Restart Recharge Podcast

013 - Certification Recharge with Google's Certified Coach Program

August 10, 2021 Forward Edge Season 1 Episode 13
Restart Recharge Podcast
013 - Certification Recharge with Google's Certified Coach Program
Show Notes Transcript

Listeners will have all of their questions answered about the process for becoming a Google for Education Certified Coach. Amanda Del Balso, Senior Program Manager for the Certified Coach program joins us today as well as Certified Coach Emily Cowan who will share more about the journey to becoming a certified coach and offer some advice for listeners who are considering submitting their own application.

Links mentioned in the show:

Information about the Google Certified Coach Program

Google's Certified Coach Curriculum

Application

Information on Forward Edge's Coaching Mentorship program, recommended by Google for Education.

Follow #GoogleEC on Twitter

Follow Amanda on Twitter

Follow Emily 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

Edge•U Badges
Edge•U is an anytime, anywhere professional learning platform made for teachers by teachers!

Coach Mentorship Program
Year-long mentorship programs to support the ultimate PD provider: instructional coaches!

Unknown:

Hello listeners.

Justin Thomas:

Thank you once again for joining us for the restart recharge podcast. A quick note before we get started today, we had to rearrange the podcast schedule by a week. So our conversation with Susanna summers will now be the next episode, which is set to air on August 24. Thank you hit the restart button recharge those batteries

Katie Ritter:

Aloha, I am Katie Ritter,

Justin Thomas:

and I am Justin Thomas. And this is the restart recharge podcast, a podcast by coaches for coaches. We bring you tips and tricks to help you in your everyday work as an instructional technology coach, or whatever they call you in your school district.

Katie Ritter:

So hopefully you'll leave this episode with us today feeling a little bit less on your own coaching Island. And we

Justin Thomas:

have a special episode today as we have Amanda del ball. So here from Google to talk a little bit about the Google certified coach program. So we'll take a look at the origins of the program and look into how the application process is and becoming a Google certified coach. We also have Emily Cowen joining us she has just recently become a Google certified coach so she'll be able to talk about her experiences in the application process.

Katie Ritter:

Yes, ladies, welcome. We are very excited to have both of you here with us today.

Amanda Del Balso:

Thank you. Okay,

Katie Ritter:

I am going to go ahead and introduce Amanda. Give you a little bit more background on Amanda and her work. So Amanda del Bosco is the Senior Program Manager on the Google for Education team. She has a deep expertise in training educators to use technology in impactful ways. She currently leads the certified coach program which empowers instructional coaches to work hand in hand with educators to help achieve teaching and learning goals. In her 12 years at Google, Amanda has managed a series of global products and programs focused on helping K 12 families increase their digital skills and access. During her Google tenure, Amanda has worked in five different offices across the US and Europe, which I'm super jealous of Amanda, and outside of work, she enjoys spending time with her family and finding great spots for hiking and picnics. So welcome, Amanda.

Amanda Del Balso:

Thank you so much. I'm so glad to be here. Thanks.

Justin Thomas:

Awesome. And we are also having Emily Cowen, join us obviously you have heard of him link before on our podcast. But in case you have yet to tune into one of those Emily prior to her coaching role. She taught six years and a middle school language arts and science teacher in Charleston, South Carolina and Columbus, Ohio. Currently she is working across multiple districts to support K through 12 teachers in the Cincinnati area. She is also providing 100% virtual coaching to the school district in Kentucky. So Emily is also a Google certified educator, trainer and coach, which is why we will be listening to what the application process was for you. So welcome in Emily.

Amanda Del Balso:

Thanks, guys.

Katie Ritter:

All right. So before we actually jump into the certification process itself and the curriculum as it exists today, Amanda, we would love to hear just a little bit more about the history of the certified coach program and sort of kind of how it even came to fruition in the first place.

Amanda Del Balso:

Great question. And so glad you asked because the origin story of the certified coach program is one of my favorite stories to tell. And it actually goes back now about five years. And really at that point in time, we were looking across the portfolio, if you will, of everything that Google for Education has to offer. And our goal is always to kind of make sure that we're providing the latest and greatest things that can support educators no matter what role they're occupying. So when we were looking across our existing training materials and certification programs, we kept hearing about how great coaches are so round of applause for everyone on this call. But what we didn't see when we were looking across the marketplace, in terms of things that got offered to coaches was a lot of professional development that was really for coaches. And by that I mean, you know, not for teachers and who are, you know, working with our students or not for those who are working in professional development settings and working with lots of other teachers more like assembly style, but really for coaches who are working one on one day in and day out with other teachers. And so that was really the insight that led us to say, hey, what can we do to support this group of superheroes as they're working day in and day out? And what you might not know is that the original pilot project that we did that under was actually called the dynamic learning project. So we were really, really lucky to get to work with about 100 schools spread through out the US on this very early version of what would now be the coaching curriculum that you see live online. At the time, you know, we were doing it in person, we were flying all over the country to really listen and learn to from coaches about what they need, and then build to that end. So we did that pilot for about three years in a number of different school districts. And the certified coach program, as you see it today, is sort of the souped up if you will graduated version of that pilot program. Love it.

