NPRC Best Practices: Instructional Leadership—Curriculum and Instruction

NAESP National Principals Resource Center

Best Practices: Instructional Leadership—Curriculum and Instruction


Improving Instruction to Enable Teachers to Teach at their Best and Students to Learn to their Utmost


Dwayne Young, Principal, Centreville Elementary School, Centreville, VA; and Deborah Tyler, Associate Executive Director, Professional Learning and Outreach, NAESP.


Research has shown that the most impactful staff development to foster building the instructional capacity of educators is job embedded with frequent opportunities to revisit and adapt skills. In this webinar, our goal is to have principals share the steps and processes they have taken to ensure that teachers have optimal opportunities to hone their craft.

What Is It About Me You Can’t Teach? — Reaching Every Child


Diane Watkins, Director of Assessment and Accountability, Chesapeake Public Schools, VA; andStephanie Johnson, Coordinator of Educational Leadership Program, Hampton University, VA


Though parents send us the best they have every day, schools are not comprised of perfect children. In this webinar we will explore what makes it so difficult to teach some children and discuss exciting new ideas for reaching every student’s potential.

The Power of Building Capacity: Connecting Climate and Instruction for Improvement


Donna Snyder, Director of Early Childhood and Elementary Education, Arlington County Public Schools, VA


This webinar will explore a comprehensive system for improvement that allows teachers, administrators, and districts to actively and reflectively respond to student outcomes in order to provide quality teaching and learning for all. Practical examples of one school’s journey from state sanctions to success will be showcased to help principals envision and plan for innovation in their own school.

Academic Rigor and the Road to Exemplary


Kathleen Sciarappa, NAESP Mentor Trainer and Coach, Rigor Workshop Speaker


The NAESP Rigor seminar was developed with an eye toward providing information about rigor in the classroom, especially in light of the Common Core. We’ll discuss four aspects of rigor: 1) metacognition; 2) higher level thinking; 3) deep understanding; 4) solving problems then address specific teacher behaviors and student responses in order to help principals and teachers engage in discussions about integrating greater rigor into instruction. Academic rigor is more than a set of activities; it is focused on the belief that the primary role of schooling is to develop self-directed individuals who are self-reflective, self-modifying and self-managing. It entails teaching beyond knowledge and skills to a deeper understanding of concepts, generalizations and principles that sit at the heart of disciplines and are transferable within and across subjects. Participants will consider what changes can be instituted for students to achieve more in the classroom.

Articles from Principal Magazine

Principal coverPrincipal March/April 2016:
“New Approaches to Instruction”

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Validated Change

We have no shortage of ideas for improving instruction. The challenge is finding the right ideas, validating them, and taking them school- or systemwide.
—Justin Baeder

Scaling to the Top to Close the Gap

Special education and general education teachers teamed up to implement Marzano’s proficiency scales and improve student skills.
—Andrea J. Spas and Steven A. Morrone

A Maker Culture

Flexible makerspaces teach students to take risks, inspiring a deeper form of learning.
—Laura Fleming

Cultivating Creativity

Schoolwide collaboration and commitment leads to successfully integrating the arts.
—Susan B. Herrera

Tips for Effective Blended Learning

Five steps to help teachers reach the delicate balance of blended instruction.
—Amy E. Baeder

Principal coverPrincipal January/February 2015:
“Literacy and Reading”

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Diving In

Help students get to the bottom of close reading and complex texts.
—Douglas Fisher and Nancy Frey

When Old Becomes New

Bringing vocabulary instruction back into our schools.
—Aradhana Mudambi

Digital Native Does Not Equal Digital Literacy

By working together, principals, librarians, and teachers can transform learning environments to ensure that students achieve digital literacy.
—Ann M. Martin and Kathleen R. Roberts

New Arts + Literacy Standards = Opportunity

NAESP’s Gail Connelly discusses the intersection of arts-integration, college- and career-ready standards, and pre-K-3 with NAESP President Mark White and NAEA President Dennis Inhulsen.

Articles from Communicator

Communicator imageCommunicator August 2016:
“3 Ways to Connect & Innovate”

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Stay ahead of the curve with these easy tips for becoming an innovative educator. Read more.

Communicator June 2016:
“Teacher Partnerships Reap Results”

New research on how teachers can learn from each other and build tangible skills. Read more.

Communicator March 2016:
“Personalized vs. Adaptive Learning”

Learn the difference between personalized and adaptive learning, and decide what’s best for your school. Read more.

Communicator imageCommunicator March 2016:
“6 Ideas to Encourage Reading”

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Use these creative concepts from the National Panel of New Principals to inspire reading at your school. Read more.

Communicator February 2016:
“To Improve Reading, Start by Talking”

Stay ahead of the curve with these easy tips for becoming an innovative educator. Read moreRead more.

NAESP Conference Presentations

Presentation imageInstructional Rounds: A Collaborative Process for Developing Teaching and Leadership Capacity

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Primary Presenter

Aaron R. Butler, PhD—Senior Consultant, American Institutes for Research


Instructional rounds are an easy to implement process modeled after the medical profession where small groups of practitioners with varying levels of expertise, experience, and skill walk together to observe, discuss and learn. Instructional rounds offer a low-cost, high impact, sustainable learning process focused on improving instruction across the school.

View presentation slides.

Presentation imagePut Me In, Coach! Transforming Teaching Practice—Instructional Coaching that Works!

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Primary Presenter

Mark Reardon, MA, Educational Administration — Chief Learning Officer, Quantum Learning Network


Conducting professional conversations that stay focused and result in increased teacher effectiveness can be challenging. Put Me In, Coach! dynamically synthesizes cognitive coaching, cognitive psychology, neuroscience, and neurolinguistics into a practical model that deepens reflection, increases personal accountability, facilitates transfer of effective practices, and ensures high levels of implementation.

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Presentation imageSOS (Supporting Our Students) : Learn How to Support ALL Students with Targeted Instruction

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Primary Presenter

Pam R. Dodge — Principal, Ankeny Community Schools


Amy J. Krause, Master’s Degree — Instructional Coach, Ankeny Community School District


Transform the way your school operates to ensure high levels of learning for all students. Learn how one large Iowa elementary school individualizes instruction for 672 students. All students deserve targeted instruction delivered by the most highly qualified staff. Leverage your data, resources, teams, because all means all!

View presentation slides.