Let me start with a bit of personal information: I am not a cook. I mean, when my husband does it so well, why not let him cook since he loves it so much?! But my husband travels for work and years ago, one night, after a very long and tiring day with school, baseball practices and school events, I was in charge of dinner. So what did we do? We ate cereal. Don’t worry, we had fruit and hard boiled eggs with it, but the bottom line? We had cereal for dinner. 

My older son promptly took a picture of his meal, sent it to his father with the message: #WhenMomMakesDinner. That slogan became a family joke and was repeated often, with additions: #WhenMomForgetsMilk or #WhenDadDoesTheLaundry. They got a kick out of these hashtag slogans and I admit, so did I. 

Take a look at this video clip from Jimmy Fallon and Justin Timberlake as they too are overcome by hashtag slogans. It will put a smile on your face for sure, but I need to warn you: there is a cuss word (that is ‘beeped’ out) at the very end.

So, I started bringing #Reflections into my coaching. 

#Reflections are a quick and easy way to read the culture of the room and assess learning in my sessions with teachers. Before breaks and at the end of learning sessions, I’d ask teachers to share what was on their mind in hashtag form and I would encourage creativity. Sometimes, I would get serious replies, such as #VoiceAndChoice, #WriteEveryday or #KidsCanDoIt. These responses helped me learn what content teachers were taking away from the session. Sometimes, I would get hashtags that clued me into teachers’ mindsets instead, such as #BrainIsFull,  #WillTryTomorrow or #BringChocolateNextTime.

There are a few options for trying this in your own coaching. You might just have a conversation and ask teachers to openly share their hashtag reflections. Or, you might give teachers sticky notes to write down their hashtags and stick them on a piece of chart paper as they walk out the door. Or, you could go digital and have teachers share their reflections on Padlet wall or Menti word cloud or open-ended chat option.

Either way you choose, it takes no time at all to do and brings a bit of lightness to reflection and self-assessment. So why not try it? Share your favorite hashtags below!

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