Justin Thomas:

Yeah, that is awesome. Flying all across the country. Sounds like that would be a lot going on there. But it's an awesome program you guys have designed? Was there any specific reason for three years kind of being that the mindset?

Amanda Del Balso:

Good question, I'll say it was a little bit of luck, and a little bit of planning in that, you know, we wanted to make sure that anything that we were going to scale and share, if you will, with all coaches as our recommendation for a coaching model was really tried and true. And also, we needed a little bit of time to kind of take what we were doing and those more scrappy if you will, in person types of environments and think about how to translate that to an online curriculum that still let coaches feel like they were learning but didn't feel like yet another elearning that someone is sending you were really, really sensitive to that dynamic. So three years one and two, we really focus on the foundations of what is what is now called our five step coaching model, what are the steps within that? Why do we feel like telling a coach and a teacher to first identify and then investigate, select implement and then reflect throughout a coaching cycle are really how they're going to get the most benefit, if you will, from a coaching interaction, both as the coachee, the teacher and as the coach doing this work. And then I would say year three was quite a bit around. Okay, now we feel like we have a set of strategies and even tools that we are really competent in recommending we worked really closely with an organization called Digital promise that did quite a bit of evaluation to sort of prove that out, which I'm happy to talk more about. And again, your three was okay, so how do we put this in a structure that all coaches could really benefit from. And so that was the first year that we had our online curriculum, which now gets updated on a regular basis. But putting that together, was a really fun and interesting challenge. And in the curriculum, you'll see lots of references and pictures and quotes from those who did participate in our early program just to try to really bring that to life.

Katie Ritter:

I love that, you know, Google for Education's team saw that need in the market around coaching, you know, in the way that you described that I know, I am kind of on a much smaller, individual scale, but kind of living and breathing that right now through my doctoral research is focused on supporting the growth and development of instructional coaches. And there is so little research out there on that topic, everything is about how high quality professional development includes mentorship and coaches and in different things, but very little on the specific needs for those individuals. And I know, all of my years, it was a lot of learning through my own trial and error without having a single place to go. So I commend your guys teams, so so much for being so intimately connected with the industry to recognize that that was a need to kind of build on top of the certifications that already fall in line with with the Google for Education series. So that's awesome. And kind of leading into that next piece. You know, a lot of times like I know, most of the coaches on our team have or work toward obtaining, you know, now the Google certified coach, but also the the Certified Trainer program as well, because I know that in our role, we do a lot of both. Can you kind of clarify a little bit of the difference in sort of what differentiates the two certification programs between the coach and the trainer?

Amanda Del Balso:

Excellent question, and probably one of the most popular questions that we get asked about Coach and Trainer. So I'm glad you brought that up, Katie. So I would say that the trainer program which is older if you will, like the older sibling of the coach program, focuses primarily on equipping teachers to work in those more group oriented professional settings where they're going to be sharing knowledge not just sitting down one on one with teachers but really in any number of of that is more than one. So the trainer course if you've taken it and sort of the activity in the community once you get that badge typically focuses again on that group oriented professional development whereas the coach curriculum and then the conversation in the coach community, once you do earn this certification is much more focused on those one to one interactions. So it's a lot of folks who I loved in your introduction, how you call this out Justin who have some kind of instructional tech coach something in their title, but they might be doing that full time, they might be doing that part time, they might be doing that outside of their school day or even aspiring to do it. But it really does come down to are you having a focused conversation with one individual around a problem of practice that they'd like to tackle? Or are you looking to train a number of teachers in a specific area. And again, there is there's not always a perfect overlap. But those are the two the the distinctions, rather, that you'll see in the program. That said, we have plenty of folks, like you said, Katie, who have both certifications, we are all friends with one another, you are welcome to go after both. I am obviously biased towards the code. Which one, let's say to do first. But for that reason, you know, we know a lot of folks are so gifted and wear so many hats, and maybe doing both of these things all day long. So first, thank you, I commend you. And second, then hopefully, you can see this as having double the resources in your pocket. And depending on, you know which hat you're wearing, at which time of the day one of these programs will probably feel a little bit more authentic to that those activities.

