actually did provide kind of a cool moment where I could tell them, Yes, even the tech coach has those days. And so when you have those days, don't be afraid to come to me. Or if you're feeling like something's just straight up not working, come tell me because you saw that it didn't work for me. And we had to kind of go to plan B. So that will probably be one of the big ones. And then the other was a day that I was co teaching with a teacher to help her integrate a new tool into her class. And again, and she was teaching remote, and it was zoom was not working. The tool was not working, nothing was working for us. And it was it was kind of really cool to see because we both had taken the approach that the students have, you know, all right, everybody, like come back a little bit later, it's cool, we'll get it figured out. And if not, we'll figure out something different, we'll figure out what else is going on. And what it actually led to was we found out that there was an issue with how it was rolled out for the district. And so it actually led to us kind of finding a solution or finding an issue that was going on, which was pretty cool. But yeah, that was those two things, it was more of I would always tell my computer science students this whenever you need technology the most, it will fail you. So always make sure you have a plan B so that was probably those two things that are kind of what those had in common was

Katie Ritter:

I like it. Well, yeah. And I liked that you like that you go to that plan B because sometimes I've seen I've seen people be in the position of leading the PD and things are going wrong and you're just trying to force it and force it because you think you like have to get through the session and sometimes it's like you can't fit a square peg in a round hole and if it's just like not working that day people will grant you the grace of like, this isn't working like give them their time back I just think the worst thing that you can do with teachers and like lose all credibility is waste their time. I think you made I think you made good on what was an unfortunate

Mark Gumm:

so yeah, I think I have one big one is really funny. I um, we finally were had the opportunity to get back in person. And I was super excited about it. And I was like ready Vamp ready to go and I was doing a Pear Deck presentation. It was a PD for for some Roberts staff and I'm super excited about it and got in there and literally the screen was just on my screen so I didn't duplicate screens nor extend it. So I'm like Presenting on my laptop like, yeah, as you see, and literally nothing, nothing's up. And so they started looking around and they're like, you know, there's nothing out there. So, really quick fix, but I kind of like on the cuff was like, let's extend our displays. Let me show you how to do that very quickly. So I just kind of weeded it in to teaching, you know, like, this is how you extend your screen, by the way. Now, we shall begin you know, so just, little blunder there. That was like a quick one quick fix. The other one was just it's so important to be prepared. You don't know who you're walking into and being new. Some coaches? I mean, some teachers are very helpful. Yeah, you could show me anything. I'm ready. And then there's other teachers that are like, I need that script. You know, it needs to be 1234. We have 15 minutes, make it happen. You know, you just kind of got to know your audience. And so for this teacher, she was very much like personality number two. And so literally, I walked in, and I was like, yeah, so I'm here to work with you. I'm excited. And she was like, Yeah, I need to go to Google Drive down. And wait, can you go back and do that again? What did you do? They're just very quick. And so I was like, intimidated. And I said, Okay, hold on, timeout. You know, I see that you have a lot of questions. I want to answer those questions. Let's do this. So we just opened a Google doc together. I wrote down her four questions. And I said, Give me a day, what your questions because you have some really good questions inside. I'm like, Oh, my God, I need help. Where's like, Where's, where's my team, and I just love that you can get on Slack and find that information, subject most of the time, when I need something, it's already there. So I can just have to kind of scroll up and look and say, Oh, that question was answered. Here's the answer to it perfect. And I'll write it down in a Google Doc or type it. But I was able to get back to that teacher. And by the time I had all her questions answered. She was like, that was very good. And I was like, yeah, see? I got you. I got you. But it's not I was like, that's one of those moments where you really realize you're not an island. And I think that having a a team of coaches that do this the way we do it is phenomenal. And I mean, I'm preaching to the choir, probably, but it's super awesome to have people you can rely on and yeah, that's those are two, quote unquote blunders that turned out to be like success stories. And even to this day that teachers still ask for me. And yeah, so good.

