I survived my first week of teaching and coaching! What a week it was! I enjoyed every minute of it. For all of the teachers that say they cried for the first month of teaching, I don't know why!!! I love every part of my job, my students are hilarious, and the school lunches are actually pretty good! :)
There's just one big idea that I took away from this week, and it came from volleyball practice on Friday.
Coaching 6th and 7th graders can be quite interesting! For the first couple days of coaching, I was trying to develop my coaching philosophy. Friday, I think I found it.
We were doing a drill, and about half of the girls were standing in line talking, and I guarantee it wasn't about volleyball, or the drill we were doing. So, I told the girls to take a lap. When they got done, I gathered them in, and told them "if you can't focus and participate in practice, you're not going to be able to focus and participate during games". This happened one more time during another drill. Yes, I know girls are chatty, have you met me?! However, I know they're not learning what they need to if they're not paying attention. This happened one other time, and another lap they took.
Then we started working on serving. A lot of girls do just "okay" with serving, meaning they make about 3/10 serves over. After watching them all serve and giving a few pointers when needed, I got them all together again. I said "serves win games". So, they were going to all get in a line and serve one at a time. They had three strikes, and then they'd take a lap. If the ball didn't go over the net OR if it went out, they got a strike. The girls asked "everyone has to run?" I said "Yes... you win as a team, you lose as a team". 
The first round of this started out 3 strikes to 1 good serve. So the girls took a lap. The second round was 3 strikes to 3 good serves. So the girls took a lap. The third round, the girls exceeded 6 good serves and only 2 strikes, and then it was time to be done. 
So, what changed in those girls? They didn't all of a sudden have a skill they didn't have the day before. 
Every time a girl made her serve over, her whole entire team was behind her, cheering for her. No one wanted to run anymore, so they were all encouraging each and every player to get the serve over, and when they did, a rip-roaring cheer broke out for that girl!! I was so proud, I almost cried!
Encourage: 1. to inspire with courage, spirit, or confidence. 2. to stimulate by assistance, approval, etc. 3. to promote, advance, or foster.
As a coach, I felt the need to encourage the girls by putting a fire under their butts to actually get their serves over the net and in the court! They would miss, and it wasn't a big deal... until they had to run! Then, their peers, their friends, their teammates, were cheering for them, giving them the confidence they needed to do well.
I wanted to see progress. Getting 1 serve over the net out of 4 wasn't good enough for me. Getting 3 over and 3 not... wasn't good enough for me. So when the girls got 6 over and only 2 strikes... I felt like my coaching had paid off. 
Most of the time in teaching, we don't get to see results until about 5-10 years later, after the students come back to visit and say "Ms. Sanders, I passed College Algebra because of the tricks you taught me in Algebra 1". It's a great feeling to see progress and results, but rarely is it right away.
With coaching, results are happening every day... sometimes you have to look for them... or... create opportunities for them. 
Wanna see results? Wanna see progress? Start encouraging, in more ways than one.