Katie Ritter:

Yeah, well, they are completely different skill sets. You know, we do a lot of work on our team to around the two different skill sets that you need with working one on one and how to approach things gently and move things along versus how do you keep things engaging when you've got 25 to 30 or more, hopefully, that's narrowing down but adults in the room. So that's awesome that there are kind of those two pathways that you can go individually or, you know, to eventually get both of them. So that's cool.

Justin Thomas:

That's cool. Someone's got both of those. Sitting right here is Emily. Emily, can you talk a little bit, let's say on the coach's side here since we have Amanda with us, but you know, a little bias towards him. I understand why. Let's talk a little bit about that application process for you become a Google certified coach, what all does that kind of entail for that process?

Amanda Del Balso:

Yeah, so the first thing to note is that it's really nice, but Google kind of sets everything up very similarly. So you kind of know what to expect and helps you through the process. So becoming a Google coach, you do have to have that Google level one, Google level two educator. So that kind of prepares you for this process. And Amanda can correct me if I'm wrong, but I think it says that the curriculum supposed to take you about 12 and a half hours. And I think that's probably like a best case scenario for someone, as someone who like really wanted to dive into the content, and make sure that I was really hitting all of those targets, it probably took me quite a bit longer. And that's not even counting for the time that you're actually working with the teacher. So it's kind of set up to be like, learn it, try it, and then move on. So I would say it definitely takes a little bit longer than that. But that curriculum has the five step coaching model, which I'm sure we'll kind of look at a little more. In this one, or I know we're coming up with our coaching Cycle series. But it talks about building culture, and that our role is not just working one on one with teachers, but kind of shifting the entire climate in a building, and building relationships. It focuses on different coaching strategies. One of them was leveling up your toolkit, so they provide you with so many resources to use and help you build that actual toolkit. So you can be successful as a coach, where you are right now. And then of course, our favorite is celebrating successes. So it helps you you know, find your bright spots and share those out. And then after you finish that curriculum, there is that standard assessment, I felt like this kind of encompassed that five step model, it felt pretty broad, and I didn't feel like I was being tricked. The language was very straightforward. And so as long as you've gone through that curriculum, you should be good to go on that assessment piece. Of course, I said it before, but again, they do ask for that evidence of that educator level one and level two. So you should have completed that prior to even starting this curriculum. And then the last piece, it will not the last piece but the second last piece is a portfolio. And this is a piece that I really enjoyed putting together. And it was just three artifacts that kind of summed up my work as a coach. So I had to prove my coaching interactions. So working directly with my teachers. I had to provide some data and kind of an analysis of the work that I had done and kind of show some of the growth of my teachers. And then there was a piece asking for the Write spots. So that's where I really got to focus on one scenario that went really well in my coaching curriculum. And then the last piece is the video. If you know me, and you're listening, I hate that piece. That piece makes me so nervous. So I know that you are going to ask more about that in a minute. But you do have a very short video component. And that kind of sums up all of the things that you need to do.

Katie Ritter:

Nice. Thank you, Amanda, anything that you would add to Emily summary of the application process?

Amanda Del Balso:

Oh, no, that was great. Thank you, Emily. Um, let's see, I would just maybe reinforce like Emily said, the assessment portion at the end of the curriculum is definitely not designed to be tricky. It is just designed to be an opportunity for you to show mastery of that curriculum. Because we do believe that the curriculum is sort of where the magic happens in terms of what you can learn as a coach about the different strategies that we're recommending putting them into practice, and then coming back to the curriculum. So since I can't be flying and being with each of you, and talking it through live coaching, if you will, the coaches, then this is our best attempt at getting at that in the curriculum. And then like Emily said, the portfolio I feel like sometimes people hear the word portfolio. And if they've maybe done a dissertation like you, Katie, or if they had a bad master's degree experience, they're like, oh, my gosh, portfolio, like I have hives already. And truly, it is supposed to just be a representation of things that you will be organically doing in your work as a coach and certainly prompted throughout the curriculum. So think of it more as a capstone like something you could tell your partner or your parents or whomever it is, like, Hey, I did this super cool thing, rather than another thing on your plate that we're asking for. So hopefully, again, in the spirit of this is very much to set everyone up for success and give you an opportunity to show what you've put into practice through this learning experience.