Katie Ritter:

Well, I think that's awesome that you like I think it I always will tell coaches, like you don't have to know everything, you can't know everything, if you try to pretend that you do know, everything you're gonna see through that app. So I think it's awesome that you kind of said, like, I'm not sure let me take some of these questions back and get you the answers. And as long as you do follow up, if you do it quickly, no one cares that they have to wait a little bit as long as they're gonna get ultimately get that help, and that you're gonna follow up with them. I mean, if you would make something up and tell them just so like, you know, because you're afraid you don't know if like you don't know, or you're not qualified for this job. Like, that doesn't do any good. So I think that's good. Well, I'll share, I'll share two of mine. One, I still want to die when I think of it. And the other one, it goes to show that I think that you know how like dogs start to look like their owners, I think like teachers take on the persona of the age of students that they have, literally, so that's the, but the first one, it was, I don't know, maybe six or seven years ago. So people didn't really understand the concept of like Google Drive in the cloud. And what does that mean? So I was trying to explain Google Drive to this district who is like, literally in the process of switching from office to Google, and I'm explaining Google Drive, and what does this what's the cloud mean? What's the benefit? You know, why would I want to log into Google Chrome? You know, so who am I like chrome bookmarks extensions are stored whatever. So I tried to explain it. I said, you know, if you would log in, and as long as you're using Google Drive, and you're logged into Chrome, let's say a tornado came through and took your laptop, you would just be able to log into the next computer and all of your stuff would be there. And everyone's face in the room got very serious. And I was like, What did I say? And someone kind of leaned in whispered to me, they said, there was a really bad tornado that came through here like a handful of years ago, and I want it to die. So know your audience is right, Mark. Research. They saw how terrible I fell, and then everyone started laughing. So then it was okay. But it was like, Oh, my goodness, that you know, I like want to die if I say something insensitive show that I still crawl on my skin on that one. And then the other one was a batch of middle school teachers. Here's like your take on the persona of the age that you teach. And I was leading a session on Pear Deck and the join code comes up. Oh, no. And join code was like, d U S. H. And everyone in the room is like dying, laughing. They're like Katie, Katie. What's the join code? What's the doing code and like trying to get me to say it and I'm like, You guys are so acting like your students. Yeah, they you know, I'm normally pretty, you know, I laugh at myself, but I'm usually pretty put together and they're trying to throw me off a little bit. But yeah, so anyway, so it was a fun one. But anyway, I thought I would just share so you guys know you're not alone.

Justin Thomas:

Like, I feel like, because paradex Probably my biggest blunder too. So there's just for our listeners out there. Don't try and have like 90 people all join a Pear Deck at the same time. That's not going to go.

Mallory Kessen:

My Nearpod was 100 people.

Justin Thomas:

Yeah, my, my paradigm. I thought I know, I didn't even think about it. But I had four different districts try and join in on a deck and the thing crashed core. So yeah, just

Katie Ritter:

Well, there we go. So, um, so in Ginny Mackerras book courageous adventures, she describes she calls fail forward. And she describes fail as first attempt in learning, which I really kind of like that idea. Because a lot of times we say like, it's okay to fail and fail forward and recover. And some people are like, what does that mean? So I kind of like that expression of first attempt in learning, because it's like, Yes, that's good. And then we learn from it, we move on, just like we all learned from those blunders that we just talked about. No natural disaster references. So when you think of some of those moments that you've had, whether it was the ones that you shared, or just other little things along the way, and those failed forward moments? What what is it that got you through? How did you continue to power through and malar you referenced your buddy? So I think that's a great way, but But what are the what's the support? Or what are those ways that kept you moving in those fail forward moments?

Mallory Kessen:

Um, I think for me, I would say kind of echoing, you know, what I said earlier, and what Mark said about the team, having a team or having people that I could go back to and like, you know, be there tell the stories of Oh, my gosh, I can't believe that just happened. Or I was asked a question. And I've never even heard of this thing. Has anyone heard of it helped me out here, friends, things like that. So having that support team helps. I think too, and for, for people who know me, I watched way too much reality TV. This relates. But in divorce court.

