Once you have assessed your program, identify the areas that you and your staff wish to focus on in the instructional components. 

While you may need to do additional work in several areas, prioritize the standard and sub-standards. The resources provided below are designed to support your thinking on how this might work in your district to implement your program. Each district has unique needs, so designing a program that fits your needs and context is the best path for success. 

The resources in this section focus on instructional practices for new teachers to implement:

  • formative assessment protocols with their mentor
  • an optimal learning environment and;
  • a focus on diversity, equity, and inclusion 

Student writing at desk

Overview of Instructional Resources 

Instructor Formative Assessment for Teachers

Teacher/Mentor Tools

These tools provide best practices, resources and tips to help you with your goals for mentoring and to establish collaborative relationships with your mentees 

The Literacy Information and Communication System (LINCS)

In this teacher induction toolkit you will find examples of formative assessment tools to support new teacher growth and development

Newton Public School Mentoring and Induction Handbook

On page 11 of this resource, you will find links to several sample high leverage tools: observation, post observation, conferencing and feedback resources.

The Learning System: New Emphasis on New Teacher Support

Pages 4-7 of this resource, highlight a collaborative assessment log that will help mentors assess beginning teachers’ practice more easily to focus their support and expertise in response to teachers’ specified needs.

American Institutes for Research: Mentoring and Induction Toolkit

This resource is part of the Mentoring and Induction Toolkit from the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders. This tool helps school or district teams plan for comprehensive systems of beginning teacher support that emphasize standards-based instructional practices.

The National Center on Quality Teaching and Learning

This resource provides a cyclical practice-based coaching cycle for supporting teachers’ use of effective teaching practices that lead to positive outcomes for students. The coaching cycle components are: 

1. Planning goals and action steps 
2. Engaging in focused observation
3. Reflecting on and sharing feedback about teaching practices

Georgia Department of Education

In this resource, you will find a mentor-teacher, goal-setting template and leadership resources to prioritize the school leader's focus on teacher induction.

EL Education

This resource provides a coaching-cycle framework to support professional goals and action plans. 

Teaching Channel

Teaching Channel has assembled the 1st Five: Early Career Action Pack to support educators in their first years of teaching and extend and make actionable the resources in our New Teacher Survival Guide. The pack can efficiently and effectively help coaches and mentors support new teachers as they acclimate to the profession, the school, students, and the community at large.

TNTP: Teacher Goal Setting

Teachers and coaches can use the goal-setting process as one strategy to improve teacher practice. This resource provides a sample goal-setting tool and highlights how teacher goals should be complimented by continuous feedback, open and honest dialogue, and additional opportunities for teachers to learn and grow through large and small group professional development. All of these pieces work together in order to help teachers develop and grow.

New Teacher Center Practice Brief: The Role of the Principal in Beginning Teacher Induction

This brief highlights how mentors and program leaders work in partnership to ensure successful induction practices related to formative assessment.

Santa Cruz/Silicon Valley New Teacher Project

On this resource, you will find information about the role of the site administrator in Induction, and concrete ideas for how to work with mentors and create the kind of positive school climate and relationships that are more likely to retain and grow new teachers.

American Institutes for Research: The Role of the Principal in Mentoring and Induction

This resource is part of the Mentoring and Induction Toolkit from the Center on Great Teachers and Leaders. This tool helps school or district teams reflect on specific actions principals, district leaders, and state leaders can take to support effective principal leadership for mentoring and induction programs.

Mentor for Optimal Learning Environment

Optimal Learning Environment Framework

Full text of Framework for an Optimal Learning Environment

CASEL: Educating Hearts Inspiring Minds

The CASEL mission is to help make evidence-based social and emotional learning (SEL) an integral part of education from preschool through high school.

Raikes Foundation: Ensuring Equity is at the Heart of Social and Emotional Learning

Focus on every student feeling as though they belong in their classroom

Mindsets Kit

The Mindset Kit is a free set of online lessons and practices designed to help teach and foster adaptive beliefs about learning.

Transforming Education: Resources for Educators

Resources designed to help educators act on what is known today about social-emotional learning and whole-child development. Included are tools and resources that can help teachers and school systems improve outcomes for all students. 

Mindsets Network: What We Know About Belonging

Students with a sense of belonging in school feel socially connected, supported, and respected. They trust their teachers and their peers, and they feel like they fit in at school. This is the premise of an optimal learning environment.