Katie Ritter:

Yeah, thanks for highlighting that. And Emily, you said it too, that you enjoyed putting the portfolio piece together. Because I do think and Amanda, you, you kind of hit on it. But I just want to highlight it again, for listeners, it really is something that like you, I don't even know necessarily that you might be like creating pulling screenshots or pulling examples and maybe elaborating on it. But you're not creating resources from scratch. It truly is something that is, to your point, Amanda happening organically as you're going through the curriculum as you're implementing it. So it really isn't this like I don't know, I don't even see it as this huge extra side piece. It's like pull these pieces together to share it with the review teams so that they can see everything in one spot of what you're already doing.

Amanda Del Balso:

Yeah. And there is like a little bit of reflection to that. Which was nice. So just thinking about all the things that you've accomplished. So it wasn't it didn't feel burdensome at all. It's exactly like what you said, if you were having a conversation with someone and telling them what you've done. Nice. Awesome.

Unknown:

And now let's take a moment to hear from our sponsors. Looking for a program

Justin Thomas:

that reaches all teachers and learning new tools to integrate in their lessons, and you badges is the answer and using 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 badge in our expanding library is aligned to the ISTE standards and the Samer model. Learn more about the program that teachers call addicting, at four hyphen edge dotnet backslash and you badges. Instructional Coaches support teachers, students, administrators, and really everyone in the district. In fact, research shows instructional coaching is one of the most impactful forms of professional development that results in improved teacher instruction and student achievement. But who is supporting the coach Ford Edge provides multiple year long mentorship options recommended by the Google for Education certified coach program to help you gain the valued support you need as an instructional coach, visit Ford hyphen edge dotnet to start giving PD to the ultimate PD providers. Welcome back. We're here with Amanda del Bosco and she is talking about the Google certified coaching program. We have Emily Cowen with us as well. And you guys were just talking about kind of the how the application process goes. Emily, you had mentioned that you feel it takes a little bit longer than kind of what they've initially said just for, especially for someone that is really trying to get in depth with the program. I'm curious, Amanda, how did you guys kind of come up with that timeframe? Was that part of the initial pilot group?

Amanda Del Balso:

Good question. Yes, this I would say it's based on our experience so far, talking to coaches about how long it took them to kind of go through things. So I think like Emily might have mentioned, it really can depend on the person just to kind of break that down the coach curriculum if you were to go through the modules again at a average. And I think that's sort of an imperfect word, but let's call it that, for lack of a better word. At an average clip, it would take you probably about 15 to 20 hours based on our latest data. Again, that can super vary depending on maybe there's a topic you want to spend a lot more time on, or maybe there's a video suggestion that we send you and then you go down like a rabbit hole of like other videos like it again, really can depend. But that's just for the curriculum piece. And again, it is designed to be kind of a learn, do come back and learn kind of model. And then the recommendation is that you're kind of going through the curriculum over a number of different coaching cycles, coaching cycles can kind of differ in each school, we recommend an average of like eight to 10 weeks, twice over. So if you're going through two coaching cycles, and then going through the curriculum, and also kind of gathering your artifacts as a natural extension of all those activities, it typically again, typically, not always, everyone, will be about six months from like the time you open your first module and start to learn all the way to when you feel like yes, I am like super ready to submit this application and kind of move forward. That's not to say you can't be shorter can't not to say that. It's longer. We don't necessarily look at exactly how long you have been doing these activities, but it is often reflected in what is actually in the application materials.

Katie Ritter:

Yeah, and thanks for clarifying Emily, I can vouch as someone who dots all her I's cross the T's definitely probably went down some rabbit holes to be very, very thorough. But that's what makes you a great coach, Emily. Emily, so outside of the curriculum outside of maybe taking the exam, about how long did it take you to actually compile the application?

Amanda Del Balso:

You're saying just putting the pieces together to apply? Um, oh, gosh, that's, that's really hard to calculate. I mean, if you're talking about actually putting the artifacts together, I mean, that was done in a day. It was just like you said, kind of polling snapshots, taking a little bit of time to reflect. I wasn't reinventing the wheel, the video. I mean, it was manda correct me if I'm wrong, but it's a three minute video. Yep. So if you factor in how many times I had to restart my video, just because I hated the way it sounded. That probably took me an entire day. But it really I mean, it's really a quick process to kind of pull those pieces together, okay. They, they asked for it in a Google forum. So you're just kind of linking all of your resources, they're uploading your certificates, but just a couple days to pull all that. So really, and

Katie Ritter:

truly the bulk of the work is spent actually going through the curriculum and implementing it. So just trying to help give listeners an idea. A lot of times, I think coaches will set a goal like, hey, winter break, I want to get this application submitted. So just trying to give them an idea, the six month timeframe is a great timeframe, Amanda to think about from start to finish, and actually implementing it, but just trying to give people good idea of like, how long do they maybe realistically need to be in a good spot to submit a quality application?