Katie Ritter:

No one that I honored you talked about.

Mallory Kessen:

In divorce court, Judge Faith mentioned, like, whenever, whenever she talks to people about starting over, she always tells them you're not starting over from nothing, you're starting over from experience. So even if there are situations where you know, okay, messed up. That's a blunder moving on to the next one kind of thing. I always try to keep that in mind, too, that, you know, even on days when I walk away feeling like, oh, gosh, I didn't know like any of these answers, or I didn't know how to handle that, or I was running behind them. And it's okay, I'm starting from experience. I've learned, you know, how much I can get done in a day, I've learned about new tools, I've learned that I don't know quite as much I've learned that I know more than I thought, whatever it is. So I love that. Yeah. And that again, that that when you're when you're starting over, you're not starting over from nothing, you're starting over from experience. Right? reality where you can

Katie Ritter:

learn things from reality TV.

Mallory Kessen:

Good, yeah. So that's, that's been a big thing that's kind of helped me keep moving forward is kind of keeping that mentality of like, even when I kind of feel like, you know, maybe I don't quite know, as much or I feel a little bit unsure of myself, I try to keep in mind, you're just learning new things every day. It's all cool. It's good. You're learning right along with people,

Mark Gumm:

I would have to say like the self identity piece, I think that was huge. Because coming into the role, you know, completely confident and you know, what it means to be a discipline, behavior coach education going into a classroom, I can run that room when I get in there. But you know, coming to a new role, you may not have thought about like, well, what is your identity now? Because it changes, your role changes, therefore, like your identity fluctuates a little bit, so you kind of have to know like, who you are. And so I would definitely say reading good books, you know, when we read the book, know your why that was a pivotal change for me. Or it was What's your why? Find your why. There it is fungi. So you find it when you know when you when you start examining yourself and taking that, that role of Well, who am I really? And why am I here? I think that will help you in your journey. And I think that that's been pivotal for me, because I came in kind of a little hesitant about the row excited, hesitant, but I knew I was like on a rocket. So you had that confidence, but and all short you kind of just have to really start digging in and defining yourself because, you know, a great concept I had at Morehouse when I was, you know, back in my college days, we always said divide Define yourself to redefine the world. So you got to start with yourself first. And then you redefine the world based on knowing yourself. So that identity piece is important, read a good book, you know, have those moments of watching reality TV have those moments where you can take a break from work so that you can get that self help, you know, kind of self development and all those pieces that really hone in on who you are. Yeah, that's been huge for me.

Katie Ritter:

So yeah, I like it. And you both You both made reference, a couple of times, like to having the team and how supportive our team was. And so I just want to you know, for our listeners, some of those coaches who don't have a team and you are on your own coaching Island, you know, I would just take that moment of, you know, you, your team doesn't have to be all employed by your same school district. So I would just encourage you to find that tribe, you know, reach out to our team on social media or find that tribe, whether it's another group of coaches going through the same certifications that you're going through, or through professional organizations, or people that you meet at conferences, like don't be afraid to reach out to exchange, contact information, phone numbers, social media, handles, emails, and you can form your own little tribe, I can't tell you how cool it's been for me to, you know, working with SEC different coaches that have never worked together in the same district, but they present every year together at ISTE. And, and they do things together, because they realized that you cannot do this job alone. And you cannot do it to the best of your ability by doing this job alone. And so I would just highly encourage people reach out, make your own team. You know, if you're not fortunate enough to have multiple coaches within the district, there's still a team out there for you, you just have to reach out and put the put the lineup together?

