Seven Principles of Active Observation
Great teacher developers are first great observers. They enjoy being in and around classrooms and know their way around once inside. They see more, understand more, probe more, focus more, and move around more. They pose more questions, test more hypotheses, and collect more artifacts. In essence, they gain more useful information per minute of observation than other observers.
Based on observations of thousands of classrooms and observers, here is a set of principles that can guide toward more active and skillful observation. Prin- ciples are not laws and therefore should sometimes be ignored. They are stronger than suggestions, however, and are offered as a set of guidelines for making the most of every minute of classroom observation time.