Justin Thomas:

Yeah, I think that's a really good aspect to look at as well, as you talked about how many times you had to do a retake with a video, right? Because it is it's intimidating to capture your coaching skills on video. As an experienced and successful coach, even some of us don't like to really be on camera. What advice do either of you have, if you're looking to get the Google certified, coaching aspect regarding that video portion, any tips or anything?

Amanda Del Balso:

Okay, I can start and then I'm sure Emily can add to this, I would say to really anchor it in what you're learning in the curriculum so that you don't feel like you have to start the video from scratch and be your own production assistant, if you will. So for example, really what we asked for in the video is if you could illustrate a specific time that you worked with a teacher, let's say teacher, Katie, on whatever it was that her classroom challenge, as we would call it, is and so we've had coaches even do something like go into the curriculum and grab a screen grab of this graphic that we have all over the curriculum, which shows our five coaching model steps, identify, investigate, select, implement, reflect, and have that on the screen next to them while they're talking or printed on a piece of paper or wherever it is. And just say like, Hey, my name is Amanda. I work with teacher Katie, teacher, Katie's challenge was XYZ. In step one, I worked with her to identify what that challenge was by and then they're off to the races and I think sometimes having the structure of making a three minute video that actually is just going through kind of like five bullet points, if you will, of what happened in real life and pretending like you're, you know, telling someone a story as you would at like the dinner table is a much easier than trying to think, oh my gosh, like I have to kind of fit in everything at once we know you worked with more than one teacher, I fully trust that part of the process. So just think of this as an illustrative example, if you will have one specific time and don't and again, don't feel free, like you need to tell me everything that you did in the video, just just that one story is perfectly fine with us.

Katie Ritter:

I mean, I liked how you how you kind of referenced it, like you're talking to someone at the dinner table, and you can correct me if I'm wrong. But the way that I usually give advice to people on our team, I feel like their personality is what makes them so great. And then when they go to submit a video application, they can oftentimes get a little bit stoic, and they feel like they have to be incredibly professional, and they can not stutter or say anything wrong. And it's like they lose themselves in the video. And so my advice is always, I've almost always when someone asked me to review a video for their applications, I say, go back and rerecord and let some of your personality come out a little bit. So not not to be like off the wall goofy, but I don't know. I think that a lot of times that personality is what makes you such a welcoming coach. So I don't know if you would agree with that advice or disagree. But I always feel like people forget to let their personality come out a little bit.

Amanda Del Balso:

Oh, my gosh, absolutely agree. I think to be honest, it's the best part of my day when I get to work with our team on reviewing applications, because it puts quite literally faces to names of all the folks that we want to be cheering on and shepherding. So love an opportunity to sort of get to know you. Also, like guys, Life is real. Many times these videos are happening in a classroom between periods or at night when kids are home. So like we've had dogs and videos, we've had babies run by like there is no judgment here. We welcome the full coaching family experience in your video.

Katie Ritter:

Love it. Emily, would you add any tips there? Well, I

Amanda Del Balso:

will say that you did steal what I was going to say. When I go through and I've had Katie, like, Hey, can you just look at this, it's always, oh, maybe we record and show some of your personality. So I had written that one of my tips was to treat it like a conversation and show your personality. I know Katie has said like, don't read from a script. Because you can kind of tell like I like she's mentioned, I'm very pretty detailed. So I would give myself kind of an outline of what I wanted to say. And she could just tell that I was looking like at the notes. So I would say you know, kind of have a plan. But I liked your idea of actually having that coaching coaching cycle, the five step model image up there, because that alone can be your talking points, you don't have to have details written down. That's just a good reminder. And then my other thing would be to pick something that you were really passionate about, or a person that you really enjoyed working with, because that made it so easy to fill the time. And I think, at least for the coaching video, that one, I mostly had to rerecord because I didn't have enough time. So it was kind of like, okay, how can I shorten this a little bit more, a little bit more, cut a couple of seconds off? Because I really enjoyed reliving and sharing the work that I did with that person or on that project?

