Differentiated Coaching of High School Mathematics Teachers: The Instructional Trajectory of Performance Tasks




Crawford, Deborah

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The purpose of this study was to explore the impact of a video lesson analysis model on the capacity of secondary mathematics teachers to deliver performance tasks with higher cognitive demand by increasing student reasoning through classroom discourse. Of interest was how to personalize teacher professional development given the typical constraints of a public school division in terms of resources. This study provides one model of using formative assessment on 10 key dimensions of cognitive demand and classroom discourse through digital media to differentiate teacher professional development during mathematical tasks with self-assessment and peer feedback. This study used survey, observational ratings on the Instructional Quality Assessment (IQA) instrument, and a descriptive case study to give information on successes and challenges to add to the knowledge base of individualized, job-embedded professional development models for secondary mathematics teachers. Findings indicated that teachers improved in all 10 dimensions when they set a specific goal to improve their classroom discussions based on a baseline video, selfassessed with criteria from the IQA rubrics, and considered coaching feedback from peers and a coach. Rigor of teacher questioning was the most significant dimension aligned with increased cognitive demand by students in mathematical task implementation. Teachers viewed self-assessment of their own lesson videos against the common Instructional Quality Assessment criteria as the most valuable component of the lesson study. Teachers improved in their capacity to deliver mathematics tasks with higher cognitive demand and explored how to personalize embedded professional development through coaching feedback. This study offers one model of how divisions can reach these goals with the realities of limited resources such as coaching staff, funding, and time. Therefore, this model includes efforts to explore the use of current web tools to expand professional development through virtual collaboration.



Mathematics education, Classroom Discourse, Cognitive Demand, Formative Feedback, Instructional Coaching, Mathematics Performance Tasks, Video Lesson Study