Mallory Kessen:

Well, I know one way to that, like, we kind of talked about this in the social media episode of it. But one way to that, like I've grown my PLN before is I'll even look to like, whether it's like podcasts or books or people I follow and see who else is following them. So would even recommend to people listening in to check out you know, who's following our restart recharge podcast? who's commenting on things and check out and see, are there other coaches and kind of start connecting with them on that, too? Is a real good spot. Yeah,

Mark Gumm:

no, definitely say to, it's okay. You can start friendships with the teachers that you have at your school. I think that, of course, keeping it professional, that's kind of important too, because half of our lives are at our school. And the other half is, you know, at our job, so, or I should say, our home base for that. So a lot of times I've found this kind of nice pairing of both worlds, where I'm able to make those lasting friendships, you know, we have a teacher right now that's ready to retire. And so everybody put money in for her, we're excited to watch her go. And you know, she's talking about how she's gonna move back home to Alabama. So she's leaving the state. So it's just, it's just important to kind of realize that you, you can find connections with people. And it doesn't have to be like you said, just you know, in the line of work, it can be in other facets.

Justin Thomas:

Awesome. Well, obviously, you both have a year under your belt, maybe another week or so to go. But pretty much you just got to write is there anything that you would want to improve upon from moving into next school year or change or just things that you've been to take with you? Any thoughts on that? Yeah, I

Mark Gumm:

would definitely say yeah, like hosting more professional developments, doing more PDS getting out there more, I think, you know, this year was definitely new and a lot of learning, learning the LMS Schoology, learning Google and learning all those things, and, and even using them now it's time to kind of AMP up and give the school what they really need. And I think, you know, the first year was very much like a learning component. But now it's time to show and perform. Yeah,

Mallory Kessen:

um, I would say for me, I've had a really, I think I've had a really different experience from a lot of the coaches on our team, just because I've been mostly virtual for a good portion of the year. So that's part of why I chuckle about what I want to do differently next year, I want to be on campuses, I want to get people in 3d. But I think like kind of on that note, one thing that I'd love to do is to be able to like meet with admin and meet with people in their buildings and talk about things that are building specific, because one thing that I've seen even just from being on campus, when I can be is that everybody has different focuses different ideas of what they want to do all aimed toward, you know, making their school or their teachers better. But I want to see what I can do to really help them focus on those goals. So that's going to be one of the things that I think I really want to do next year.

Katie Ritter:

So thinking about I think our last question for you guys. What are the top two pieces of advice that you would give a brand new coach. And if it would help you think about it, like what are the what are the top two things that you wish you could have told yourself at the beginning of this role?

Mallory Kessen:

So if I think back to myself at the start, my one joke piece of advice is you can you can go to the bathroom and get a drink whatever you'd like. Because that was my first question. I asked Katie, I think when we were meeting was, so who do I have to ask when I have to go to the bathroom? And she was like, you don't have to do that anymore. You're okay. Just because you're so used to that teacher mode. But, um, in terms of things that help your long and everything. I think the first thing I would say is listen, listen, listen, listen, listen, listen some more, whether it's to teammates, if it's to, if it's listening to teammates, if it's listening to teachers, there have been a number of times where I'll walk into a classroom, and they just kind of want to talk about what's going on with like, you know, their personal world. Or they'll say, I want help with tool a and then an asking them, well, what do you want to do? What's your goal, you find out that tool B would actually be better for them or things like that. So listening has been a big one for me. And then the other thing I would probably say, too, is to give yourself, give yourself credit yourself some grace that like you definitely, you know, more than you realize, and that it's okay, when you don't know things. So I'd say that making sure that listening is probably the number one thing that you're doing. And then to give yourself that grace of, you know quite a bit and you're good. It's kind of like we tell new teachers when they come into the classroom, even on the days when you feel like you know, nothing, you know, more than your students. So giving yourself that grace, but also the grace that if you do need to go look up something or you do need to go find something real quick. It's okay.