Katie Ritter:

Oh, that's nice. That's sweet. You should tell that person. Okay, so Emily, tell us a little bit about now that you do have the certification, how will it impact your work as a coach? Or how did it impact? Because you got yours in December? Correct? Of 2020? Yeah. Okay, so then you had half a school year, so So how did you notice that that being impacted in your work,

Amanda Del Balso:

one of the most beneficial things and going through that program, or the course was all of the resources that were provided to me. And so using those having all of those templates ready to go, it really kind of eased my mind and saved a lot of extra time that I would have been spent kind of creating those resources. So definitely taking advantage of that saved me from reinventing the wheel at all, also, I do different things in different districts. So it was very clear on kind of setting up the schedule for coaching cycles, and how you can kind of stay on track because it is so easy to kind of find your way away from that initial goal. And so I found that, that that curriculum kind of helped me stay on track and set up a schedule for for my teachers. And then also there were tons of real life scenarios. So there were times when I'm like, This sounds very familiar. I think I went through this in the curriculum. And so it kind of helped me apply. You know, the ways that they told me to work through that or you know, just ideas I had thought about while going through the curricula LEM are right there in front of me. And so I could put some of those strategies to the test. So it really, it was very realistic to what our job actually is. Awesome. Love to hear that about

Katie Ritter:

that let's time it. Yeah.

Justin Thomas:

That's great. Amanda, once the coach is certified, how does the coach program continue to provide those opportunities for growth?

Amanda Del Balso:

Oh, my gosh, this is the best part besides the curriculum. Okay, they're both my favorite. Another good part. So we'd like to call it a coaching community. So for example, when you complete the curriculum and submit your application, it takes us usually a month, ideally, a little less, if we're moving quickly, and you get a badge. So the first thing to do is celebrate and plaster that badge all over social media, send it to all the people celebrate, print it out, put it on a t shirt, whatever you need to do to kind of feel great about that. And that that is kind of the entry ticket, if you will, to this community of global coaches who are really there to support each other. So we as a Google for Education Team, do a whole bunch of things to really try to feed that community. So we do professional development events formed by coaches throughout the year, for example, we'll have speakers come in that manage various coaching tools, which are also in our curriculum and kind of talk about the latest and greatest with those tools. Or we'll do a special session on managing data as a coach, how do you collect your data? Manage it up? How do you prepare for next school year? This year was a lot about navigating COVID? How do we do virtual coaching? What is virtual coaching? How do we get a teacher to sign up for virtual coaching? How do we find our teachers to even tell them to sign up for virtual coach and all the things and then among the community members itself, which I can take no credit for, but a lot of pride in is we have a Google group, if you will, that is that all of the coaches are a part of and so you can ping that group and ask them questions, share wins their frustrations, it's really kind of a four and by the coaches type of feel. So Katie, I think you mentioned at the beginning of the podcast, not wanting a coach to feel alone or like they're on an island, and we definitely share in wanting to help coaches feel like they are a part of a community, even if that community isn't people in your building, or even people in your district or even people in your country. So that's, I think, a really exciting thing that happens once you are have earned your badge.

Katie Ritter:

Excellent. Yes. And I can I can vouch for it being a very active community. I think there's always emails going through and coaches supporting one another and kind of those in the moment questions that they might have. That might come up even beyond the curriculum. So it is like like most, if not all of the Google for education, certification communities, it is another thriving, very supportive group. So to both of you, top top three, you may not necessarily have three if it's if it's condensed into less, but no more than three of your top tips that you would give a coach who is preparing to start this certified coaching journey. And we'll start with Amanda, are you ready?

Amanda Del Balso:

Okay. What you couldn't see folks is that Emily and I were looking at I want to start with this card. Okay, oh man, three tips. I feel like I'm doing my own coaching video right now. Like cancel over can't go under. I think my first tip and I hope this doesn't sound too, too silly. But it's just to dive in like the curriculum is online, it's there. It's free. It's not behind any kind of fire paywall anything so even if you're curious about it, and you're not sure you're like Amanda, this is going to be a big school year, I'm not sure I can allocate all 20 hours, just get started, see how you like it no harm in trying. And truly, we welcome you to go check it out or encourage others to check it out at any time. So again, just dive in. My second piece would be to if you can really try to set yourself up to be in a position where you're digesting a little bit of this material and then testing it out. So we hear from a lot of teachers that they love to do this curriculum over the summer, when they maybe have a little bit more brain space, and they wouldn't be wouldn't have otherwise. And then put that into practice in the school year. Or they'll carve out time over various breaks to kind of crank through a bunch of the curriculum and then put that into practice. So whatever that looks like for you, wherever you are, I would just think about sort of that model where you're want to give yourself time to learn and synthesize independently and then go forth and put that out in the world. And easier said than done. But my last tip is, don't stress the application part. I will volunteer myself and others to be available to help you but truly the application part of this is just intended to be an opportunity where you You showcase the cumulative things that you have done along your journey as a coach, both with the Google certification program, as well as everything else you're already doing as a coach. So, again, don't let that be kind of the straw that breaks the camel's back, if you will. And if you have any questions, our team is here to support you specifically along that part of the process.

