This toolkit is designed to equip coaches and others who support CS teachers’ instructional practice with tools that guide productive coaching cycles. The tools are designed to facilitate coaching conversations between colleagues with the ultimate goal of strengthening instructional practice and helping both teachers and students reach their full potential. Both the coach and coachee become more reflective practitioners when exchanging ideas about CS content or CS classroom. 

Overview of the Coaching Cycle

Coaching is an ongoing cycle involving three phases that take place before, during, and after teaching a focal lesson. We call these phases planning, implementing, and reflecting.

The phases vary slightly by the specific framework or coaching style adopted, but regardless of label, coaching cycles generally share similar processes. Most coaching relationships begin the cycle by reflecting on teachers’ strengths, areas for growth, and setting goals, before entering the planning and implementing stages. The cycle often includes opportunities for teachers to co-plan, rehearse, co-teach, and debrief with their coaches so that they can accomplish their goals. Throughout the cycle, teachers and coaches focus on the actions and evidence of student learning. 

Coaching Cycle

Coaching Questions

The role of a coach is not to focus heavily on providing solutions, but to help the teacher unpack their teaching style, methods, and content knowledge by asking probing questions to lead the teacher to independently find strategies that work for them and their students. These questions are not intended to be a checklist; rather, they are intended to be customized for use by the coach depending on context and the teachers’ CS growth journey. These questions can be seen as a launching point for the coach to brainstorm questions to ask the teacher during the coaching session. Coaching is most effective when questions such as these are integrated organically into the conversation. It is important to keep in mind that the goal is for these questions to support successful outcomes throughout the coaching cycle, ultimately, guiding the teacher to ask these questions themselves as they reflect on their own teaching practices.

Additional Resources

License & Attribution

Authors: Janice Mak, Bryan Twarek, Sababu Chaka Barashango, Cindi Chang, Shaina Glass, and Meg Ray

Suggested Citation: Mak, J., Twarek, B., Chaka Barashango, S., Chang, C., Glass, S., and Ray, M. (2021). CS Coaching Toolkit. CSTA Standards for CS Teachers. Retrieved from

CC license

License: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License (CC BY-NC-SA 4.0).