Katie Ritter:

Yeah, I'll echo your listening. That was a big thing that I had to train myself on at the beginning. Because I was young, I wanted to prove myself, I wanted these veteran teachers to like, know that I could help them and contribute to them. So I felt like I needed to, like have an answer for everything at first. And I was listening to respond, I wasn't listening to hear what they were saying at the beginning. So I that that was a big one for me. So I think that's a great that that little nugget, I think is a golden golden ticket right there for coaches. Yeah,

Mark Gumm:

I would definitely say relationships and trust first relationships, knowing that knowing how to build relationships, before we even get to the tools, all of the you know, all those pieces that come with technology, integration, and curriculum, you know, just really building that bond, because you really, you think you may have an idea of the school you're in. But until you're there every day, like working on the ground with the people, you find you find that the relationships that that's what leads you to more people, it really gets down to it. So I would say, taking the time to build relationships with people, whether it's, Hey, good morning, how are you all the way to, hey, I developed this on your behalf, and I just want you to take a look at it. I mean, it goes a long way. So relationships, and then also trust, I think that they go together, but they're a little different with trust aspect is it's much more like we're in this together that that that that you're not alone, that you can confide in me, and I'm going to keep your stuff, private. You know, there's been times where I've shared things with the principal that I would not have shared with everybody. And I've heard things about teachers that I'm not going to share out, you know, it's, it's very important that that trust is built. And I think that that you can, you can go so long. There's so many ways you can move when you build trust with people. And I think those two things have been pivotal. And I think as a new coach, just having, you know, go in trying to build relationships, and going in going in establishing yourself to the point of earning trust, because it can, it can be a positive thing. But if you kind of go in the wrong way with the wrong spirit or our attitude, I can see where that would be negative and then that won't, that won't work out.

Justin Thomas:

So yeah, that's huge, huge, huge, huge. I would even say to trust in yourself. I mean, like that's, that's something to that, you know, you go in and you're like, Damn, I'm probably everything, but you don't have to know every single thing. Every single tool. That's right, you know, that's you got other teammates, you have PLA and you have things like that, where if it's something that you're not sure about, obviously, you have the ability to reach out and connect with other people and just have trust yourself, be able to figure things out and work with those teachers.

Mark Gumm:

I would definitely say, you know, our team for that, you know, Katie, I tell you this, but I'm so serious, you did such a good job of finding, you know, I call them Avengers, finding these people who are good, who are good and like every other facet of the world wherever they are. And we've learned how to come together and use each other and learn from each other and build relationships and trust. And that's turned into a really positive working environment. I think that's what that's what you know, teams want I think that's what coaches want, you know, is the idea of just being able to say ourself ideas and not feel judged if you got it wrong. If you didn't display or answer something correctly, it's, you know, you can look past that stuff and build so

Katie Ritter:

you guys, you guys are the Avengers. I like that. They may

Mark Gumm:

make some graphics out there they'll get started

Mallory Kessen:

already photoshop skills

Justin Thomas:

out there on social media we'll see we'll see we'll see but we'll be out there and social media is obviously our next episode. That's gonna be coming out on July 13. Well, we are getting into the thick of things in July so kind of crazy even.

Katie Ritter:

So Mark and Mallory it's been so nice having you both and talking about that first year as a coach love having that perspective. I'm sure lots of our listeners are probably relating whether it was their first year or, or they're just remembering those terrible things they said their first few years. But anyway, so be sure to subscribe to restart, recharge wherever you listen to podcasts at restart, recharge podcast.com And follow us on Twitter, Instagram and Facebook at our our coach

Justin Thomas:

cast. And also feel free to reach out and connect with us on these social media platforms. If there's anything that you want to know or any topics that are on your mind, please let us know and we'll be happy to feature a

Katie Ritter:

and if you haven't already, we would love, love, love and be so grateful if you would subscribe and rate us especially if you listen on Apple podcasts that will help other coaches find the podcast so that we can hopefully help them too. And they can become a part of our little tribe here so that they don't feel alone on their own island. So with that, go ahead and press the restart button

Justin Thomas:

recharging coaching batteries and leave feeling inspired to coach fearlessly with the restart recharge podcast,

Katie Ritter:

a tech coach collective and getting this new bike thing Welcome back

Justin Thomas:

to the restore research charge