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Incremental Coaching at Lipson

At Lipson, our vision is to have “A great, trusted teacher in every classroom.”

What is Incremental Coaching?

Frequent and short observations from your own teaching coach. They focus on one area of the lesson and then choose one single action step that will help staff to improve. This will be supported by a follow up coaching session where the action step is  discussed and modelled. This remains as a target until it becomes a habit and is consistent within a teacher’s practice.

Powerful Action Steps

At Lipson Co-operative Academy, we use Powerful Action Steps (PASpro) as our method of recording and monitoring the coaching model. This is a simple and effective way to capture each individual teacher’s professional development. 

Our single action steps are largely taken from the ‘Teaching Walkthrus’ programme delivered by Sherrington and Cavliglioli but also feature steps from Lemov’s ‘Teach Like A Champion’. Each step is also mapped out against EEF Improving Literacy in Secondary Schools Recommendations to ensure that improving literacy is a crucial part of teaching and not seen as a bolt on. 

How is Incremental Coaching implemented?

Action Step 


Cold Calling

No hands up questioning

No Opt Out

Turn ‘I don’t know’ into success

Say it again, better (Literacy)

Encourage students to develop responses using more knowledge or improved literacy. 

Whole Class Understanding

Assess that all students have understood through regular hands up/down, true/false or mini whiteboards. 

Signal, Pause, Insist

Stop and wait for attention. Give verbal and non verbal signals. 

Give Them the Words (Literacy)

Use the Frayer model to provide students with an ambitious vocabulary to use and practice 

Chunk, Stop, Annotate (Literacy)

Plan reading effectively in advance and annotate small chunks under a visualiser for meaning. 

Reading Ruler (Literacy)

Teacher led reading with students using a ruler to actively track the text. 

The Coaching Cycle


A Typical Coaching Conversation

See It, Name It, Do It, Do It Again. 




1-2 mins

Precise praise used to discuss positives from last coaching session

Last time, we identified…. And I can see this being applied effectively when...

Probe- See It

1-2 mins

Question to identify the core issue

How did you use…. 

What strategy did you use to…

Action Step- Name It

2-3 mins

State single, high leverage action 

Improvements could be made with…

Replace… with...


4-5 mins

Simulate how to do it

Let’s practice together. Do you want me to be the teacher or pupil?

Role play action step

Plan ahead

1-2 mins

Design/revise upcoming lesson plan together

When would be a good time to implement this in your next lesson?

Follow up

1 min 

Establish timeline/method for sharing practice

When would be best to come and observe you implementing this?

I will come and observe this during your lesson on...

What do our staff say about Incremental Coaching and CPD at Lipson?

“Setting the scene and sharing the vision for the year with all staff was really powerful. There was a real emphasis on the value added by all staff to provide the high standard of education the school delivers”


“I think the model the school has adopted is progressive, supportive and insightful for staff at all levels. The move towards a horizontal model of coaching rather than a top down approach removes pressures of formal observations towards a more regular and realistic developmental rather than judgmental model.”