Katie Ritter:

awesome tips. Thank you, Emily,

Amanda Del Balso:

man, that's hard to follow. Um, I would say that one of them is probably super basic. But if you are even the slightest bit disorganized, like I can be from time to time, I, if you're going to start the curriculum, I would create a folder in your Google Drive, because like I said earlier, they give you so many great resources. And I think it's really valuable to make the copies and have a place for them. That way, you're not wondering where it is later, because that, you know, that's very easy to get lost. So I, I would start with organization. My second tip kind of piggybacks off of what Amanda said, and kind of focus on one section at a time. So like she said, you know, whether it's spring break, you dive into a curriculum, like one section of the curriculum, and then when you come back, you kind of implemented, and then the next opportunity where you have some time you dive into another section, I think chunking it and really taking the time to like feel confident in applying the skills before you move to the next phase. And then I think if you have the option available to you having some sort of mentor as you work through the curriculum would be a really great piece. I feel very fortunate in that. I work with an entire team of coaches. So I have that built in. But I know we've set up before that coaches often are islands. And and once you get the coaching curriculum and this certification that kind of opens a door to connect with other people. But if you have the option while you're working through it, it really would be great to have some sort of mentor

Katie Ritter:

awesome tips from you, too. I think if I could add one, it might be to put a date for yourself on the calendar, like set that goal, put some dates, put some things on the calendar to kind of help hold yourself accountable. Because since it is which is wonderful. But with it being a free curriculum, it's easy to let it be out of sight out of mind. So if you can do something like that, or find a find a coaching buddy to go through it with you. So you guys can hold each other accountable, to make sure that you actually do achieve it by when you want to achieve it, whatever that timeframe is for

Justin Thomas:

you. Wow, those are some really good tips. Let's stick with our three here. Amanda, this one is for you. The best three things about working at Google.

Amanda Del Balso:

Whoo rule, a tough one. Okay. My fun fact is I have been at Google for nearly 13 years. So this is a lot, a lot of years to distill into three things. Okay, one, the people not to be cheesy, but truly like many of my best friends outside of work are also my work colleagues, especially on the Google for Education team, where I think we are united in this passion of really wanting to continue to cheer on educators in general, and especially coaches, who, in my opinion, were the coolest cape. So that's definitely one. Two is OK, in non COVID times the food I was sharing with this incredible podcast crew before we joined is that my family is Italian. But I have failed to become a very good cook ever in my life because of Google's food that is provided to me on a daily basis via lunch. So thank you food.

Katie Ritter:

I can see how that would happen though. Right? Yeah,

Amanda Del Balso:

I need a curriculum on food. Please send me suggestions. If anyone has those. I'm actually I know those exists. But I need to put a date down at and work towards that. And then I would say three is something around like flexibility. So for me, like I mentioned, I love to explore new places. I love to be outside. And what I've really enjoyed about Google is that it's a super global place with a global mindset that has literally allowed me to move. And from day time flexibility sometimes allows me to like get up from my desk and take a walk in one on one and while I'm you know, stretching my legs. So those are those are my best three on the spot, Justin. Oh, sure. I'm gonna think of many more. I'm going to send them to you after this meeting. Oh, yeah. Good. I'm excited. We want to want to

Justin Thomas:

hear more. Oh, yeah. And, um, I have a follow up question if if you're willing to share. You've been living in different cities all across the world. What are some of the cities that you've been living in Oregon with Google?

Amanda Del Balso:

Okay, good question. So I let's see, I've done I'm trying to do it sequentially. Cambridge, Massachusetts, Boston, then Dublin, then New York, then San Francisco. Then Mountain View. And I'm actually now in Princeton, New Jersey, technically back out of the mountain that acts out of the New York office. But we haven't quite returned to work yet. My favorite would definitely be Dublin, which, I mean, was just an incredible experience. It's kind of like the United Nations of Google where folks from all over Europe, the Middle East, and Africa come to work. And it was just so incredible to be around that many people from all over the place the diversity of mindset, and I love the idea of speaking more languages than I do. So even just literally getting to sit in the cafe and hear people speaking that many languages was like, super inspiring to me. Oh, no, you didn't ask. But there you go. Justin. That was

Unknown:

no that

Justin Thomas:

that is awesome. I was curious, because I knew there was a Google station in Dublin, I was curious if that was one of the spots that you had been in. So that is awesome. Dublin has a spot I would really like to go to at some point. And it sounds like it is amazing to be there.

