Sandvold, A. & Baxter, M. (2008). The Fundamentals of LIteracy Coaching. Alexandria, VA: Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development.

Author: Amy Sandvold and Maelou Baxter


The Fundamentals of Literacy Coaching, by Amy Sandvold and Maelou Baxter provides a wide angle lens to view the scope and sequence of an effective K-8 literacy coaching model. Sandvold and Baxter, both integral members of the Reading Excellence initiative in Iowa's Waterloo Community Schools, provide six fundamentals for the implementation of a district-wide literacy coaching initiative. The conversational tone of this book demystifies the complexities of the process. Both authors provide practical and realistic advice for district and school administrators and literacy coaches in their efforts to create, maintain and sustain coaching programs. Sandvold and Baxter uphold that being prepared both organizationally and philosophically provides a solid foundation for successful implementation. They recognize the importance of building relationships between invested members and offer practical advice for developing and maintaining those relationships. Sandvold and Baxter not only review the role of the literacy coaches as teachers, but also their role as learners. Teachers being coached come to the table with a wealth of knowledge and this book reminds us of their important role in the coaching process. This book provides thoughtful advice for working with adult learners that creates an environment conducive to professional development. The fourth fundamental of a coaching initiative described in this book is consistency: consistency of purpose and vision, of organization, of attitude, consistency of the coaching model, of scheduling and consistency of paperwork. So many systems and process breakdown because of an inconsistent model or environment; this book provides examples of scheduling charts and coaching models that can be used by administrators and coaches when deciding on a structure for their own districts and buildings. The value in this book comes from the fact that the authors lived the experience and willingly share their successes and missteps along the way. This book does not take a microscopic view of literacy coaching by looking at the details of coaching conversations; however, it does offer a look at the broad structures and processes of literacy coaching initiatives that may cause either failure or success.

Date Added: 10/20/2008


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