Mindful Schools

Summary of the research around mindfulness to support resilience for teachers and students

Achieve the Core

Student Achievement Partners, an organization founded by authors of the Common Core State Standards, launched a website to share free, open-source resources to support Common Core implementation at all levels. 

Achieve the Core: Classroom Videos

This collection of classroom videos and associated lesson materials was developed to support K-12 educators implementing the Common Core State Standards.

Common Core State Standards Initiative

A comprehensive and well-organized website that answers questions and provides supports to teachers.

Achieve the Core: Scaffolding

Strategies, plans, materials, and research to support scaffolds in ELA and Math

EngageNY Scaffolding

Meeting students' needs through scaffolding

Achievement Network

Protocol to guide teachers’ analysis of student writing. By organizing student work along a progression of learning that includes both reading comprehension and writing skills, teachers can identify trends and devise targeted instructional strategies to give students the support they need to be successful.


Analyzing student work data protocol

New Teacher Center

Knowing Students Across Multiple Dimensions to support mentors and their teachers to identify strengths and diverse learning needs; engage in reflective conversations that deeply analyze student strengths and needs regarding knowledge, skills, prior experiences, and personal histories; understand how students' strengths and needs impact learning; and plan lessons that address these strengths and needs

Setting Personal Goals Fuels Academic Success

An article that highlights strategies with videos to support student goal-setting.

Integrating Academics with Social Emotional Learning

Seven key practices to help students meet college and career ready standards

There is a Better Way to Teach Students with Disabilities

Using current brain research, this article focuses on meeting the needs of diverse learners

CAST: Universal Design for Learning (UDL)

See how the UDL framework - multiple pathways - guides the design of instructional goals, assessments, methods, and materials that can be customized and adjusted to meet individual needs.

Learner Variability is the Rule not the Exception

Edging into the conversation in an optimal learning environment is the term “learner variability.” It is a recognition that all students differ, and learning sciences research shows that these differences matter for learning. This article delves further into the variability in today's classrooms.

Embracing Learner Variability in Schools

In this video, David Rose discusses the importance of providing learning supports and structures that are tailored to students’ individual needs and abilities. He shares his vision for “de-standardizing” education to help students discover their strengths and become expert learners.

Understanding Learner Variability to Personalize Learning

This article is focused on why we actually personalize learning for students.

Learner Variability Project

The Learner Variability Project (LVP) works at the intersection of educators, researchers, and edtech developers to help design and develop supports for a more equitable education for each learner. Learning sciences research is translated into easily accessible factors and strategies that can inform classroom practice.

Valuable Leader Project (VLP)

The VLP is a free web-based app that helps teachers and students explore values, identify those that are most important, and consider how these values show up in our actions.


This document and resources provide the structure related to the implementation of UDL. When UDL provides a basis for instruction and curriculum design, the core beliefs in this document should holistically provide the foundation of UDL.

12 Ways Digital Tools Power Parent Engagement

There’s an increasing awareness and recognition of the limitations of traditional parent-teacher conferences and volunteer opportunities, particularly for traditionally marginalized student populations. Digital tools for more meaningful parent engagement are highlighted in this resource.

NEA Education Policy and Practice Department

Collaborating for Success - Parent Engagement Toolkit

Resources on academic and school related topics


Draw on collective expertise and energy through collaborative teaching and planning, collegial support, and team development in this Edutopia resource


Parent Teacher Conference Resources

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion


Free toolkit for facilitated conversations about race, bias and prejudice to listen, lead discussions around equity

"I Feel Invisible": Native Students Languish in Public Schools

At Wolf Point High School in rural Montana, Native American students face the same neglect Native students across the U.S. do as they navigate a school system that has failed American Indians

Understood for Educators 

For free, Understood for Educators empowers teachers in their goal to ensure that all students thrive. Equity is at the core evidence-based resources, classroom videos, and downloadable tools designed to help educators feel more confident in supporting students with learning and attention issues.

Ceedar Center

When used together, high-leverage practices (HLPs) and evidence-based practices (EBPs) can become powerful tools for improving student outcomes. This resource is designed to show the promise of these practices in advancing educator preparation and practice and, subsequently, outcomes for students with disabilities and those who struggle. The site includes articles and videos.

Reading Rockets

Reading Rockets provides numerous articles and resources for special educators.

Intervention Central

Intervention Central provides teachers, schools and districts with free resources to help struggling learners and implement Response to Intervention and attain the Common Core State Standards.

RTI Action Network

Resources and guides for educators in the effective implementation of Response to Intervention (RTI).