Katie Ritter:

Yeah. And I think all of those just made everyone including myself a little bit jealous about working at Google. But we know everybody's always wants to know more like Emily said, but So Amanda, very last question that we have for you. Unless, of course, there's anything else that you wanted to share with us. But in thinking about all of the great experiences and things that you have learned from Google, and now getting to work so closely with educators, particularly coaches, what is one major Googly thing for lack of having an exact word? But what is one major Googly thing that coaches can take back to implement into their schools?

Amanda Del Balso:

Whoo, good question. Okay, I hope again, this is not too cheesy. But I would say an uncomfortably excited mindset. So at Google, it's sort of like a mantra that sometimes people ask, you know, what's your big idea? What's your moonshot idea? If you will, like this TEDx kind of concept that makes you uncomfortably excited? Meaning how can you think big enough that this, that you can completely transform something in a positive way, but the idea of actually doing it is like, Oh, I'm really excited about this. But also, like, are you really doing this like kind of nervous, but fun energy. And I see that a lot in how I think a lot of coaches approach our program, you know, some of them come in, they've been, they're completely new to coaching, others calm, and they've been coaching forever. But they're sort of joined in this mindset of wanting to do things in a way that they feel like is better for them, and more transformative for their teachers. And so we've bonded over this, I think I had sent it to a coach once kind of in passing, and they were like, oh, uncomfortably excited, like, I really like that. So feel free to borrow and endorse steel with pride. But I think now more than ever, as we navigate, I'm calling it a post COVID world, I'm not sure if that's like the right term, but whatever, a world that has been influenced by COVID. And so many teachers and schools and districts are thinking about where they go next, there's never been a better time to be uncomfortably excited about or frankly, of time that we're all being forced to be uncomfortably excited about what the future is. And I really think that coaches are sort of at the forefront of working with their schools and their teachers to make that happen. So that's what I would say, Oh,

Katie Ritter:

I love that so much. I think I can like see all of our eyes in the room like, yes, we are going to steal that with pride. So thank you for that uncomfortably excited expression that we will take away. I'm going to before we kind of wrap up, is there anything else that you wanted to share with listeners about the curriculum or the program or anything at all to do with the certified coach program?

Amanda Del Balso:

Oh, good question we covered so much today. I would say stick with my number one tip, which is like, please come one come all get started, feel free to share this with others. I think the only other thing that we didn't talk a ton about but I just wanted to acknowledge is certainly in the curriculum is how coaches can work really effectively with their support systems, whether it be a building leader, a system leader, whoever it is to really make sure that they are supported by those folks, and they are continuing to really highlight the importance of coaching work that's happening because we also hear a lot from coaches that they want to improve for themselves, and they want to improve for their teachers, but they need the support, like Emily said of mentors and those around them. So just know we agree with that we will do our best to shepherd best practices through the curriculum and the community. And I hope that makes you further excited.

Katie Ritter:

Yes, awesome. Well, thank you so much. To both Amanda and Emily for joining us. We will link the certified coach Program website, curriculum and application in the show notes for this episode at restart recharge podcast.com. You can also follow along with a very active community on Twitter. Hashtag Google. Oh II see, again, that's hashtag Google ECE. And there's again a very active community of folks that can help support you as you enter this journey to becoming a Google certified coach. And then I also want to mention and just kind of full disclosure, Emily did mention the importance of having that mentor coach for through her first couple of years of coaching forward edge does happen to be one of Google's recommended mentor partners for the certified coach program. Offering year long mentorship options for coaches, you can check out those options on our website at forward hyphen edge.net forward slash Google dash certified dash coach and we will of course link that in the show notes for this as well. So with that, 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 cast and we're

Justin Thomas:

about to hit another school year so if there's anything that is on your mind, please reach out to us and let us know what these topics are so we can discuss it here on the podcast.

Katie Ritter:

Yes So press the restart button

Justin Thomas:

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

Katie Ritter:

a tech coach collective Okay, so everyone say your prayers that we captured everything with the audio Okay, so we'll go ahead and get started. I have taken my bracelets off so they aren't like slamming around and pointing causing all kinds of Jingle